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post #1 of 18 Old 11-16-2019, 10:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Atmos ceiling speaker placement

Hello all,

I’ve just recently set up my first full Dolby atmos 7.2.4 setup with a Denon 4300H, 3 pairs of KEF Q100’s & Q200, and 2 cheap pairs of Pyle in ceiling speakers. The affect is certainly noticeable, though a bit on the subtle side. Initially, I wanted to spread my ceiling speakers out to give my setup a “wider soundstage” for the atmos affect, but now I’m wondering if I’d be better off moving them in closer.

Right now I have the speakers placed at a 35 degree angle from horizontal, but I’m wondering if placing them at a 45 degree angle would actually enhance the height affect for all seating positions, and if by “expanding the sound stage” what I’ve really done is muted the height effect. Speakers are installed in a 7’-5” drop ceiling. MLP is 3’ off the ground on a large U-shaped sectional couch. Speakers are placed 6.5’ forward and back from MLP, so all seating positions are between front and rear ceiling speakers. Vast majority of the time, MLP willl be the only seats used.

Has anyone experimented with ceiling speaker placement? Is 45 degrees considerably more effective than 35 degrees for spatial audio, even though 35 is still technically in the recommended range? I know speaker dispersion that far off angle isn’t great, which is probably why Audessey saw fit to boost the speakers by 12dB.
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post #2 of 18 Old 11-17-2019, 10:51 AM
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I would mount them at least at 45 degrees elevation from ear height. Measure from your ears to the ceiling; that same distance forward & rearward of you is 45 degrees elevation.

Also, IF the height effect is too subtle, no harm in adjusting the volume level of those speakers till you end up with just the right degree of height effect.
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post #3 of 18 Old 11-18-2019, 03:35 PM
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Moving them closer to the center of the room is going to be the new standard for Dolby is my understanding because our ceiling heights won’t allow for the full dispersion that is required with them mounted closer to the side walls.


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post #4 of 18 Old 11-18-2019, 04:05 PM
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12db boost by audessey seems like a lot considering your low ceiling. Can the tweeters be aimed on the pyles?

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post #5 of 18 Old 11-18-2019, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiovideoholic View Post
Moving them closer to the center of the room is going to be the new standard for Dolby is my understanding...
What "new standard for Dolby"?

Sanjay
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post #6 of 18 Old 11-18-2019, 06:17 PM
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Atmos ceiling speaker placement

@sdurani It’s not a new standard “yet”. The word floating around is that results have been better using tops closer together in residential settings so only a matter of time before they publish the findings is what I have gathered. It makes perfect sense since most residential spaces have between 7’-9’ ceilings. The dispersion from further spacing doesn’t have enough distance for coverage like closer spaced Tops would provide. I don’t know what angles are being talked about/published as “findings” in these tests but I did talk to Walter about it when he was doing my Trinnov calibration and he said he has been using very similar spacing in his installs/designs. So take it as you will.... just spreading the word of what I’ve heard from some of the bigger players in cinema sound/home theater design.

And another change being suggested is higher placed surrounds but will leave that alone as of right now because some are suggesting higher elevations than others but will just say between 1’ and 2’ higher side wall surrounds coupled with closer spaces Tops seems to be very Golden.

I’m waiting on a layout right now for both Atmos and DTS-X Pro.


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Last edited by audiovideoholic; 11-18-2019 at 06:25 PM.
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post #7 of 18 Old 11-18-2019, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiovideoholic View Post
...just spreading the word of what I’ve heard from some of the bigger players in cinema sound/home theater design.
Which of the bigger players in cinema sound/home theater design?

Sanjay
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post #8 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 05:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post
Which of the bigger players in cinema sound/home theater design?


Walter and Tony to name a few along with others. Tony is giving seminars on how to use the Cinema layout over the residential layout for Tops along with higher surrounds. There are others that will be publishing findings as well and will link them once published.


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post #9 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 08:44 AM
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Walter and Tony to name a few along with others.
Their preferences are going to be the new standard for Dolby? Has anyone told Dolby?

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post #10 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by sdurani View Post
Their preferences are going to be the new standard for Dolby? Has anyone told Dolby?


Halarious you are.


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post #11 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 11:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the responses regarding top speaker location, that was what I’d come to suspect as soon as I got the system hooked up. It’s not bad as is, the effect is certainly noticeable, I just figured it might be even more noticeable if the speakers were closer to MLP. I was hesitant to do so because that puts two of the side seats on the sectional directly underneath or even slightly forward of one of the front ceiling speakers, but that may be a necessary evil.

With regards to the Audessey results, I think it’s likely a combination of poor position (far off axis) with the speaker and poor quality 16ohm speaker (perhaps low sensitivity as well?). The Pyle speakers were only $40/pair, but I wanted to try atmos out before spending more on those speakers. The tweeters cannot be rotated or “aimed” towards the seating area.

Being at a 36 degree angle from horizontal at MLP, that puts the listener 54 degrees off axis. Moving them in by one 2’ ceiling tile, they’ll be at a 47 degree angle, 42 degrees off axis, which I imagine should perform a bit better, in addition to enhancing the height effect.
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post #12 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SabresfortheCup View Post
With regards to the Audessey results, I think it’s likely a combination of poor position (far off axis) with the speaker and poor quality 16ohm speaker (perhaps low sensitivity as well?). The Pyle speakers were only $40/pair, but I wanted to try atmos out before spending more on those speakers. The tweeters cannot be rotated or “aimed” towards the seating area.

Being at a 36 degree angle from horizontal at MLP, that puts the listener 54 degrees off axis. Moving them in by one 2’ ceiling tile, they’ll be at a 47 degree angle, 42 degrees off axis, which I imagine should perform a bit better, in addition to enhancing the height effect.
I have the Pioneer add on Atmos modules and they require a lot more gain compared to my B&W speakers. I suspect you are correct on sensitivity and resistance.

Could you possibly draw a picture or be more explicit with measurements? I can't visualize your description of angles and I will have to make a similar decision based on where joists are spaced.

Thanks!
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post #13 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audiovideoholic View Post
@sdurani It’s not a new standard “yet”. The word floating around is that results have been better using tops closer together in residential settings so only a matter of time before they publish the findings is what I have gathered. It makes perfect sense since most residential spaces have between 7’-9’ ceilings. The dispersion from further spacing doesn’t have enough distance for coverage like closer spaced Tops would provide. I don’t know what angles are being talked about/published as “findings” in these tests but I did talk to Walter about it when he was doing my Trinnov calibration and he said he has been using very similar spacing in his installs/designs. So take it as you will.... just spreading the word of what I’ve heard from some of the bigger players in cinema sound/home theater design.

And another change being suggested is higher placed surrounds but will leave that alone as of right now because some are suggesting higher elevations than others but will just say between 1’ and 2’ higher side wall surrounds coupled with closer spaces Tops seems to be very Golden.

I’m waiting on a layout right now for both Atmos and DTS-X Pro.
So something similar to what Cineramax is doing with his "Topmerssive" layout?

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post #14 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 04:36 PM
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So something similar to what Cineramax is doing with his "Topmerssive" layout?





It sure is very similar. Peter has some differing thoughts which are backed up by countless hours of tinkering but all in all the results should be about the same. Peter is hot on the trail as always with it too. He is who had me talking and reading some of these guys’ works. They are all a wealth of knowledge in that circle to say the least. He’s working with me right now along side Walter. Walter is plain and simple a miracle worker when it comes to tuning. His ears are magical!!!!


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post #15 of 18 Old 11-19-2019, 09:48 PM
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Ok not sure what all is going on there but it looks cool as all heck lol

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post #16 of 18 Old 11-20-2019, 09:55 AM
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So I am trying to understand the best on-ceiling placement for Atmos speakers (example, SVS Prime Elevations), and I'm trying to do it only on paper, as the room is not built out yet, and I have full flexibility to place wherever. The SVS speakers themselves have a 20 degree angled cabinet/driver. If one were to place them so the driver shot directly at the listening position, and the ceiling was, say, 9 ft high, with ear level at 3 ft, then the math says the speakers should be 2.25 ft in front of me (and behind). See pic.


However, when looking at Dolby's own Atmos suggestions (which do not take into account any speaker angle, nor state a theoretical or exampled one) they have the ceiling mounts much further forward (and behind) than that. And they offer a huge 30-55 degree variant for placement. So....


Do you folks recommend I simply wait and place them somehow-temporarily on the ceiling and listen for myself? Or are there some tried and true empirical facts here? BTW, my main goal is to reproduce Atmos music (like Abbey Road) primarily, with movie sound being secondarily important. Thx
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post #17 of 18 Old 11-21-2019, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by ted_b View Post
So I am trying to understand the best on-ceiling placement for Atmos speakers (example, SVS Prime Elevations), and I'm trying to do it only on paper, as the room is not built out yet, and I have full flexibility to place wherever. The SVS speakers themselves have a 20 degree angled cabinet/driver. If one were to place them so the driver shot directly at the listening position, and the ceiling was, say, 9 ft high, with ear level at 3 ft, then the math says the speakers should be 2.25 ft in front of me (and behind). See pic.


However, when looking at Dolby's own Atmos suggestions (which do not take into account any speaker angle, nor state a theoretical or exampled one) they have the ceiling mounts much further forward (and behind) than that. And they offer a huge 30-55 degree variant for placement. So....


Do you folks recommend I simply wait and place them somehow-temporarily on the ceiling and listen for myself? Or are there some tried and true empirical facts here? BTW, my main goal is to reproduce Atmos music (like Abbey Road) primarily, with movie sound being secondarily important. Thx
Ted
I would think its fine to plan things on paper but something always seems to come up that will change those plans. If it were me, knowing "around" where I want to place the speakers would be the starting point, and I'd run wiring to that location and leave enough extra to re-position if I needed to. I hope that makes sense?
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post #18 of 18 Old 11-21-2019, 12:14 PM
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I would at least try to stay inside the Dolby range. If the speakers are 20 deg, space them out a bit more and put a 10 deg wedge as your mounting block to get to 30 deg.

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