Multiple Center channels.

This old topic is closed. If you want to reopen this topic, contact a moderator using the "Report Post" button.
I would like to try an experiment, but I'm scared.

I just bought a big screen TV and would like to try connecting the built in speakers as second and third center channels. How do you think my pre-amp will hold up? I'm not too concerned about extra distortion unless it becomes audible. I never listen to music with the effects on, and movies are not known for low distortion material.

By The By, I thought you guys would find this interesting. I just read an article on the internet somewhere. The guy stated that no one would want high quality main speakers for their theater system. Because no one just sits and listens to music anymore. Especially not in front of their TV. BS! I have a satilite system with 40 music channels! I sit with my coffee every morning for at least a half hour and listen to just music.

Speaking as one who pays very little attention to video (I've got a system, but it doesn't really stir my blood), I personally can attest to the fact that there are a few dinosaurs out here who listen to music.
As to the preamp will depend on how much current your preamp can deliver. Obviously, we're talking minute amounts of current, not whole amps. Other factors to consider are the input impedances of the various things you're asking the preamp to drive. For your present purposes, higher impedance is better.
When all is said and'll probably work.
(And fer cryin' out loud, don't let anyone hear you say that you don't care about the "D" word--it'll ruin your reputation!)

Joined 2008
Paid Member
Disclosure: I was the last kid on the block to go stereo from mono.

Toole provides overwhelming evidence that the meat is in the center and a satisfactory center channel is extremely valuable.

Toward that end, I have four high quality bookshelf-like speakers on 2 foot stands (The Egg from Leigh Instruments) with two of them FLANKING the plasma screen and at screen height. They are connected in parallel to the center channel. The other two are FL and FR. They give me a really great center channel... which is where the meat is.

To return to this thread, I tend to endorse the view that the more speakers and drivers, the more you are splitting the differences of shortcomings and room acoustics and improving the total room sound. While the built in speakers in your TV may be poor, can't hurt to have them spice the sound in proportion. But only as a supplement to one or two quality center speakers.

(I am about to start a new thread relating to center channels in stereo systems.)
Last edited:
Joined 2008
Paid Member
The one problem that you will have is:
The two separated center channel tweeters will fight each other every inch of the way.

And how is that different from a stereo set-up with the two tweeters fighting and the localization of instruments with treble (which primarily arises from the tweeters) shifting?

In practice, even with absolutely perfectly matched tweeters the room will cause imbalance. But the ventriloquism effect over-rides minor imbalances and differences in position when there is a real target (like a TV screen) and prolly similar even for a virtual/phantom center location. Even more so if the tweeters are fairly close together like multiple center channels.
Joined 2004
Paid Member
would like to try connecting the built in speakers as second and third center channels.

This is what I have done with my JVC D-ILA (LCoS) bigscreen. The TV has variable audio outputs and I leave the speakers on. The center channel speaker is above the screen so this creates a triangle with the TV speakers. I run the receiver volume high so the center channel is dominant and the TV speakers just fill in enough to image the sound in the center of the screen. (perhaps -10 dB) No smearing, no drop outs, just a very screen-centered image. The TV remote raises the volume of both so there's no readjusting.

Also, unless you're talking RPTV, the TV speakers are not worth using. And at that, only some RPTVs will have worthwhile speakers.

4.5" FR's in their own ported box. The TV backlight is a bulb, not fluorescent so it has the room for real speakers. (4.5", did I say real speakers? I must be getting soft in my old age.)

Nowadays this system is not practical as the speakers are crap as Dangus mentioned but if the D-ILA system ever caught on but alas, I guess the owners got mad at all the bulbs they had to buy so that system went bye bye about 5 years ago. And no it's not the old RPTV.
This old topic is closed. If you want to reopen this topic, contact a moderator using the "Report Post" button.