Center channel speaker placement

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by brandon*b, Aug 4, 2003.

  1. brandon*b

    brandon*b Extra

    Aug 4, 2003
    Likes Received:
    I am trying to determine the optimal center-channel speaker placement for my set-up. I have read that the center channel is to be no greater than 6' from the 2 front channels. my options are:

    #1) center channel ontop of my entertainment center (about 7' high) with the 2 front channels on either side of the base of the TV (3' high)

    #2) center channel ontop of my TV (about 5'high) with the front speakers either on either side of the base of the TV (about 3' high).

    #3) center channel ontop of the TV and the front channels ontop of the entertainment center (about 7' high).

    My understanding is that you would want the center to be closest to the TV. Any suggestions on the placement of the speakers would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Jeff Kleinberg

    Jeff Kleinberg Stunt Coordinator

    May 20, 2001
    Likes Received:
    #2 will gve you the best sound stage and pans, try to arange them so the center is slightly behind the main LR, forming a semicircle.

  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    May 22, 1999
    Likes Received:
    I dont know where that 6' idea came from. Here is my typical guideline:

    - Center speaker on top of the TV. Pull the speaker forward so it over-hangs the front of the TV by 1/4 inch.

    - You want to decouple the center speaker from the TV cabinent. A popular thing to do is get 2 rubber door-wedges and make feet. This also gives the center some downward tilt which compensates for being higher than the L/R.

    - Put the L/R speakers out about 45 degrees from the center. Ideally, they will be pulled into the room to be an equal distance from the primary listening position as the center. (Measure to the tweeter). The speakers can be less or more than 45 degrees (mine are at about 30), but try to give the speakers some space around them. 2-3 feet of clearance is a better choice than trying to get a 45 degree angle.

    - Toe in: Use a laser-pointer to see where the L/R speakers are pointing at. There are 3 typical ammounts of toe-in:
    • A- So the focus from the L/R speakers intersect about 2 feet in front of the primary listening position. (This is the typical 2-channel music arrangement)
    • B- So the focus is exactly on the primary listening position.
    • C- So that the focus is about 2 feet BEHIND the primary listening position

    You just have to try all 3 with your room and speakers and pick one.

    IMPORTANT: After playing with speaker positions and toe-in, use a SPL meter to check the levels. This can make a large difference. Check the Primer/FAQ at the top of the Basics area for more info.

    Hope this helps.

Share This Page