The home cinema speakers you choose can make the difference between an average home cinema system and a great one, but the choice can be daunting. Our Home Cinema Speakers Buyers Guide will guide you through the process, and help you make the right decision.
Buying home cinema speakers can be as simple or as difficult as you want. You can buy your speakers separately, tailoring each pair to suit your exact requirements, or you can choose a complete matching set from a manufacturer.
Buying a Matching Speaker Set
This is by far the easiest, and normally the best way to get set up. All the speakers will have been designed and configured by the manufacturer to work together perfectly so it takes a lot of the guess work out of trying to match speakers types and brands. You will normally buy 2 pairs of speakers, a centre speaker and a sub woofer from the same range, and they will often also come in one box, ready to go.
Buying Speakers Separately
This way takes more time, and it is easier to make mistakes, but it does give you the benefit of being able to choose the speakers to match your particular requirements. If you choose to go down this route you’ll firstly need to decide which set up you want to go for. You can start off small and go for a 2.1 system, or you might choose to get a 5.0 speaker set up and add a sub-woofer at a later date or, or you may go hell for leather and get a 7.1 system straight away. The choice is yours!
Making Sure The Speakers Work Together
If you do not choose to buy a matching set, we would always recommend getting the main speakers from the same manufacturer because they have been designed to work well together whilst still giving you a wide choice in the type of speaker. For example you could opt to purchase a pair of floor standing speakers, and a smaller centre speaker for the front, and pair of bookshelf speakers for the rear, all from the same range so the complement each other perfectly. There is more choice with a subwoofers because they only carry the low bass notes so the sound quality and style doesn’t tend to clash as often.
Ways to Buy
There are two ways to buy your home cinema speakers depending on your requirements – both assume you have a budget to keep to.
- The Best Package – Most of us will have a set of requirements and things we need from our home cinema speakers. These requirements will vary from person to person, but in addition to budget you will generally want to consider aesthetics such as the look, colour and size; where you need to position them; whether they need to be bi-wired or bi-amped, and the sound quality. Buying this way means you can get a very short list of suitable speakers quite quickly, and you can make your decision fairly easily.
- No Compromise – If nothing else matters but the sound, then the best way of buying is to go into your local hi-fi store, specifying your budget, and see what they have to offer. You can then judge what speaker sounds best to you and you only. Just remember that everyone is different and just because the sales person or the whole internet thinks one speaker is better than another, it doesn’t mean you have to – trust your ears!
You’re almost there, just a few more things to remember before you buy:
- Make sure you like the look of the speakers – you’ll have to live with them everyday!
- Speaker Matching – unless you really know what you’re doing, it is almost always best to buy speakers from the same manufacturer, and preferably from the same range;
- Cables – Although some speaker packages do come with speaker cables, many do not, so factor this into your budget;
- Magnetically shielded – Again almost all home cinema speakers will be magnetically sheilded, but some cheaper brands may not be so watch out for this.
All you need to do now is read our home cinema speaker reviews, buy, and enjoy your home cinema!