Originally Posted by bhotchki
I am putting in a new home theater. I am looking at two setups recommended by my AV consultant and am curious to hear folks thoughts. One option is the Genelec G-Series in a 7.1 setup (G4s in front, G3s on side, G2s in back). The other is the in-wall Sonance Reference line in a 7.2.1 atmos setup. Costs are about equal. I don't love the idea of hanging speakers off the wall in a new theater but I know the Genelec's sounds nice. I haven't heard the Sonance Reference line. In both cases I will be using a Genelec 7370 APM sub. Down the road I could update the Genelec to atmos but wouldn't do it initially because of costs. The Genelec in-wall speakers are out of my budget range. Thoughts?
I will be using the room to mostly watch 4K movies and am thinking the atmos setup and aesthetics might outweigh the Genelec given the purpose of the room but am open to suggestions.
Do you mean 7.1.2 for the Sonance set up? The middle digit is the subwoofer and the last digit is the Atmos speakers.
You're really asking an apples and oranges kind of question and I would suggest that you do some homework and get a better understanding of what you're really looking at.
The Genelec's are active speakers, meaning they have their amplifiers built into their cabinet. You would need only a pre-pro to use them with a coaxial cable run to each speaker. In this case, each speaker cabinet has a tweeter and woofer and each speaker has its own amplifier; two speakers and two amplifiers in each cabinet.
The Sonance are passive speakers and would require a pre-pro/amplifiers combination or an AVR and speaker wires to operate.
So there is the above differences to consider.
The other point, and it's a major one, is that the Genelec speakers have active crossovers and what Genelec calls "Room Response Compensation". "Room Response Compensation" allows each speakers sound to be adjusted for its mounting position optimizing in-room performance. This would be in addition to any active room correction that a pre-pro or AVR may provide.
The Genelec's are also a waveguide design which can give flat on and off-axis response for a wider usable listening area and improved sound stage imaging.
If it were me, I'd go with the Genelec's. I would also go with three G4's and four G3's for the sides and backs. You could also consider going 5.1 2 and add the two back channels at a latter date for 7.1.2 it you feel Atmos is more important.
As far as Atmos goes, I would add it latter if it's a financial issue. The point being not all movies have an Atmos track. Heck, not all movies have a 7.1 sound track. I look at it this way, 5.1 is the "cake". 7.1 is icing on the cake and Atmos is sprinkles on the icing. In the long run, you're much better off getting a good solid set of audio bed speakers 5.1/7.1 and then going after Atmos/DTS:X/AURO-3D.
BTW, Genelec makes excellent speakers. I believe that your acoustic engineer helping with the design is giving you some good options.