3 or 2 channel for HT? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 11-10-2012, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
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so i have tried setting up 5.1 in my house but my room is small and cant get rear speakers to work. couch is against wall and i have tried different configs and it just becomes distracting. so i just have my rears setting on my front speakers for now. i was into car audio for a while and always liked a good clean 2 channel setup. so what are my options when just dealing with speakers in front? i read some place about running 5 channels with 3 across and two up high. i dont know what its called or where i read it (it might have been a dream lol). should i just got with a 2 channel or do a left, right center set up. im not stuck on using my current equipment since i like trying new things out. i was running set of DD monitors before and they were really nice for music and action scenes but with heavy dialog it becomes hard to hear. im sure i will have to go to multiple amps over my avr i have now but i dont even know where to start with a processor.
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post #2 of 6 Old 11-10-2012, 10:34 PM
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Question, when you refer to your rear speakers not working in your room, where where you trying to place them? behind you? If so that is not where they go in a 5.1 set up. they should be more beside you, 90-110 degrees is optimal. I have my couch up against the rear wall and run the surrounds at roughly 95 degrees from the listening position and both are roughly 3 feet from the arms of the couch (works out be about 4.5 feet or so from the middle of the couch - ie listening position). running the audyssey auto set up on my avr will adjust the trim levels appropriately for the surrounds to the point that I do not find them distracting, instead I get a nice enveloping surround sound experience.

As far as running a 2 or 3 channel set up that is up to you. I have a 3.0 set up in my bedroom and often i will listen to it in just stereo mode. some times it sounds better and sometimes the appropriate surround mode for the content sounds better. I do like having a center channel over not having one, in case of dialog intelligibility issues or listening too far off center, I can turn it on and problem solved.

running high channels on your front stage requires you first to have surrounds connected and a 7.1 avr capable of matrixing content to height channels. there are a few ways to matrix content into the heights with dolby PLIIz and audyssey DSX being the most common. I like what PLIIz does for height channel content.

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post #3 of 6 Old 11-11-2012, 01:01 AM
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If you don't want to use surround speakers, I would go with a 3.1 speaker system for HT. Left front, right front, center channel, and subwoofer.
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post #4 of 6 Old 11-11-2012, 06:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txredxj View Post

so i have tried setting up 5.1 in my house but my room is small and cant get rear speakers to work. couch is against wall and i have tried different configs and it just becomes distracting. so i just have my rears setting on my front speakers for now. i was into car audio for a while and always liked a good clean 2 channel setup. so what are my options when just dealing with speakers in front?

Anything with 2 or more channels and L/R symmetry can sound really good.

2.0
2.1
3.0
3,1
5.0
5.1
...

I was talking with a well-known HT authority (published in a number of national audio publications) last night and he said that he thought that most people are not running a full 5.1 or greater system, but are running without surrounds and sometimes even with no subs or centers.
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i read some place about running 5 channels with 3 across and two up high. i dont know what its called or where i read it (it might have been a dream lol). should i just got with a 2 channel or do a left, right center set up.

Try 'em!
Quote:
im not stuck on using my current equipment since i like trying new things out. i was running set of DD monitors before and they were really nice for music and action scenes but with heavy dialog it becomes hard to hear. im sure i will have to go to multiple amps over my avr i have now but i dont even know where to start with a processor.

I don't know why you would necessarily need more amps other than perhaps the one in a powered subwoofer.

As far as processors and amps go, a good AVR is a very good starting place that many are able to stick with indefinately and obtain great sound quality.
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post #5 of 6 Old 11-11-2012, 06:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McC View Post

If you don't want to use surround speakers, I would go with a 3.1 speaker system for HT. Left front, right front, center channel, and subwoofer.

2.1 or 3.1 can be very satisfying, especially if your room isn't really right for true surround.

And as far as it goes, back in the day I ran a 3.1 system for years when there was only 2 channel media.
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post #6 of 6 Old 11-11-2012, 09:26 AM - Thread Starter
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the way i have my living room set up is less than ideal and possibly really bad. it is all shifted to one side instead of centered in the room. it is a small 1 bedroom house i rent. i disabled the surround speakers and it actually sounded a bit better. after reading about power ratings on avr's this makes sense i guess. i have been looking at emotiva umc-1 and xpa-5 as an upgrade from my cheap pioneer avr. i dont get hdmi 1.4 with the umc-1 but i tried 3d and it wasnt all that great for me. i will do some more research and probably go with a 3.1 set up but with the xpa-5 i should be able to expand on it later.
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