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USER876

Klipsch bookshelf or floorstanding for my large room

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I am doing some upgrades and rearranging in our media room. Currently I have 15 yr old Klipsch floorstanding speakers (SF-2)  as my mains with a klipsch 12" sub and no center channel. They sound pretty good but I want some performance and asthetic improvements.  These are used 90% for TV and movies, and 10% for music at low volumes.  The room is large, 18x22 with 9 foot ceilings.


Option 1: Replace towers will R820F's  I know these are the"best buy" reference speakers but they are currently half price and I heard they sound much better than the older model and am thinking would be an improvement over what I have now (esp being 8" woofer vs 6.5") . I also plan to get a center channel (RP-440) and upgrade the sub with the klipsch 15"


Option 2: RP160M  bookshelf speakers as mains on stands with a center channel (RP-440) and upgrade the sub to the klipsch 15".  I know these are bookshelf speakers, but everyone raves about their output and frequency response.  I would have a big sub for the low frequencies and these are reference premiere which I am thinking will sound better than the reference line.  Only concern is will they fill the room up with sound vs the floor standers?


 

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There are more than two options, as there are quite a few speakers that would fill your room to satisfaction.  What price range are you looking at and what state are you in?  have you perused your local craigslist for klipsch speakers? 

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I have the RP-600M,  newer version of the RP-160.  I've heard people say they sound pretty close to the same so I'll use the term interchangeably.  In my opinion the 160 can absolutely fill the room.

 

I had RF-83's in small/medium sized living room 5.1 setup and I replaced them about a week ago with the 600's due to WAF  complaints.  The 83's sound more clear at whisper quiet levels and have less distortion at crazy loud levels but when the 600 hits that sweet spot in the middle it absolutely holds its own as L/R in a strong 5.1 setup, Marantz 6011 AVR.

 

The 600 has a surprising amount of mid-bass but you have to give it some power.  I have a 15" sub which I use for a more intense listening experience like Bluray movies but for TV watching 99% of the time the L/C/R is what I listen to.

 

For perspective, 65" TV in the middle, RP-600M on 18" stands which put them just below ear level while sitting down.  Some 24" stands would put them exactly at ear level but they sound so good where they are I have no plans to change.  As for sound, the 600's image like you would not believe.  In 2.0 they produce a phantom center just about as loud and strong as the dedicated MTM w/ 7" woofers.

 

225702814_VizioPQ65KlipschRF-83.thumb.jpg.93f7512741a409abfba5f8b9864513ea.jpg151202796_RP-600MJudgeJudy_small2.jpg.a686a14f871cb71f0f43f6bcbca5fa91.jpg

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That's good to know.  I recently got an 82" TV (60" is shown in picture below).  I am going to wall mount it and due to WAF, I think the bookshelfs on stands is the way to go.   I am going to upgrade the sub to the 115 SW and add a center channel which I never had before.  The 160M's are an amazing deal right now so I think it's worth a try, even the R820's at their current 50% off would cost a little more.  For the other poster above, I guess I do have a little more budget, but what am I really getting by spending more?

 

IMG_7647.jpg

Edited by USER876
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I suggest floor standers for a big room but......If you get really good book shelfs that would still be fine. Keep in mind book shelfs may need stands.

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1 hour ago, Fish said:

I suggest floor standers for a big room but.....

I agree with you.  His room is much bigger than mine and as much as I like the RP-600M's there is only so much air a pair of 6.5" woofers can move.  My MLP is about ten feet from the front soundstage.

 

The question is, will a pair of entry-level floorstanders be better for his room than a pair of mid-level bookshelf speakers?

 

1 hour ago, USER876 said:

I recently got an 82" TV (60" is shown in picture below).  I am going to wall mount it and due to WAF, I think the bookshelfs on stands is the way to go.  

 

The RP-160's are going to be an excellent choice because they are good speakers.  I also like your idea of the 15" sub because it can fill the space with a full sound at lower listening levels that the RP-160's can't.

 

The one place I might suggest you prioritize your audio bucks in the center speaker; get the best one you can afford.  In my experience the center speaker is more important than the L/R.  I am a lifelong 2-channel guy and I know it's hard to wrap your mind around that notion, but I've found it's true for me in the last few years since I've gotten the chance to acquire a couple of good center's like the RC-64 III.

 

To maximize your speaker budget you might consider finding a strong center on the used market.  If you think this might be an option let us know and we can make some suggestions, maybe even help you find something.  There are people here who are amazing at finding deals. 

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Well, If I don't go with the 160M's (listening position is 18' away), and the consensus is to stay away from the reference line (although I still think the R-820F is better than what I have now), then the option would be the RP-260F or 280F.  Am I missing anything?  I have to look at pricing.

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7 hours ago, wvu80 said:

 

The question is, will a pair of entry-level floorstanders be better for his room than a pair of mid-level bookshelf speakers?

Tough call but I would prefer a better quality speaker than a large speaker. I just sold some mint rf82s" in box for $400 , I like the best of both worlds....

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3 hours ago, USER876 said:

Well, If I don't go with the 160M's (listening position is 18' away), and the consensus is to stay away from the reference line (although I still think the R-820F is better than what I have now), then the option would be the RP-260F or 280F.  Am I missing anything?  I have to look at pricing.

18 ft !, man you better get some floorstanders......Well, it would be nice anyway....

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3 hours ago, USER876 said:

, and the consensus is to stay away from the reference li

Is that the consensus,? you appear a good candidate for the ref line . It's that or Heritage and I'm not sure  klf's will work for ya...😉

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Welcome to the forum!

 

18 feet is awfully far away from an 82" TV.  The visual impact and sound power will be greater closer.  We have a 130" projection screen (2.35:1) and Klipschorns, and sit about 12/13 feet away.   Filmmakers, like the rest of us, vary in how large they want the image, but most would want one larger on your retinas than you would get at 18 feet from an 82 incher.   As always, YMMV. 

 

You can spread your Left and Right speakers farther apart, but you'll need to toe them in a bit, and also get good center channel. 

 

The 15" sub is an excellent idea. 

 

I'm biased in favor of floor standing speakers.

 

Good Luck!

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1 hour ago, garyrc said:

Welcome to the forum!

 

18 feet is awfully far away from an 82" TV.  The visual impact and sound power will be greater closer.  We have a 130" projection screen (2.35:1) and Klipschorns, and sit about 12/13 feet away.   Filmmakers, like the rest of us, vary in how large they want the image, but most would want one larger on your retinas than you would get at 18 feet from an 82 incher.   As always, YMMV. 

 

You can spread your Left and Right speakers farther apart, but you'll need to toe them in a bit, and also get good center channel. 

 

The 15" sub is an excellent idea. 

 

I'm biased in favor of floor standards.

 

Good Luck!

 

 

Yes, I know it's a bit far back to sit, but we struggled trying to figure out how to get the seating closer without really closing off the room.   I will attach a sketch.

 

82" was the biggest TV we could get for a good price point.  We use the room every day so didn't want to have to keep it dark for a projector.  I hope to setup a dedicated movie space in the basement in the next 1-2 yrs.   Even at that distance the sound is pretty good and impactful.

 

sketch.JPG

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I agree with @garyrc directly upstream that 18 feet is a pretty far back.  I think the "book" says for TV watching you want to cover about 30 degrees of vision.

 

Here is my go-to guide for TV's which includes some science behind the recomendations.  The rtings.com chart says for 82" TV the recommended distance is 11.5 feet.

https://www.rtings.com/tv/reviews/by-size/size-to-distance-relationship

 

@USER876I know you've got room limitations and WAF considerations, most of us do.  I included the link for informational purposes, I'm not trying to be pushy.

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@USER876, @wvu80,

 

User, later, when you do your basement, consider projection (I'm not trying to be pushy, either:unsure:☮️ ).  For commercial cinemas, the specs I read were 36 degrees from the back of the theater, 53, or so, degrees from the front rows.  For 70 mm, the screens were often bigger, with the seats going right down to the chord of the arc of the curved screen, with no stage, or organ, or pit in the way.   If you run Lawrence of Arabia, or Ben-Hur (1959 version), or Baraka you may want that.   In my favorite 70 mm theater, shown below, we got about 55 degrees from the 11th row from the screen (which I haunted).  For 2001: A Space Odyssey we moved down closer.  Immersive!

 

image.png.3c118b0bf7d97f1847bc2bfbde89fb03.png

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Thanks for all the insight!  I am familiar with all the rules of thumb for screen size and viewing distance, and trust me I sketched out tons of options, even two rows of seating.   It's just that the room lends itself right now to be big and open as we do more in the room than just watch TV and movies.  Maybe down the road I will get the seating closer to the TV, but for now I just want to upgrade the audio.

 

I'd love to do something like this...closer seating with an eating bar in the back....much closer than having the seating on the back wall where it is now.

seating.JPG

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So I picked up the RP-160M's and tried them out tonight.

The verdict is that I was pretty disappointed.  I compared them with my 15 yr old Klipsch Synergy SF-2 towers listening to music, some TV, and some movie scenes. I didn't use the sub.  Although the sensitivities were about the same, my towers played louder at the same receiver volume setting.  The 160M's just didn't fill my big room the way the towers do.

The towers had noticeably more bottom end and a warmer / fuller / grander sound.  Clarity was equal.

Higher frequencies / treble / detail sounded equal. which was the biggest disappointment.

I auditioned them for about 2 hours.

I really wanted them them to work, especially due to the low price I got them for but I just packed them up, and will return them.

I will probably just keep the towers and invest in a center channel and a bigger sub. I guess the entry level models back then were actually pretty good speakers.

Thanks for everyone's help.

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Haha ... your room is big enough for PRO Klipsch speakers :D  Once you try them, you'll never go back :) 

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Just now, Emile said:

Haha ... your room is big enough for PRO Klipsch speakers :D  Once you try them, you'll never go back :) 

Why do I say this MAY be a true story....

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18 hours ago, USER876 said:

So I picked up the RP-160M's and tried them out tonight.

The verdict is that I was pretty disappointed.  I compared them with my 15 yr old Klipsch Synergy SF-2 towers listening to music, some TV, and some movie scenes. I didn't use the sub.  Although the sensitivities were about the same, my towers played louder at the same receiver volume setting.  The 160M's just didn't fill my big room the way the towers do.

The towers had noticeably more bottom end and a warmer / fuller / grander sound.  Clarity was equal.

Higher frequencies / treble / detail sounded equal. which was the biggest disappointment.

I auditioned them for about 2 hours.

I really wanted them them to work, especially due to the low price I got them for but I just packed them up, and will return them.

I will probably just keep the towers and invest in a center channel and a bigger sub. I guess the entry level models back then were actually pretty good speakers.

Thanks for everyone's help.

 

Just a note, they're probably not going to be real warm after 2 hours of play time.  Gotta break those bad boys in first.

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