Polk Audio Blackstone™ TL3
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
Very nice big sound out of such a small speaker!!
Polk's Blackstone TL3 packs big-speaker punch in a compact center channel design. Built using the same tweeter design found in their flagship full-sized loudspeakers, as well as exclusive state-of-the-art technologies, the TL3 overcomes some of the usual limitations of compact speakers. You'll hear the kind of accuracy and detail you expect from a much larger center channel speaker, including a wide soundstage, crisp dialogue, and realistic special effects. It's the perfect choice when space in your living area is limited, but your love of great sound is not.
A big part of the TL3's incredible sound is the 3/4" Ring Radiator tweeter. Found in Polk's flagship speakers, this sophisticated tweeter reproduces transparent, natural highs. The dual 3-1/4" aerated polypropylene woofers are lightweight, but also stiff and strong, allowing the cones to move more freely in the baffle. It means you can play your music and movies loud without hearing any distortion. Polk's Extended Linear Motion voice coil helps make the cone movement even more efficient to further cut down on distortion and extend the speaker's dynamic range. This increased efficiency is the key to the TL3's big speaker sound.
The "TL" refers to Polk's "Time Lens" technology, which aligns the drivers in such a way that high- and low-frequency sounds all reach your ears at the same time. This improves the speaker's imaging and soundstaging, so that you'll feel less like you're watching a movie and more like you're part of it. An "acoustic lens" in the speaker grille disperses sound waves in a way that makes your music and movie soundtracks sound larger and more open. The TL3 also features Polk's acclaimed PowerPort® technology to help reinforce bass output. Plus, its sturdy cabinet is reinforced with a steel plate to help fight resonances that can muddy the sound.
The TL3 has keyhole slots in the back for easy mounting to your wall straight from the box. You can create your own compact home theater system by adding anywhere from five to seven TL3 satellite speakers to this center channel. And don't forget a Polk subwoofer to complete your system with rumbling bass.
Very nice big sound out of such a small speaker!!
Music Man, Washington, DC
Average Customer Review(s):
Very nice big sound out of such a small speaker!!
Nice speaker, but wish I would have moved up to "great". Had a space issue and this fit.
Great center channel speaker. Small but delivers. Perfect for my application.
The speaker has very good sound for it's size, which is very compact. The sound is not a quantum leap over my old setup however, thus the lack of five stars. I guess my previous speaker setup was better than I gave it credit for. Nothing bad to say about Crutchfield or Polk.
Pros: small size
Amazing sound from this center channel speaker. It's perfect for a large room. As always Crutchfield support was awesome with helping me find a center channel speaker that met my needs.
Pros: Excellent Sound quality. Slim design made it easy to place where I had room for it. Great for a large living room.
Cons: No cons that I have found.
The center speaker works great on projecting the dialog out into the room, it has good frequency coverage. It has a low profile fitting under the TV perfectly.
Pros: Low profile
Cons: None so far
Love this center speaker, it has greatly enhanced my system. It replaced a Mirage nanostat speaker that I was using as a center channel. The richer sound is very noticeable with this Polk center channel speaker.
Pros: Wide range and creates very distinct voice dialog when watching TV or movies.
Awesome replacement Center Channel Speaker. love it!
I purchased this center speaker for use in my surround sound system. I wanted something small enough that could be mounted below my flat screen TV. I am amazed at the quality of sound in this small speaker. I always trust the ratings on Crutchfield and we are very happy with the Polk Blackstone TL3.
Pros: exceptional quality sound; small, lightweight speaker
GREAT SOUND.YOU CAN HEAR A PERSON VOICE CLEARLY. FIT RIGHT UNDER TV. VERY HAPPY WITH MY PURCHASE. CRUTCHFIELD IS A PLEASURE TO DO BUSINESS WITH. SALES STAFF IS VERY KNOWLEDGEABLE AND FRIENDLY.
Great sound and fits below the TV screen perfectly.
Nice speaker it completes my 51 system
Upgrading to this center speaker from an older small speaker made such a difference. Glad this speaker was recommended for our needs and it sounds great!
Pros: Great sound in a small package.
Good sound in a small package
Pros: Small size
Cons: none yet
The sound clarity was excellent. For the size this center speaker's sound was excellent and is good for a small to a medium size room. This speaker is an excellent addition to me home entertainment center.
Pros: Great sound Sounds like a larger speaker
I could hear the awesome difference the moment I hooked it up to my system. I had an older Bose center speaker with my other Polk inwall, inceiling, and base. My tech neighbor accross the street treaked the system to bring out the full qualities of my new center speaker. Sounds fantastic in all modes; video, music, and TV. I highly suggestion having the whole package of Polk Audio speakers.
Speaker clearly reproduces dialog and I am also very happy with the quality of the overall sound. I had been using an AR4 bookshelf speaker I had laying around, but low voices and whispers were buried in the music and sound effects of today's shows and movies. Dialog with this speaker clearly stands out and does not compromise any part of the rest of the soundtrack.
Pros: Voice is clearly heard and overall sound is great. Low profile and small form factor fits nicely in the small space I had available.
Cons: None. I would add I think the price is a bit high, but is actually no more than a very good quality speaker costs nowadays. The quality is worth every penny.
I purchased this to replace my center channel that was to big to fit in front of my flat screen tv and this fits, looks good and sounds great.
Pros: small in size big in sound and looks great.
Cons: None for me
I was upgrading a 2.1 to a 5.1 and needed surrounds and a center. Some reading here on Crutchfield suggested that a center was not a place to skimp since it does all the dialogue. I shop by price first, then color (needed black to match TV stand), then reviews. After increasing my price target for a center from 100 to 200, i found this. I have used Polk in my cars the last 3 vehicles and have been impressed with their value. This was the right price, the right color, and had great reviews. Having installed it for a few weeks now, I am very happy with my choice. It has great clarity for movie and TV dialogue, and looks awesome. It has no low end, but a center doesn't need to. No distortion even at high volume. I am running it from an Onkyo TX-NR 737. Sounds good for movies, TV, and music.
Pros: Looks, clarity, value. Does its job well.
Great sound from a small center. Mounts anywhere and good looking also. I replaced a heavy speaker twice the size of this one and didn't lose any sound.
Pros: Great sound. Small size. Attractive finish
Installing my own surround sound system. This center speaker has all the function needed and sounds great. Good quality. Easy to set up.
Pros: Size, appearance, quality.
I needed a small center to fit my tv stand, but didn't want to compromise on quality. This speaker fits perfectly and it sounds great too.
Crutchfield support helped me put together a good system for a reasonable price (I was trying to keep the entire system around $2k). They recommended this speaker and it works very well. Good sound, easy install (I installed it on the wall under TV), really brings out the dialogue better than previous systems I have had.
Pros: good price, good size and design, easy install
Limited options for a small center channel. I was very please with my purchase.
Pros: Small and sounds great
Works as described. Perfect fit below my TV and with my Polk Audio front speakers.
Performs as advertised. Looks much better than the pictures. Fits in front of the TV as it should.
Pros: Nice looking. Has the good speaker terminals. Sounds good.
Fit my space. Good sound.
I had an old Sony speaker left over from my previous sound system. This speaker greatly improved my ability to hear the voice portion of the sound.
Pros: Voice is clear
Cons: None so far
Awesome replacement for a blown speaker that needed replacing
Pros: Great sound, fits will in tv console
Amazing sound for the size- had a small space to fit a replacement center in for a large room and this did the job. Powerful enough for big room, but small footprint.
Pros: Great sound
After my floor standing tv died I bought a flat screen to hang over the fireplace. Its nice to have the tv up there but there was not enough room for my center speaker. I tried to use the surround without the center speaker, but I was not happy with the way it sounded. I missed a lot of the dialogue and voices. Did some research and decided to try the Polk TL3. I like it, it sounds real good. Now I can hear all of the voices and dialogue . And it has a low enough profile to fit under my new tv quite well. And the looks and style of it blend in quite well with my decor. Im very happy with this speaker.
Pros: Cost, looks good, sounds good. What else can I say
Cons: Cant think of any.
Great sound and clarity from such a compact speaker. Don't need to use CC to understand dialog anymore!
Pros: Compact size, crisp, clear audio
I was updating my system and as a cost saving measure i wanted to retain my Klipsch SF-2 speakers. A matching Klipsch center was too large for my application so my adviser recommended the TL 3. I could not be more pleased with the unit as the pass between them is solid and the TL3 is efficient enough to work well with the Klipsch at a low volume.
Pros: Good sound, small footprint, reasonable price. Use your Crutchfield adviser!
Cons: none for my application.
This center channel is fantastic. Highly recommended.
Pros: The speaker has great sound and is small enough to fit under my flat screen TV.
Cons: Expensive, but worth it.
Very good sound and works quite well.
Ok, I wasn't too sure about this speaker. My media room is 20x30 with a 25 ft ceiling . I just didn't think this would work. Was I ever wrong. This speaker blows and that's good!! The sound that comes out is crisp clear and easily fills my room. Way to go Polk.
Pros: Small, shallow, looks good on wall.
It is a nice speaker for the price. The sound is clean and better than expected for a speaker this size. I would have loved to get something a little bigger but I have size constraints
Pros: Sound,size and bang for the buck.
Cons: Lack of depth and power due to the smaller woofers.
Great center channel speaker from Polk. Sounds great paired with other Polk speakers and Sony receiver. You could spend more but no reason to.
Pros: Size. Fits we3ll under LED TV Appearance Sound quality
This thing is incredible. So much of your sound comes from your center channel don't go cheap here. This speaker was the size I needed. Looks great (got the wife's approval) and sounds even better! I haven't heard the TL1 or TL2 but I would easily spend the extra money and get this one again. It just sounds incredible.
Pros: Size and Sound
Love the sound. The size is perfect.
I was torn between the tl2 and the tl3 and am happy that I chose the tl3. I am impressed by how clear the highs are and how much clearer dialogue is while watching tv now.
Pros: Big sound for such a small speaker.
I replaced a much larger sized center channel speaker with this unit and the sound is crisper/clearer and better overall. I bought it to match a set of L/R TL3's with a sub. Very happy with this center speaker.
Pretty good center. New to home theater systems, but I think I could find a better / louder center for vocal highs when watching movies.
Pros: Good sound for size
I purchased this as a center channel to go with 4 MC80 in ceiling speakers. I was told buy some that this would not sound good and that I should go with some of the bigger Polk center channel speakers but I wanted to stay with a more streamlined unit for my family room. I have no regrets buying this unit and feel that the sound is very good for it's size. I use my system for music, movies and TV and feel it is very clear, giving great dialogue. On some movies I have to turn the volume up but do not think it is a TL3 issue but believe it is the way some movies are produced. I highly recommend this unit.
Pros: size and sound from a small unit
Cons: I do not like the faceplate over the woofers/tweeter, it is a felt material and wish it was more of a nicer grill.
Great sound from a small package that compliments my front speakers. Small size fits well below my flat panel TV.
Pros: Size and frequency response.
i got this speaker to upgrade from an older large box center speaker that blocked my tv front panel so i couldn't use the remote to operate the tv.i have always been a big fan of polk and already having the rear surround TL3's this was a no brainer.the size and shape is awesome.as far as the sound it is a polk baby! it sounds great.enough said just buy it!
Pros: low profile size and shape and its high gloss black finish,sound of course
The Polk tl 3 center channel works very well in my larger tv room. I hesitated to purchase this speaker because it may have not been big enough for my room. after listening to it for about a month I have zero buyers remorse. I'm very happy with it.
Pros: not an overwhelming bohemian in size most other center channels are.
Cons: I haven't found any cons yet.
I used this in my home with other TL3 front speakers, and my parents liked the clarity of voices so much from the center, that they added the TL3 center channel along with the MC80 ceiling speakers to their new home.
Pros: very clear vocals at all volume levels
I am very happy my with purchase of the Polk Audio TL3 center channel speaker. Great sound with small foot print that I needed. Checked out a lot of reviews before purchasing. Will continue building my 7.1 system with Polk Audio speakers. Crutchfield service and shipping were excellent.
Pros: Awesome sound and build quality. Great value for dollars spent.
I have a real tight corner in which I set up a home theater in a box. I picked a budget Yamaha package that had a set of small speakers and was affordable. The sound out of the center channel speaker was weak, making the overall sound rather shallow. With the addition of the Polk T3 the center filled out very nicely. It has good depth and full range of tone. I am very pleased.
Pros: Great sound
Cons: Odd form factor
This speaker fit exactly what I needed to fill the spot in my living room. I have plenty of big, deep sound from my other speakers, but I needed a small center channel to complete the system. Physically and performance-wise, this does just what I needed. And it looks great too!
I have a complete Polk speaker system, but had two problems with the Polk CSR center speaker. One, it was too tall to sit in front of the TV so I had to put it in the entertainment system, and even with the doors to the entertainment system open, the vocals sounded somewhat muffled. Since I'm a little hard of hearing, the clarity from the CSR was sometimes hard to understand. The TL3 has solved both problems. Its size is small enough to fit just below the TV and the clarity is so much better than my old Polk speaker.
Pros: Great size Great clarity
Cons: It's only been a couple weeks but I have no complaints thus far.
This center channel is very good and for most people it would be excellent. I have a hearing issue (two hearing aids) and in some circumstances the dialog is not as clear as I need it to be. Whether this is a speaker fault or a fault of my hearing instrument, I can't be sure. I am however considering ordering an upgrade to the center channel.
Pros: It's excellent for music and most TV programming but lacks some clarity in recorded (DVD or DVR) dialog.
Cons: None oher than the above
I bought this center speaker to replace a very old Infinity speaker. The sound is great and works well with my Yamaha RX-A720 receiver. I wanted something small but with good sound. This speaker fit the bill.
Pros: Small size. Big sound.
Seems to be a very good center channel speaker so far!
Pros: Makes dialogue in most shows and movies much clearer. It's nice and small, perfect for my cheap home theater stand. Decent price as well. Extremely fast shipping, only took 5 days to get from VA to Okinawa!! Too bad all of the mail going from the U.S. to APO addresses, via USPS, isn't that fast!
Cons: I didn't have the easiest time running my 10 gauge speaker wire through the connectors on back, so I may remove the wire, put on banana plugs, and re-install.
I initially bought the TL1 and it was a good speaker but was a little too small for the room I needed it in. The TL3 fills my larger room with great sound and is definitely worth the extra dough. It is an awesome speaker; glad I upgraded.
Pros: Strong, room filling sound.
Cons: None so far.
Unless you plan on spending more than $1000 on a center channel you won't find much better than this. It has excellent sound and the price it right.
Pros: Sound quality better than you would expect in this price range and comparable to speakers at 4 times the price. Also the compact design is a plus.
I bought the TL3 center speaker because the RM7 center that came with my surround sound system sounded a little tinny compared to even my flat panel speakers. The TL3 has a more full bodied sound and a much better resonance than the RM7. I made some minor adjustments to the other speakers to accomodate the new center but am very pleased with it. My old system was a pair of 30 year old Bose 901s and it was time to move on to a more room pleasing sound even though I love the 901s.
Pros: Better resonance and sparation of sound. Not too big and can go in front of flat panel TV Good price for what you get
Cons: The only con would be that the sound from the system as a whole is great but smaller speakers can't produce the sound of bookshelf speakers and higher end speakers--know that going in and you will enjoy your purchase.
Great full bodied sound & clear.
Usually I have a lot of respect for the audio equipment that bears the Polk nameplate, but this TL3 isn't the amazing little wonder that you might expect if you've read Polk's marketing prose. Sure, the TL3 has some nice sound and the highs are definitely there. But it comes up woefully short on genuine bass. For $60 more than a TL2, you get bass response that's only 10 Hz lower (115 Hz). That's right, 10 Hz lower. Certainly NOT the ground-breaking sound reproducer that Polk markets it as. Hardly the marvel of our century, ring tweeter or not. In fact, I think that if you blindfolded people and did an A-B comparison between a TL2 and a TL3, I think most folks would be hard-pressed to tell the difference. One of the best selling points about this speaker is actually its relatively short enclosure profile which allows it to be placed in front of many flat screen TV's wiithout blocking the picture. Still, for respectable bass response, there are better center channel speaker choices out there for the same price that Polk expects you to pay for the TL3. Keep your money, or buy the TL2. At the price, it's a better value for the money.
Pros: Relatively short profile allows placement in front of many flat screen TV's without blocking the picture. Fit, finish, and appearance are all good.
Cons: Comes up short on real bass. Hard to justify paying $60 more than
I bought this TL3 Center speaker because of the space constraint I had. The speaker is beautifully designed and it sounds great. If you need a center speaker, you won't disappoint with this one.
I am very happy with this center channel. My first Polk product, not my last.
This center channel sounds great and is a great value. It really sounds good with my polk tsi400 towers
Pros: Great value and sound!
Improved quality of audio so we can now understand what is being said. I did expect a bit better quality however. But good for the price.
Decided it was time to replace my mammoth 1987 Kenwood speakers (which still work great) with these compact speakers. Was worried about the plastic housing, but.... they sound great. The sound quality is amazing.
Pros: Looks sleek and stylish. Great sound quality.
Cons: Plastic, but only time will tell if this is a con.
I was a little hesitant due to the lack of reviews, but after months of deliberation and research I finally decided to go with three TL3 center channels as my front configuration (fr, fl & center) in my home theater set up. It has been a few months since my purchase and install and I am completely satisfied with the look and performance of my TL3 center channel speakers. Aesthetically they fit nicely on the wall with my Panasonic 50 inch plasma, acoustically the blend very well with my dsw pro 500 sub-woofer. Together in my 13 x 18 family room they produce a quality of sound (music or movies) that outsizes their physical footprint. I am happy and proud of my Blackstone TL3 speakers.
These speakers are AWESOME - - they provide a clear crisp sound. They outperform speakers in a much higher price range. I thank CRUTCHFIELD for the recommendation and I would gladly recommend these to anyone !!!
I needed to replace my center channel with a smaller one and this one worked awesome. the sound fills the room perfectly.
|Midrange size (inches)||N/A|
|Woofer size (inches)||3-1/4|
|Connector Type||5-way post|
|Frequency Response||115-28k Hz|
|Parts Warranty||5 Years|
|Labor Warranty||5 Years|
Overview: The Polk Audio Black Stone TL3 series center-channel speaker (TL3) features new innovations specifically designed to enhance the compact speaker's performance. The Black Stone TL3 is a two-way center-channel loudspeaker with a 3/4" Dynamic Balanced ring-radiator tweeter and dual 3-1/4" Dynamic Balance aerated polypropylene woofers inside a bass-reflex enclosure with a bottom-firing port. The TL3 is equipped with 5-way binding posts and offers various mounting options.
Note: The TL3 has an overall frequency response of 115 to 28,000 Hz and will require a powered subwoofer(107PSW111, sold separately) for full-range sound.
Dynamic Balance Driver Technology: Polk Audio's patented Dynamic Balance process allows Polk to design their drivers specifically for flatter frequency response, revealing the sharpest details and a more lifelike transparency, with absolutely no strain even at high volume. It's a bold, rich, warm, and lifelike sound.
Time Lens Technology: The sophisticated laser alignment of the "acoustic center" of the Blackstone TL tweeters with their accompanying drivers results in far superior imaging. The acoustic centers of the tweeter and mid-range woofer are aligned, creating a crisp accurate soundstage. The acoustic centers of the tweeter and mid-bass driver are located in the same plane for superior imaging, while the acoustic lens incorporated in the grille smoothes the tweeter's frequency response.
3/4" Ring Radiator Tweeter: The Polk Audio Black Stone TL3 series center speaker features a 3/4" ring radiator tweeter that is normally found only on high-end loudspeakers. The 3/4" ring radiator tweeter offers incredible accuracy and detail, so you music sound likes the artist intended.
3-1/4" Aerated Polypropylene Woofer: The Polk Audio Black Stone TL3 series center speaker employs a 3-1/4" aerated polypropylene cone woofer with Dynamic Balance driver technology (Polk's patented transducer design process) that produces a flat frequency response, with sharp detail, transparency, and the ability to play loud without strain. The aerated polypropylene cone is lightweight, yet stiff and strong, with longer linear excursion capabilities in a limited compact enclosure space, so it plays louder with less distortion.
Optimized Linear Motor Structure: Engineered for better compact speaker performance, Polk's OLM Motor Structure flattens the BL Curve, making cone movement more efficient than previously possible, reducing distortion and extending the small speaker's dynamic range right up into big speaker territory
Frequency Response: The speaker's overall frequency response is 90-31,000Hz, and the -3dB frequency response is 115-28,000Hz.
Additional Speakers: The TL3 center-channel speaker will require a powered subwoofer (107PSW111, sold separately) for full-range sound.
Enclosure Type: The Polk Audio Black Stone TL3 center-channel speaker features a non-resonant composite enclosure with time-aligned geometry, and PowerPort technology.
Curved Enclosure Design: The Polk Audio Black Stone TL3 center-channel speaker employs non-parallel surfaces that not only lead to a stronger, more rigid and acoustically inert enclosure, but they also result in less audible coloration from internal surface resonances.
Steel Reinforced: Extra-rigid steel plates reinforce the curved enclosures of the TL3 center-channel speaker, resulting in an acoustically inert enclosure free from internal resonances and any audible coloration, for more lifelike audio detail.
Integrated Acoustic Lens: An innovative acoustic lens incorporated into the grille produces a high frequency response so smooth that it delivers a balanced, realistic performance. An acoustic lens is molded into the back of the speaker grille and helps create imaging frequency balance previously impossible in small high-performance loudspeakers.
PowerPort: The Polk Audio Black Stone TL3 center-channel speaker utilizes Polk Audio's patented bass venting technology, for added midbass response and increased efficiency. PowerPort technology decreases port turbulence and virtually eliminates "port noise," for a massive 3dB boost in bass response.
High-Gloss Finish: The Polk Audio TL3 center-channel loudspeaker features a durable, deep automotive-strength high-gloss finish that matches today's most stylish flat-panel TVs. The TL3 center-channel is available in a high-gloss black finish.
5-Way Binding Posts: The Polk Audio Black Stone TL3 center-channel is equipped with one pair of 5-way binding posts to ensure a secure connection to many types of speaker cables and connectors. The binding post terminals will accept banana plugs (single or dual), pin-connectors, spade-connectors, and bare wire (18-12 AGW).
Rubber Feet: The Polk Audio TL3 center-channel features three integrated rubber feet so you can sit the speaker on a stand or shelf securely.
Wall Mountable: The TL3 center-channel speaker features dual single keyhole slots on the back of the cabinet for wall-mounting the speaker without any additional wall-mount bracket (mounting screws not supplied). There is also a 1/4"-20 threaded insert on the back of the loudspeaker for mounting the speaker to the wall using an optional articulating bracket (sold separately).
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