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Definitive Technology CS-8040HD

Center channel speaker with passive bass radiator

Item #: 735CS8040

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20 Reviews



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Hear the detailed dialogue and special effects you've been missing

Add some oomph to your movie night with Definitive's CS-8040HD center channel speaker. It uses advanced driver design and solid build quality to reproduce movie dialogue and on-screen action with exceptional detail and presence. Add this compact speaker to a pair of Definitive's Bipolar Series home theater speakers to enjoy a huge, three-dimensional soundstage with both music and movies.

High-tech drivers for exceptionally detailed sound

cutaway view

The CS-8040HD has two 4-1/2" midranges flanking a 1" dome tweeter, for perfectly blended highs and mids. The pure aluminum dome tweeter has a silk surround, allowing it to dish out loads of sonic detail without ever sounding harsh. And thanks to Definitive's Balanced Double Surround System (BDSS) drivers, movie dialogue and special effects will sound clear, never muddy. This center-channel design also features an upward-firing bass radiator in the top of the cabinet, so you'll hear just a little more boom in TV explosions and depth in bombastic movie scores.

Build a complete Definitive home theater system using perfectly matched bipole towers (see the BP-8020ST, BP-8040ST, BP-8060ST, and BP-8080ST) and surrounds (see the SR-8040BP and SR-8080BP).

Got wire?

Most speakers don't include any. Learn about choosing and installing speaker wire at the Crutchfield Learning Center.
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Did you know?
Your new speakers will probably sound better after several weeks of use than they do right out of the box. That's because the material surrounding the woofers will loosen up, allowing the drivers to move more fully. Definitive Technology estimates a break-in period of 24 to 48 hours of playback before the speakers will deliver optimum sound quality. For more information and helpful tips, check out this article from Definitive's website about conditioning your speakers.

Product Highlights:

  • Balanced Dual Surround System (BDSS) driver technology places rubber surrounds on both the outer and inner edges of each speaker cone for improved clarity
  • frequency response 40-30,000 Hz
  • sensitivity 92 dB
  • 8-ohm impedance
  • handles up to 200 watts
  • dual 4-1/2" midranges
  • one 1" pure aluminum dome tweeter
  • upward-firing 5" x 10" bass radiator
  • one set of 5-way binding posts
  • high-gloss black finish on side and bottom caps with cloth grille-wrapped enclosure
  • 20-1/2"W x 5-3/4"H x 12-1/4"D
  • warranty: 5 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Your home theater's most important speaker

The center channel speaker is the workhorse in a home theater system. It has to reproduce clear dialogue and special effects that keep your eyes and ears glued to the movie action. A high-quality center speaker is a great investment for any surround sound setup. Try to choose one that's as closely matched as possible to your front right and left speakers, so that as sound moves across the front stage, it stays seamlessly realistic.

Definitive Technology CS-8040HD Reviews

Average Customer Review:

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Written By DavidR, Virginia on Thursday, October 08, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Clean look and great sound. Matches well with the rest of the Def Tech speakers I bought.

Pros: Reasonably priced, bass radiator, well constructed.

Cons: None.

Excellent Center Channel

Written By Bill, Florida on Thursday, April 16, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great sound, looks and build quality. I am looking forward to purchasing the entire 8040 or 8060 system in the future.

Pros: Sounds great, looks great, built very well.

Cons: A little tall for some TV's on a stand. Although, it does not hinder my viewing of "letterbox" or widescreen features.

Great sound

Written By Jake, Illinois on Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great sounding speaker!

Pros: Looks great. Sounds even better.

Cons: This isn't really a con, more of a heads up. This is not a speaker that is meant to mount to the wall. It's large and heavy. I wanted it mounted, so it took a little extra to make it happen. So if there is anybody out there like me, you can do it but be ready to put a little work into it.

Ok center channel

Written By David, Utah on Friday, January 23, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Decent center channel speaker. Looks great. low profile to fit in many entertainment centers. At first the speaker sounded like a large expensive television speaker. Not too great at all. After a brief break in and some equalizer adjustments, the speaker is sounding better but still not quite as good as the 8060 center channel I listened to as well. For the extra money, I may exchange this for the 8060 and give that a try for a while.

Pros: Great looking, low profile

Cons: Hollow sounding human voices.

Def Tech CS8040 HD

Written By mike, Waterloo Nebraska on Saturday, November 29, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

this speaker sounds great and also looks fantastic

Cons: it's a little on the large size so you'll need a cabinet to fit it


Written By Jesse, Richmond, VA on Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

After doing many reviews of different speakers I decided on the 8040hd mainly because of the frequency range. I had a Mirage nanoset surround set and the center was lacking for movies and there was messing midrange for music. Sounded pretty good but something was off. I noticed the placement of the speaker against the wall on top of my entertainment stand caused a tin can effect so I moved it to the front of the stand to reduce the sound bouncing off the stand. I ended up reversing the polarity of the wires to get a clearer more crisp voice and now it's great. Movie theater quality. I was however surprised that the higher hz rating was not as clear as Klipsch centers in the same price point. I decided to keep the center, however ended up replacing the front channels with the Klipsch rf 60's and now I get a great full spectrum sound.

Pros: Very sleek looking, and a great range for some voices, sound effects and beautiful range for music. Very warm sound

Cons: I like a really bright, crisp sound. Some voices were not as bright as I expected from a speaker with such a frequency range. The box is as large as most boxes that house 5" speakers. Can't really notice movement of speaker, or notice sound benefit for passive bass radiator even before reversing polarity.

Definitive Technology CS-8040HD

Written By Trey Hendricks, Greenville, SC on Monday, March 24, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Extremely impressed with this center speaker, Just purchased Denon receiver, which complements the rich sounds nicely. speaker handles the 125 watts from receiver flawlessly! Can't wait to purchase the floor speakers by Definitive Technology as well as the ceiling speakers to complete my 7.1 surround sound.

Pros: Looked at similar speakers and they were much larger than this speaker, The dimensions fit in my cabinet perfectly. Very powerful speaker and priced right for the quality it emits!

Cons: No cons! thoroughly impressed.

Great Upgrade

Written By Gary, Rogers, AR on Thursday, February 06, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Purchased this to replace a ProCenter 1000, and been extremely happy with the upgrade. It looks great sitting above my TV, and the sound is strong and clear.

Pros: This speaker has great sound, and compliments the my Definitive BP-8060 towers perfectly.

Cons: none so far.

Excellent Center Channel

Written By CarolW, Keller, TX on Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I originally bought the Definitive Technology 8060 center channel with the subwoofer built in. That was a wonderful unit! But right after I bought that I saw the Definitive Technology BP-8060ST speakers with the 8040 center channel and could not resist. WOW! This center channel is perfectly paired with the speakers mentioned. I could not be more pleased with this unit. I was trying to upgrade and luckily I spoke to a Crutchfield support tech and decided it wasn't necessary. He was correct. This is a wonderful center channel. It looks so classy and completes the look with the speakers. Great buy!! Best money I spent in a long time!

Pros: Great sound, looks, quality.

Cons: None

Great center speaker

Written By JerricR, River Forest, IL on Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Fantastic center speaker that is a perfect match for my DefTech 8060 towers and DI 6.5R in-ceiling speakers. Great sound, very clear!

Pros: Unbelievable clarity. Dialog is crisp and so much easier to understand with this speaker.

Cons: None

The tradition continues...

Written By VictorAriel, San German, PR on Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I`ve been a fan of Def. Tech. for a long time. First, the pro-center 100, later pro-center C-2 (what a difference) and now this...The CS-8040hd. The blend of the CS-8040HD with the SM55s is superb, especially in a movies in which dialogue morphs into song or "bang" without a moment's notice. Knowing that in home theater set-ups, over the 70% of the work is in the hands of the center channel, this center could be without problem your working horse. Outstanding performer...Highly recomended...

Pros: Brute force but with finesse,..Outstanding performer

Cons: none...

Definitive Tech 8040 center channel

Written By Greg G, Houston Tx on Thursday, May 16, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Excellent mids and highs, matches the 8060 towers seamlessly

Pros: Excellent soundstage for DVD's and movies

Cons: Bass radiator tends to "pop" at higher volume levels during music playback

Great Center

Written By bsbuskirk, Parkersburg, WV on Sunday, April 28, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I researched for a couple months before making this purchase. I have a fairly strong 7.1 setup now, but am making plans for a step up in the theater department for my next house. I plan to add a couple BP10s and hope to use 4 BP6Bs for my surrounds. The center was available as an open box so I went ahead and picked it up. It's even better than I had hoped, especially at the low end. I'm even more sure of my choice for Dev Tech BP's all around. Don't hesitate, get one!

Pros: Good sensitivity, clarity, and low end. Great dispersion.

Cons: None!

early impressions were great, but exchanged for a Def Tech SM65

Written By B Hans, Dallas on Monday, April 22, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I used the Def Tech CS-8040HD with StudioMonitor 65 front speakers with the hope that the CS-8040HD would fill in the range of the 65s with its 4.5" woofers. Instead, I found that the CS-8040HD accentuated particular frequencies to the point of being a distraction from the rest of the sound. I am exchanging the Def Tech CS-8040HD for a third Def Tech StudioMonitor 65 that I will use as my center chanel. I switched back an forth between the CS-8040HD and the SM 65 and, while the 8040HD may have performed slightly better while playing sound effects, the SM65 really outperformed while playing the human voice.

Pros: great for sound effects and musical instruments

Cons: did not reproduce the human voice as well as others, did not balance well with the SM65s

The Best

Written By Mrbill, los angeles on Sunday, March 31, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Love this center

Cons: none

your ears will thank you!!

Written By Jim, boston ma on Monday, March 11, 2013

First off I love this center channel!!! Crisp highs smooth lows and a great overall tonal balance. Iron man 2 sounded like is was in mr.starks living room!! the eagles hell freezes over dvd was so detailed and enveloping I thought I was watching them live at the garden. if you love music and movies a like...Get this center channel you'll be glad you did. My system consists of def tech 8060 towers and bp1.2x surrounds. powering my deftechs is a pioneer elite sc-61 receiver and bdp-62fd Blu-ray player. I recently put money down on the 8060hd after hearing one in the store. Def tech is the way to go for quality, price and a very sweet sound at any volume.

Pros: build quality,finish and sound ...sound... sound!!!!

Cons: none

great sound - clear voice

Written By Bob, White Plains, NY on Friday, February 08, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Purchased as part of a system that includes 2 - Studio Monitor 65, 2 - Studio Monitor 45 and the SuperCube 6000 - receiver is an Onkyo TX-NR809. S/W Hunter @ Crutchfield who was very helpful.

CS-8040HD (as is whole system) is great - clear and crisp sound and dialogue, very impressed and great value! More than adequate bass - see need for powered sub in center channel (CS-8060 & 80)

Pros: crisp and clear sound with adequate bass @ a very reasonable price

Cons: none

crisp clear and precise

Written By big daddy, Toledo Oh on Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and this speaker looks and sound as great as it looks. Awesome response. listening to eric church I could hear the natural sounds of the pick hitting the strings. very clear dialouge while watching movies. have owned for 3 weeks and only expect the sound to get better and better. if you can purchase this speaker you will not be disappointed. highly recommend

Pros: very accurate sound imaging nice looks solidly built excellent warranty

Cons: have not heard a thing

Definitive Technology CS-8040HD

Written By Anonymous, Littleton. Co on Thursday, December 27, 2012

Excellent detail

Pros: Great sound

Cons: None

great sounding centerspeaker

Written By mr roy, baton rouge la on Saturday, August 25, 2012

you be amazed with the sound quality this speaker put out i am pushing it with the denon 3313 receiver and wow with the eagles live in melbourne dvd sounds like you are in the front row i even cranked it up to 80 on the receiver and no distortion at all just clean sound just buy it will be the best investment you ever made period

Pros: great dialouge

Cons: nothing to complain about just praises

Hands-on research

What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Black center channel speaker
  • 2 End caps (installed)
  • Cloth grille sock (installed)
  • Owner's manual
  • Online product registration information

Features and Specs

Enclosure Passive Radiator
Tweeter Dome
Midrange size (inches) ---
Woofer size (inches) 4-1/2
Connector Type 5-way post
Power Range 20-200
Sensitivity 92 dB
Impedance (Ohms) 8
Frequency Response 40-30k Hz
Height (inches) 5-13/16
Width (inches) 20-1/2
Depth (inches) 12-1/4
Weight 20 lbs
Parts Warranty 5 Years
Labor Warranty 5 Years

Product Research


Woofers: The two woofers used in the CS-8040HD are 4-1/2" second generation BDSS (Balanced Double Surround System) drivers. The cones are injection molded polymer composite with cast aluminum baskets. BDSS is Definitive's patented technology that supports the speaker cone at both the inner and outer edges allowing longer and more linear excursion for greater clarity and detail. The new Linear Response Waveguide (patent pending) smoothes off-axis frequency response and disperses sound over a wide area (the HD in the part number stands for High Dispersion). The drivers are pressure coupled to a 5x10-inch racetrack style passive radiator to improve the bass output. The upward-firing passive radiator requires 1" of clearance above the enclosure.

Tweeter: The tweeter is a pure aluminum dome, heat-treated to relax the crystal structure, then coated with a ceramic to produce extended highs.

Voice-Matched: The CS-8040HD is a full-range low-distortion center channel speaker, timbre-matched to blend perfectly with the Definitive Technology BP-8040ST or BP-8020ST SuperTower main speakers.

Binding Posts: The speaker terminals are gold-plated, 5-way binding posts and will accommodate spade connectors, single or dual banana plugs, pin connectors, and bare wire up to 10 gauge.

Our Product Research Team

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Definitive CS-8060HD

Definitive Technology CS-8060HD


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$479.99 After $220.00 Sale

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Built-in powered sub for stronger, deeper bass

The Definitive Technology CS-8060HD offers these features:

has an 8", 150-watt subwoofer

reproduces low frequencies down to 30 Hz

handles up to 250 watts