Better speakers or better placement/spacing? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 07-18-2014, 12:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Better speakers or better placement/spacing?

5.1 system used for movies and hopefully gaming again in the not to distant future (two young kids have caused a hiatus)

I currently have Athena B1s for left and right, Athena C1 for center, Athena 10" sub and crappy rears that are getting replaced regardless
We just bought a new entertainment center in which I haven't figured out what to do with my center speaker (since I no longer have a center shelf for it).

I have a large doorway to the left of my TV limiting my ability to spread my speakers apart unless I go above, which I don't want to do with bookshelf speakers because I think it will look bad. Left and right speakers are only about 5 ft apart. I sit about 11 ft back so they should be about 11 ft apart.

My budget is tight too. <$300

Is it better to keep what I have how I have it, which is nicer speakers, at non-optimum placement. (I might mount the center on a shelf above the TV)

Or buy some cheaper speakers, like the Monoprice premium 5.1 or some in ceilings even (my ceiling above the TV is angled perfectly downward toward the couch) and have them at optimum distance apart (albeit higher than ear level)

It might be worth mentioning I have a Denon e300 with Audyssey.

Solution needs to look good for WAF.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 14 Old 07-19-2014, 12:03 AM
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I wouldnt go with in celling speakers, they seriously compromise sound quality in exchange for the ultimate WAF.

Your going to be pretty limited as far as the L&R channel go since those speakers look pretty narrow and are already flush with the TV and sides of the entertainment center.

As far as the center goes, you could always just save money and not get one. I use to have a 7.2 system in a dedicated HT and now have a HT in another room but I only have 2 large towers and 2 large subs. Honestly i dont miss my center channel that much. So long as you get decent L&R channels they will produce a phantom center. When I demo my system to people they proclaim at how good my "TV speakers" sound, they are surprised to learn that my TV speakers arent on, all that center sound is coming from my L&R channels.

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post #3 of 14 Old 07-19-2014, 08:22 PM
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What sub is that? Might be best to invest your money in a sub upgrade.

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post #4 of 14 Old 07-19-2014, 08:43 PM
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Is it in any way possible to move the TV/Speakers to a different wall to spread them apart better? Setup is paramount, so it's always better to improve your setup and see if that improves your sound quality before buying better speakers.

I feel your pain. I'm in a similar position. About 11 feet away from my TV but L/R speakers are only 6' apart Nothing I can really do about it. When my HT was in a different room (different house) I was 10' away from the tv with the speakers 10' apart. The stereo separation of the main speakers was tangible. I really miss it.

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post #5 of 14 Old 07-20-2014, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucksInCharge View Post
5.1 system used for movies and hopefully gaming again in the not to distant future (two young kids have caused a hiatus)

I currently have Athena B1s for left and right, Athena C1 for center, Athena 10" sub and crappy rears that are getting replaced regardless
We just bought a new entertainment center in which I haven't figured out what to do with my center speaker (since I no longer have a center shelf for it).

I have a large doorway to the left of my TV limiting my ability to spread my speakers apart unless I go above, which I don't want to do with bookshelf speakers because I think it will look bad. Left and right speakers are only about 5 ft apart. I sit about 11 ft back so they should be about 11 ft apart.

My budget is tight too. <$300

Is it better to keep what I have how I have it, which is nicer speakers, at non-optimum placement. (I might mount the center on a shelf above the TV)

Or buy some cheaper speakers, like the Monoprice premium 5.1 or some in ceilings even (my ceiling above the TV is angled perfectly downward toward the couch) and have them at optimum distance apart (albeit higher than ear level)

It might be worth mentioning I have a Denon e300 with Audyssey.

Solution needs to look good for WAF.

Thanks.
I'd move the console and tv to the center of the wall (between the opening and the side wall). Get some stands (or articulating wall mounts, if you are worried about kids) and put each speaker about centered between the (wall/console, opening/console) Get the tweeters at ear level and experiment with forward and side positioning a bit. If you can get a nice image at your seat, you won't need to use the center. if you can't, the center should sit at the very front of the console to reduce reflections.

Use stacks of books as temp stands to experiment with height and placement. Best sound will be had by having the front of the soeakers in front of the console.

Last edited by RayGuy; 07-20-2014 at 11:12 AM.
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post #6 of 14 Old 07-20-2014, 03:01 PM
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Based on where you speakers are now you don't need to use the center speaker. Just set the center to NONE and let the front speakers handle the dialog.

You should pull the B1's to the front of the cabinet to reduce sound reflections. Or ultimately move the console to the right a foot or so to allow for speaker stands.

Satellite speakers and in ceiling speakers would be a downgrade. Don't go there.

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post #7 of 14 Old 07-20-2014, 03:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post
What sub is that? Might be best to invest your money in a sub upgrade.
The sub is the Athena AS-P400.

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s it in any way possible to move the TV/Speakers to a different wall to spread them apart better?
No. They have to stay on that wall.

Quote:
I'd move the console and tv to the center of the wall (between the opening and the side wall).
I might be able to move the entertainment center a foot to the right.

Last edited by ChucksInCharge; 07-20-2014 at 04:03 PM.
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post #8 of 14 Old 07-20-2014, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucksInCharge View Post
The sub is the Athena AS-P400.
Those appear to be pretty decent subs. Probably have to spend a good bit to improve upon it.

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post #9 of 14 Old 07-21-2014, 12:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucksInCharge View Post


I might be able to move the entertainment center a foot to the right.
Why only a foot?
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post #10 of 14 Old 07-21-2014, 02:46 PM
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That setup would benefit greatly from better speaker placement, but without knowing what the rest of the room looks like, I have no idea what would work better since I can't tell what you can or can't do in there.
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post #11 of 14 Old 07-21-2014, 07:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
Why only a foot?
Because of the love seat in front of the window.

And the second picture shows the rears. One is behind the picture on the mantle facing toward the couch.

Maybe this gives a better idea of the room.
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post #12 of 14 Old 07-21-2014, 07:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucksInCharge View Post
Because of the love seat in front of the window.
You just need to buy new furniture to accommodate your stereo

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post #13 of 14 Old 07-21-2014, 11:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChucksInCharge View Post
Because of the love seat in front of the window.

And the second picture shows the rears. One is behind the picture on the mantle facing toward the couch.

Maybe this gives a better idea of the room.
Put the love seat on the wall that currently has the tv. Move the couch into the position in front of the window vacated by the love seat. Then move the console, tv and speakers to the long wall opposite the love seat, vacated by the couch.
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post #14 of 14 Old 07-22-2014, 06:46 AM
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I think others have given good advice. You will see the most benefit from optimizing placement of speakers and listening position. Unless you are spending loads of money on super nice in ceiling speakers I don't think it would be an upgrade. Especially with the monoprice stuff.

If you can't convince your wife to let you change the placement in the room then you will always be limiting the system. Is there another room in the house you could move it to? Just do the best you can.

And you can probably just take out the center as has been suggested.

Don't know what your surrounds are but you might be better served to put the money into a better sub instead. In ceiling surrounds can be a good option if placed and directed appropriately.
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