5.1 vs 7.1

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Allen C Hecht, Dec 19, 2003.

  1. Allen C Hecht

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2003
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Waiting for my new avr525 7.1 receiver to arrive. I want to ask if there are enough 7.1 sources, i.e. dvds available to warrant the immediate purchase of two additional speakers, as well as the royal pain to run 2 additional speaker wires under my crawlspace(the real low, scrape on your belly part) then fish them up through the walls to their final resting place, or can I wait until 7.1 becomes more prevelent? In addition, if I operate in 7.1, that takes away the usage of the speakers on my deck without the purchase of an additional receiver. Thoughts?
     
  2. Mike.W

    Mike.W Auditioning

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0
    There is actually no 7.1 DVD format yet for movies. The highest format right now is DTS-ES 6.1 Discrete, which appears on only a handful of DVDs. Dolby Digital EX and DTS-ES 6.1 Matrix both form the rear channel from a matrix of the surrounds. Whether you think it's worth it or not is certainly up to you -- but since 6.1/7.1 will become more prevalent, you might as well run a few cables for it now, as you will likely do it eventually anyway. [​IMG] The tradeoff between 7.1 and outside speakers is yours to make. Which is more important to you?
     
  3. Stelios

    Stelios Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    0
    Also, if your sofa is right at the back wall, the additional 2 speakers required will not work proberly. They should be at least 1-2 meters back from the sofa.

    Stelios
     
  4. Allen C Hecht

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2003
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    right now in my 5.1 set up, the two surrounds are at ear height, approx 3 feet or so from the couch. According to Harman Kardon, I should be wiring the outside deck speakers into the rear surround jacks, and plugging the rear surround speakers into the side surround speaker jacks. Then reconfigure the two side surround amps to be zone 2. Will the various sound modes such as Dolby Digital EX and DTS-ES 6.1, Logic 7, make any sound difference with my current 5.1 set up?Also, hopefully I will hear the difference between my Sony strde545 and the HK525. but I agree, think what I will do is run the two wires just in case.
     
  5. ChrisLazarko

    ChrisLazarko Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2003
    Messages:
    867
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well the best idea is the zone 2. The few 6.1 DVD's out there from what I understand don't make much of a difference. Now I just bought the HK AVR-230 for a little trial which I will be returning shortly once mine gets fixed and I fooled around with it a little and put in LOTR using 6.1... the back center didn't seem to offer much of anything... so I find it worthless.

    Anyways, zone 2 is pretty cool so that is definantly worth it.

    Enjoy.
     
  6. Allen C Hecht

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2003
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    does that mean that I can be watching tv or a dvd on my bigscreen in the family room, and the kids can listen to the radio on the deck? Would I be able to watch tv while they listen to a cd playing on my dvd player? The manual to the avr says zone 2 can only be an analog source.
     
  7. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
  8. SteveLeach

    SteveLeach Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Messages:
    159
    Likes Received:
    0
    My understanding is that in 6.1 the back channel is a mono signal. When doing the 7.1 mix they send the same signal to both of the back speakers. So I guess I don't see any benefits just now for 7.1 over 6.1.
    Unless my understanding is incorrect about the signal? Anyone know for sure?
     
  9. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    24
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    Yes, 6.1 and 7.1 are the same signal, though there are also Logic 7 and now DPL2x that can steer the signal to make the channels more distinct.

    If you have a larger room, 7.1 may be of benefit, but for the average HT, 6.1 is going to be plenty already.
     
  10. John S

    John S Producer

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2003
    Messages:
    5,460
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yes, right now, even though I have 7.1 hooked up, 6.1 is the threashold.

    I find personally that it makes a significant difference myself, in my room, with my setup, from 5.1 to 6.1/7.1...

    There are more DTS titles in my library than I had previously thought. Often times I am to lazy to browse the menus of any particular DVD.

    Even with the mono source going to two rears instead of one in the center, I find some minor advantages.
     
  11. Holger

    Holger Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    May 29, 2002
    Messages:
    87
    Likes Received:
    0


    well steve, it isn't that easy. first of all, someone should clear out the terms *6.1* and *7.1*

    most receivers today which claims to be a *7.1* product aren't in fact *7.1* products at all. like you said, they just deliver excatly the same signal to the left and right surround back channels, so they are properly spoken *6.1* items whith just 7 channels of amplification or in other words: they only use 3 surround channels, no matter how many backsurrounds are in use.

    there are only a few items which can be considered as *7.1* products, such as lexicon decoders and those products which already have or will have the new dolby pro logic IIx format. in these cases the two backsurrounds will run a stereo signal, so here are REALLY 4 channels of (independent) surround information present.

    as to your question: a *6.1* system with only one backsurround speaker doesn't make any sense at all, because of the *reverse effect*. if only one speaker is right behind your seating position, it often appears, that this signal seems to be located in front of you, rather then being located where it should belongs, your back.

    so, someone should ALWAYS use two backsurrounds, instead of just one to avoid or at least to decrease this *reverse effect*. that is exactly the reason, why THX (ultra) always recommends two backsurrounds rather then one.

    to my personal experience the whole *6.1* thing is just a gimmick made out of industry hype, (no matter if one or two backsurrounds are used) because IMO it produces more problems, then doing anything good.

    if someone is really interested in *7.1* then (lexicons)logic7 or dolby pro logic IIx is the way to go, otherwise i recommend to stay with *5.1* an save the money.


    regards, holger
     
  12. ChrisLazarko

    ChrisLazarko Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2003
    Messages:
    867
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you are looking to do a Zone2 then yes the 2nd zone can only be in an analog source while the first Zone can be a digital source i'm pretty sure.

    But with CD's all you would be using is an analog source anyways so it's not a very big deal.
     
  13. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 1999
    Messages:
    1,479
    Likes Received:
    0
    In my experience, 6.1 can be useful if surround placement doesn't allow for good phantom rear center imaging. I would experiment with 5.1 first and if the room & placement doesn't allow for an adequate rear sounfield, then I'd try adding the two additional speakers, which in some cases can help.

    DJ
     

Share This Page