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Home Audio Speakers: The Basics

A home audio system is made up of two components: the receiver and the speakers. Once you have chosen a receiver that is to your liking and will provide all the optimal audio features you want, you have the pleasure (or pain) of choosing your speakers. The receiver is only as good as the home audio speakers and vice versa. But with so many types, which should you choose? What are the differences?

Floor-standing speakers, also known as tower speakers, have been around for decades, and for good reason. While larger than their counterparts, the reproduce a wide range of frequencies and are more efficient in terms of volume per watt. Because of their size and performance, they are more expensive than smaller speakers. They are ideal if you have a large room or want to listen to more music rather than movie watching.

People with a budget and little space should consider investing in bookshelf speakers. They can still offer excellence performance. Most are 2-way, meaning they contain a tweeter and a woofer or midrange. The downside of bookshelf speakers is that they cannot produce low bass as well as a floor-standing speaker. Consider adding a subwoofer to the home audio setup.

Movie and theater buffs will need to add channel speakers to their system. They can handle a wide range of frequencies and can deliver more precise dialogue, music, and special effects in movies. They are generally placed above or below the TV. The channel speaker should be the first speaker you purchase for your system and where you put most of your money.

Surround speakers are adept for the high and midrange sounds. They come in quite small packages these days and will therefore not distract from the décor. But remember to add a subwoofer for the low bass. Placement is key for these speakers to ensure you get that true surround sound effect.

As mentioned previously, subwoofers are crucial for producing low frequencies which is not possible on smaller home audio systems. However, they are rather large. The good news is that they are omni-directional so you can place it virtually anywhere in the room, out of sight.

Really tight on space? A sound bar is the solution for you. The sound bar's processor is able to deliver a rich, full sound throughout the room without all that extra setup. Sound bars offer virtual surround sound and are perfect for those with no floor space for speakers. They can mount on the wall or sit below the television. They connect with one simple cable.

Enjoy movies and music the way they were meant to be heard. Do them justice with the right home audio system setup.


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