L/R width speakers in a narrow room - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 11-18-2012, 11:06 PM - Thread Starter
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I am working on speaker layout in a theater that is about 10.5' x 22'. I want to put speaker wire drops in for height and width speakers in the front for future expansion.

I don't plan to use them right away, but who knows?

The first row ears will be about 9.5'-10.5' back from the screen. I will give angles from this location.

I am designing the room so that I can convert to an acoustically transparent setup if I want in the future, but for now I am not going to do that.

My left and right main channels I am planning to put about 5" in from the sides on the front wall. These will be as close to the screen as I can get them.

So this is what I have so far:

Main left/right: about 26 degrees from center of listener, about 3 feet off the ground.

Wide left/right: about 55 degrees from center of listener, 3 feet off the ground. These will be on the side walls, so will be quite a bit closer to the listener.

Height left right: right above main left and right at about 6.5 feet.

Side surrounds: on sides between 1st/2nd row. Planning dipole/bipoles

Rear surrounds: on back wall about 1' in from corners

The big concern here is that the wide L/R are about 5-6' from the listener, since they are on the side walls, and the main L/R are about 10.5' from the listener. This would be more pronounced for anyone sitting off center on the first row.

I would assume that with a good receiver I could adjust the delay/relative volume accordingly for the wides and it would be more or less okay? But I want to know if there are any other thoughts on it.



Thanks!

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post #2 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 12:59 AM
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It is my opinion that height and wide speakers are unnecessary in a home theater environment. You can achieve the same effect (actually better) through proper engineering and treatment. Adding those additional speakers creates more problems than they are worth. If it were me, I'd skip it altogether. However, I would consider adding additional side surrounds for that second row. Having a single side surround in between your rows really does not benefit that second row. Further, recall that dipole speakers work best when the ears are placed within the null field of the speaker. In addition, I would say your main L/R speakers are too close to the corners. Move them in a little or move them out.
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post #3 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 03:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

Further, recall that dipole speakers work best when the ears are placed within the null field of the speaker.

SMB - by null field, does that mean off axis to the tweeters? so you cant localise them as easily?

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post #4 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 12:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

If it were me, I'd skip it altogether.

That's good to know. I'm assured not to waste my money on the speakers at the outset.

Now, I don't really plan to populate the speakers soon, but my I am also designing my theater around personal experimentation over time also. If I were to try widths and like it at some future date, and didn't have drops for the wires, I might be mad I didn't put them in. So if there is any chance I might like the effect and keep them, I'd want drops. Has anyone some good hard evidence or experience that wides just suck in a narrow room or anything like that? If that were the case I wouldn't even bother with the drops.
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Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

However, I would consider adding additional side surrounds for that second row. Having a single side surround in between your rows really does not benefit that second row. Further, recall that dipole speakers work best when the ears are placed within the null field of the speaker.

I thought that might be the case. So I am planning a run of conduit with several drops on the sides so I can place multiple surrounds or move them depending on how they work in the room. I echo "Ellil's" question also - with the added question - could the null be large enough with a dipole to cover both rows, or is it those sitting nearer the wall I need to worry about?
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Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

In addition, I would say your main L/R speakers are too close to the corners. Move them in a little or move them out.

I can't move them in unless I move them above or below the screen. I still might go with an AT setup, but if I don't - should I move them onto the side walls (that's if I mount)? Maybe 12-15 inches forward from the corners? Or should I get L/R speakers on stands so that I can experiment better with placement and not be limited to the walls?

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post #5 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 12:55 PM
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I would go with the AT setup for sure.
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post #6 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 12:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

It is my opinion that height and wide speakers are unnecessary in a home theater environment. You can achieve the same effect (actually better) through proper engineering and treatment. Adding those additional speakers creates more problems than they are worth. If it were me, I'd skip it altogether. However, I would consider adding additional side surrounds for that second row. Having a single side surround in between your rows really does not benefit that second row. Further, recall that dipole speakers work best when the ears are placed within the null field of the speaker. In addition, I would say your main L/R speakers are too close to the corners. Move them in a little or move them out.

Very interesting. How would you approach the fact that one row of surrounds will affect the other row's seats?

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post #7 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 01:51 PM
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Ok, answering several questions at once. First, I have been in a private demo that Audyssey set up themselves and sat next to Luke and Chris K from Audyssey. I don't care how big your room is or how wide, bringing in additional speaker causes localization of the speakers especially being so close to the boundary. Off axis should be a bit diffuse but you should be able to say, hey I hear a bus right there where there is no speaker. This is easily attained through proper design, treatment and calibration. Adding speakers that close to the boundary also creates additional unwanted artifacts in the room. The science and the negatives trump any benefit and ihave yet to find a benefit in using either heights or wides.

The null field is created as a result of the cancellation that occurs with dipoles being out of phase. Your ear should be in that field to create the desired diffuse effect.

You can use a second set of dipoles for the second row.

Speaker distance from front wall is often dependent on crossover frequency.
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post #8 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 08:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

Ok, answering several questions at once. First, I have been in a private demo that Audyssey set up themselves and sat next to Luke and Chris K from Audyssey. I don't care how big your room is or how wide, bringing in additional speaker causes localization of the speakers especially being so close to the boundary. Off axis should be a bit diffuse but you should be able to say, hey I hear a bus right there where there is no speaker. This is easily attained through proper design, treatment and calibration. Adding speakers that close to the boundary also creates additional unwanted artifacts in the room. The science and the negatives trump any benefit and ihave yet to find a benefit in using either heights or wides.
The null field is created as a result of the cancellation that occurs with dipoles being out of phase. Your ear should be in that field to create the desired diffuse effect.
You can use a second set of dipoles for the second row.
Speaker distance from front wall is often dependent on crossover frequency.

Being dipoles, would that second row's left and right speakers need to be reversed in order to keep them in-phase with the first row's?

Sorry for the hijack Daniel and for picking your brain SMB too... smile.gif it's just that all this also applies to my own HT project.
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post #9 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 09:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krakhen View Post

Being dipoles, would that second row's left and right speakers need to be reversed in order to keep them in-phase with the first row's?
Sorry for the hijack Daniel and for picking your brain SMB too... smile.gif it's just that all this also applies to my own HT project.

Yep! They sure would! This often entails putting the left speaker on the right side and the right speaker on the left side provided you are using dipole (directional) speakers. However, the big catch! No receiver or pre/pro out there can handle using multiple side surrounds (at least that I am aware of and assigning heights or wides to do this does not work either). You will have to get a separate DSP to deal with this issue. Further, it will require the use of outboard amplification at least for the side surrounds.
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post #10 of 22 Old 11-19-2012, 10:06 PM
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.....just when you think LCR placement is confusing enough!

(just use the the pro layout service and save the stress I say biggrin.gif)

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post #11 of 22 Old 11-20-2012, 09:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for your comments! Clear as mud... Well, it does help some wink.gif of course. There aren't really easy answers on this stuff I've been noticing. Right now I'm focusing on just having enough drop points to not have wires strewn around, and ideally be able to put the speakers on the drop boxes for no wires.

Fortunately I'm okay if I have to move them around a little - I want the sound to be best, but I figure I'll be tweaking and so forth for a while to come. I expect this to be an ongoing hobby.

I am sometimes tempted to do a professional service, but I want to try to get it right first myself, through research, then I will also understand it, which is part of the fun.

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post #12 of 22 Old 12-12-2012, 12:57 PM
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Considering I'm using an Onkyo TX-NR809, is there a DSP I could add for a reasonable price to implement multiple surrounds?

I have nearly the same size room I'm planning. 23x12.5' at the front, narrowing to 10.5 about 13' from the front. The back of the first row of seats will be at that jog in the wall (only on one side). So side speaker placement will be dicey since if I place the left side in front of the jog (90 degress to row one) it will probably be useless to the 2nd row.

Another limitation I have is this room is in a pitched attic above the garage. So I have vertical wall for the first 4 feet from the floor then the pitch starts. So if I try placement above head height, it starts coming in narrower than the floor plan indicates. The pitch is quite steep with the peak some around 12' feet, I need to measure so I can calculate the angle (breakout the geometry book!).

The pitch impacts the front wall also, so the screen will be about 10' from the 1st row since is has to be place out from the front wall.
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post #13 of 22 Old 12-13-2012, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

It is my opinion that height and wide speakers are unnecessary in a home theater environment. You can achieve the same effect (actually better) through proper engineering and treatment. Adding those additional speakers creates more problems than they are worth. If it were me, I'd skip it altogether. However, I would consider adding additional side surrounds for that second row. Having a single side surround in between your rows really does not benefit that second row. Further, recall that dipole speakers work best when the ears are placed within the null field of the speaker. In addition, I would say your main L/R speakers are too close to the corners. Move them in a little or move them out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

Ok, answering several questions at once. First, I have been in a private demo that Audyssey set up themselves and sat next to Luke and Chris K from Audyssey. I don't care how big your room is or how wide, bringing in additional speaker causes localization of the speakers especially being so close to the boundary. Off axis should be a bit diffuse but you should be able to say, hey I hear a bus right there where there is no speaker. This is easily attained through proper design, treatment and calibration. Adding speakers that close to the boundary also creates additional unwanted artifacts in the room. The science and the negatives trump any benefit and ihave yet to find a benefit in using either heights or wides.

The null field is created as a result of the cancellation that occurs with dipoles being out of phase. Your ear should be in that field to create the desired diffuse effect.

You can use a second set of dipoles for the second row.

Speaker distance from front wall is often dependent on crossover frequency.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by krakhen View Post

Being dipoles, would that second row's left and right speakers need to be reversed in order to keep them in-phase with the first row's?
Sorry for the hijack Daniel and for picking your brain SMB too... smile.gif it's just that all this also applies to my own HT project.

Yep! They sure would! This often entails putting the left speaker on the right side and the right speaker on the left side provided you are using dipole (directional) speakers. However, the big catch! No receiver or pre/pro out there can handle using multiple side surrounds (at least that I am aware of and assigning heights or wides to do this does not work either). You will have to get a separate DSP to deal with this issue. Further, it will require the use of outboard amplification at least for the side surrounds.


Shawn ;
Your comments on height/wide speakers kinda got burried in this thread, which I missed due to generic title until last post.

First, I respect your advice and wisdom learned from real world OJT, in this and other threads.

I've embarked on 11.x , there is a thread here on that.
Moving past 7.1 (5.1) into 9.1 (11.2)....upgrading your HT room via Audyssey DSX or Dolby PL IIz
Then I read your posts......and I wonder.......

My HT has appropriate acosutic treatments, and honestly my soundstage does sound 3D in all manners/facets.
Yet, I got the new Denon 4520CI and being a hobbyist decided to embark on 11.1, going for the ultimate/latest surround set-up......
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post #14 of 22 Old 12-13-2012, 10:18 AM
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Not to over clutter or hijack this thread, but Shawn's comments about HT with 2 rows can use side speaker for each row interests me....

My 4308CI had this option, and my 4520CI can do same.


I wonder if I did set-up as shown in setting 5 if the Audyssey routine would ping each side A and B speaker seperately or as a 2 speaker array??
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post #15 of 22 Old 12-14-2012, 11:40 PM
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If the distance and timing can be set for each individual speaker receiving the same signal, then your good. However, the catch then becomes Audyssey. It won't work. Audyssey will become very confused by this and create a mess of things. Best to just use an outboard DSP that can handle this type of work. I am not sure there is a receiver out there can truly deal with multiple side surrounds. Sometimes, we just have to bite the bullet and accept the costs of playing in our hobbies sandbox. smile.gif

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post #16 of 22 Old 12-15-2012, 08:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo View Post

If the distance and timing can be set for each individual speaker receiving the same signal, then your good. However, the catch then becomes Audyssey. It won't work. Audyssey will become very confused by this and create a mess of things. Best to just use an outboard DSP that can handle this type of work. I am not sure there is a receiver out there can truly deal with multiple side surrounds. Sometimes, we just have to bite the bullet and accept the costs of playing in our hobbies sandbox. smile.gif

and for some of us here on AVS that sandbox can be a bottom less money pit chasing the ever elusive "next thing" in audio, video, eta al.

I'm sticking with the std 7.1 set-up with 1 side surround for now, and focusing on my 11.x arrangement.
I know your thoughts on 11.1 wides/heights from this thread, I'm still open minded till I go thru this exercise.

OT but sorta relevant to multi row seating:
It should be stated that for 2 row arrangements, at least my case, the are plenty of times where the 1st row is only used, say 95%+, but the 2nd row is used for large gatherings.
I'd like a easy/quick way to switch between 2 or even 3 EQ settings based upon;
1st row used, 2nd row empty (the 95% case)
1st + 2nd row used (the 4% case)
2nd row used, 1st row empty (very slim chance, 1%, but what the heck)

Now if that ability was included in AVR's it would be sweet!
Just run the EQ routine 3 times and have separate saves in the AVR memory bank, then program which EQ you want at listening time.
Yea, it could be done via store/restore to a PC, but that's not integrated solution.

I posted this to Chris K via facebook, Audyssey Tech Talk
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post #17 of 22 Old 12-15-2012, 07:41 PM
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If its done right the first time, there would be no need to chase! biggrin.gif. It's not as expensive as one may think. Everyone automatically assumes high dollar cost. Not sure why. When, in reality, it may cost you as much or more to do what you plan to do.

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post #18 of 22 Old 05-28-2013, 11:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for your comments on the side surrounds, and the ensuing discussion. It has been very enlightening and a good amount of food for thought while I decide on my speaker placement and component list.

I was thinking of getting the Denon 4520ci. I WOULD like it if I could get it to sufficiently support two rows of surrounds.

Shawn (and any others) - any recommendations on affordable DSPs that would help support multiple side surround rows? I could budget for it possibly, but I'd want to research what I'm getting into.

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post #19 of 22 Old 05-29-2013, 12:29 AM
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Depends on your definition of "affordable":
- Minidsp is the cheapest
- Xilica
- QSC

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post #20 of 22 Old 05-29-2013, 05:11 AM
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Another subscribed thread smile.gif

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post #21 of 22 Old 06-18-2013, 09:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elill View Post

Depends on your definition of "affordable":
- Minidsp is the cheapest
- Xilica
- QSC

Thanks! I'll look into them - at some point. I want to right now, but I know I'll get totally sidetracked. Currently I need to stay focused on finishing the wiring, and lighting control. wink.gif

I'll report back on this thread (if I remember) what I did with my speakers, when the time comes in a few months. Thanks everyone!

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post #22 of 22 Old 06-18-2013, 09:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Okay, I couldn't help it. I looked up the minidsp. Looks great, and very interesting - for not too much I could dabble and see how I liked it, then go from there! Looks like a learning curve though...

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