What's better, too wide or too narrow?

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Brandon:W, Aug 10, 2004.

  1. Brandon:W

    Brandon:W Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm limited to the configuration of my front speakers in a 5.1 system.

    The room is 18' x 16.5' x 10' high.

    The main listening position is 11' from the TV.

    The back surround speakers will probably be 8' apart in-walls, on a wall directly behind the listening spot.

    Now my dilemma is that the front speakers can either be 6' apart, or 18' apart (and about 2 feet in front of the TV).

    The Dolby web site suggests somewhere between 22 and 30 degrees from center for the front speaker placement. I have a choice of either 15 degrees or 45 degrees.

    What do you think would provide the better environment for HT?

    (I don't have the means to setup the system currently and test what sounds better)

    I'm leaning toward the larger angle placement...what do you think?


    Brandon
     
  2. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Moderator

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    Wow, are those your only options? For a position 11’ back, an 18’ spread is too wide and 6” is too narrow. Can you re-arrange the room?

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  3. Tom D

    Tom D Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello, 15 deg is closer to 22, than 45 is to 30. I would set them 6' apart facing forward as opposed to angled in to the room. Good luck - Tom
     
  4. Brandon:W

    Brandon:W Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Wayne,

    Unfortunately, if I want to have the speakers placed equidistant from the TV, those are my choices. The TV location is fixed.

    Here's a poor picture of the room layout (sorry for the .pdf format). S shows the speaker pre-wires, and SW is the sub pre-wire.

    [PDF of the room layout]

    Since there is a walkway right next to the TV, I'm a bit stuck.

    I suppose I could move the couch from the far wall into the center of the room....but I don't think my wife would go for that. Heck, I'm still working on her to put up with an SVS sub...

    Brandon
     
  5. Brandon:W

    Brandon:W Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Tom,

    I was thinking of that too... but I thought since I have a center speaker - having them closer together may be worse than further apart. At least with them further apart, I'd have a better chance of hearing a left to right pan.

    At the least: It's got to be better than the way I had it set up in our old house - a 2.1 system with the right speaker at about 10 deg and the left speaker at about 90 deg.

    Brandon
     
  6. Charlie C

    Charlie C Stunt Coordinator

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    please dont set them 6' apart, and THEN toe them in. Id do the 18' apart and direct them straight to the sweet spot.
     
  7. John S

    John S Producer

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    At 6' apart, you would certainly toe them out some right?
    At least that is what I have been doing for calibration in such situations for people. Mine are this way right now even, as I had no other choice. Ahhh dreaming of next year setting up my dedicated room at my new location.....

    I guess, if I had two options, I would have to try them both and then go by my impressions of each. So how's that for a waffle answer? lol

    Right now I am doing so many things "wrong" but with carefull calibration it really seems to come out quite well in the end result.
     
  8. Brandon:W

    Brandon:W Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you for the replies, gentlemen.

    I don't know - there just seems to be something "wrong" about having to toe them out at the 6' setting.

    My gut tells me that the 18' setting, toed in will produce better results.

    I can't check it out now, unfortunately. I was wondering if anyone else had a similar problem - or had their fronts very far apart, or very close together...

    Brandon
     
  9. KeithY

    KeithY Stunt Coordinator

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    Brandon,

    My fronts are 5ft apart, can't go any closer or any
    farther...well, when my wife isn't home I move them to
    about 7ft apart, but the left is in the middle of the
    walkway. At 5ft I've tried toe in, straight and toe out
    slightly(maybe 5deg). Toe out seems to sound the best.
     
  10. Brandon:W

    Brandon:W Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Keith,

    Another Phase Tech man - doesn't seem to be many of us around. I have a pair of PC 40 MK IIs and love them.

    You're even more positionally challenged than I am. I noticed you don't have a center channel. Is that because your speakers are so close together?

    BTW, great pics on the difference in video cables - I didn't think you could tell that much difference - but you sure show a big improvement!

    Brandon
     
  11. Mary M S

    Mary M S Screenwriter

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    Ridiculously tight tolerances here, with no possibility of rearrangement. Mains: 4’10” apart toed out. Center speaker above 60” screen (needs to be lowered). Sweet spot does hit well at main listening 7’/8’/9’ feet away. And a secondary odd ball spot just outside of back room opening where there is one seating location used fairly often (off kitchen) which acoustically sounds very well depending on dB level. It works.

    About to integrate a large (for the space) subw; corner loaded behind the screen. At this point, for the first time- (I did not want to know previously due to my choice restrictions!) I will attempt to graph the room FR watching for nulls and peaks. The sub has minor peak cut capability, which I will prob. want/need to use.
    If things get seriously out of whack with the strong long waves, may break down and look into full EQ component box, for the room (component rack is full also - darn-it!). But may have to shoehorn EQ in.

    If I had both options (as you) I would (if you have wire long enough) position in both locations and graph (or just calibrate and use your ears.) Including a SW in the mix, (not just running the mains in 2-channel) you mentioned HT-so I will assume your using .1, - for the best response in 5/6/or 7.1 and 2-channel.

    Your choice may feel limited but I certainly wish I had even ‘one’ secondary option! [​IMG]
     
  12. KeithY

    KeithY Stunt Coordinator

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    Not for long, just ordered M&K LCR851...but that's another thread.
     
  13. Chris A H

    Chris A H Stunt Coordinator

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    Since you have limited options, any chance of trying both and picking the location you like best?
     
  14. Brandon:W

    Brandon:W Stunt Coordinator

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    You know, Chris, I think that's what it's going to come down to. First I need to decide on my center and surrounds, then try the different setups.

    I'm wanting to try out the Phase Tech 33.1 center speaker to match my fronts - but the PT rep doesn't have them in yet. I'll have to wait till next week to try them out.

    I'll have to let everyone know how it works out.

    Thanks for all the replies!

    Brandon
     
  15. KeithY

    KeithY Stunt Coordinator

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    I've had these for about 15yrs and there's some sentimentel value....since we don't room for another setup I will probably get rid of them[​IMG]

    BTW they are in excellent condition
     

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