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Rear surround versus high front speakers


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#1 of 10 Tommasini

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Posted April 29 2011 - 03:31 AM

I'm finally wiring my DYI system tonight and still haven't made up my mind on my rear surround speakers. My receiver is an Onkyo TX SR608 and I'm installing a 7.1 Polk Audio M50/CS20 and inwall (RC85i) speaker system. I have a dilemma and would like everyone's opinion. I'm reluctantly placing my side surround in the ceiling on an angle (we have a vaulted ceiling) at about 12' angled toward the primary listening position due to window and door configuration. Due to the high ceilings and the position of the bathroom and bar my rear surrounds are going to be really high (at least 14') and 7 feet behind the primary listening position. My question is..... Would front high/wide (in addition to my R/L front and center channel of course) offer a better movie/sport/gaming audio experience than rear surround?


Thanks in advance for your help,

Tommy



#2 of 10 Tommasini

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Posted April 29 2011 - 08:51 AM

Not many opinions here I guess. I've decided to wire it for both, install front wide and high instead of rear surround and if I don't like the set-up then I can purchase some speakers for the rear surround. I could actually do both (rear surround and front high and wide) and set it up for 9.1 but to do that I lose my zone 2 capabilities.



#3 of 10 Adam Gregorich

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Posted April 29 2011 - 09:12 AM

Sorry late to the party James.  I haven't heard a front height system, so I can't comment.  I do have a 7.1 system using back channels.  Audyssey seems to push for front width (or height) channels over back speakers with their DSX system.  We were recently talking with sound designer Erik Aadahl about mixing for theatrical 7.1 and that question came up (3:30 in):





If you are interested in 7.1 checkout our entire discussion with Erik and Craig Eggers from Dolby.



#4 of 10 Adam Gregorich

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Posted April 29 2011 - 05:11 PM



Originally Posted by mccambley 

Front height speakers are new to the game and I know of no movies that coded for them. 7.1 on the other hand actually has movies coded for that arrangement.

Yes, Dolby and Audyssey have matrix systems to put sound there.  Theatrical 7.1 is relatively new.  There have been 10 movies mixed for this.  The first was Toy Story 3, and the most recent was Megamind.  There are a lot more in the pipeline.





#5 of 10 Tommasini

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Posted April 30 2011 - 02:50 AM

Thanks for the comments. I was up all night and now resting in the car while my wife drives to the beach. This is what I decided to do..... I wired the house for in ceiling and installed side and rear surround. The speakers that I purchased for the rears I felt would be to small for front wide or front high. I then wired the room for front wide and will add towers there and front high and will bracket mount speakers there in the future. It appears from last minute research on the Audssey EQ (sic) that the front wide and front high are very angle specific so I just didn't want to slap some in-walls up and create more imaging problems for myself down the road. My room is 22' x 30' with the 60" ( still looking at the new Sharp 70") mounted on the 22' wall. I believe. My room is plenty big enough for 7.1 but the ceiling and back wall being my biggest obstacle. I wired the subs at 7' from one corner (1/3 rule) and another in the opposite corner. My front R/L are towers and the center will be on a cabinet under the LED. Any suggestions or observations are welcome as drywall doesn't go up for a week. Thanks, Tommy

#6 of 10 Tommasini

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Posted April 30 2011 - 05:43 AM

My system is an Onkyo TX SR608 and has numerous filters and.decoders. it also has 7 x 110 watts.

#7 of 10 CB750

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Posted April 30 2011 - 10:15 AM

James,


You have been at this hot and heavy for over a month.  Relax have a beer and don't have a heart attack worrying about things so much.   We live in an imperfect world and it seems you are doing the best you can with the problems you are faced with.    I don't know if I would worry about changing technology as we all might be one step being left out of the latest thing.   It sounds like you wired your room as best you can for the future so enjoy the fruits of your labor.



#8 of 10 Hicks

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Posted May 04 2011 - 10:11 AM

With more true 7.1 sources coming down the pike I would go that route.

Height effects will remain matrixed for a while, at least I haven't heard of any plans to implement them in any theatrical mixes.

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#9 of 10 Tommasini

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Posted May 05 2011 - 03:16 AM

CB750, you are exactly right! It's been raining here and my job has kept me from worrying about it so things are good. I finished the wiring and now waiting on the sheet-rock to be finished. I wired the room for 2 subs (1 wired at 1/3 wall width and the other in the corner), front wide, front high, side surround, rear surround and zone 2 speakers on the front porch of the pool house. The room is 22 x 30 so I have lots of room to experiment with, I can't go wrong with all the options I have. I will probably begin the build with 1 sub (tested at both locations), side surround, rear surround and of course front R/L and center.


I do have a question regarding boxes and enclosure stuffing...... I was talking to guy installing the CAT 5 cable, alarm system, etc the other day and he asked me if I was going to build boxes behind the speakers and I said, yes. He told me that he does a lot of these installations and never uses boxes or insulation. I called Parts Express and they said the same thing. I looked at the instructions from Polk Audio and they recommend placing some insulation behind the speakers. What opinion does everyone have on this topic?


Thanks always,

Tommy



#10 of 10 derrickdj1

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Posted August 08 2011 - 07:32 PM

Hi. I have a new 7.1 system with front highs and it performs great and sounds great. This setup will be Ideal for you with the long room and more sound heading back toward the listening area. I was not sure If I would like the system but I have a long room also and took the advice of an audio tech to go with front highs.Ceiling placement of the rear surrounds is not a bad ideal if you have a good speaker package.




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