SVS Prime Center
Center channel speaker (Premium Black Ash)
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Our take on the SVS Prime Center by Crutchfield's Steve Kindig
The starring role in an SVS Prime home theater
I've always been partial to 3-way center channel speakers, because that dedicated midrange driver covers the frequency range where dialogue lives. The SVS Prime Center is one of the lowest-priced 3-way centers I know of. But don't worry, it offers the rock-solid build quality and lifelike sound quality that SVS is known for.
SVS designs every driver in house
While many companies build their speakers using off-the-shelf components, SVS designs all their drivers in house. This is a huge advantage because it gives them complete control over how the drivers, crossover, and cabinet interact.
The Prime Center uses dual 5-1/4" woofers to produce center channel effects with unconstrained punch and impact. The polypropylene cone material is extremely lightweight and rigid, allowing the woofers to sound smooth and natural through the midrange, while also delivering surprisingly solid bass.
The 3-1/2" midrange driver is housed in its own sub-enclosure within the cabinet, to minimize internal interaction with the woofers. SVS's 1" aluminum dome tweeter sits right above the midrange driver, which helps the output from the two drivers blend more smoothly.
Smart, solid construction
The Prime Center's cabinet is made of sturdy MDF, with an extra-thick front baffle and internal bracing to control unwanted vibrations. Those tapered edges on the front baffle are called chamfers. They reduce edge diffraction for clearer, more precise soundstaging. (Those are the only corners SVS ever cuts!)
Build a complete Prime system
- 3-way design
- 1" aluminum dome tweeter
- 3-1/2" polypropylene midrange driver
- dual 5-1/4" polypropylene woofers
- frequency response: 48-25,000 Hz (±3dB)
- recommended amplifier power: 20-200 watts
- sensitivity: 86 dB
- nominal impedance: 8 ohms
- bass-reflex cabinet with dual rear-firing ports
- removable cloth grille
- 5-way binding posts accept bare wire, pins, spade lugs, and banana connectors
- 18-11/16"W x 7-11/16"H x 9-1/8"D
- weight: 20.2 lbs.
- warranty: 5 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
What's in the Box:
- Center channel loudspeaker
- Grille (pre-installed)
- 4 Self-adhesive rubber bumpers
- Owner's Manual
- SVS brochure
- Online Product Registration Card
Great speaker. Very clear. No boxy sounds.
Eric, Dalton, PA
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Features and Specs
|Midrange size (inches)||3-1/2|
|Woofer size (inches)||5-1/4|
|Connector Type||5-way post|
|Frequency Response||48-25k Hz|
|Parts Warranty||5 Years|
|Labor Warranty||5 Years|
3-Way Center Channel Speaker: The SVS Prime Center is a true 3-way center channel loudspeaker designed with high quality components and sophisticated engineering to provide sonic excellence. From its premium grade drivers and sophisticated SoundMatch three-way crossover to the extra-thick baffle, internal bracing, and FEA optimized tweeter diffuser, the Prime Center channel speaker is well-equipped play the most important role in a home theater sound system.
1" Aluminum Dome Tweeter: The Prime Center speaker's 1" aluminum dome tweeter is light, efficient, and rigid, and plays crystal clear at high volumes for an exceptional transient response. The tweeter utilizes an FEA-optimized diffuser for even greater clarity with a sense of utter transparency, while also offering an "airy" presentation and incredibly unveiled highs so female vocals and dialogue always sound natural, crisp and smooth.
Polypropylene Midrange & Woofers: The Prime Center speaker houses one 3.5" polypropylene midrange driver and two 5.25" polypropylene woofers. The polypropylene cone material is extremely light and rigid and maintains a flat frequency response with excellent handling across the foundational midrange and bass frequencies. The driver's cast ABS-fiberglass composite basket ensures precision component alignment and excellent thermal transfer. Each driver also employs a vented voice coil former to minimize air compression artifacts.
- 3.5" Midrange Driver: Thoughtfully designed for acoustic excellence, the 3.5" midrange drive is mounted in its own dedicated and completely sealed compartment to ensure smooth, precise and clear midrange that's free from coloration.
- Dual 5.25" Woofers: The two 5.25" woofers utilize a rugged motor and long-stroke suspension for high output. The woofers also utilize aluminum shorting rings to reduce gap inductance and lower distortion.
SoundMatch Crossover Design: The innovative SoundMatch Crossover is a 3-way design with premium-grade capacitors, air-core inductors, and heavy-trace printed circuit boards. This high performance crossover network delivers outstanding phase coherency and time domain behavior. The crossover's tapered array offers expansive, yet focused and precise soundstage, resulting in accurate frequency response at all listening positions in the room. The precise tuning of the SoundMatch Crossover also ensures pinpoint accuracy of highs, mids, and lows, while maintaining pristine signal purity.
- Midrange-to-Tweeter Crossover: 2.4 kHz (12 dB/octave slopes)
- Woofer-to-Midrange Crossover: 350 Hz (12 dB/octave slopes)
Performance Driven Cabinet Design: The Prime Center utilizes a FEA-optimized MDF cabinet with internal bracing to eliminate resonances. The speaker cabinet's chamfered front baffle, flush-mounted drivers, tapered edges, and acoustically transparent FEA optimized grille minimize edge diffraction and improve on-axis high frequency response for clear, precise sound staging. A separate sealed midrange enclosure improves sound quality and enhances imaging, while dual 1" wide-flared rear-firing ports provide greater efficiency and smoother bass response. All of these advancements are packed into an attractive cabinet, that's available in a piano gloss black or premium black ash finish.
5-Way Binding Posts: The SVS Prime Center loudspeaker is outfitted with 5-way binding post terminals for connection of bare wire, pin-connectors, spade-lugs, and banana connectors (single or dual). Use 18AWG speaker wire for wire runs up to 10', 16AWG speaker wire for wire runs up to 25', 14AWG speaker wire for wire runs up to 50', and 12AWG speaker wire for wire runs up to 75'.
Placement & Mounting Options: The center channel should be placed directly on-axis, relative to the primary seating position. As with the main front speakers, placing the tweeter at/near head level when seated is optimal. But depending on the placement of the video display or projection screen, this is not always possible. If the center channel must be located below head level, then an upward tilt of the speaker is recommended to improve mid/high frequency response and dialog intelligibility.
- Stick-on rubber feet are include that attach to the bottom of the speaker to protect it when placed on a shelf or stand. The rubber feet add approximately 0.125" to the overall height of the speaker.
- The Prime Center is not wall mountable.
Note: Dedicated room treatments like absorbers, diffusers and bass traps (all sold separately) can greatly improve the sound quality of any listening environment, and are encouraged to extract the absolute best performance from any loudspeaker system.
Prime Series: The Prime series of loudspeakers from SVS consist of a floorstanding speaker (Prime Tower), bookshelf speaker (Prime Bookshelf), center channel speaker (Prime Center), surround speaker (Prime Elevation), and satellite speaker (Prime Satellite) - all sold separately. The SVS Prime series delivers pinpoint accuracy, powerful dynamics, exceptional clarity, and an immersive audio experience.
Optional Powered Sub: A SVS powered sub (sold separately) makes a great addition to the Prime series of loudspeakers.
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Looking for more? Check out the next model in this lineup.
SVS's Ultra Center provides more center channel power for a large room or projector system.
The SVS Ultra Center offers these features:
upgraded 1" aluminum dome tweeter
4" composite glass-fiber midrange driver
dual 6-1/2" composite glass-fiber woofers
dual pairs of 5-way binding posts allow bi-amp/bi-wire configurations
frequency response: 45-32,000 Hz