Quality of speakers varies widely; usually you get what you pay for. Bigger is not necessarily better; I have a pair of JBL L5's that are 4-ways: 1" tweeter, 4.5 and 6" midranges, and 8" woofer that outperform another JBL 3-way speaker with a 12" woofer. Fronts are the two that sit to your front left and right, surround speakers are to your rear left and right, and the center channel is in front of you. Most CDs are not recorded in surround sound, so you should listen to them in stereo.