Not knowing the size/dimensions of the room, and equipment associated with driving the speakers, it is difficult to make any suggestions. You say that you have 2 channel already handled, so I assume that you won't use these for music at all except for maybe concert videos? Or will you be listening to SACD Surround/DVD-A 5.1?
My suggestion is spend some time at the dealers listening to the speakers that deliver the most impact. You may find that the CM series or the 600 Series will fill the bill and save you some money in the process.
I think that (of course we don't know yet what you are using or plan to use) that the pre-pro and amplification play a very big part in the delivery of accurate and involving surround sound. From my experience I would rather have the fronts and rears match in size or be very close in size than have bid fronts and small rears. I feel that DTS-MS utilizes the rears more and that I lose bass response in the rear. Also since I listen to SACD/DVD-a 5.1 I would get a more surround envelope that I prefer.
But you may have a different taste that I do. And if you are utilizing 7.1 the the larger rears would probabaly not make sense. Just offering my opinion.
You certainly do not need full size speakers for the rear surrounds.
If you chose 800's for the front, you could easily use 805's for the rear surround,
You could even go for the 7.1 style and have four 801's for the rear sets of surrounds.
If like Theo, you will want a wider frequency response (more bass) then I would say 803 for the rear.
Center channel should be the upper quality dedicated center from B&W.
It's home theater, it doesn't make any difference.
I find that hard to believe that speakers don't mater because they are in a home theater....forums have all kinds of people i guess...
the room is 15 by 25 feet and the electronics could run any of the speakers.
Buy the POLK stuff for HT and be done. There is nothing on soundtracks worth all the agonizing.
Speakers do make a difference for home theater. If you want to watch concerts, like I do, a HUGE difference. That being said, I don't understand asking about only one brand. Why wouldn't you want to ask about, or listen to whats out there? If B&W is all you care to look at, just buy the best they offer for what you want to spend.
FWIW; I have a N801, HTM1, N805 and ASW850 B&W setup driven by a Krell KSA-250 (L & R) and two Pioneer Elite M-91 (center and surround). Sounds perfect to me. In fact, my wife and I have just watched/listened to Adele live at the Royal Albert Hall on blu-ray, about as good as live sound/vision gets; and I am not particularly an Adele fan. Emotionally brilliant!
Buy the biggest and best B&W's that will FIT into your space or you will never be happy. You will always have doubts as to what could have been. And, in the long run, you will wind up spending less money buying once rather than twice.
I have a full 5.1 system with Paradigm signature v3's with a SVS PB13ultra sub with integrated tube and Oppo BDP 95. Simply stunning sound from movies and music. I too bought Adele on blue ray and so far the best I've heard. Now I am contemplating changing to Casta Acoustics as they use a custom horn driver which is used in commercial theatres. If you want big sound - go horn. The speakers do and will make a huge difference in movies/blue ray concerts.
To the clueless who think that soundtracks aren't worthy of good speakers, you've obviously never listened (or heard) some of the great soundtracks and concert DVD's out there.
"A little knowledge is a dangerous thing".
Yuk. I'd go smaller, use subwoofers, and do a 7.1 system. I'd never go back to 5.1. Assuming this is a mainly HT setup, you have the room (room for speaker placement, you don't need room to go 7.1) and are going 7.1, put all the all matching speakers at the same ear level. LCR close to the display and subs at different ends of the room.
At the 800 Diamond cost level I'd look elsewhere, but hey, you're the Boss.
It doesn't matter, it's tv.
I went with 804S all around... all i can say is WOW.
thank you for the input
For best HT I can't believe you are stuck on B&W. You don't care about dynamic range, reference levels, and full range? Is this a bedroom system then? Be prepared to spend a fortune compared to what other manufacturers could give you for much, much less.
And IMO if you want the "best" HT from B&W speakers, you better buy 5 or 7 all matching speakers.
I could buy 6 qty Klipsch KLF 30's, upgrade the tweeter diaphrams with ti's, convert one of them to a center by cutting a new front baffle, and smoke nearly B&W setup. For HT you can't beat dynamics, full range, etc. I could get 6 qty KLF 30's for under $2500. Just giving a example of why B&W is a bad HT move. Your gonna have to spend Mega money for B&W's best full range models, and have to match all speakers!
Sthomas.... my post ,right before yours, stated that i have 804S speakers at all corners. (all five speakers). and i am using my old cdm SE speakers while i experiment with 7.1.
I understand that there are other companies that sell their speakers for less, that's all well and good, i enjoy my system. I have heard a great deal of professional commercial systems, and hometheaters and demo rooms.... mine at least stacks up tp any of them (and i do not even have room treatments.
i always love people saying that higher end speakers will not do that great with hometheater....dynamics and all.....i guess a speaker that is made to accurately reproduce sound does not do well????? make no common sense.
Totally missed that post! Nice purchase. Matching them all was a smart decision, I bet it is first rate HT experience. B&W can get you there, just a bit more expensive. Bet you are loving them!