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RSL CG25 Center Speaker Review

Rate this speaker:

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 26 16.6%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 70 44.6%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 50 31.8%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 11 7.0%

  • Total voters
    157

sarumbear

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Using the dB/color legend on the screen grab, one can also see the dispersion pretty accurately (-6db is the line separating light and dark orange).
Please read my post.
 

Keened

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This doesn’t make sense whatsoever?!!

The speaker obviously has an incorrect baffle-step compensation.
Well it's not an either-or situation, as you very well know, humans are imperfect microphones. It's quite possible for something to sound good without being ideal. Regardless of whether or not the design could have been better, and it clearly could have been (as the other MTM the 340SE2 showed), it should give you pause when something doesn't hit all of the KPIs but still comes out decent. Perhaps we need to re-weight the metrics to better reflect anthropomorphic ideal bias.

The manufacturer said it is supposed to be used with EQ, and the background it comes from, namely home theater, is 100% intended to be run with EQ usage. It's also explictly supposed to be used with a sub-woofer.
And what do you mean, “Objectively minded folks can either dismiss the listening tests…”? How about we chuck it into a properly controlled listening test, and see how listeners prefer it or not vs speakers with better spinoramas. Bet you anything it would be less preferred…and with EQ, it would still be less preferred than speakers whose spinoramas are better than this one with its EQ.

I mean, aren't we all still waiting for the next big blind listening test get together where we can emperically test all of the data gathered so far against actual listener preference? I don't think anyone is disputing that given what we know so far, but it's kind of like VBR MP3 vs FLAC: one is objectively better from a signal reproduction standpoint, but you can get surprisingly far with the other even though it is clearly inferior in abstract.
 

sarumbear

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Appears the same as when I first responded to it…

Both the color legend and the graph coordinates have the speaker at +/- ~15 degrees, not +/- 5 degrees dispersion.
We wear different glasses then.
 

rvsixer

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We wear different glasses then.
The green arrow somehow managed to read the color legend and find the correct -6dB dispersion angle :)

From your post 52:

1677796457062.png
 
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amirm

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It's the same old story, same old song and dance. Listening tests have value when they are done comparatively with an attempt to control biases. That's the way we connect measurements to perception. Without controlling for biases, listening tests add nothing to our existing understanding.
You are wrong about this. In this review I heard resonances that were clear as day. Such was not at all easy to detect in the measurements. But audibly, with the right test content (curated after testing 200+ speakers), the audible effect was very easy to detect.

Likewise, power induced distortion is trivial to hear in a speaker. Sure, you can see increased distortion in measurements but nothing quantifies it as clearly as playing again, the right content and hearing the distortion.

On tonality, I am not at all doing what you imply. I don't just turn on a speaker and pontificate as to what it sounds like. I measure it first. Then i build EQ filters for each tonality deviation and perform AB tests. If the results are close, then I perform them blind. If the results are not conclusive, I state it so.

As to training, it absolutely helps. And you get there by performing those AB tests and learning form them. Is it fool proof? No. But neither is our research of speaker performance.

Know this: it is a pain for me to perform these listening tests and developing the EQ. I would not remotely do them if they were not necessary. But necessary they are.
 

isolar8001

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Most of us that own RSL's CG speakers prefer the CG5 to the CG25. In most charted reviews and listener situations, the abnormalities noticed in the CG25 don't exist...the CG5 is one fine little speaker.
I rarely use my one of my three CG25's as a center, preferring my Q Acoustics Concept Center. The CG25 set vertically is a pretty formidable speaker though.
Sometimes I use them as my mains, sometimes the CG5's, and sometimes my Q Acoustics 3030i's.

Anything that RSL makes is one hell of a deal for the money. I got most of mine when they discontinued the white cabinets...I got the CG25's for 300 each, and 250 each for the CG5's. Best deal I ever got.

 
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beagleman

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I checked directivity from my seating position and it covered my loveseat. I noted that the narrowing is not as bad as some others.

I have made this same/similar type comment many times, (about SOME MTMs in general) and was laughed out of the room.

I think the lesson learned, one must HEAR a speaker before applying a blanket statement to all of similar types.
I think a bit too much emphasis is put on bashing certain things, with no real knowledge of how they work in a real room. (not you but forum in general, at times)
 
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Berwhale

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Interesting article regarding MTM in horizontal orientation with comparison of MTM to single 2 way bookshelf (with measurements)...


Conclusion of the article...

Below are some useful guidelines to consider when choosing a center channel speaker:

  • Choose a center channel that has similar output capabilities and sensitivity as your main channels.
  • It’s usually a good idea to choose a speaker from the manufacturers same product line of your main channels to ensure similar drivers and tonal characteristics “voicing”.
  • Consider a horizontally mounted MTM design if you have a height restriction and your primary seats are in a +/- 30 degree listening window or less.
  • Consider 3 matching vertical MTM designs for the front 3 speakers if you can place the center channel behind a perforated screen.
  • Consider W(T/M)W design if your listening window exceeds the +/- 30 degree and you are height constrained to not use identically matched speakers to your mains.
  • Bottom line, chose what sounds best for your application that tonally matches your main speakers as closely as possible.
  • Don’t forget to calibrate all of the channels using the internal pink noise generator (aka. Test tones) of your A/V receiver / processor.
MTM and W(T/M)W are the two basic center channels designs that are most popular. There are many variants of each all with their associated strengths and weaknesses. The best advice one could give when choosing a center channel speaker or any of the speakers in your theater room is to NOT just blindly rule out a particular type of design because someone says it theoretically cannot work. Test them with your ears in your listening environment across your listening area to decide if they are right for you.
 

rvsixer

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"Consider a horizontally mounted MTM design if you have a height restriction and your primary seats are in a +/- 30 degree listening window..."

Real world info, and this is the problem exactly (why am I an Audioholics patreon again lol).
Please show me an MTM that does +/- 30 degrees dispersion within +/- 6dB. I really need one for my new small HT build.

The speaker in this ASR test would be down -12db at 30 degrees (and right in an area necessary for speech intelligibility) .
So the person in the center things might be cool, people next to the middle would already be at -6db and may struggle a bit to hear clear dialogue, and people at 30 degrees out could go "huh, what did they say, could you rewind that and turn it up so I can hear it while you in the center seat now gets blasted please?".

I have personally struggled with these issues with both my MTM 2-way's as well as a DIY 2.5-way; IMO they work for one to three (skinny and snuggly) person theaters, after that not so much which is why I am looking for tested +/- 25 deg or a 3-way this time around.

Watch this for good real world info imo:

 
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Berwhale

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Real world info, and this is the problem exactly (why am I an Audioholics patreon again lol).
Please show me an MTM that does +/- 30 degrees dispersion within +/- 6dB. I really need one for my new small HT build.

The speaker in this ASR test would be down -12db at 30 degrees (and right in an area necessary for speech intelligibility) .
So the person in the center things might be cool, people next to the middle would already be at -6db and may struggle a bit to hear clear dialogue, and people at 30 degrees out could go "huh, what did they say, could you rewind that and turn it up so I can hear it while you in the center seat now gets blasted please?".

I have personally struggled with these issues with both my MTM 2-way's as well as a DIY 2.5-way; IMO they work for one to three (skinny and snuggly) person theaters, after that not so much which is why I am looking for tested +/- 25 deg or a 3-way this time around.

Watch this for good real world info imo:


I have a similar concern. My centre speaker (Celestion C4-C) sounds great to me in my central position. However, my wife, who has some hearing issues, sits on a side sofa and about 26 degrees off axis and often has issues with speech intelligibility. I know that some of the issues is attributable to her hearing issues, but I'm starting to wonder how much can be explained by the horizontal dispersion characteristics of the C4-C.
 

Newman

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Well try swapping seats and see what she says.
 

Berwhale

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Well try swapping seats and see what she says.

I asked this at the time. She said she isn't prepared to give up the sofa she's stretched out on and, from her perspective, why should she have to move to accommodate a speaker?

I ended up buying a Sennheiser Flex 5000 from their outlet for when she's really struggling.

Question: Is it possible to reduce the beaming, or move it's frequency away from the critical range for speech, by angling the mid-woofers?
 

Lttlwing16

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-- Just wanted to step in to mention after owning a full RSL 7.1.2 home theater setup (CG23 LRC//CG3 Surrounds//C34eMKII//SpeedwooferSMKII) as well as purchasing my Denon 4700H from them, their direct customer service is top notch. This is of course in addition to the stellar sound quality both for music and movies after applying Audyssey XT32 correction. The cohesiveness of the whole system from tweeter to sub is really to be spoken of. For a consumer level setup, the quality to price performance is really hard to beat.

Nice to see @amirm reviewing their work and finding it pleasurable.
 

Newman

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I asked this at the time. She said she isn't prepared to give up the sofa she's stretched out on and, from her perspective, why should she have to move to accommodate a speaker?
Well “swap seats” the other way: by literally swapping where the seats are located! :)
 

GabrielPhoto

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Real world info, and this is the problem exactly (why am I an Audioholics patreon again lol).
Please show me an MTM that does +/- 30 degrees dispersion within +/- 6dB. I really need one for my new small HT build.

The speaker in this ASR test would be down -12db at 30 degrees (and right in an area necessary for speech intelligibility) .
So the person in the center things might be cool, people next to the middle would already be at -6db and may struggle a bit to hear clear dialogue, and people at 30 degrees out could go "huh, what did they say, could you rewind that and turn it up so I can hear it while you in the center seat now gets blasted please?".

I have personally struggled with these issues with both my MTM 2-way's as well as a DIY 2.5-way; IMO they work for one to three (skinny and snuggly) person theaters, after that not so much which is why I am looking for tested +/- 25 deg or a 3-way this time around.

Watch this for good real world info imo:

Agree...I dont see what is good in the dispersion of this particular center at all.
 

Dj7675

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Agree...I dont see what is good in the dispersion of this particular center at all.
It isn't good dispersion horizontally. But it could be a good sounding speaker within its dispersion (frequency response, lack of compression etc) Too far outide that, I would expect sound to suffer of course. So this will be totally dependent on use case... distance from speaker and width of seating you care about. What I actually find very interseting is some of these MTM center speakers are quite good speakers when flipped vertically. Many of these are very good and better speakers than their bookshelf counterparts becasue of their dual woofers. There have been several of these. This one is a little different in that out of the box the frequency response isn't good. But should it really surprise anyone that it sounds good with EQ?
 

jbattman1016

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How do these compare to the CG5? Would you recommend those for a stereo setup?

Are you running full range or with a subwoofer? What's your room size?

The CG5 is great for music as this is what I have, but I'm running it with a sub.
 
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