Atmos: Wides?! vs not ideal rears for 7.2.4 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 14 Old 03-22-2016, 01:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Atmos: Wides?! vs not ideal rears for 7.2.4

So I have about 18" to 2' off my back wall from MLP. I could put in a dual tweeter in-wall running at stereo about 18" above ear level which I believe would fill some gaps. However, no matter how you slice it, that's pretty close... Therefore, I began to consider wides: I could put in angled in-ceiling speakers aimed at MLP and run a 7.2.4 with wides instead of rears.

I have almost no experience with wides and frankly, don't hear much about them. In fact, wides are generally only spoken about when dealing with 9.1 instead of 7.1. I'm not sure the reason for that. Perhaps rears give a better experience but what about in-ideal rears...

Any thoughts on wides vs non-ideal-but-functional-rear-surrounds?

I'm gonna wire up for both but I'm still very curious. I'm limited to one or the other because the marrantz is 11 channels with external amp.

Thanks,
Joe
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-22-2016, 03:52 PM
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Wides -vs- Rears, I'd choose rears, but only if you have the room for them, which you really don't, and is why I mentioned then in the other thread.
But if your limited to in-ceiling I wouldn't consider then since all your other bed layer speakers are ear level, and since you're using bi-pole surrounds, you'd have to have a pretty big gap between your Fronts and Surrounds then l them to be a big concern anyway.

From weekday you described in the other thread, because of your room I'd stick to 5.1.4, and since you've got a 7.1.4 receiver, you could always add wides (ear level) anytime later if you think you may be missing something.
If you're wanting to pre-wire, just forward of the ½ way point between your Fronts and Surrounds.

Oh, and Wides are only used with DTS-X and Atmos objects, and Neural-X, but not with DSU at all.

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post #3 of 14 Old 03-22-2016, 04:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALtlOff View Post
Wides -vs- Rears, I'd choose rears, but only if you have the room for them, which you really don't, and is why I mentioned then in the other thread.
But if your limited to in-ceiling I wouldn't consider then since all your other bed layer speakers are ear level, and since you're using bi-pole surrounds, you'd have to have a pretty big gap between your Fronts and Surrounds then l them to be a big concern anyway.

From weekday you described in the other thread, because of your room I'd stick to 5.1.4, and since you've got a 7.1.4 receiver, you could always add wides (ear level) anytime later if you think you may be missing something.
If you're wanting to pre-wire, just forward of the ½ way point between your Fronts and Surrounds.

Oh, and Wides are only used with DTS-X and Atmos objects, and Neural-X, but not with DSU at all.
I'm limited to in-ceiling for wides. However, I'm considering in-wall for Rears, if I don't go wides.

Also, what is DSU?

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post #4 of 14 Old 03-22-2016, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjcinnamon View Post
I'm limited to in-ceiling for wides. However, I'm considering in-wall for Rears, if I don't go wides.

Also, what is DSU?
DSU is Dolby Surround Upmixing. It is a audio processor mode used to up mix content from a 5.1 or lesser source to utilize the Atmos channels.
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post #5 of 14 Old 03-22-2016, 07:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALtlOff View Post
Wides -vs- Rears, I'd choose rears, but only if you have the room for them, which you really don't, and is why I mentioned then in the other thread.
But if your limited to in-ceiling I wouldn't consider then since all your other bed layer speakers are ear level, and since you're using bi-pole surrounds, you'd have to have a pretty big gap between your Fronts and Surrounds then l them to be a big concern anyway.

From weekday you described in the other thread, because of your room I'd stick to 5.1.4, and since you've got a 7.1.4 receiver, you could always add wides (ear level) anytime later if you think you may be missing something.
If you're wanting to pre-wire, just forward of the ½ way point between your Fronts and Surrounds.

Oh, and Wides are only used with DTS-X and Atmos objects, and Neural-X, but not with DSU at all.
I plan on doing a lot of DSU, so the wides will have limited value.
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post #6 of 14 Old 03-22-2016, 08:26 PM
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Better to do a good 5.1 layout than a poor 7.1 layout by shoehorning rear speakers behind you when there isn't enough space. Put the surrounds in the back corners, slightly above ear level. If the only way you can do wides is in-ceiling, then don't do it (those speakers are intended to make the soundstage wider, not taller).
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post #7 of 14 Old 03-23-2016, 12:42 PM
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A couple of points:

The Marantz will do wides OR 2 pairs of heights - one or the other. If you choose wides, I believe you will kill one pair of your in-ceiling heights. I am pretty sure you can't pick wides over rears (or vice versa), even if you have 11 channels in the Marantz. Only so many outputs in the processing are dedicated to either floor or height channels.

Wide speakers are a good idea if your left and right speakers are placed very close together in the front of the room. An example would be if you are sitting 12 feet back and your left and right speakers are only 6 feet apart. Wides are also considered "floor" speakers, so an in-ceiling installation is not ideal. Of course, your room also needs to be wide enough so you can get enough spread between your left and rights and the wides (in other words, if your room is only 8 feet across wide speakers are not going to accomplish much).

When designing an ATMOS system, it's best to think of your home theater as a "dome," and try to place your speakers within that space to fill out that dome. When thinking of the system in this way, it's easier to get your speaker positioning and angles right.

You can, of course, put the rear speakers behind you, like you discuss. When you run the room setup on the Marantz receiver / pre-pro, Audyssey will adjust the levels and response based upon how far the speakers are from your listening position. Still, you will probably end up being quite aware that the rear speakers are essentially firing right into your ear

Might be helpful for you to post some pics or diagrams of what you are talking about. Hope that helps!
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post #8 of 14 Old 03-23-2016, 02:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Schuermann View Post
A couple of points:

The Marantz will do wides OR 2 pairs of heights - one or the other. If you choose wides, I believe you will kill one pair of your in-ceiling heights. I am pretty sure you can't pick wides over rears (or vice versa), even if you have 11 channels in the Marantz. Only so many outputs in the processing are dedicated to either floor or height channels.

Wide speakers are a good idea if your left and right speakers are placed very close together in the front of the room. An example would be if you are sitting 12 feet back and your left and right speakers are only 6 feet apart. Wides are also considered "floor" speakers, so an in-ceiling installation is not ideal. Of course, your room also needs to be wide enough so you can get enough spread between your left and rights and the wides (in other words, if your room is only 8 feet across wide speakers are not going to accomplish much).

When designing an ATMOS system, it's best to think of your home theater as a "dome," and try to place your speakers within that space to fill out that dome. When thinking of the system in this way, it's easier to get your speaker positioning and angles right.

You can, of course, put the rear speakers behind you, like you discuss. When you run the room setup on the Marantz receiver / pre-pro, Audyssey will adjust the levels and response based upon how far the speakers are from your listening position. Still, you will probably end up being quite aware that the rear speakers are essentially firing right into your ear

Might be helpful for you to post some pics or diagrams of what you are talking about. Hope that helps!
That dome concept is what I've been thinking about which is why I'm entertaining the 7 channel layout so much.

My side surrounds (Paradigm Surround 1's) are bipoles and 10ft out from MLP. Therefore, they may be a little too diffuse by the time they hit my ears. I'm trying to pickup additional space where they may be weak on the 7 or 5 bed first stage.

here is my layout.

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This may be a crazy experiment but I have 3 options to fill in some space in the back and in the opposite angle of the front. If you feel like, feel free to rule some out.

The first is the dual monopole's about 6' up which would be 2' up from MLP. The sides and fronts are on a 4' plane with my ears. I'm hoping the with the rears higher than the ears but lower than the atmos that it would be diffuse enough to not be in my ear

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Pros: It's the most proven set up. It's the second most expensive.
Cons: Doesn't achieve the recommended angles (because they're in wall) and would basically fire right at the fronts (and possibly at some ears 2' below). I did some measuring and I'm likely closer to 15 to 18 inches from wall to ear.

The second is dual tweeter in the center. Also, 6' up (so above the ears) but in the center

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Pros: Cheapest option, and likely not blasting straight on.

Cons: may be too close to the listeners to dispurse/diffuse outward

The 3rd option is dual 30 degree angled pointed at the rear wall

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Pros: near definitely diffuse, allows for the most flexibility

Cons: most unproven, most expensive, likely no room in the ceiling, could interfere with the top atmos channels as well.

Thoughts?
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-23-2016, 02:43 PM
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A tough call. Obviously your main problem is the fact that you are seated so close to the rear wall. However, it looks like you have only one row of seating - correct? If so, the Marantz is going to adjust the level so that no one should get "blasted" by the rear channel.

Typically with ATMOS you don't want diffusion, but many people struggle with the "point source" problem you have. I have a "more ideal" room setup, but even so, a person in the left or right-most seating position is going to be quite aware of the side surround speaker firing right into their ear (I've experienced it myself when I have guests over - I turn over the "sweet spot" in those circumstances to others).

I asked Kevin Voecks of Harman (JBL / Revel) about this at CES. His answer was to add more channels to spread the sound out, but obviously you are maximizing the number of channels in your Marantz already.

It might be best to simply move the side surround speakers back so they function as sides and rears. The Marantz will process and route sounds accordingly.

If you do want localizable sound in the back, my first inclination is to recommend mono-poles with very wide dispersion. With my own system, a JBL Synthesis designer recommended the JBL CBT50 line array - a speaker with extremely wide horizontal dispersion and very limited vertical dispersion. Might be worth a look.

Based upon what you are considering, though, I would go with the dual monopoles. A suggestion: borrow a set of bookshelf or surround speakers and place them in the back. That way you can calibrate everything using the Marantz and see what you think.

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post #10 of 14 Old 03-23-2016, 06:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by John Schuermann View Post
A tough call. Obviously your main problem is the fact that you are seated so close to the rear wall. However, it looks like you have only one row of seating - correct? If so, the Marantz is going to adjust the level so that no one should get "blasted" by the rear channel.

Typically with ATMOS you don't want diffusion, but many people struggle with the "point source" problem you have. I have a "more ideal" room setup, but even so, a person in the left or right-most seating position is going to be quite aware of the side surround speaker firing right into their ear (I've experienced it myself when I have guests over - I turn over the "sweet spot" in those circumstances to others).

I asked Kevin Voecks of Harman (JBL / Revel) about this at CES. His answer was to add more channels to spread the sound out, but obviously you are maximizing the number of channels in your Marantz already.

It might be best to simply move the side surround speakers back so they function as sides and rears. The Marantz will process and route sounds accordingly.

If you do want localizable sound in the back, my first inclination is to recommend mono-poles with very wide dispersion. With my own system, a JBL Synthesis designer recommended the JBL CBT50 line array - a speaker with extremely wide horizontal dispersion and very limited vertical dispersion. Might be worth a look.

Based upon what you are considering, though, I would go with the dual monopoles. A suggestion: borrow a set of bookshelf or surround speakers and place them in the back. That way you can calibrate everything using the Marantz and see what you think.
I have a pair of cinema 90's that I can use to test everything out. They are tiny so they'd be a good choice for this.

Otherwise, I'll see if paradigm has a horizontal dispersion speaker.

So far the two experts recommend monopoles. I can't disagree with that.
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post #11 of 14 Old 03-23-2016, 07:10 PM - Thread Starter
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DSU effects on DTS and other traditional mixed content

@John Schuermann

I like @ALtlOff suggestion of remapping the inputs and calling

Middle ceilings (tops), front heights
Rear ceilings (tops), middle ceilings (tops)

and then leaving raised the rear surrounds to pick up some of what would have been in the rear ceilings (tops)

Do either of you know if I use DSU on a 5.1 DTS track, what the effects are? I generally don't like the simulated stuff but that's usually 2 channel to surround. I'm not sure how the traditional surround to object oriented surround upconverts.

Or is it best to leave a DTS-Master track at DTS-Master?
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post #12 of 14 Old 03-23-2016, 08:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjcinnamon View Post
@John Schuermann

I like @ALtlOff suggestion of remapping the inputs and calling

Middle ceilings (tops), front heights
Rear ceilings (tops), middle ceilings (tops)

and then leaving raised the rear surrounds to pick up some of what would have been in the rear ceilings (tops)

Do either of you know if I use DSU on a 5.1 DTS track, what the effects are? I generally don't like the simulated stuff but that's usually 2 channel to surround. I'm not sure how the traditional surround to object oriented surround upconverts.

Or is it best to leave a DTS-Master track at DTS-Master?
I personally use DSU everything, no matter the original format, here's a couple of examples why:

Post # 262

Post #420
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post #13 of 14 Old 03-23-2016, 08:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ALtlOff View Post
I personally use DSU everything, no matter the original format, here's a couple of examples why:

Post # 262

Post #420
HOLY F I'M STOKED!!!

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post #14 of 14 Old 03-27-2016, 07:18 PM - Thread Starter
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My side surrounds are 10' out from MLP

if I run monopoles will people get blasted in the ears? All my other surrounds are monopoles BUT none are at ear level.

Would bipoles be a way to combat that and perhaps hit a neglected area of the room?

I'm looking at the following two speakers + factoring in something I already own and was considering using:

Paradigm 25S

These are likely the best quality speaker with the worst WAF. Not too mention the forward facing monopole woofer scares me a bit. They are also the most expensive (2k for the pair) meaning I wouldn't be able to get them for 2 years. These would also be a perfect match for my fronts because they are the Prestige series BUT they would not match my rear surround.

Paradigm Bipole in wall P80's

These will have the best WAF. Secondly, the may be the most diffuse (given that they are ear level this may be important). They would be cost effective relative to allowing me to leave my current speakers upstairs


Paradigm Surround 1's


These would be the most cost effective because I already own them upstairs. However, this will really neuter my small upstairs 5.1 setup. They have a medium to low WAF given that they will be 4' off the ground at ear level on-wall. Unlike the 25s, nothing is pointing directly at the listener. Which may help the non-MLP issue.

If you'll remember my layout is like this:

Click image for larger version

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So bipoles or monopoles from 10' out, considering the non-MLP experience (i.e. 4' away from the ear level side-surround)

If bi-pole would the, surround 1's, 25S's or the in-wall dual tweeter be preferred.

If monopole, I will likely go in-wall which will be similar cost to the dual tweeter.

@John Schuermann
@ALtlOff

Last edited by tjcinnamon; 03-27-2016 at 07:48 PM.
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