My living room doesn't lend itself to a surround system, so I run it in stereo. There's no center channel and the sounds from the speakers allows seamless transition across the front. If you can't find a center channel speaker that satisfies you, try phantom- it's not the end of the world if you don't use a center channel and using phantom is far better than using a bad center channel speaker. Hearing people speaking without sounding realistic is terrible. I have heard radio interviews with people who I know and when my attention wasn't on the interview, I have been startled by the sound of their voices, on occasion- it sounded as if they were in the room. That tells me my speakers do a great job with vocals.