Newbie Speaker Question

David Weeks

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Hello,

New to home theater and looking to build one. I recently built a house and pre-wired for in-ceiling speakers 3 in front and 2 in the back. However it has been recommended that I use an external center speaker by one person and another person said that using an in-ceiling R/L and an external center speaker could make the sound funky as it pans side to side. Does anyone have a similar setup? Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Apologies if this has been asked before.
 

JohnRice

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In-ceiling speakers are just not good for home theater. They should be in front of you, where the image is. In-ceilings are ideal for Atmos, when they're properly located and once you go to the point of having Atmos. Also, the first surround speakers should be to the sides of the viewing position, not behind it. If you expand from 5.1 to 7.1, then you add speakers behind you.

And I agree that having the L&R in the ceiling but the center on the front wall probably would be even worse than having them all in the ceiling. The left and right should be in front, to the sides of the image, with the center in the center of the wall, either above or below the image.

I highly suggest re-doing the speaker layout.
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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Well, any pans will go from say, the center channel located several feet off the floor, over and up to the ceiling. Meanwhile, the image that’s generating the sound moves horizontally across the screen.

I’ll leave it up to you to decide if that will sound “funky.”

Really, ceiling speakers are a bad idea for the front stage. Imagine if you had regular in-room speakers, but turned them to face the side walls. That’s basically what you get with in-ceiling speakers – they only sound good when you’re directly under them because they are so far off-axis from your seating location.

But don’t take my word for it – go to your nearest grocery store and see for yourself. Listen to how an overhead speaker sounds when you’re standing directly below it, verses how it sounds when you move 10-15 ft. away. The effect is even worse with low ceilings.

In-ceiling speakers can work well for the back (surround) speakers, as long as they aren’t too far behind the seating. But they are always a bad choice for the front trio.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

David Weeks

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In-ceiling speakers are just not good for home theater. They should be in front of you, where the image is. In-ceilings are ideal for Atmos, when they're properly located and once you go to the point of having Atmos. Also, the first surround speakers should be to the sides of the viewing position, not behind it. If you expand from 5.1 to 7.1, then you add speakers behind you.

And I agree that having the L&R in the ceiling but the center on the front wall probably would be even worse than having them all in the ceiling. The left and right should be in front, to the sides of the image, with the center in the center of the wall, either above or below the image.

I highly suggest re-doing the speaker layout.
Thank you for your response. Greatly Appreciated
 

David Weeks

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Well, any pans will go from say, the center channel located several feet off the floor, over and up to the ceiling. Meanwhile, the image that’s generating the sound moves horizontally across the screen.

I’ll leave it up to you to decide if that will sound “funky.”

Really, ceiling speakers are a bad idea for the front stage. Imagine if you had regular in-room speakers, but turned them to face the side walls. That’s basically what you get with in-ceiling speakers – they only sound good when you’re directly under them because they are so far off-axis from your seating location.

But don’t take my word for it – go to your nearest grocery store and see for yourself. Listen to how an overhead speaker sounds when you’re standing directly below it, verses how it sounds when you move 10-15 ft. away. The effect is even worse with low ceilings.

In-ceiling speakers can work well for the back (surround) speakers, as long as they aren’t too far behind the seating. But they are always a bad choice for the front trio.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
Thank you for the response. Greatly appreciated.
 

David Willow

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Take some time to listen to the speakers if you haven't. It is very hard to tell from reviews if you will like them. Also, if you are going to order online why not check out on-line only brands like SVS and Axiom (or even cheaper ones like Fluance).
 

PCRIDE

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All the speaker and receiver manuals from the major manufactures suggest this as a common speaker layout. Then if using atmos , for a true system Dolby suggests up to 11 speakers, but 4 -6 can work well. The atmos layout can be above you pointing down in a circular pattern around the room aiming into the center.

 

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