Speaker Set-Up Question

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by mattBates, Jul 20, 2006.

  1. mattBates

    mattBates Auditioning

    Jul 20, 2006
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    I'm creating a 7.1 system in a basement room that is about 28' by 15'
    and about 9' high. My question regards the back two speakers. I am
    placing my tv and front 3 speakers at one end of the room and have two
    choices regarding how to place the back speakers.

    I can either place the rear speakers in the ceiling a couple of feet
    behind the viewing area or I can place speakers on the wall (or on
    stands) at the back end of the room (about 12 to 14 feet behind the
    viewing area). I need to keep the area behind the viewing area open
    for the kids to play in. Any suggestions about which alignment would
    create the best sound field? The distance from the TV (a 50" DLP) to
    the viewing area is about 13-14'.

    Thanks so much for your help. I really appreciate it! Take
  2. JeffLab

    JeffLab Stunt Coordinator

    Nov 4, 2004
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    Hi Matt,
    My HT setup is quite similar, actually. I built mine in the basement as well, 28' X approx 15', with the viewing area in the front half of the 28' length. I have a supporting column in the middle of the room which dictates how far back I can situate the couch.

    My center channel is directly beneath my 50" LCD screen, with the two front speakers at the far ends of the front wall. My side-rear surround speakers are mounted on the side walls, just under 7' high, angled slightly downwards, just slightly rear of the seating line, and the rear speakers are at the same height, directly behind the seating area, sitting atop a bookshelf, again slightly angled downwards. Unfortunately I'm out of town at the moment, otherwise I'd post some pics to illustrate what I've done. I'll be back in a few days, and intend to post them the first chance I get.

    I had briefly considered putting the rear speakers all the way in the back of the long room as well, but ultimately decided against it. I think the best thing is to keep both areas distinct and avoid having them "spill over" into each other. In my instance, the space behind the couch is not only divided by the column, but I also installed an open-backed bookshelf which creates an open wall dividing the two spaces more distinctly, therefore making the 2nd half of the room my computer room. Oh, and the thought of my wife trying to kill me for having the rear speakers blaring in her ears while she was goofing around on the pc was a factor as well.... [​IMG]
  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    May 22, 1999
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    Hi Matt. Welcome to HTF!

    In truth, it will not make a dramatic difference however you choose to place the rear speakers.

    But I could give you an opinion... [​IMG]

    I like all my tweeters at the same level. Having sounds transition from front to back and shoot up over my head is un-natural.

    Many systems suffer because the rear speakers are too-close to the seating area. An ideal system is the seats are in the center of a circle and all speakers are on the arc of the circle equidistant from the listener.

    For these reasons - I'd mount the speakers at the back end of the room. You will be darn close to having equal distances to front & back and that extra distance will create a sense of 'space' like a movie theater.

    But one thing: get a Setup DVD and a Radio Shack SPL meter and level-adjust your speakers so the distances dont matter. This way the sounds wont suffer from the distances.

    With this setup - I think you will have a great-sounding system.

    (And mounting speakers are a lot easier to change than putting things in the ceiling and patching the hole later.)

    Hope this helps.

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