Adding Atmos Capability - Just Need Ceiling Speakers - Worth The Substantial Cost? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 11 Old 11-08-2019, 11:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Adding Atmos Capability - Just Need Ceiling Speakers - Worth The Substantial Cost?

As the title says, I have really wanted to add Atmos capability to my home theater, and now have the necessary amplification and processor for a 7-1-4 system. I just need to add the four ceiling/overhead speakers. My system consists of all upper level Revel speakers purchased a year ago. After discussing the matter with a local home theater professional, a Revel engineer, and reading some comments in this forum and elsewhere, the "appropriate" Revel overhead speakers to utilize are going to cost me $750.00 each/$3k for the two pairs. That's a pretty fair chunk of change. Will the system sonic upgrade I will get from moving to Atmos justify that kind of additional investment? And are the overhead effects that will then be possible enough for this kind of expenditure to make sense?

I would greatly appreciate your expertise on this issue. Thanks.

Jim
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post #2 of 11 Old 11-09-2019, 07:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim CL View Post
As the title says, I have really wanted to add Atmos capability to my home theater, and now have the necessary amplification and processor for a 7-1-4 system. I just need to add the four ceiling/overhead speakers. My system consists of all upper level Revel speakers purchased a year ago. After discussing the matter with a local home theater professional, a Revel engineer, and reading some comments in this forum and elsewhere, the "appropriate" Revel overhead speakers to utilize are going to cost me $750.00 each/$3k for the two pairs. That's a pretty fair chunk of change. Will the system sonic upgrade I will get from moving to Atmos justify that kind of additional investment? And are the overhead effects that will then be possible enough for this kind of expenditure to make sense?

I would greatly appreciate your expertise on this issue. Thanks.

Jim

Generally speaking, atmos is a mixed bag. Sometimes it's great and sometimes it's meh. It depends on the movie/mix. I don't know if I could justify spending 3k for atmos though. I bought some Focal Sibs at a cost of about $400.00 and it's been well worth that investment. Maybe just go with some Prime Elevations or something. I didn't match my base speakers and it sounds perfectly fine to me.
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post #3 of 11 Old 11-09-2019, 07:45 AM
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INMO, the Atmos overhead speakers do not need to be super high end or even an exact timber match with the base layer. Any small, reasonably priced, directional sattelite speakers should work fine (as long as they pass the WAF muster).
The overhead soundfield has very little in the way of low frequency information. It's mostly highs and mids. Having said that, in order to "locate" the object based source material it helps to have overheads with good tweeter dispersion. Then use a laser pointer to orient the tweeters at the main listening area. Let the AVR adjust the resulting soundfield, then season to taste using the Atmos demo disc.
Worked grat for us
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post #4 of 11 Old 11-09-2019, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by m0j0 View Post
Generally speaking, atmos is a mixed bag. Sometimes it's great and sometimes it's meh. It depends on the movie/mix. I don't know if I could justify spending 3k for atmos though. I bought some Focal Sibs at a cost of about $400.00 and it's been well worth that investment. Maybe just go with some Prime Elevations or something. I didn't match my base speakers and it sounds perfectly fine to me.
Thanks for your thoughts. I agree with your position on this, it just seemed like way to much to invest. I would love to use the SVS Prime Elevations as I know they are a great value, and I'm sure they would be all that's needed. My only concern is that I have read numerous statements from home theater designers and builders that the Atmos overhead speakers must be positioned so that the tweeters are facing the seating area. I don't think that's "possible" with the Prime Elevations as I believe they mount flat to the wall near the ceiling?

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post #5 of 11 Old 11-09-2019, 01:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by humbland View Post
INMO, the Atmos overhead speakers do not need to be super high end or even an exact timber match with the base layer. Any small, reasonably priced, directional sattelite speakers should work fine (as long as they pass the WAF muster).
The overhead soundfield has very little in the way of low frequency information. It's mostly highs and mids. Having said that, in order to "locate" the object based source material it helps to have overheads with good tweeter dispersion. Then use a laser pointer to orient the tweeters at the main listening area. Let the AVR adjust the resulting soundfield, then season to taste using the Atmos demo disc.
Worked great for us
Makes perfect sense. I wasn't sure there were reasonably priced "directional" speakers out there for this purpose. As I noted above, I would really like to use the SVS Prime Elevations for this, but again, they cannot be directionally placed. The only reason I felt I had to consider the Revel ceiling models that were so expensive as none of their other speakers have directional tweeters.

Honestly, though, speakers that can perform well, but don't require me to cut into the ceiling, like the SVS Prime Elevations, would be far, far preferable and so much easier for me to implement. And I'm happy paying a grand or so to do that if something will work directionally.

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post #6 of 11 Old 11-09-2019, 01:31 PM
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Atmos definitely adds to the immersion and movie experience - I love my set up.


I wouldn't go putting cheap speakers up there though - they may not get a lot of use but when they do you still want them to sound as good as possible, especially if you already have excellent Revel listener level speakers.
I would suggest using Revel M16 bookshelfs and ceiling mounting them - $900 pr might be more reasonable to you ??

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post #7 of 11 Old 11-09-2019, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim CL View Post
Thanks for your thoughts. I agree with your position on this, it just seemed like way to much to invest. I would love to use the SVS Prime Elevations as I know they are a great value, and I'm sure they would be all that's needed. My only concern is that I have read numerous statements from home theater designers and builders that the Atmos overhead speakers must be positioned so that the tweeters are facing the seating area. I don't think that's "possible" with the Prime Elevations as I believe they mount flat to the wall near the ceiling?

Jim
My Focal Sibs come with a swivel/tilt mount that lets me mount on ceiling or wall and pivot/tilt to be able to aim the speakers. I’m sure you could find a swivel type mount that would let you do the same with any bookshelf speaker if the prime elevations wouldn’t work in your setup.
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post #8 of 11 Old 11-10-2019, 10:28 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by niterida View Post
Atmos definitely adds to the immersion and movie experience - I love my set up.


I wouldn't go putting cheap speakers up there though - they may not get a lot of use but when they do you still want them to sound as good as possible, especially if you already have excellent Revel listener level speakers.
I would suggest using Revel M16 bookshelfs and ceiling mounting them - $900 pr might be more reasonable to you ??
The M16's are excellent speakers and I am using them for side and rear surrounds now. The problem with ceiling mounting them would again be that there is no way to position them to direct the sound to the seating seating position.

Jim
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post #9 of 11 Old 11-10-2019, 10:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by m0j0 View Post
My Focal Sibs come with a swivel/tilt mount that lets me mount on ceiling or wall and pivot/tilt to be able to aim the speakers. I’m sure you could find a swivel type mount that would let you do the same with any bookshelf speaker if the prime elevations wouldn’t work in your setup.
Good idea. I'll see what I can track down in terms of swivel mounts.

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post #10 of 11 Old 11-13-2019, 10:00 PM
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I used Focal Dome for Atmos, also have the built in stand/swivel. Easy to mount and aim. Very well made, in France, with wide dispersion. I paid $1000 and think they were a bargain. Now $800 at https://www.crutchfield.com/p_091DP5...ack-Black.html


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post #11 of 11 Old 11-14-2019, 06:05 AM
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Hi,

I went through the same decision process several months ago. Here's that thread, if you are interested: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/90-re...l#post55781690

In your specific situation, I would consider (carefully) what else you could do with the $3,000 required to add the top speakers. $3k would pay for a new, 4k projector (or at least make a big chunk of the price.) It would also buy a bunch of movies, or pay for streaming services for a loooong time. Depends on your priorities. I spent a few hundred dollars on my Atmos speakers, and have been happy with the sound quality...for the little sound that actually exists on most discs or in streamed content.

I'd also consider the possibility that discretely encoded Atmos content might now be as widespread as it will ever be. (Ala 3D.) Very few consumers will have the ability or inclination to add Atmos capable speakers to their viewing rooms. Physical discs sales are falling rapidly, and streaming of Atmos content is very limited. Hoping that this does not happen, but IMO it's worth a little thought before making a major investment.

I'm finding that I'm smarter than I thought, but dumber than I need to be.
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