Speaker menagerie

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My home theater, which we have been discussing as of late, has a pretty eclectic mix of loudspeakers to make it sound and work the way I want. I chose this arrangement with great purpose. Many people believe it is critical to have exactly the same loudspeaker type, or at least from the same manufacturer, in every location a speaker is installed within the home theater. I am not one of those. Further, I never set the surround processor to anything other than full range for every speaker in the system. I choose, instead, to design the system such that the very best devices are used for the intended purpose. The center channel, for example, has a job to do that is very much different than that of the surround speaker. Thus, making sure the center is from the same manufacturer as the surround makes little sense unless that manufacturer really has each of them perfected. I have found no such manufacturer to date. Better, IMHO, to choose that which works best for the given purpose, adjust around those choices. And do not choose loudspeakers that cannot be fed a full range signal. The surround processor is a poor place to add a speaker roll off. For the front three loudspeakers, left, center and right, I chose a ribbon based loudspeaker. The BG Radia SA-320 was what I wound up with. I have used these in an experimental loudspeaker I worked on and loved the way they sounded: quick, full, lifelike, non-directional. As a ribbon, their speed is hard to beat and my thought was I want clarity, non-fatiguing sound and the ability for the device to disappear above all else. Further, whatever I chose had to be an in-wall design as I have extremely limited space and did not want to chew up any room size. To install these loudspeakers, my designer, Robert, built specially constructed in wall cavities. He slightly toed in the left and right to aim better at the center position, the center speaker itself of course pointing straight ahead. Here's some shots of how he built these speakers into the walls. Note the pains taken to get the rear of the speaker damped properly, important in this type of speaker. Tomorrow I'll share the others. Wall-2 Wall-1 Wall-3
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Paul McGowan

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