Home Cinema Speakers Buyers Guide

Home Cinema Speakers Buyers GuideThe 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.

  1. 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.
  2. 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!

And finally…

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!


  1. alan gwynne says:

    i have a marantz sr5004 av amp mezzo2 mordant short for front set of mission m71i for rear a fidelity centre speaker and a gale3090 sub i am not sure if i should change to a all one set up or try and better match what i`ve got what would u sugest any help u can give would be greathave a budget of around £600 many thanks


    1. Because your speakers are all different manufacturers, you are probably not getting the best from your very good amplifier. My advice would be to stick with the SR5004 and spend your money on a matching set of speakers so you get a consistent and matching sound. The Q Acoustics 2000 Series are good speakers and would fit into your budget.

  2. nick says:


    i’m going to buy speakers for my house big living room and the label TRIAD came along through a friend of mine. he beeives these are the right ones for me.

    to be honest i have never heard of this label before and i was wondering weather you could give me some feedback regarding their quality of sound.

    SHould i go ahead and buy them?

    thankx loads


    1. TRIAD make good quality speakers but we would advise you listen to them first if you don’t know much about them.

  3. Michael Willams says:

    Looking for advice/direction please help!
    I recently bought a sony bdv n590 3d blue-ray pleayer/surroung system. Whils away on holiday my boy had a party and has put some very loud music or films on and has damaged the front left speaker and possibly the right. everything comes out distorted especialy dialouge from regular tv. I have tried to contact sony to buy replacement speakers but I seem to be knocking my head against a wall with them. I know these speakers aren`t the best in the business but the system suited my needs. So I am after advice on some speakers new or used I can buy to replace of similar standard. (I do realise I might have to buy a whole 5.1 set but that`s something I have to accept) I thank you in advance for your help/advice.

    1. Yes it does sound like the speakers have blown. The centre channel speaker handles the voice audio so wouldn’t have been affected by the overloud stereo music.

      The bad news is that Sony don’t sell these, or any speakers for their home cinema systems separately.

      If you don’t mind waiting, they do come up on Ebay from time to time, very often just the speakers themselves. Otherwise, a whole new system looks like the next best solution.

  4. Gareth Charles says:

    I’ve recently purchased a house with a cinema room but the sub isn’t wired into the controlling box. Im sure this has a specific name but as you might be able to tell I’m a complete novice with these things. The sub has a Hi Input and LFE input and the control box has connections (purple) for pre out and (white and red) for line out zone 2. What do I need/need to buy to connect the two please, I can send images if it helps?
    The control box is a ONKYO TX-NR515 and the sub is a MJ Acoustics PRO 50 MkII.

    Really would appreciate any help thanks.

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