Originally Posted by Ethan Winer
That's not recommended. As someone walks across the screen in a movie, the sound will go up and back down as well as left to right.
Well, this sort of depends upon the height of the fronts as well as the relative and overall screen height. And where the center speaker actually ends up relative to the screen. There are several things to consider, here. But, with the screen at eye level, considering ONLY the center speaker (or the hypothetical situation where the front's are single point sources centered at the exact same height as the center of the screen), above the screen is supposed to be better. Purportedly, we are less able to localize the speaker when it is above the plane of our ears than when below, and this lesser localization enhances the illusion that the center's sound is emanating from the actual screen, itself. This makes sense to me and I have seen it oft-repeated (and have oft-repeated it, myself
). And I think there is some scientific evidence to back this up. Our ears evolved to be able to localize sounds below us, where out offspring and prey usually reside, better than those sounds emanating above us. Blah, blah, blah. I'm sure you've heard it.
But, as I said, there are a lot of variables, here. It is not so cut and dry. Obviously, you can't consider ONLY the center speaker. Yes, the front 3 speakers identical and at the same height, as in your photo, is a primary goal. But many setups are not so perfect. In many setups, the fronts are higher than pictured in your photo and the screen is lower. A horizontal center speaker might be necessary. And the center cannot always be placed directly below or directly above the screen. If, generally, above the screen IS better, is it better to have the center speaker above the screen and further from being aligned with the fronts or below the screen and more aligned with, but below, the fronts? This is the more common situation it seems most people encounter. And how high above the screen or the front speakers is too high? Etc.. So, there are several inter-related things to consider.
- screen's height, in general
- need for a horizontal center speaker
- relative tweeter heights of the front 3 speakers to one another as well as to the screen
- above or below the screen for the center speaker
- what else?
So, for example, in the photo kgveteran posted, we'd probably all agree that they got the center channel speaker's placement correct, even with the speaker higher than it probably needed to be.
Originally Posted by kgveteran