Pockets of Sound

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mark_Be, Jan 18, 2003.

  1. Mark_Be

    Mark_Be Extra

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    I have the following equipment and setup for my entry into the HT hobby...

    Equipment:
    Sony STR-K840P receiver
    Sony micro speakers (SS-MSP2 for R/L fronts and surrounds; SS-CMP2 for center; and a Sony sub-woofer)

    Setup:
    Not optimal but I have to deal with a family room setting where the Panasonic 53" TV is in a corner of the room so the R/L front speakers are actually about 3 feet closer to the listening position than the center speaker or TV and the surrounds are directly on the side of the listening position. The front L/R and surrounds are on the floor. Distance for the speakers from listening position is about 15 feet for front right (left is about 2 feet closer)and surrounds are about 7 feet from listening position directly to the side. I have set the menu options on the receiver to match this as much as possible.

    My problem is that the surround speaker effects seem to be more like pockets of sound or pinpoints of sound when the effects come from them instead of feeling like I'm immersed in the sound of the movie. Unfortunately, the only comparison I have to my setup is a friend's house where the setup and speakers are MUCH better quality.
    Kind of hard to explain but my system gives the sensation that the effects "travel" from the surround speakers to the front speakers instead of just being a seamless flow of sound.

    My question is...will an upgrade to better speakers help this situation or is the setup of the room really the biggest problem. Hopefully, speaker upgrades will help as that's something I can do something about but I'm pretty much stuck with the room setup.
    I know from reading the FAQs that my setup isn't optimal but I wanted an opinion of whether the speaker upgrade will make a noticeable difference with regard to my problem.
    Thanks again,
    Mark
     
  2. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Cees Alons
    Mark,
    Before you upgrade (don't worry: you will one day [​IMG] ), you certainly must try moving your rears. The best position is higher on the wall radiating "over" the heads of listeners. Another approach may be pointing them to the walls in an angle such as to "distribute" the reflected sound more evenly, but I think that a higher position (higher than the heads of the audience, approx. 0.5 - 1' higher) may perform wonders already.
    At least: try it!
    Good luck with your HT!
    Cees
     
  3. GregLee

    GregLee Stunt Coordinator

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    Also, check the receiver's volume settings for the surrounds. Specifically, try turning those volumes up to see if it helps, if you don't have a sound pressure meter. A mistake I made in setting the volumes by ear is compensating for the distances of the speakers and setting the furthest ones to lower volumes. You could also try fiddling with the distance/delay settings -- there's no law that the settings have to correspond exactly to the actual distances.
     
  4. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    dang! the first two posts were my exact recommendations. [​IMG]
    1. diffuse your speakers. i have mine right beside the couch, but they point straight up. or you can point them towards the walls and have the sound "bounce" off the walls.
    2. calibrate your speakers. you may have your rear's running too "hot". or you can simply try turning them down.
    i'll say this...it's nice to see someone who is aware of this stuff. all my friends just *love* that rear channel action and always like it pumped up. to me, it's annoying and detracts from the screen.
    but, ultimately, it's all about personal preference.
     
  5. Mark_Be

    Mark_Be Extra

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    Thanks for all the inputs folks! This is a great forum!
    I will try raising the rear speakers today when I get home and also will check my menu settings again for distance and volume. I did already direct the rear speakers to the walls in lieu of pointing directly at the listening position and I think it did help diffuse the sound somewhat.

    Ted, thanks for the comment about "being aware". I have a lot to learn in this hobby and I wasn't exactly sure what was wrong but it just didn't sound right to me. Hopefully my ears (and eyes) will get tuned in better as time goes on.

    Thanks again for all the help...off to play after I get home!
    Mark
     

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