Energy Take Classic 5.1 vs. Pioneer SP-PK21BS

I have a Samsung 46-inch LCD TV, Onkyo TX-NR509 A/V receiver, and KLH HT-60 speakers. I just got the Onkyo, and now I'd like to upgrade my speakers. I am considering the Energy Take Classic 5.1 system as well as the Pioneer SP-PK21BS speakers, but the Pioneers seem a bit large for my room (25x14 feet with a viewing distance of 10 feet). Also, the Pioneer's center speaker is so high, it would block the bottom portion of my screen.

Michael J. Leone

I'm surprised the horizontal Pioneer center speaker would block some of your screen, which must be placed fairly low. Can you raise the screen up a bit?

I've always been a big fan of the Energy Take-series speakers (see our review of the Energy Take Classic system here, shown on the left above), so I think it's a great choice for $600.

We also reviewed the Pioneer SP-PK21BS system, except that ours had the larger SP-BS41-LR left and right satellites instead of the SP-BS21-LR (see that review here, shown on the right above). The system we reviewed had the same center speaker, so if you can't adjust the height of the screen or the speaker, you'll have to look elsewhere. Too bad, since this is a killer system, especially for $400. (The system we reviewed is $528.) Other than the center-speaker problem, I don't think the Pioneers are too big for your room.

If you want really small speakers, and you can increase your budget to $800, consider the Cambridge Audio Minx S215 system (reviewed here). Other good options in this price range include the Definitive Technology ProCinema 600 ($799) and NHT SuperZero 2.0 ($844).

If you have an A/V question, please send it to askhometheater@gmail.com.

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