Cambridge Soundworks The Surround Surround Speakers

The Surround

Dipole Surround Speakers

User Reviews (13)

Showing 1-10 of 13  
Manuel   Audio Enthusiast [Oct 07, 2003]
Strength:

Create good soundfields, work especially well with DVD movies in Dolby Digital. Small size, with good build quality.

Weakness:

None, if you consider that they are surround speakers.

These are very good speakers for surround sound use. Notice I said surround sound. They were not made for main speakers, and maybe not for DVD-Audio. They sound very good on my home theater, and do exactly what I expected of them when I bought them. I see that Cambridge Soundworks has now added monopole capable bi- and dipolar surrounds to their lineup. This would be the absolute best choice, but, hey, these weren't designed for that. They do exactly what they supposed to do. I have certainly enjoyed them with my system, and they integrate well with my Polk center and Front/Lefts.

Similar Products Used: Infinity and Yamaha (small 2 ways).
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Keith Savage   Audio Enthusiast [Apr 23, 2002]
Strength:

Good For Dolby Prologic. Solid construction.

Weakness:

Terrible for DVD-Audio Bad for 5.1 channel sound when the rear channels are fed non-diffuse sound

The Cambridge Soundworks Surround speakers are great if you live in Dolby prologic world and have never heard of Dolby Digital 5.1 or DTS, or DVD-audio. These Bipole/dipole speakers have opposing tweeters pointed side ways to create diffuse sound. This works well on Dolby prologic tracks to create rear ambience, but it ruins DVD-audio when you want precise full channel sound from every speaker. I ended up returning these for a pair of Monitor Audio Bronze 1s, which blow these out of the water in term of frequency response and clarity. Do not be fooled in thinking you can flip the bipole/dipole switch on the front of these and make them sound good on DVD-audio -- the tweeters are still facing side ways. If you still have your heart set on Dipole/Bipole technology, then these are a great value at $100/pair on ebay direct from Cambridge soundworks. They mark them as refurbished, but they are in fact brandnew. The build quality is good, like most Cambridge Soundworks products. The grills are metal, so they ought to be highly durable speakers. They are small enough to wall mount without freaking out your significant other. Being a big fan of the Departed Henry Kloss, It''s a shame that at the end of the day I have to recommend against them in favor of convential direct radiating speakers.

Similar Products Used: Polk RT7, Polk RT35i, Polk CSi30, Monitor Audio Bronze 1
OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
4
Justin Weiss   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 22, 2000]
Strength:

Nice, evenly dispersed sound on movie soundtracks
Bipole-dipole switchability

Weakness:

Not full range (but hey, they're not supposed to be!)

I am wondering if some of the reviewers below know that these are SURROUND speakers, meant for use in HT applications. They are not supposed to be your front main speakers!

They do their job admirably, pumping out great surround effects from my DVD's. Even though I've matched them up with high-end (read: way more expensive) front speakers from Vienna Acoustics, the Cambridge speakers blend in just fine and I don't find them lacking in any way.

With the rise of 5.1-channel music, the dipole-bipole switch on these speakers will prove more and more useful; a nice bonus touch.

I'm giving them four stars because I like to save 5 stars for products that absolutely blow me away. But these are fine surrounds, make no doubt about it.

Similar Products Used: none
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Michael Gutierrez   Audio Enthusiast [Mar 22, 2000]
Strength:

Bipole/Dipole switchability, easy to hang on wall, dipole mode is excellent.

Weakness:

Not full-range, but that's why they're the price they are.

These were pretty good surround speakers, not bad price, easy to set-up, and made a good first impression on me. Cambridge SoundWorks offers a 30-day in home trial, so there's no harm in seeing if the surrounds suit your style. Very good speakers, but there are better out there.

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
4
Steve   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 11, 2002]
Strength:

Dipole/bipole design, great sound dispersion.

Weakness:

None so far.

First of all, you can save a ton of money by getting these speakers through hifi.com's auctions on eBay. They say that they are refurbished, but they looked brand new to me. I couldn't even find a scratch on them. I paid a little over $100 instead of the $399 list! And, that included the full warranty.
Now for my review. In a word, these speakers rock! They really bring movies to life. When I pop in "Pearl Harbor", you can hear and FEEL those planes and bullets flying over your head. I had been using some Bose 201's for my surrounds, but there is NO comparison to the sound that the smaller Cambridge speakers throw at you.
If you want a great pair of surrounds without paying a fortune, then these are the speakers for you!

Similar Products Used: Bose.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Peter Dress   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 06, 1999]
Strength:

None, really

Weakness:

Poor, tinny sound; overpriced

Say what you will about these speakers, but I feel they are not worth the money Cambridge Soundworks asks for them.

The bad: The purpose of a dipole is to send energy (soundwaves) along a parallel axis to the speaker; (hopefully) these waves will connect with something and reflect back to the listener. This is an ingenious concept, as one will not readily identify the source of the sound. These speakers, however, contain two small, anemic drivers (4" perhaps? I am unable to remove the grilles) which send very little surround info anywhere. The accompanying literature did caution that these speakers should be used with amps of 80W or more, but I am running them off of a NAD T770 receiver and I am confident it is not my electronics.

The good: You can switch them from dipole to bipole with the flick of a conviently-located-on-the-front switch.

Save your $300 and spend it on a set of Paradigm ADP 170's instead.

OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
1
Tom   an Audio Enthusiast [Aug 03, 1999]

The Surround IIs I have had for about 7 months seem good - until I took the time to hear what I could get for just a little more $$. They will soon be replaced w/ two Acoustic Energy Aegis One direct radiators. Seriously, these things are awful for everything except the highest frequencies and don't even think about playing any DTS music or CDs using DPL or DSP effects (not that I'd bother w/ DSP or DPL for two-channel music). The drivers on these are really, really small cardboard things that can't hold a candle to a half-decent pair of full-range speakers for maybe $50 more per pair.

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
Joe   an Audio Enthusiast [Feb 12, 1999]

I can't remember the last time I was disappointed with any product that was designed by Henry Kloss. The Surround dipole speakers are not any different. The only disappointment I have is that these now discontinued speakers were replaced by The Surround 5.1s(at least they are not listed in the latest CS catalogs). My opinion is this DD and DTS craze is not a valuable reason to concentrate more efforts on bipole speakers,especially for use in surround systems. I'm sure I'm alone,here. I have no doubt they are good performers. Maybe,Cambridge Soundworks should have left the option available(and maybe they have). Anyway,I enjoy the fact that these speakers can convince me that peripheral sound can be one of the most difficult theories to understand.
The drivers are interesting. If you remove the grills there are two 2 1/2" mid-drivers on both sides of the cabinet. I say interesting because you can view the drivers thru their dust covers. The low frequency driver is a 4" woofer. The build quality is generally good. The terminals are gold-plated binding posts and except quite a few varieties of wire terminations. I owned the smaller Surround II dipoles,and they have received some positive reviews. I can honestly say these larger models are even better. I am in the process of mating these bad-boys with a subwoofer(specifically the CS Basecube 10). I expect good results. In the meantime,I will continue to enjoy my toys. Highly recommended.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Robert   Audio Enthusiast [Feb 28, 2001]
Strength:

Bipole/Dipole design

I am happy with these surround speakers. They do everything they are supposed to do, without paying too much. I feel these are a nice match to the Definitive Technology BP-10's, c/l/r 1000 and Mirage subwoofer that I own. I think most people will be happy with these speakers.

Similar Products Used: 2-way Realistic speakers
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Paul   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 14, 2001]
Strength:

Everything, these surrounds are absolutely amazing.

Weakness:

They take a little time to get set up right to fully function with a system, but what home theater doesn't?

These are great surrounds, they perform as finely tuned instruments, as Cambridge has rightfully intended. I took my time in finding the right setting on my receiver to get the full ambience affect and it was more than worth it. Make sure that if you get them that they sound equally as loud if not just a little louder than your front tweeters and mids it helps the 5.1's to fully envelope you within the sound. Also the bipole/dipole functioning of these speakers enhances the total function on whateere sound source you might be listening to. If you want a high quality surround that gives you the feel of a home movie theater then you should certainly purchase these speakers.

Similar Products Used: Sony, Cerwin Vega, Yamaha, JBL, KLH.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 13  

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