What You Need To Know About The Polk CS10
Polk Audio has been making fantastic sounding and affordable speakers since 1975. Base in Baltimore their speakers are designed by folks with degrees in math and physics. And Polk has proven itself time and time again to be a leading manufacturer that offers a taste of the truly hifi at a pocket book friendly cost.
The CS10 center channel speaker is constantly in ‘top selling product’ on Amazon and is a recommended speaker at Crutchfield. And for good reason. The CS10 is designed to mate with the TSi speaker series from Polk but has been constantly reported to sound good with mix-and-matched home theater systems. Though this is generally not a recommended route for home theater design. One typically wants to make sure that all woofers and tweeters in a home theater system are the same to achieve a consistent and coherent voice from the system.
The CS10 has two 5.25-inch bi-laminate organic fiber cone woofers and a 1-inch silk/polymer composite Dynamic Balance dome tweeter. The cabinet is made from extensively braced MDF board with 3/4-inch thick baffles. It comes in either black or cherry finish. Polk’s finishes are fantastic. I was very impressed with the Cherry finish on a pair of Polk RTiA bookshelf speakers I owned many years back.
Though the CS10 is designed to mate with the TSi series, Polk speakers have a very similar voicing across the brand, so the CS10 would be a good mate with the higher up RTiA or LSi series.
How Does the CS10 Sound
To my ears Polk speakers have always had a nice clear but warm mid range and a slightly rolled off high end that is solid and pleasing. High frequencies are crisp without being thin. The mid range is clear and full of life and musicality. Though I’ve not heard the CS10 myself reviewers and listener report a similar sound. Crystal clear voice and a large and filling center channel. With 93 reviews on Amazon and a 5 of 5 stars. There is little wonder why this is a top seller.
There are basically two places you want a center channel to be. Right in the middle and directly under the TV or right on top and in the middle with it angled down towards your listening spot. If you put the center channel too low to the floor voices will sound too chesty and warm in the mid range. Dialogue will be harder to understand and 3D imaging will be off. There are after market mounts you can purchase to better place your center channel.
The CS10 is easy to drive. At 91dB sensitivity a moderate to high powered surround sound receiver (30W-100W) should drive this baby just fine. You shouldn’t have to spend big bucks to get good sound out of it.
The CS10 is a reflex port design, that means the closer you can get it to a wall the better bass response your most likely have.
Sub-cross over set up – You’ll noticed the TSi100 roll off at about 61Hz, similar to the CS10 but the TSi200 roll off at about 50Hz. You’ll want to set up your cross over for your sub at about 60Hz if you use the TSi100 but if you use the TSi200 cross over the sub at 50Hz. You’ll most likely get better coherence from the left/right channels matched to the cross over than the center channel.
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