Deciding on Polk center speaker S30 vs CSiA4

I recently bought a packaged deal consisting of an Onkyo TX-686 receiver paired with Polk Signature S55 tower speakers and polk HTS 12 subwoofer. I need to buy a center speaker. The series match is the S30 center speaker (No S35 because of budget constraint) but is it mandatory. The S30 costs about $149 but the Polk Audio CSi10 is $99. The Polk Audio AM3365-A TL3 is around $145. Seeing the specs, I do not see much difference in TL3 vs S55 vs A4. (1) Is it important to have match center in same series for timbre effect. Polk does mention speakers of different models also match with each other (2) Any thoughts opinions on TL3 vs S30 vs CSi10.


  • rooftop59rooftop59 Posts: 4,923
    Hi, welcome to the forum.

    Yes, in this case I would get the matching center. As you can see from my sig I don't think the front three half to match, but the S30 is the superior center of the three. (Your post is a little confusing because you are mixing up series - there is no CSi10, but there is a CS10, and the CSiA4 is better). The TL3 is just too small and will have to be crossed over really high, don't bother. Get the biggest baddest center you can afford. The center and the sub and the two hardest working speakers in the home theater.

    If you can up to a CSi5 that would be my suggestion. It isn't an exact match but it is a significantyly bigger and better center:
    HT Rig:
    Denon AVR-X4200w; Peachtree Audio NovaPre; B&K TX4430; Bryson BPD-1; Mains: Dynaudio Emit 10; Center - Polk cs400i; Heights, Center Surround - Klipsch KHC - 6 In-Ceiling; Surrounds - Monoprice in-ceiling; Sub - HSU VTF-2 MK5; LG UP870 4K BDP; NVidia ShieldTV
    Master Bedroom
    Marantz SR-5007; Audiosource Amp Two, PSB Imagine B, Definitive Technology ProCenter 2000, NHT Super One CI surrounds, Martin Logan Dynamo, Squeezebox Touch
  • firsttimerfirsttimer Posts: 87
    I am using an s30 center with s60 towers. Get the s30 you will not regret it
  • mrlorenmrloren Posts: 1,682
    Hello and welcome,

    I have the S30, got it with my S60 package deal. I built my TV stand for a big center so the S30 looked a little funny. I used a TSX-250C for a bit, nice big center that looked good but was step behind the S30. I picked up a CSi-A6 on CL for $70 and love it. Ran Audyssey and it blends very nice. My advice is look for a good used CSi-5 or CSi-A6.

    If you're in SoCal I will sell you my CSi-A4 or TSX-250C for dirt cheap.
    When I was a kid my parents told me to turn it down. Now I'm an adult and my kids tell me to turn it down.

    Family Room:
    Samsung UN60H,
    Denon AVR-X4400H, Emotiva XPA3 GEN3
    Oppo BDP-93,Sony UBP-X800BM, Sony DVP-NS3100ES, WD Live HUB.
    Main: Polk Signature S60
    Center: Polk CSi-A6
    Front High/Rear High In-Ceiling Polk 80F/X RT
    Surrounds: Polk S15
    Sub: HSU VTF3-MK5

    Bed Room;
    Sony KDF-E42A10,
    Marantz SR5010, BDP-S270
    Main: Polk Signature S20
    Center: Polk Signature S35
    Rear: Polk R15
    Sub: HSU STF-2

    Working Warehouse;
    Sony 2100ES
    4 Polk RTi4 about 15' up the wall
    Old sony 12" Sub
    Mini tower PC with 400GB of music
  • rburgess714rburgess714 Posts: 328
    Welcome and congrats on your new speakers. I have the s35 with box and packaging sitting in my closet. Willing to sell, if interested pm me.
    Living Room
    Yamaha Aventage RX-A 1060, Parasound P5, Parasound A23, Yamaha BD-S681, Auralic Aries Mini, Polk S60, Polk S30, Samsung 60" LED

    B&K Ref 50, B&K 200.2, Chromecast, LSiM 703s

    Douglas Connection ICs and Cables
  • prasannanprasannan Posts: 2
    Thank you very much for the quick response and replies. Very useful indeed. @rooftop59 - yes, i did mix the CSi10 and A4 - lol. I will consider the CSi5 and check it out.
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