Question about setups with fewer than 5.1 speakers...

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Ralphie_B, Jan 11, 2006.

  1. Ralphie_B

    Ralphie_B Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm planning an AVR+Speakers+Sub system for my den. We watch a lot of movies in there, but it's by no means a theater room... the layout has the TV in a corner, with seating on couches against the walls. I want to avoid wiring up rear speakers, at least for now.

    So far, I've been considering a sound projector, like the Yamaha YSP-1000 (or -800) plus a sub. I plan to demo a setup like this at a local store. If I'm not happy with its performance, I will probably pick out a receiver, speakers, and sub instead.

    If I go with the receiver/speakers/sub, would you guys recommend a 2.1 or 3.1 setup? My understanding is all DVD players can downmix Dolby Digital 5.1 to just about any combination of channels. I'm leaning toward 3.1, because I've read that DVDs tend to be mixed with most (if not all) dialog going to the center channel. Should I expect any audio 'weirdness' if I were to get a 5.1 receiver, and just use the front left/right, center, and sub outs? Would 2.1 from a 5.1 receiver be any better? Or a dedicated stereo receiver? Thanks!
     
  2. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    Nope, it'll be fine.

    But if you have no plans to move the setup, why not get a better 2 channel integrated and a pair of nice stereo speakers, rather than compromising and buying features you will not use.

    Maybe an HK 2 channel receiver, MMG's, and a decent disc player.
     
  3. Ralphie_B

    Ralphie_B Stunt Coordinator

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    No plans to move, so I will definitely consider the stereo option.

    I should add that this is for a relatively small room (see my thread in the Speakers and Subwoofers forum for a layout), and that I would like to stick with compact bookshelf/satellite-sized speakers.
     
  4. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    Ah so.

    JBL L20T.

    Vintage opens a big world.
     
  5. Dick Knisely

    Dick Knisely Second Unit

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    But to your original question, no, any AVR I know about will handle a 3.1 just fine and simply pushes the missing speaker's output somewhere else, in this case to LF/RF. IMHO having a center channel makes a big difference for watching TV.
     
  6. Ralphie_B

    Ralphie_B Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you, that's good to know. It sounds like, if the sound projector doesn't work out, I'll be going for 3.1 then. I already have a nice dedicated 2.1 setup downstairs for music listening, so if I have to get a 'lesser' 5.1 receiver for the den (rather than a higher-end stereo one), that's a compromise I can live with. [​IMG]
     

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