Canton CD 200 Series Home Theater Speaker System

Old joke: Heaven is the place where the police are British, the cooks are French, the lovers Italian, bureaucrats Swiss, and the engineers German. Hell is the place where the cooks are British, the engineers Italian, bureaucrats French, lovers Swiss, and the police German.

What We Think
Though a bit pricey, this beautifully finished, well-balanced system delights the eye and will not disappoint the ear.
What the old saw omits is that in heaven, the metalworkers surely are German, too. I've seen whole regiments of slim, stylish aluminum-enclosure speakers fashioned for on-wall mounting or to otherwise complement modern flat-panel (or slim-profile) TVs. But this Canton array's brushed-aluminum surfaces, and its mechanical fit-and-finish, take the ribbon. If my Mercedes-Benz SLK's interior were this nice, I'd be happy. If I had an SLK, that is. (A six-year-old Jetta is more my speed.)

SETUP Beyond its jewellike finish, the Canton CD 200 Series home theater speaker system is similar to a lot of others in this genre: slim, quasi-cylindrical cabinets, perforated-aluminum grilles, and highly adaptable shelf-stand/wall-mount brackets (Canton's are simple, effective, and quite nicely made). However, the speaker uses push-terminal input connectors instead of the multi-way binding posts you'd expect on a system of this caliber; you can get banana plugs into them, but just barely.

I wired the 5.1-channel Canton suite to my pre-pro/power-amp electronics, which pump 150 watts all around. Canton rates the left-right-center CD 250's frequency response as "40-30,000 Hz," which is lower on the bass end than compact speakers usually deliver and higher in the treble than the limit of human hearing. I can't speak to the 30 kHz part (Fido? Wanna jump in here?), but the 40 Hz end is surely optimistic. Yes, there's some output at 40 Hz, but not much. I first set my preamp's crossovers to 120 Hz for all five channels and ultimately found that 150 Hz delivered smoother, more consistent bass.

My setup's front speakers went, via Canton's supplied tabletop mounts, on existing stands alongside my 50-inch Samsung DLP, with the center on a stand just below the screen. The CD 220 surrounds went on high shelves to either side of the listener, and the 10-inch AS 100 SC subwoofer a bit left of the left-front speaker.

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