This is my first post, and I'm an extreme newbie when it comes to surround sound. I'm setting up my first room with surround sound, and I have a question on the distance speakers can from the couch. I've been reading and researching this forum for months (and also the entire Internet), and I didn't find anyone with the concern I have with surround sound at over 20 feet in distance. I apologize if there is a forum dedicated to this, but I couldn't find it.
Here's my scenario: I don't want the best surround sound system possible, I just want something much better than the built-in TV speakers of my 55 Sony KDL-55HX800. I want to be able to hear sound all the way to the other side of the room. However, since researching surround sound, now I want something pretty decent, because I feel I've been missing out by not having it. Maybe I will eventually someday become and audiophile, but for now I want something good and impressive to someone who never really watched a movie at home with surround sound.
So my distance from my couch to the TV is 22 feet (the room is 22' long x 12' wide). The couch is against one wall and the TV along the other wall 22 feet away. I'm pretty much set on in-wall speakers from Monoprice (because of price, reputation, and very good reviews in this forum). I don't want floor standing speakers because I have a 2-year old and a newborn on the way. So this room is going to have toys, a TV, kids running around, etc.
Now here are my options for 7.1 speaker placement (or should I do a 5.1 in this size room?)
Option #1 - Left, Center and Right in-walls installed against the wall where the TV is located. Center will be above the TV. R and L will be to the left and right of the television. Probably will get the monoprice #7604 for all three speakers. Surrounds will be in-ceiling above the couch on the other side of the room.
Option #2 - I have a header board that splits the room (actually its exactly 12' 7 from the couch). If you don't know what a header is, it's 2x4's that extend 10 inches down from the ceiling and boxed off with drywall. Basically if you are standing under a doorway in your house, it's the wall that comes down to where the top of the door is. Now extend that all the way across the room and that's what I have in my scenario (but I don't have a door in the room - it's all open with a header). Now I have the option of installing my L/C/R speakers into the header - so the speakers will be 12 feet 7 inches from the couch and about 6 inches from the top of the ceiling, but these speakers can be facing the couch (although they will be high up right under the crown molding. So these speaker would be 9' 4 away from the TV. I've been reading that the center speaker should be near the TV - so I don't know if this would cause any problems. Surrounds will go in ceiling above the couch.
My question is would option #1 or #2 be better for me. If I went with option #1 would I be able to get good sound all the way across the room? Would the speakers be too far away from the TV in option #2?
I don't have a receiver yet, but I wanted to get the wiring and speakers installed now because the room is currently under construction. I don't even need to use the speakers now, but now is the time to wire and install the speakers. Maybe Santa will get me a decent receiver.
Thanks for reading and any opinions are appreciated.