Two Rows: 5.1 or 7.1 and where to put the Surrounds - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 07-20-2011, 04:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Have not seen anything definitive about 2 rows /room size / speaker placement (answers seem to address one or the other optimally but not all).

Hence, the question - About to build my second HT (new home) in the next coming months. Please see attached image for specific measurements. Room is 17.5" by nearly 11".

Wife requirement is 2 rows of seats. The theater became a major social activity for us and our friends and 2 rows was essential to seat 8. Plus our 8 Berkline 88's were hauled to the new house and are gathering dust awaiting use.

It will be a tight fit I know in relation to screen size and viewing distance...less than optimal, BUT we are willing to live with the slight imperfections...

My questions are regarding surround sound speakers.

1) 5.1 or 7.1 in a room that size?

2) Depending on #1, where to place the speakers in relation to 2 rows?

The theater will be Acoustically Treated using DIY methods (hello GOM!!!), and the second row will be on a riser for better viewing/sound.

Any help would be GREATLY appreciated. Thanks!!!
LL
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post #2 of 5 Old 07-20-2011, 11:08 PM
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If the room allows for speaker placement on the side walls and back (which yours would seem to do), go with 7.1. Speakers on the side at ear-height or somewhat higher, and a bit higher in the back. Side placement is probably between the rows - there are 'recommendations' from Dolby / THX on the angles from the seating positions that may be helpful, too.


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post #3 of 5 Old 07-21-2011, 12:04 AM
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I am in the same predicament right now but will most likely go with 2 sets of side surrounds and run them in series to make a 16ohm load. Hopefully that will work out for me. But then again, will that arrangement mess with the Audessey setup? Idk. I'm cusiour to see what other people think.
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post #4 of 5 Old 07-21-2011, 08:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckarabian View Post

5.1 or 7.1 in a room that size?

Room size not a determinant for going 7.1 as much as seating location. You could be in a huge room with your seating against the back wall and you'd be a poor candidate for 7.1 (no space behind you for the rear speakers). By comparison, your situation is ideal for a 7.1-speaker set-up, with excellent separation between the side and rear speakers.
Quote:


Depending on #1, where to place the speakers in relation to 2 rows?

I would place the side speakers directly to the sides of the first row listeners (114" from the front wall) and place the rear speakers at least 60 degrees apart on the back wall (back corners would work well). Mount all surrounds at least a couple of feet above ear level.

This will make sounds at your left and right side clearly distinct from sounds behind you. Spreading the rear speakers well apart will let you hear stereo separation back there, where our human hearing is not so good.

See attached diagram.
LL

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post #5 of 5 Old 07-23-2011, 01:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckarabian View Post

Room is 17.5" by nearly 11".

Wife requirement is 2 rows of seats. The theater became a major social activity for us and our friends and 2 rows was essential to seat 8. Plus our 8 Berkline 88's were hauled to the new house and are gathering dust awaiting use.

It will be a tight fit I know in relation to screen size and viewing distance...less than optimal, BUT we are willing to live with the slight imperfections...

Let's do a little math. Room is 131" wide. A row of 4 Berklne 45088's is 112.5". That leaves 18" for folks trying to get to the rear seats if the front row is pushed full to the opposite wall.

You will apply some room treatments. That will take away a bit more, 2-4" depending on what you use.

If 6 seats is out of the question, what are the chances of going for 7, the front row being 3?

My theater is 17x11.5' and I chose triple recliners with no armrests for the middle seat, just to reduce width. It was not so much about sightlines, but soundlines. Sitting so close to the side wall is a relative disaster for bass (way too much, way too lumpy), and surround balance (hot spots from the surrounds).

I normally do not recommend dipoles (it's just my preference to use monopoles), but they might work well for you if the nulls are lateral to the front row. That will reduce the direct energy somewhat for them, and increase it for the back row.

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