Need help with designing HT setup in apartment...

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by John*Jones, Jun 26, 2002.

  1. John*Jones

    John*Jones Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello all,
    I'm looking for recommendations for my first HT setup that I'm slowly putting together. I just got my Take 5.2 speakers yesterday and to burn all the nervous energy while I wait for the money to purchase a receiver and some cables, I've been deliberating the room setup. I've included a image of my apartment below, with a basic layout of the equipment.
    All suggestions are welcome, but I had a few specific questions. I have stands for the front two speakers, but not for the rear. Seeing as how they cost $75, I was considering mounting the back two on the wall behind my couch, with wall mounts that came with the speakers. Is there any acoustic difference between mounting and stands...silly question, I know [​IMG] And if I were to mount the speakers, what would be their optimal height and what would be the desired distance between the two? Also, if I mount the speakers, will that allow sound to penetrate the apartment above more so than with just stands? If mounted, should I "toe" the speakers or is there some other desired positioning.
    Also, my TV stand is a little tall...I need to find a new one to bring down the screen to my direct line of sight, as well as the center speaker. From what I've read so far, is it not correct to have the center speaker line up with to my ear level when I'm watching?
    Anyway, besides what I've mentioned, please let me know if you have any other suggestions or if there is something I'm missing...I want to be able to make my first HT setup a smooth a process as possible. [​IMG]
    Thanks again,
    John
    [​IMG]
     
  2. joe rizzuto

    joe rizzuto Stunt Coordinator

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    try this site - it has great info and is more than a good place to start -http://www.dolby.com/ht/Guide.HomeTheater.0110.html
     
  3. Sean Dayton

    Sean Dayton Stunt Coordinator

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    I bought stands for my fronts and rears when I purchased my Take 5.2 set. Having stands for the rears allowed me to place the rears in the proper position.
     
  4. Michael Lomker

    Michael Lomker Stunt Coordinator

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    It's always a compromise with apartments...I'm in the same position. In an ideal world the TV would be on the short wall so that you could place the rear surrounds on the side walls about 1/3rd of the way down from the ceiling.

    I wouldn't worry about too much sound from the surrounds...movies really only use them for ambience/surround effects and they are at a much lower volume level than your main speakers.

    I ended up buying stands and having the speakers on either side of the couch at ear level. Not what I wanted but it is much better than not having the rear speakers.
     
  5. Greg*go

    Greg*go Supporting Actor

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    Another point that should keep you from worrying less about the sourround speakers going into the next apt is since they are so close to you, you'll end up turning their volume down some through the receiver so the surround sounds aren't louder then the main speakers when sitting on the couch.
    If you're going to wall mount them, you might want to move them a little bit further from the couch, and about 2 feet higher. You should try to figure out a way to test how they sound before you actually do the mounting though. It would be a shame if you mount them then decide you don't like how they sound there. It looks like a nice setup though. It's much more audio friendly them my speaker placements. Will you be getting a sub anytime in the near future?
    Greg.
     
  6. John*Jones

    John*Jones Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks everyone for the replies. This is exactly the kind of feedback I was looking for.
    Greg,
    I had be agonizing over how I would test my speaker placement before actually mounting them...last thing I need is more visible holes on my wall. Unfortunately, I will not be getting a sub anytime in the near future (I just bit the bullet and put down $390 for a Denon 1802 and I haven't even purchased my interconnects and speaker cables yet [​IMG] ). However, considering the dimensions of my room and the fact its an apartment, I had thought that I could manage without one...for the time being, anyway...am I wrong? [​IMG] Will not having a sub affect how I setup my speakers?
    I do plan on buying an SPL meter and an audio configuration DVD (anyone know where I can find one at an affordable price?). I'll be using this system 50/50 for movies and music (I'm drooling over the TurtleBeach Audiotron to unleash the potential of my mp3 library). I listen to alot of classical and I crave clarity...is there anyway to optimize for this kind of music?
    Anyway, I need to get to work. Thanks for everyones time and patience, and recommendations as well!!
    John
     
  7. Paul_Dunlop

    Paul_Dunlop Second Unit

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    Hi

    I have the same sort of layout in a condo apartment- i used to use wall mounts for the surrounds, and had them toed in. They sounded pretty good, but i recently removed the wall mounts, bought stands and faced the speakers towards each other. i think it sounds much better now.

    If you look on the Dolby website, they suggest facing the speakers toward each other, and/or placing them higher on the wall IF your couch is against the wall.

    A friend of mine wall mounted his at the top of the ceiling, facing down on an angle, and it works pretty well for him.

    My feeling is that with Stands, i have more flexibility in moving the speakers around and varying the toe in (if i want to again). Once you wall mount, they're there for the duration.

    Hope this helps

    As for the sub, it makes a pretty big difference no matter what size your room is - you just need to lower the volume to accomodate your neighbours. I highly recommend the Energy 8.2 - for cost and performance, i think it's a great deal. Also being front ported helps with placement - in an apartment you don't want the port firing at either a shared wall or your bedroom!

    My lineup
    Fronts - Energy XL 16's
    Center - Energy XLC
    Surrounds - Energy XL 15's
    Sub - Energy XL 8.2
    Receiver- Denon 1601
     

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