Speaker placement in hard to fit room (picture)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mike Butler, Mar 30, 2002.

  1. Mike Butler

    Mike Butler Extra

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    After 3 years in a new house, I am finally setting up my TV/entertainment area. I have a Mitsubishi 50" RPTV that we bought when we moved in. I am buying an amp and speakers to go with it.
    The room is our family room and has some severe limitations. It is 16X19 and two stories high that is open to the upstairs hallway. On one end of the room there is a 2 story fireplace with 2 story windows next to it and around the corner on both sides. The opposite corner is a neat angled wall that currently houses the TV perfectly. On either side there are large openings that lead to the kitchen and hallways. This is likely where the TV will stay.
    I have questions about where to place the speakers. I can place the fronts right next to the set, but I have always thought they should be further spread out. Is this right? The other option is above the openings to the other rooms, but they would be 8 feet up that way. If the speakers were pointed downward, would this be ok? The red ink in the picture shows the possible locations.
    The center seems logically placed on top of the TV.
    The rears are also a problem. Behind the couch is the wall and behind my recliner are windows. I could mount them high up in brackets and aim them straight down, but they would end up directly overhead, not behind at all. Would this work alright?
    Any other ideas based on this crude drawing I whipped up on my laptop using MS Paint during my vacation?
    Thanks,
    MIKEhttp://www.picturetrail.com/gallery/...6146&members=1 Familyroom layout
     
  2. DustinDavis

    DustinDavis Stunt Coordinator

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    Mike,

    Is the location of everything in the room except your HT equipment fixed? I can think of a couple different configurations that would be better HT-wise, but you'll have to make some concessions on the location of your furniture.

    For instance, if you are willing to put the couch in the middle of the living room, you could put the sofa back by the kitchen, facing the direction where your sofa is in the picture. Then you can use the 19 ft wall to space your speakers out from the TV, which will be in the middle of the 19ft wall. Then, put rear speakers on stand behind the sofa, mount them on the wall behind the sofa, mount them on the ceiling behind the sofa, or you could even mount them on the side walls, though that would probably be my last option.

    You've also got enough room on that 19ft wall to place your AV cabinet there, and reposition your sub if you want or need to.
     
  3. Selden Ball

    Selden Ball Second Unit

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    Selden
    Mike,

    One rough estimate for front speaker separation is that they should be slightly less far apart than the distance to your listening position. However, having their sounds come from overhead instead of the level of the TV can be quite distracting. Have you considered movable stands?

    You might consider dipole speakers for the surrounds. They'll tend to produce a diffuse sound for people seated along their axes. Most of the sound that'll be heard will be difuse reflections off the walls. I'd put one over the couch and the other over the chair in the upper right corner of your drawing.

    I hope this helps a little.
     
  4. Mike Butler

    Mike Butler Extra

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    Thank you guys. The problem is my "home theater" is my wife's "family room". She even wants those Bose "Jewel Cubes" because they are so small and unobtrusive, but that's for another thread[​IMG] I realize it's not really a home theater, but I want to make the best of it. I could make one in the basement, but I know we tend to stay upstairs most of the time. I have to plan on the furniture staying put.
    If I did go with small, white speakers(not Bose), they could be mounted on the wall with brackets near the TV and aimed correctly. They just wouldn't be far apart. SO what's more objectionable: higher than necessary or closer than necessary?
    The rears seemingly have to be overhead, I guess that's obvious. What does a "dipole" speaker do differently?
    We are toying with buying a leather sectional and putting it in front of the TV, where there could be some small speakers on stands behind it.
    I'm figuring on $1,500 $2,000 for a Denon receiver,a DVD player and 5 speakers(got a Klipsch sub already). I suppose a leather couch would be near the same. Can't have both at once[​IMG] Aww.. forget the couch.
    I appreciate any other input. I am mostly thinking out loud on this, but it's nice to get feedback and fresh ideas, like suggestions for little white speakers(not Bose)
    Thanks
    MIKE
     
  5. DustinDavis

    DustinDavis Stunt Coordinator

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    With that room configuration, you are definitely in a pickle as far as getting good sound. You do not have a single seat available for on-axis viewing except for the recliner. But it is so far in the corner, it would be very hard to place surrounds optimally even for that seat.

    Good luck.
     

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