Question on speaker placement and 6.1 vs 7.1

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by EdAngell, Mar 16, 2005.

  1. EdAngell

    EdAngell Stunt Coordinator

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    I am getting ready to install some speakers into my basement rec room which will be our home theater. The house was built and pre-wired for 6.1 and has boxes in the walls for the front 3 speakers and in the ceiling behind the seating area for the back 3 speakers.

    Without getting into the whole in-wall debate (due to pre-existing choices and extenuating circumstances too detailed to go into, I am using Klipsch R2650W's all around) would it be better for me to go from 6.1 to 7.1 if I can run another wire back to the receiver from the spot in the ceiling where the rear center channel is supposed to be placed (I have a conduit up there for the projector)? If not, how do you wire the 6th channel only on a 7.1 receiver?

    Also, since all the speakers are "square" which way should the rear speakers and rear center(s) be positioned? Should they all face the same way with the tweeters closer to the screen or sideways or what?

    Sorry if these are stupid questions, but I'd like to get my ducks in order before I start cutting drywall. Thanks for your help.
     
  2. John S

    John S Producer

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    Hard call, because 7.1 is not much more than 2 rear 6.1 speakers. I mean, you could run the new wire, you could also just jumper parallel from the one 6.1 rear to the other. All 7.1 AVR's I know of will run 7.1, 6.1, 5.1 no problemo. The processor knows what to do by what speakers / channel are configured as there / installed.
     
  3. EdAngell

    EdAngell Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm using a Pioneer Elite VSX-52TX.

    Sorry for the confusion, but if I wanted to only use 6.1 how do I hook up the 6th channel to the receiver when there are 2 connections on the back? Which do I use?

    I was thinking I should just get a 7th channel because I can get another speaker to match the rest for $130 and not have to try to match the system down the road. I think I can get the wire up there through the conduit. Is 7.1 that much of an improvement that it's worth the trouble?

    Also, do you have any insight as to how the speakers should be oriented in the ceiling since they are all the same shape/size? Do they all go the same way, or mirror-image from side to side? Can you give me a diagram?

    Thanks for the help!
     
  4. John S

    John S Producer

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    The orientation, should be somewhat experiemental, maybe even with an SPL meter. I mean, when they are not in cieling, a little tow in / tow out here and there can be way more significant than one might expect. I would probably go with tweets out away from center / sweet spot.

    7.1 is an improvement. Varied opinions on how much, if at all, just as with anything else. I give it a big thumbs up myself.
     
  5. Calvin S

    Calvin S Agent

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    The dolby web site offers really good diagrams and tips on speaker placement for 6.1 and 7.1. As far as running 6.1 on a 7.1 system, you'll most likely need to consult your receiver's owners manual. In mine (Denon), it specifically tells which of the surround back outputs to use. Then, in the receiver setup, you need to tell it that you only have one surround back versus two. I recently added surround back, and ran wiring for 2 back channels, but only put in 1 surround back speaker. I decided on that approach because there is discrete 6.1, but no discrete 7.1. Since my room is small, having two non-discrete back channels didn't make much sense to me.
     
  6. EdAngell

    EdAngell Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the help guys!
     

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