Ridiculously stupid 7.1 surround question

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Oxycontin, Oct 4, 2006.

  1. Oxycontin

    Oxycontin Auditioning

    Oct 3, 2006
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    I've got the whole 5.1 thing down, and where the 5 channels are, and on a 7.1 system, I gather that the two new channels are "side" channels. Now here is my question:

    I don't want to have side speakers sitting on stands in my room, and I can't cut into the walls, because there is a door in the middle of the room on one of the sides. I could however, put some "in ceiling" speakers in, in the middle of the room on both sides.

    Is 7.1 meant to have the speakers on the sides, or would it sound acceptable to have them in the ceiling? i.e. would sounds sound very out of place if they were in the ceiling?

    Thanks ![​IMG]
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Jun 24, 1999
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    Technically speaking, the surrounds in a 5.1 setup are considered side surrounds, though they are referred to as and often located in the rear. In a 7.1 setup, the "normal" surrounds are on the side and the "new" speakers are in the rear. There is no reason why you couldn't have the rear surrounds in the ceiling, or you could do some "on wall" speakers or even just have a 6.1 setup with a single rear center.

    My buddy's 7.1 setup has all 4 surrounds in the ceiling and it worked surprisingly well (wiht proper placement and calibration).
  3. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

    Aug 19, 2002
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    As john pointed out, it's common confusion about "surround" placement in a 5.1 array. They actually go beside the listening position (or slightly behind by a foor or so) in a standard 5.1 array. A 7.1 array adds two rear speakers which are placed behind the listenin position.

    This is illustrated quite effectively here:


    As far as home theater listening goes, I recommend following the dolby standard placement. For multichannel music listening, there can be some different considerations which can lead to some slightly different placement choices.

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