Adding Height channels - questions on location and speaker size - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-13-2013, 09:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi Guys, jumping in here...

I've just upgraded to a Onyo PR-SC5507 and am planning to add a set of speakers to go to 9.2. I'm currently running a 7.2 setup with Polk RT5000 (RT3000p mains, CS1000p center, FX1000 side surrounds and an extra pair of RT3000p upper satellites as rear surrounds.) I run a pair of SVS PB12/Plus-2's for subs. The 5507 does a nice job of room correction for both subs, BTW.

I'm considering adding a pair of Polk speakers for height, and have a choice to make. I already own and can use either a pair of Polk RT55i's, or a pair of Polk R1's. Here's my question, "How much frequency response does the height channel need?" I know more is better, but wider freq response means bigger speakers. The R1's are fairly small, and have a freq response from 65Hz to 20kHz with 5.25" driver. The RT55's are a lot larger, with a freq response of 35HZ to 25kHz. The R1's would be much easier to install, and if they have enough freq response to cover most of the audio signal sent to them, they'd be my choice.

I run a 7 x 200wpc amp for the existing speakers, but would probably use a smaller amp for the heights - somewhere around 75wpc. I could, however, run the heights on two of the 200wpc channels and use the smaller amp for rear surrounds. Obviously the larger speakers would benefit from more power, but again, if the signal is not there, why overkill?

Any advice?

I'm finding that I'm smarter than I thought, but dumber than I need to be.
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 03:21 PM
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Things to consider...

If you have a sub doing LFE, bass FR is immaterial. However...

Sensitivity matters more than FR, as Audyssey will cut the most sensitive speaker to match the least sensitive. That means a little 85dB@1W, 1m speaker will get 4x the power of a 91dB@1W, 1m speaker, regardless of its power handling capability. Now, surround/ambiance channels may not receive a lot of power in movies, but if you listen to multichannel music, or use all-channel stereo mode, you'll find their weaknesses. If not, I'd do the little ones, but that's me.

Depending on your room construction and sub placement, the 5507 may not have that hard a job... not all rooms have strong bass room modes as many construction and architectural features absorb bass energy. My room's like that.

Have fun,
Frank
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post #3 of 6 Old 01-14-2013, 08:11 PM
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I use Boston Acoustics towers all around, but for my height channels, I used some Boston bookshelves crossed over at 120hz. I did some testing, and obviously it's source dependent, but they don't seem to get an extremely demanding signal. Also, I find the height channels improve the soundstage a little better if you place them not only above the mains, but out a little wider then the mains too.


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post #4 of 6 Old 01-15-2013, 07:09 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks guys. There doesn't seem to be a lot of info on actual users of the enhanced channels so your input is most welcome and helpful.

I've actually mounted one of the smaller speakers using a repurposed TV mount. I've ordered another just like it from Monoprice. They'll support 33lbs suposedly, so they should work for larger speakers if I go that way. The mount point is above and slightly wider than the mains, so I can check that box.

I've got plenty of sub capacity - a pair of SVS PB12-Plus/2's. I cross over the surrounds at 60Hz and the mains at 40Hz. I'll probably cross these at around 100-120Hz.

I still need to find a 2 channel amp to drive them, but it looks like 75 to 100WPC should be plenty.

I'll post with my results and share whatever I learn.

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post #5 of 6 Old 01-15-2013, 06:19 PM
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What kind of mains and surrounds are you using in which you'd opt to cross over that low instead of letting the quad 12" drivers handle the bass? I use towers all around but still cross at 80hz - performance wise, I'll let the dual 18s handle the bass all day.


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post #6 of 6 Old 01-16-2013, 04:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rtart View Post


I'm currently running a 7.2 setup with Polk RT5000 (RT3000p mains, CS1000p center, FX1000 side surrounds and an extra pair of RT3000p upper satellites as rear surrounds.) I run a pair of SVS PB12/Plus-2's for subs.

I do this because even at 80Hz, there is some directionality from the speakers. I prefer to hear the bass come from the channel intended, instead of from the subs. That's the whole point of the subs built in to the mains and center speakers.

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