Originally Posted by audioguy
I would now like to clarify my initial exuberance over my first impression of the upgrade to the new DTS:X Pro upmixer.
I have since created two presets, one with my Wides and Top Middles set to "none" and one with them enabled to make use of the new upmixer. Once I was able to switch back and forth and with the volumes identical, the improvement in overall envelopment
, IN MY ROOM (9.8.6), was subtle, AT BEST. I need to point out that because my L&R speakers are in the room vs behind the screen, they are lots closer to my left and right surrounds (probably 4 or 5 feet) than they would be otherwise. As a result, I get almost perfect imaging in the Wide position even with no Wides playing. I knew this to be the case when I played the Atmos Music disk by REM. I could turn on and off the Wides and the difference was subtle. While the sound when the Wides played was " a tiny bit" more distinct, it added little to the overall immersive experience.
What I did notice, however, was that the bass SEEMED TO increase when I switched between the two presets. If what I seem to hear is actually occurring, my guess is that the bass (LFE channel) created from the 4 additional speakers playing is added to the overall LFE channel output. If I have a chance tomorrow, I will just play the LFE channel and see if I can actually measure what I think I am hearing when I compare the two presets.
That said, I am still VERY glad that Trinnov provided this FREE update. While the immersive improvement may be subtle in my room
, it is still an improvement - and the cost was well within my budget
Have you tried comparing them from off-axis seats? The most benefit to having more than 7.1.4 speakers in any system is for anchoring sounds so that everyone gets a closer to the same experience. The MLP should, in small to average sized rooms, already phantom image perfectly
with just 7.1.4 speakers as long as they are properly placed and good quality speakers. There should be almost no difference whatsoever with more speakers because you are sitting in the ideal location for phantom imaging. However, if the room is large and the angles between front and rear speakers become larger, even the MLP will get benefits as the extra speakers (say surround #1
and top middle) will bridge those angles so that imaging is restored to phantom image from front to back perfectly. This is true even with matrixed added speakers so it's certainly true with discrete.
But the moment you sit in the left or right chair off-center or move from the 1st row to the second row, the imaging differences become terribly apparent with even basic Dolby Digital demos. The precedence effect, whereby phantom sounds between stereo speakers begin to collapse to the nearest speaker the more off center you sit from it will screw up imaging terribly in places like center height or top surround (i.e. the reason we have a center bed speaker in the first place as this was the
most noticeable location for the problem even with just stereo playback). As you continue to scale up a theater to infinity in theory, you would need ever more pairs of speakers to avoid the precedence effect as phantom imaging begins to fall apart after 110-130 degrees separation with degradation even before that point and the precedence effect able to destroy imaging with even lesser angles.
Top middle and front height stereo pairs are not sufficient to lock in a top center image for all seats off-axis. You need center height and top surround to do so. Thus, Atmos is utterly incapable of properly producing a consistent image for ALL seats. DTS:X Pro with its Auro-3D-centric added speakers should, at least in theory
now be able to provide a fairly consistent experience for most seating locations (center rear and center rear height is problematic without at least a matrixed set there due to the psycho-acoustical issue with a speaker directly behind you, but I don't think ANY of the formats offer center rear height (although it can be simulated with an extracted set of channels).
Given the high praise for DTS:X Pro from the CES show, the initial reports here are somewhat disappointing. I was hoping to go full discrete with my 11.1.6 setup instead of a hybrid extraction (top middle) and matrixed FW and SS#1
) at some point in the not-so-distant future. But between locked Atmos mixes (ala Disney) and the somewhat disappointing reports of DTS:X Pro for upmixing thus far, I'm starting to feel like it's not worth the effort. Auro-3D music albums like Mando Daio's Aelita are mind blowing here now even all the way to the third row and Atmos and X soundtracks equally pan as well across the entire room with no channel limitations whatsoever. I think I'd feel like I'd be paying more to get less. Reports of muffled front soundstages
with the new Neural X are even more scary. That should not happen period, IMO. Extracting more speakers shouldn't muffle anything (it doesn't do with Pro Logic extraction or matrixed). It sounds like either DTS screwed up or there's some kind of interaction between Trinnov's own corrective remapping and Neural X's remapping of 7.1.4 (or less) soundtracks.