Would any of the focal speakers be a good match as they seem to use the same tweeter. Like the CC30 for example? Anyone have experience with that combo?
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I can't afford the space (or the cost) of a Wilson Watch center channel speaker. I bought a nice Genesis center channel but it doesn't blend in properly, sound wise.
If you can't do the Watch, or another Sophia, I would say do the phantom center. The Watch is a decent center channel, but even the Watch isn't as good as a third Sophia would be. It isn't because of a lack of quality, it is because of the nature of speakers and how they sound when not exactly the same. The Watch is a great compromise if you can't do a third Sophia though, because it still sounds great, despite not being the perfect match (because it was designed to be close in sound, despite the compromises made to the size and structure).
I don't think you can go with any other speakers and get a decent enough match to make it worthwhile. I would wait and save up for a used Watch...
I advised a Wilson owner on using a Genesis center with his Sophia, he wrote back how he was all smiles and said it blended great. If your surround is mainly for movies dont beleive you cant get a good result from a carefully considered non matching speaker, for music it is way more important. You can run Phantom and many think it is good enough or even great but I totally fall on the side of the center channel being a must, BTW the Genesis center was under $1000. Like I said if it is for music I would seriously think it over but for movies you dont need to think as long.
Go phantom for center channel info - nothing cheap will blend properly - you can't turn a pigs ear into a silk purse ;-)
More seriously - there are plenty of good reasons NOT to go with a center channel unless you can use the SAME speaker as your mains at the SAME height...the mix and mastering studio engineers who make your movie and concert sound tracks do NOT generally use a different center channel at a different height...for good reason too!