Looking for help with speaker setup for movies/TV in large family room - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 06-17-2013, 08:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Hey everyone,

Thank you in advance for sharing your time and expertise. I'm going to try to be as informative and concise as possible. Let me know if I miss something.

The situation:
  • My family room is 27' x 23' x 9' (~5500 cu. ft.) and is built over the garage (pictures at bottom).
  • We're considering placing a 60" TV over the fireplace, but the options for speaker placement seem very limited (see pictures).
  • The wife and I would use the room for movies (30%) and TV (70%) and are looking for at least a 5.1 setup (anything more is a nice-to-have).
  • The currently proposed setup (below) would run around $1600 for LCR and two rears; however, I could probably double that budget, if needed. I will probably need to upgrade my sub, but not sure what I need or what I should expect for price yet.
  • I'm not beholden to any speaker company; although, I've used Energy speakers for several years and really like their sound.
  • I currently own a Denon AVR-1910 for a receiver.

My current thoughts:

The best solution I've found for the front is 3x Martin Logan SLM for LCR, much like in this picture (left):



Because the wall behind the seating angles inward, the space for rear speakers seems a little tricky and I'm looking at doing 2x ML-65's for in-wall behind a sectional sofa.

For subwoofer, I currently have an Energy ESW-V8. I love how much "oomph" it puts out for its size, but I'm doubting it will be sufficient for the family room.

Questions:
  • Does anyone know if these SLMs can put out enough sound for the room size? Or are there other options I should consider?
  • Will the ML-65's sufficiently match the SLMs or will it sound awkward? Once again, are there other options I should consider?
  • What qualities (e.g. size, wattage, etc.) should I be looking for in a subwoofer? Any recommendations?

Thank you in advance for your help.

Here's the promised pictures of the family room:


Picture taken from the back-left corner of the room. I'm using the chair as a placeholder for a sectional couch.


Picture taken from the back-right corner of the room.


Picture taken while sitting in the placeholder chair.


A closer look at the area around the fireplace.

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post #2 of 4 Old 06-17-2013, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jklick View Post

Hey everyone,

Thank you in advance for sharing your time and expertise. I'm going to try to be as informative and concise as possible. Let me know if I miss something.

The situation:
  • My family room is 27' x 23' x 9' (~5500 cu. ft.) and is built over the garage (pictures at bottom).
  • We're considering placing a 60" TV over the fireplace, but the options for speaker placement seem very limited (see pictures).
  • The wife and I would use the room for movies (30%) and TV (70%) and are looking for at least a 5.1 setup (anything more is a nice-to-have).
  • The currently proposed setup (below) would run around $1600 for LCR and two rears; however, I could probably double that budget, if needed. I will probably need to upgrade my sub, but not sure what I need or what I should expect for price yet.
  • I'm not beholden to any speaker company; although, I've used Energy speakers for several years and really like their sound.
  • I currently own a Denon AVR-1910 for a receiver.

My current thoughts:

The best solution I've found for the front is 3x Martin Logan SLM for LCR, much like in this picture (left):



Because the wall behind the seating angles inward, the space for rear speakers seems a little tricky and I'm looking at doing 2x ML-65's for in-wall behind a sectional sofa.

For subwoofer, I currently have an Energy ESW-V8. I love how much "oomph" it puts out for its size, but I'm doubting it will be sufficient for the family room.

Questions:
  • Does anyone know if these SLMs can put out enough sound for the room size? Or are there other options I should consider?
  • Will the ML-65's sufficiently match the SLMs or will it sound awkward? Once again, are there other options I should consider?
  • What qualities (e.g. size, wattage, etc.) should I be looking for in a subwoofer? Any recommendations?

Thank you in advance for your help.

Here's the promised pictures of the family room:


Picture taken from the back-left corner of the room. I'm using the chair as a placeholder for a sectional couch.


Picture taken from the back-right corner of the room.


Picture taken while sitting in the placeholder chair.


A closer look at the area around the fireplace.

Hi Jklick:

Have you considered placing the television in front of the big window in this room? That location would give you more flexibility for speaker placement. You have a big room, and I don't think the SLM speakers would give you the performance you need for this space. Floorstanding speakers would do a better job, and possibly 2 12 inch subs would be my suggestion. I'd also suggest going larger than 60 inches based on your seating distance - you're limited in screen size if you mount the panel above the fireplace. That is a beautiful room, by the way. Fireplace mounted sets look great in interior design magazines, but ideally, the television should be at eye level. Just my 2 cents.


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post #3 of 4 Old 06-17-2013, 12:03 PM
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post #4 of 4 Old 06-18-2013, 07:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myoda View Post

Have you considered placing the television in front of the big window in this room? That location would give you more flexibility for speaker placement. You have a big room, and I don't think the SLM speakers would give you the performance you need for this space. Floorstanding speakers would do a better job, and possibly 2 12 inch subs would be my suggestion. I'd also suggest going larger than 60 inches based on your seating distance - you're limited in screen size if you mount the panel above the fireplace. That is a beautiful room, by the way. Fireplace mounted sets look great in interior design magazines, but ideally, the television should be at eye level. Just my 2 cents.

The current distance between the seating and fireplace offsets the eye-level problems that you bring up. However, you're also right that the distance is too far for a 60" display. I went to a local AV place this afternoon and not only did I feel drawn to 65" displays, but the ideal seating for them was much closer than I'm currently designing for. That being said, if I moved my sofa a whole bunch closer, people would be hurting their necks.

It's not a bad idea to put a TV (heck, a much larger one) on a stand in front of the window. Honestly, I might die a little inside because it's a pretty window that we'd be covering up, but I'd like to keep my options open still - beggars can't be choosers. Actually, I just presented this idea to the Mrs. and she vetoed putting a TV in front of the window. However, she wouldn't be opposed to a projector screen that comes down from the ceiling. The only problem with that is there are a lot of windows, so I would need some light-blocking blinds or shades of some sort.

Thank you for validating the SLMs will not work for the room size - I had my doubts. If I decide to do a projector screen in front of the big window, my number of options for speakers are going to put me in analysis paralysis for a couple more weeks. smile.gif

FYI: I tried out the B&W CM5's while at the AV store and they were amazing. In fact, when I played them just by themselves (with a subwoofer), it didn't sound like a center channel was missing. This was important to me because the center channel placement is the biggest headache for me if I persist in trying to do a fireplace setup. I could just place the CM5's on the bookshelf and be done with it.

It looks like my speaker project might be put on hold until I figure out where to put the display. However, I'm open to recommendations for speakers if I go the projector route. My wife seems interested in investigating in-wall and in-ceiling, whereas I'm not opposed to tower speakers.

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