Polk S30 Vs. S35: Which Is The Best?

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Welcome to another sibling crash article. Today I’m going to be reviewing two center channel speakers by Polk. As a respected audio company, Polk has gained our trust over the years, and I thought a detailed comparison between products became necessary. It’s admirable that the company offers an extended range of speakers coming in distinct shapes and sizes. The two speakers aim to level up your home theater setup.

Key Takeaways

  • Polk S35 has a killer look that you will fall at first sight. Certainly looks better than Polk 30S.
  • Just save up some bucks and purchase Polk S30.
  • The sound quality in both speakers is terrific. 
  • For narrow space areas, Polk S30 is ideal, and vice versa. For larger places, S35 seems to fit perfectly. S35 tends to take up more space.

Introducing the Polk S30 and S35 Speakers

Polk S30 Overview

Polk Signature Elite S30 and S35: Key Specs

Polk S30

  • Speaker type: Center Loudspeaker
  • Color: Black
  • Woofer size: 3 inches
  • Frequency response: 53- 40000hz
  • Power: 150W
  • Impedance: 8
  • Sensitivity: 88dB
  • Drivers: x2 5.25-inch dynamic balanced
  • Dimensions:6.1 x 24.4 x 4.1 inches
  • Weight: 14lbs

Polk S35 Overview

Polk S30

  • Speaker type: L/C/R Loudspeaker
  • Color: Black
  • Woofer size: 5 inches
  • Frequency response: 42 – 40000hz
  • Power: 125W
  • Impedance: 8
  • Sensitivity: 89dB
  • Drivers: x6 3-inch dynamic balanced
  • Dimensions: 10.6 x 20 x 7.5 inches
  • Weight: 19lbs

Polk Signature Elite S30 and S35: Which one is better?

In terms of design, S35 is the winner with a more elite appearance. The slim body construction is ready to shine through the home theater system. It’s a bit tricky to claim a winner in the sound performance, so it’s a tie. As you can see from the key specs above, the numbers are so close to defining a winner. To end your curiosity, I would say pick Polk S30 because there’s no difference in quality, but the price range is half. If you have the money and do care about room aesthetics, go for Polk S35.

It’s surprising how the manufacturer manages to keep up with the latest features and serve us on a golden plate. Polk audio with two center channel speakers offers an excellent bang for your buck. They undertake the mission of making their products reachable to everyone and it seems like they are succeeding so far. There’s room for improvement, but I’m satisfied with the results of the S30 and S35. Both center channel speakers managed to deliver a sensational atmosphere to the table.

Design and Built Quality

The bulky traditional style is covered all over the S30 design. You will meet the contemporary walnut touches instead of slim and modern. This kind of design is not pretty common nowadays, but vintage is always welcomed in most house interiors. Aside from the vintage style, the build quality seems sturdy. It fulfills the claim of long-lasting life that the company advertises.

On the other hand, we have the sophisticated look of the S35. It does justice to the name and swears never to ruin any home theater decoration. The build quality is nicely crafted and seems quite sturdy. As many of you can guess, my side is Polk S35 Elite. Of course, the preferences differ, but when something is gorgeous, it catches immediate attention.

Sound Quality

The overall sound quality in S30 is overwhelming, and I adored the lovely balanced tones in every frequency range. Every single note hits differently in pure clarity. You won’t be missing a critical dialogue, even some casual background conversations. The same but more upgraded performance applies to the S35 as well. Both will enrich the home theater system seamlessly. 

Dynamics and Acoustic Arrangement

Polk Audio S35 nailed it this time with the feature called Dynamic Balance Designed Acoustic Array. Let’s express warm approval to the patented technology that performs very well in every music genre you throw. The mechanics are in arrangement with room acoustic to impress the audiophile with defined and rich sound. On the other side, the S30 is powered with the same feature but is slightly less powerful. 

The frequency range in Polk S35 is lower, which means it can handle lower frequencies much better. Lower frequencies are ideal for high-resolution sound in ultra-HD movies, multi-channel concert videos, and spatial audio combined for Apple Music, Dolby Atmos, or DTS: X.

Bass Production

Something that I particularly like is the bass boost. The booming effect is clear and audible when watching movies or listening to music. There is no difference between the bass enhancement in the two speakers. Therefore, I can’t declare a winner- it’s a tie.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Center Speaker used for?

The center channel speaker is dominant in completing the surround sound system. It does most of the work and ensures you get clear conversations when watching movies and TV shows. Usually located in the front, these speakers ensure the boost of sound all alone.

Is Center Channel Necessary for Home Theater System?

No, it’s unnecessary if you have at least two speakers, a soundbar, or a subwoofer in your home theater system. You can avoid using a central speaker if you intend to create a standalone music system. 

What’s the Optimal Setup Frequency for Center Channel Speaker?

 The assignment of the center channel speaker aims at the dialogues and mid-range frequencies. The ideal range is from 100Hz to 240Hz.

How to Make Center Channel Speaker Sound Better?

The location of any audio equipment affects the sound quality. If the area is incorrect, you cannot get the best out of channel speakers. So, the center speaker should always have a horizontal position above or below the TV. You have to be familiar with room acoustics and furniture beforehand. Generally speaking, it’s better to be a few feet away from the wall facing directly to your face. Plus, avoid obstructing the front with accessories.  

What’s the Difference between Center Channel Speakers and Soundbars?

Center channel speakers play mono sound. The sounds directly come from one direction (one channel). On the contrary, soundbars have a stereo sound that divides the sounds into two channels (right and left). So, both speakers need to stand in the middle to ensure immersive audio.

A Brief Summary

We crashed the two siblings in this article, and they appear to be impressive in any way. Polk did a great job, including the Dynamic Balance Designed Acoustic Array feature.

Everything was very well put together except the design part. For vintage lovers S30 is ok, but S35 gives a more sophisticated and high-end look. If the looks aren’t important, don’t think twice; choose S30. If you can make it rain, choose S35. The price spectrum differs greatly, even though the sound quality is pretty much the same.   

Further Reading

If you enjoyed what you read thus far, you may read some of my other insightful blogs

Don’t miss out on this great comparison matchup between the Sennheiser HD 650 and Fidelio X2.

A list of the top 4 speakers for the Fluance RT85 is also included.

Furthermore, find out if you can wear headphones at a casino.

To learn why subwoofers have magnets and whether you should wear headphones over or under your beanie, be sure to read them both.

Additionally, if your speakers sound like they’re underwater, you should investigate the cause of the problem and possible solutions.

Melissa Peterkin
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