Originally Posted by hellokeith
Generally speaking, home theater surround systems have a subwolfer and limited-range satellites. Whereas a theater could
have full-range "satellites".
Is there a rule-of-thumb when creating/mixing the LFE? Would it be different for cinema media vs BD/HD DVD?
Commercial theaters all have full range "satellites.." I have never been in a theater which doesn't. Some don't have subs, but that is generally not the case.
Some sound systems use the subs for bass extention, but it is more common to have low end extention on each channel (i.e. a sub on each main channel.)
Each mixer has differnt opinions and methods about it... For me, I will use the sub only for things that aren't storytelling neccessities.. i.e. I never only put something in the sub. This is for two reasons.. one, the theater may or may not have a sub. Two, the sub is the most unpredictable part of the speaker system, and the sub can be greatly affected by the room it's in.
With music, I always try and get as much low end information into the mains as I can, and then go to the sub for the last octave for that extra push.... I will also check alot of times to see what the track will be like without the sub, so that I know that in any environment without a sub the track won't fall apart in the low end.
As far as effects go, the sub is always fair game
As this relates to home theater, sometimes they don't remaster for home, so you get what we had intended for the theaters.. this can create issues because of bass management, where the mains get redirected to the sub for crossed over material from the main speakers set to small.
I just finished a film for Sony, which takes great care in their remastering for the home. One of the things we did is to listen to the track with bass redirection on through an AC-3 encoder/decoder monitor, and we can make adjustments to the track if there is a lot of bass buildup.
Bass management is really the main thing you have to account for in mastering for home video, and it really doesn't cause huge issues most of the time.