Can't hear surround backs well. - AVS Forum
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Old 09-20-2013, 05:42 AM - Thread Starter
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I upgraded my system to 7.1 a few weeks ago but for some reason I've been mostly underwhelmed. I can't seem to hear anything coming out my rear surrounds, or at least I can't differentiate between those and the side surrounds. The rear surrounds are Polk OWM 3's mounted to the ceiling about 6 feet behind me and pointed down towards the listening position. The entire system is calibrated w/ my recievers MCACC. I know the speakers are working cause if i get up and stand next to them they're active and loud. Could it be a positioning problem and I need to know angle the speakers down more or could it be as simple as just turning them up a little?
Thanks dudes.

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Old 09-20-2013, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by BNestico View Post

I upgraded my system to 7.1 a few weeks ago but for some reason I've been mostly underwhelmed. I can't seem to hear anything coming out my rear surrounds, or at least I can't differentiate between those and the side surrounds. The rear surrounds are Polk OWM 3's mounted to the ceiling about 6 feet behind me and pointed down towards the listening position. The entire system is calibrated w/ my recievers MCACC. I know the speakers are working cause if i get up and stand next to them they're active and loud. Could it be a positioning problem and I need to know angle the speakers down more or could it be as simple as just turning them up a little?
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Does your AVR have an automated system optimization tool such as Audyssey, MCACC or YPAO? Run it again and get back to us.

Having "action" on the rear channels is primarily dependent on recording and rear channel level settings.
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Old 09-20-2013, 06:50 AM
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I say try both see which works or maybe you need to angle them differently and turn the rear surround trim levels up in the AVR. One really easy way to do this is go to Radio Shack and buy yourself a Digital SPL Meter for about $50. Put it at your main listening position with the mic facing up toward the ceiling but at ear height or just slightly above. Adjust all the speakers to 75db on the meter using the built in test tones on the receiver. Then it will be calibrated to reference. From there you may find it necessary to bump the center up by 3db and maybe even the surrounds.

Shawn
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Old 09-20-2013, 06:51 AM
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What movies have you played in your new setup? Some soundtracks will not be very active or dynamic w/the surrounds Demo the Avengers to get a feel of what your system can do, and where you can make some adjustments.smile.gif
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Old 09-20-2013, 07:22 AM - Thread Starter
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The Avengers was the first movie I watched when I hooked them up. I've since watched Les Miserables, Star Trek ID, Wreck it Ralph (which so far yielded the best results), World War Z, different parts of Star Wars ep. I (podrace sceane) and III (opening sequence) which are in 6.1. And the final shoot out in the 2008 Rambo. I mean, should there be a stark noticable difference between 5 & 7.1?

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Old 09-20-2013, 08:05 AM - Thread Starter
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The Avengers was the first movie I watched when I hooked them up. I've since watched Les Miserables, Star Trek ID, Wreck it Ralph (which so far yielded the best results), World War Z, different parts of Star Wars ep. I (podrace sceane) and III (opening sequence) which are in 6.1. And the final shoot out in the 2008 Rambo. I mean, should there be a stark noticable difference between 5 & 7.1?

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Old 09-20-2013, 08:25 AM
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Well between 5.1 and 7.1 you should hear sounds beside you and behind you if you have your speakers placed properly.

Also Transformers 3 has one of the best and most agressive surround mixes out there. If you can't tell its 7.1 with that movie then things need changed.

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Old 09-20-2013, 09:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Could my tweeters be aimed over my head?

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Old 09-20-2013, 10:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BNestico View Post

Could my tweeters be aimed over my head?

Tweeters are supposed to have off-axis response. That shouldn't be enough to cause serious lack of audilbity. Suboptimal level settings in the AVR can easily do that.

The original formula for surround speakers made response > 7 KHz optional...
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Old 09-20-2013, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BNestico View Post

Could it be a positioning problem and I need to know angle the speakers down more or could it be as simple as just turning them up a little?
Yes, turn them up a little. The calibration mic is omnidirectional, you hearing is not. Drop the level of the side speakers by a dB or two and raise the level of the rear speakers by the same.

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Old 09-20-2013, 11:39 AM - Thread Starter
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When I first put the OWM 3's up I mounted them horizontally w/ the tweeters on the out sides to try and make them less visible. I ran the MCACC with the speakers in that position. I've since rotated them to the vertical, tweeter on top position but didn't feel I needed to rerun the MCACC after that. Do you think running the auto calibration again will help at all?

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Old 09-20-2013, 01:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BNestico View Post

When I first put the OWM 3's up I mounted them horizontally w/ the tweeters on the out sides to try and make them less visible. I ran the MCACC with the speakers in that position. I've since rotated them to the vertical, tweeter on top position but didn't feel I needed to rerun the MCACC after that. Do you think running the auto calibration again will help at all?

Given how easy that is, why are you even asking? ;-)

Yes, do it!
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Old 09-22-2013, 10:34 AM
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Are you running a codec to up convert 5.1 to 7.1? My older 4308CI I did that, else very little content is 7.1


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Old 09-23-2013, 10:47 AM - Thread Starter
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I don't up convert my 5.1 material to 7 I purposely chose 7.1 or 6.1 sources to make sure I would hear something out of them.

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