Originally Posted by craig john
You may have missed where I said:
"This second graph is the Atmos speakers in isolation, (no subwoofers, but the overhead speakers reset with a 40 Hz crossover):"
I don't have the equipment to measure the spectral content of the pre/pro outputs for the overhead speakers. I can only measure what I can measure with a microphone. The content I measured was from the 2018 Dolby Atmos Demo Disc and it was Dolby's proprietary content that I measured. If there was ever going to be bass content in the Overhead outputs, you would think Dolby would put it there.
And I NEVER said "spend as little as possible." I just don't think it's necessary to spend $16,000 on speakers and $26,000 overall just to add Atmos. In a Home theater environment... and with the capabilities of Bass Management, it's just not necessary. I also disagree that a Bass Managed, satellite/subwoofer(s) system doesn't sound the same as a speaker system with full range speakers in all positions. The assumption is that the full range speakers can be placed where they need to be placed AND that those placements will also yield acceptable bass response. I have rarely seen that to be the case. Properly placed and Bass Managed subwoofers offer a far greater opportunity to optimize the bass response.
Still, the speakers in question, Triad Gold Mini-Monitors, are small sealed 2-way's with an F3 of 55 Hz. They don't have much more bass response than the RSL C34e's. Tigerhonacker will be upgrading to 4 large SVS subwoofers. He'll be using Bass Management. There is no reason, even if there is some bass in the Overheads, to spend that kind of money on Overhead speakers, at least IMO.
Nonetheless, I'll be very interested to see what you find when you measure the spectral content of the Atmos Overheads. I await your measurements.
My apologies. I did miss that you changed the crossovers for your second measurements. Good work.
I didn't intend to imply that you stated "spend as little as possible', but that is a trend that I am starting to see, and your measurements and posts certainly encourage that line of thinking.
As far as subwoofers go, and the lowest two octaves..I calibrate cinemas for a living, so I certainly agree that subwoofer placement is critical, main speakers will rarely be in the correct positions etc. That isn't what I'm talking about. If the spectral content for surrounds and overheads is full range (and hopefully I will have time to measure that this coming week), then having more capable speakers overhead is certainly justified. You yourself own Triad Platinum LCR's for your mains. If Bass Management is such a panacea, then how do you justify that expense? Audioguy is crossing his overheads at ~120Hz, so he can play them loud enough without distortion. That seems like an additional very legitimate reason to spend more on overheads. In general, a bigger speaker will have better power handling.
When 5.1 and 7.1 content first became common in home theaters, I recall the same ideas be passed around. And perhaps on early content, it was justified. It certainly isn't now. History repeats, and the same thought process comes back regarding overheads.
Consider an actor with a powerful deep voice. Sean Connery, James Earl Jones, George Clooney even in Gravity. His voice is commonly heard in surrounds and overheads in Gravity. I'd prefer all of his voice to come from those speakers, and not have the deeper resonance routed to subwoofers. It just doesn't sound right to our ears/brain. Even more so for multi-channel music. It is difficult enough to integrate subs with mains properly and they are in the same 2D plane. My experience in hundreds of private cinemas tells me it just doesn't sound the same.
Of course we always have to take into consideration budget and design constraints. But that doesn't keep me from educating clients and recommending the best solution, and if compromises have to be made, at least they are based on purely those constraints. But again, my experience in rooms with everything from small custom Triad speakers designed to fit into small soffits up to large Procella and JBL speakers has me convinced that when budget and design allow, go big.