Surround speaker sound is directional: How to solve that? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 07-13-2014, 04:26 AM - Thread Starter
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Surround speaker sound is directional: How to solve that?

Hi,

I have the following 5.0 setup:

PHP Code:
|L---TV&C---R---------|
|                     |
|                     |
|                     |
|
RL->Sofa<-RR---------| 
L=Left, TV&C=TV&Center, R=Right, RL=RearLeft, Sofa=Sofa, RR=RearRight.

The RL and RR surround speakers are placed directly on the edge of the Sofa, pointing in the direction of the Sofa. They are placed on stands, at ear level. The Sofa cannot be moved much further from the left or rear wall (it's about 5" from the rear wall, and 8" from the left wall). There is "other stuff" in the empty area to the right of the Sofa, so the equipment can't be moved there.

The problem is that I feel that the surround sounds often become a bit too directional in this setup. Especially for those that sit near the edges of the Sofa. So I wonder what can be done to reduce this problem? Some ideas:

1. Move the surround speakers so that they point slightly towards the rear wall, thereby letting the sound reflect on the wall and create a more diffuse ambient and non-directional sound?
2. Place the surround speakers higher up. I'd have to get new stands for that, and I don't know if there are any suitable ones at that hight though.
3. Any other ideas?

Thanks!

Last edited by Fjodor2000; 07-13-2014 at 04:37 AM.
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post #2 of 6 Old 07-13-2014, 05:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fjodor2000 View Post
Hi,

I have the following 5.0 setup:

PHP Code:
|L---TV&C---R---------|
|                     |
|                     |
|                     |
|
RL->Sofa<-RR---------| 
L=Left, TV&C=TV&Center, R=Right, RL=RearLeft, Sofa=Sofa, RR=RearRight.

The RL and RR surround speakers are placed directly on the edge of the Sofa, pointing in the direction of the Sofa. They are placed on stands, at ear level. The Sofa cannot be moved much further from the left or rear wall (it's about 5" from the rear wall, and 8" from the left wall). There is "other stuff" in the empty area to the right of the Sofa, so the equipment can't be moved there.

The problem is that I feel that the surround sounds often become a bit too directional in this setup. Especially for those that sit near the edges of the Sofa. So I wonder what can be done to reduce this problem? Some ideas:

1. Move the surround speakers so that they point slightly towards the rear wall, thereby letting the sound reflect on the wall and create a more diffuse ambient and non-directional sound?
2. Place the surround speakers higher up. I'd have to get new stands for that, and I don't know if there are any suitable ones at that hight though.
3. Any other ideas?

Thanks!
Try angling the speakers toward the back wall. Maybe about 25 degrees. This will diffuse the sound. Also being your so close to the rears try lowering the db level a bit.
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post #3 of 6 Old 07-13-2014, 07:44 AM
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According to THX specs, the surrounds should be 2' or higher above ear level. Are the surrounds di-pole, bi-pole, or direct radiators? Direct radiators are the least favorable as surrounds since the tweeters directly face the listening position.
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post #4 of 6 Old 07-13-2014, 10:25 PM
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You could also try placing your surrounds on the floor, behind the sofa, pointing up. I'm using this configuration and it's not all that bad.
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post #5 of 6 Old 07-13-2014, 10:45 PM
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Try 110-120° behind you for your surround speakers. ...And aim them toward the central area. ...Experiment.
And, try a foot to two feet above ear level. ...Five feet from the floor (the tweeter).

If you can't put them behind you because your couch is against the back wall (not a good idea by the way), then put them farther away from the main listening position, or higher on the back wall (six feet or so).

What is preferable (normally when possible) is to have your three front mains and your two (or four) surrounds @ the same listening distance.

Main key word: Experiment.

* Oh, a subwoofer (or two) is also a good idea, eventually.

Bests, ~ Robert § (Bob)

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post #6 of 6 Old 08-02-2014, 03:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Class A View Post
Try angling the speakers toward the back wall. Maybe about 25 degrees. This will diffuse the sound. Also being your so close to the rears try lowering the db level a bit.
Thanks for the suggestions! I've tried both of them for some time now, and it really does help quite a lot. It's obviously not perfect, since having the surround speakers further away from the listening position and at optimum angle would be better. But it's still a definite improvement, and I no longer feel the sound from the surround speakers is that directional in most cases.

I'll see if I can also place the speakers higher as suggested by some, but that would require me getting new stands, and in addition I think it would look a bit weird to have such high stands in my living room. Sometimes you just have to make some trade offs when not having a dedicated home theater room...
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