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post #1 of 20 Old 05-15-2020, 03:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Help with new Atmos speaker placement

I currently am running a 5.1 setup but have been thinking about upgrading to a 5.1.4 or 7.1.4 Atmos setup. I do not want to change my speakers or sub. I know I will need to get Atmos add on module speakers(I do not want to install ceiling speakers) and a new Atmos capable receiver. My current equipment is the following:
TV - Panasonic VT60 65" Plasma
Fronts - Infinity Beta 50
Center - Infinity Beta 360
Surrounds - Infinity Beta ES 250 (I have 3) . I also have 2 Infinity Primus 150 speakers.
Sub - HSU VTF-3 MK3
Receiver - Onkyo TN-NR818

I'm pretty confused about an Atmos setup with what I have. Where should I place the speakers and additional Atmos modules. Also, what are some good Atmos module speakers that are not too expensive. Maybe $150 a pair/$200 a pair tops. Sound not aesthetics is my only concern. Primary listening is movies. Attached is a layout of my room. Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 20 Old 05-15-2020, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
I currently am running a 5.1 setup but have been thinking about upgrading to a 5.1.4 or 7.1.4 Atmos setup. I do not want to change my speakers or sub. I know I will need to get Atmos add on module speakers(I do not want to install ceiling speakers) and a new Atmos capable receiver.

I'm pretty confused about an Atmos setup with what I have. Where should I place the speakers and additional Atmos modules. Also, what are some good Atmos module speakers that are not too expensive. Maybe $150 a pair/$200 a pair tops. Sound not aesthetics is my only concern. Primary listening is movies. Attached is a layout of my room. Thanks in advance.
So, use this is as a guide for positioning speakers in the various configurations:

https://www.dolby.com/us/en/speaker-...des/index.html

If sound is your primary concern, Atmos-enabled (bouncing) speakers might be the poorest choice. Most do prefer in/on-ceiling vs. ones requiring the bounce. Might not be practical or desirable for whatever reason, but probably will yield better results. Anyway, DO be sure to read about Dolby Atmos on their wesbite; what you need, what to expect, how to do it, etc., bit of background on it. Might help you in the decision process.

Not intimately familiar with Atmos-add on types or costs, but the likes of Klipsch, KEF, ELAC, NHT, Sony, and Pioneer are at least a few of the brands that make said modules. Just search for Atmos add on module, or Atmos-enabled speaker and you'll start finding stuff. Look for one that has a similar tweeter design to your Infinitys if possible.

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post #3 of 20 Old 05-15-2020, 10:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonas2 View Post
So, use this is as a guide for positioning speakers in the various configurations:

https://www.dolby.com/us/en/speaker-...des/index.html

If sound is your primary concern, Atmos-enabled (bouncing) speakers might be the poorest choice. Most do prefer in/on-ceiling vs. ones requiring the bounce. Might not be practical or desirable for whatever reason, but probably will yield better results. Anyway, DO be sure to read about Dolby Atmos on their wesbite; what you need, what to expect, how to do it, etc., bit of background on it. Might help you in the decision process.


Not intimately familiar with Atmos-add on types or costs, but the likes of Klipsch, KEF, ELAC, NHT, Sony, and Pioneer are at least a few of the brands that make said modules. Just search for Atmos add on module, or Atmos-enabled speaker and you'll start finding stuff. Look for one that has a similar tweeter design to your Infinitys if possible.
Thanks. The Dolby site helped a lot. It seems I have a few choices for configuration. I could do 5.1.4, 7.1.4, or 7.1.6. I have the 2 Primus 150 surrounds and 3 Beta ES250's. The Beta ES250's can be used a monopole, bi-pole, or di-pole and are much better of a speaker than the Primus 150's. I'm not a crazy audiophile but I would like the best movie HT experience that I can get with what I have and not cutting holes in the walls or ceiling. I'm not sure if 7.1.4 or 7.1.6 is overkill but I do already have those extra surround speakers so I would only need to buy the Atmos add on module speakers. The other issue with going with 7.1.4 and especially 7.1.6 is getting a receiver that can handle 11 or 13 channels. That could get very expensive. 11 channels are not as crazy expensive as 13.

Speaker wise I read good reviews on the Pioneer SP-T22A-LR($120 pair) and Sony SSCSE($198 pair). Not sure which matches my Infinity's best or if it matters that much. Any others that are $200 or less per pair?

So my questions:
1.Does 7.1.4 sound noticeably better than 5.1.4? It would be easy for me to do as I would only need to make sure the receiver can handle 11 channels.
2.If I do 7.1.4, which speakers would be better for the surrounds and rears? Beta ES250's and Primus 150's.
3.What mode would I run the Beta ES250's in?
4.How high should the surrounds and rears be, ear level or 1-2 ft above? It seems as the recommendation has changed.

Sorry for so many questions but I think the Beta ES250's being able to be used as monopole, bi-pole or di-pole adds a layer of complexity.
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post #4 of 20 Old 05-16-2020, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
Thanks. The Dolby site helped a lot. It seems I have a few choices for configuration. I could do 5.1.4, 7.1.4, or 7.1.6. I have the 2 Primus 150 surrounds and 3 Beta ES250's. The Beta ES250's can be used a monopole, bi-pole, or di-pole and are much better of a speaker than the Primus 150's.

The preference for Atmos systems is to use monopole, or bipole, not dipole. Depending on your physical distance to speaker, monopoles are best - BUT - if you are close to the speaker, monopoles are more easily localized, and could be distracting, especially when the speaker is getting a lot of loud action. Content dependent. If you are forced to be close to a speaker, use the bipole mode. I mean, experiment of course - but bipole might ultimately be better if you have to be close to a speaker. The better of your speakers, I'd probably use those as the side surrounds, and use the lesser ones as your rears. The sides will be more active in general, and the rears more reserved. Or so has been my experience.

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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
I'm not a crazy audiophile but I would like the best movie HT experience that I can get with what I have and not cutting holes in the walls or ceiling. I'm not sure if 7.1.4 or 7.1.6 is overkill but I do already have those extra surround speakers so I would only need to buy the Atmos add on module speakers. The other issue with going with 7.1.4 and especially 7.1.6 is getting a receiver that can handle 11 or 13 channels. That could get very expensive. 11 channels are not as crazy expensive as 13.
So, recently at least one member who has done quite a bit of experimentation did not really notice a difference between the x.x.4 and x.x.6. Not saying don't do it, but I'd say with single row of seating, the x.x.4 is totally fine. You're right - that really jacks up the price for a receiver, more speakers - PLUS - I think it even gets trickier using the bounce-type speakers as the angles need to be pretty on to get the effects in the right place, it is dependent on the placement of the modules, which is usually on top of the other ear-level speakers.

One avenue to consider - a receiver than can process 11 channels, but only amplifies 9. There is a decent price jump as more and more channels have to be amplified within the receiver, significant typically from 9 to 11. SO....with a 9 channels amplified receiver, but 11 channels processed, you pick yourself up an inexpensive 2-channel amp that will connect those last two channels externally. Good enough amp easily <$200.00, even down to sub $100.00 price. Save yourself some coin there if you did that.

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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
Speaker wise I read good reviews on the Pioneer SP-T22A-LR($120 pair) and Sony SSCSE($198 pair). Not sure which matches my Infinity's best or if it matters that much. Any others that are $200 or less per pair?

Dunno really. I've not done too much research on this, but I do know the KEFs, Klipsch, and ELCA offerings are more than that. There is a thread in the forum I believe that is dedicated to the upfiring Atmos speakers. Search for that thread, and there might be a lot of good info in there about brands and selection criteria.

As far s matching and mattering - a few schools of thought. Hardcore folks, Idealists, and Dolby very much so encourage this. I agree with this camp, but it is not always practical for many reasons. Like the company that made the rest of your speakers doesn't make one, or they are too expensive, or whatever. Practicality has to rule the day. The other camp - Atmos is more of a subtle-effect kinda thing, so you're less likely to notice differences as that is not where our focus is. I'd say it becomes more critical if you are using height speakers in music listening vs. HT listening. If you are not an audiophile, then it likely won't matter what you go with. At the end of the - IF you can match, do it. If you can't, DO NOT lose sleep over it. You'll see the recommendation of at least trying to match the tweeter type - so if you've got say aluminum domes, get something with an aluminum/metallic dome. Soft dome, get soft domes. Even that is not an absolute, but it is a guideline. I don't know what your Infinitys use.

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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
So my questions:
1.Does 7.1.4 sound noticeably better than 5.1.4? It would be easy for me to do as I would only need to make sure the receiver can handle 11 channels.
Depends on the content. 5.1.4 is pretty awesome. 7.1.4 is an incremental improvement. It's not a night and day, WOW kind of thing. But I did move from 5.2.4, to 7.2.4, and yes - I do notice the difference. It does add a degree of immersion, making more whole the bubble if you will, enhancing the rear stage. If given the option, I will always go this route. A lot of folks will disagree and say it adds very little. Emphasis, content dependent. I also do a lot of music upmixing into all channels, and it is just better for this, in my opinion.

HOWEVER - If you have to stretch to do it, I'd say maybe consider the 5.1.4, and invest the money in better gear, rather than lesser gear to stretch out two more channels. But sounds like you've already got the speakers for it, and the space to make it work.

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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
2.If I do 7.1.4, which speakers would be better for the surrounds and rears? Beta ES250's and Primus 150's.
Better/Bipole capable as side surrounds, lesser capable as rears.

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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
3.What mode would I run the Beta ES250's in?
Try both! (I know, kinda been answered already...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
4.How high should the surrounds and rears be, ear level or 1-2 ft above? It seems as the recommendation has changed.
Both O.K. really. Ear level is the 1st recommendation, but slightly above is fine. And I've been in more than one space with higher-level surrounds being used for Atmos and it was great. So, if you need to do this to clear an obstacle or something like that, it'd fine. Ideally, the tweeter at least has a clear line to all of the listeners. Better to clear high back seating, than to block the tweeter, if that means mounting a bit higher! And so on....

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Originally Posted by rlb4 View Post
Sorry for so many questions but I think the Beta ES250's being able to be used as monopole, bi-pole or di-pole adds a layer of complexity.
Na, it makes it far more flexible! I think we've covered this. Don't feel at all bad about asking so many questions. It's part of the research process. There is a lot of good experience on the forum. Mine can only offer so much though since you're going down a slightly different path than I did. Keep in mind, I'm using in-ceiling speakers in a 7.2.4 arrangement, so I'm speaking from opinion and what I've read from the experiences of others as far as the Atmos experience.

You've got plenty of time to think about it. Another option, though it'd be more pricey, but I *think* it'd be a better result, would be to use on-ceilings like this, off to the sides:

https://www.svsound.com/products/prime-elevation

Not saying buy these, just for illustration purposes as another option. Yeah, becomes more challenging with the wiring, but saves you from drilling big holes in the ceiling for actual in-ceiling type speakers. So, keep doing research, pick brains, take your time! It'll pay off.
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post #5 of 20 Old 05-17-2020, 11:54 AM
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So this is where I'm at so far. I may need to move the front pair of Atmos speakers closer to the mlp or just move the mlp up by 6" to 9". Some say 2' in front and 2' behind the mlp is best however I would prefer to keep the mlp at least 10' from the screen. Since the spacing between the ceiling trusses is about 22" I have some wiggle room forward and back. I can also ignore Dolby's recommendations and move the speakers in a little closer from left and right so they are directly over the mlp. The current ceiling speakers I'm looking at are 6 1/2" and can rotate 360° and pivot by 15° in any direction with a 100° dispersion.
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Projector: EPSON Home Cinema 1060 | Screen: 100" Silver Ticket (fixed/white) | Receiver: DENON X3600h (5.2.4) | Receiver fan: AC Infinity Aircom T8 | Blu-ray: Panasonic DP-UB420 | Logitech Harmony Hub | Amazon Echo Dot 3rd Gen. | Center: Emotiva Airmotiv C2+ | Front L/R: JBL Studio 530 & Klipsch RP-600M | Surrounds: Klipsch R-51M | Atmos: N/A | Sub: SVS PB-2000 Pro (dual) | Other: ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 & Polk Audio S20
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Placements B....
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post #7 of 20 Old 05-17-2020, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
So this is where I'm at so far. I may need to move the front pair of Atmos speakers closer to the mlp or just move the mlp up by 6" to 9". Some say 2' in front and 2' behind the mlp is best however I would prefer to keep the mlp at least 10' from the screen. Since the spacing between the ceiling trusses is about 22" I have some wiggle room forward and back. I can also ignore Dolby's recommendations and move the speakers in a little closer from left and right so they are directly over the mlp. The current ceiling speakers I'm looking at are 6 1/2" and can rotate 360° and pivot by 15° in any direction with a 100° dispersion.
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Placements B....
I'd go with A myself, B is just (in my opinion) placing the heights too close to each other. 4' of separation is not very much unless you're doing a top front, top middle kinda thing. If you are doing top front / top rear, I think they should be spaced out more in B. With A, you could move the fronts a little closer to MLP based off of what I'm seeing in the schematic.

I think mine are about 8' apart, front to back, and maybe about 7' left to right. (I'd space that dimension out a bit more, but it was slightly inboard of main, or way outboard thanks to joists, and then one would just be too close to a boundary, so I went with what I thought was the lesser of two evils.) I tried to get them as close to Dolby specs. as I could for top front / rears. Not perfect, but close, with what I find to be a very good result.

The Dolby guidelines are just that, but they are what they are for a reason. Don't sweat not being perfect. If you're in the ballpark, you should be good to go. But if you are in complete violation, the Dolby Police will be knocking on your door....

Seriously though, I'm sure there is a reason why some say 2' fore and aft is best, but I don't know why. Maybe still narrowly within what Dolby states, but I'd have to do the math, otherwise my thinking says that is off. Could be a personal preference for the resulting performance, but I gotta tell you, I'm pretty happy with my setup that got reasonably close to Dolby's *perfect* placement. You can only do what your space will allow, of course! Are you intending a front /rear, or a front/middle?
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post #8 of 20 Old 05-17-2020, 03:35 PM
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I'd go with A myself, B is just (in my opinion) placing the heights too close to each other. 4' of separation is not very much unless you're doing a top front, top middle kinda thing. If you are doing top front / top rear, I think they should be spaced out more in B. With A, you could move the fronts a little closer to MLP based off of what I'm seeing in the schematic.

I think mine are about 8' apart, front to back, and maybe about 7' left to right. (I'd space that dimension out a bit more, but it was slightly inboard of main, or way outboard thanks to joists, and then one would just be too close to a boundary, so I went with what I thought was the lesser of two evils.) I tried to get them as close to Dolby specs. as I could for top front / rears. Not perfect, but close, with what I find to be a very good result.

The Dolby guidelines are just that, but they are what they are for a reason. Don't sweat not being perfect. If you're in the ballpark, you should be good to go. But if you are in complete violation, the Dolby Police will be knocking on your door....

Seriously though, I'm sure there is a reason why some say 2' fore and aft is best, but I don't know why. Maybe still narrowly within what Dolby states, but I'd have to do the math, otherwise my thinking says that is off. Could be a personal preference for the resulting performance, but I gotta tell you, I'm pretty happy with my setup that got reasonably close to Dolby's *perfect* placement. You can only do what your space will allow, of course! Are you intending a front /rear, or a front/middle?

Well my original goal was top front/top rear but thanks to the AC closet the top rears will have to go where the top middle speakers would have been if I had gone the other route. I'm still hoping to pull off a front/rear. Prior to my original goal I was going to just install two over the mlp however Dolby recommends at least four for Atmos. As noted in the drawings I can position the speakers back and forth from where they are marked between the ceiling trusses by about 6". This will allow enough room for the anchors/mounting dogs and possibly inexpensive baffles if needed later. So technically I can close the distance between the front and rear speakers in placement A or expand the distance in placement B by one foot. Or I can move all four speakers either forward or back by 6".

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post #9 of 20 Old 05-20-2020, 11:57 PM - Thread Starter
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So did a little more reading. I definitely want to do 7.1.4 as the speaker angles work better in my room. I'm going to use the Infinity Beta ES250's as the side surrounds(90 deg) in bi-pole mode as the seating positions are only about 2-3 feet away. The rear wall has 2 doors near each side so I don't think I can get enough separation between 2 rear surrounds. My solution is to use the 3rd Infinity Beta ES250 as 2 speakers by removing the bridge connector and wiring each side individually as L & R surround rears. Thoughts?

For the 4 Atmos speakers I am deciding between up-firing modules or height speakers at the top of the wall/ceiling junction. There seems to be camps for each type. My ceiling height is 7 1/2 feet and flat. I am leaning towards the height speakers as more tend to feel that is the better way and having the speakers up high at the ceiling avoids the rear door problem and looks better than modules mounted 1/2 way up the back wall. I saw some speakers that can be used as both height speakers(mounted at the ceiling with the speaker angled down towards the MLP) and up-firing modules(angled up and bouncing off the ceiling). The SVS Prime Elevation and the Dali Alteco C-1. Both are pricey $200 each and I can't even find the Dali's anywhere. I also saw that the Sony SS-CSE Atmos speakers can be used as both up-firing modules or height speakers at the ceiling. Are there any other speakers that can be used as both up-firing modules and height speakers? Preferably less expensive. My thinking is that the Atmos speakers don't get that much sound info so why spend a lot of $ for speakers that are mostly for filler sound. I don't want to get crap but $200 per speaker x 4 is a lot. I probably would like to keep it at $300-400 max for all 4 speakers.

Lastly, for a receiver I am thinking of either the Denon x3600 or x4500 when they go on sale or I can get one as a factory refurb. My main factor is the Audyssey XT32. And then add an inexpensive 2 ch amp.

Any thoughts, concerns or recommendations are greatly appreciated.

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post #10 of 20 Old 05-27-2020, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Jonas2 View Post
I'd go with A myself, B is just (in my opinion) placing the heights too close to each other. 4' of separation is not very much unless you're doing a top front, top middle kinda thing. If you are doing top front / top rear, I think they should be spaced out more in B. With A, you could move the fronts a little closer to MLP based off of what I'm seeing in the schematic.

I think mine are about 8' apart, front to back, and maybe about 7' left to right. (I'd space that dimension out a bit more, but it was slightly inboard of main, or way outboard thanks to joists, and then one would just be too close to a boundary, so I went with what I thought was the lesser of two evils.) I tried to get them as close to Dolby specs. as I could for top front / rears. Not perfect, but close, with what I find to be a very good result.

The Dolby guidelines are just that, but they are what they are for a reason. Don't sweat not being perfect. If you're in the ballpark, you should be good to go. But if you are in complete violation, the Dolby Police will be knocking on your door....

Seriously though, I'm sure there is a reason why some say 2' fore and aft is best, but I don't know why. Maybe still narrowly within what Dolby states, but I'd have to do the math, otherwise my thinking says that is off. Could be a personal preference for the resulting performance, but I gotta tell you, I'm pretty happy with my setup that got reasonably close to Dolby's *perfect* placement. You can only do what your space will allow, of course! Are you intending a front /rear, or a front/middle?

So I made some further adjustments with the in-ceiling speaker placements based closer to Dolby's guidelines and here is where I'm at. Most everything looks good however unfortunately the left rear speaker placement is quite a bit close to the rear wall then what I would prefer. 7.5" from center of speaker to rear wall to be exact. Even though the speaker can pivot 15° in any particular direction I'm concerned with it's 100° dispersion pattern I may end up with unwanted wall reflections. Also how critical is it to have the rear speakers inline with each other? In other words, if I moved the left rear speaker forward by 1' 4" and kept the right rear speaker where it is on the drawing would that pose a problem for Atmos or would that simply be corrected with Audyssey?
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post #11 of 20 Old 05-27-2020, 09:30 PM
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I could probably just build another broadband acoustic panel to hang on the door leading into the AC closet to help with any wall or in this case door reflections. 18"-24" seems to be a recommended distance.

Projector: EPSON Home Cinema 1060 | Screen: 100" Silver Ticket (fixed/white) | Receiver: DENON X3600h (5.2.4) | Receiver fan: AC Infinity Aircom T8 | Blu-ray: Panasonic DP-UB420 | Logitech Harmony Hub | Amazon Echo Dot 3rd Gen. | Center: Emotiva Airmotiv C2+ | Front L/R: JBL Studio 530 & Klipsch RP-600M | Surrounds: Klipsch R-51M | Atmos: N/A | Sub: SVS PB-2000 Pro (dual) | Other: ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 & Polk Audio S20
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post #12 of 20 Old 05-28-2020, 07:50 AM
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So I made some further adjustments with the in-ceiling speaker placements based closer to Dolby's guidelines and here is where I'm at. Most everything looks good however unfortunately the left rear speaker placement is quite a bit close to the rear wall then what I would prefer. 7.5" from center of speaker to rear wall to be exact. Even though the speaker can pivot 15° in any particular direction I'm concerned with it's 100° dispersion pattern I may end up with unwanted wall reflections. Also how critical is it to have the rear speakers inline with each other? In other words, if I moved the left rear speaker forward by 1' 4" and kept the right rear speaker where it is on the drawing would that pose a problem for Atmos or would that simply be corrected with Audyssey?
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I could probably just build another broadband acoustic panel to hang on the door leading into the AC closet to help with any wall or in this case door reflections. 18"-24" seems to be a recommended distance.
Well, that's a good question - what's more important, the geometry/symmetry, or boundary proximity for optimum Atmos performance? This is just my sense and opinion - so take it as such - but I'm going with symmetry as being more important. I'm basing that on the intent of Atmos to position sounds in space relative to the other speakers in the assumed recommended positions, including of course the other Atmos speakers. Now, is 1' 4" a make or break? I simply don't know! I do not think Audyssey or any room correction system for that matter can fix that. However, it will help to some degree with the speaker's response which will be influenced by proximity to a boundary. I could be wrong on this too, but room EQ can set distances to a microphone, levels, and tweak responses, but it won't correct for a speaker's position relative to other speakers, since it doesn't know where speakers are. And you've already mentioned your other tools of assist - aimability and wall treatments.

Very interested to hear others' opinions on this too. But I'm going with geometry/symmetry for now. And if you're anything like me, lack of symmetry can be distracting visually too....
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post #13 of 20 Old 05-28-2020, 08:43 AM
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I agree, having the speakers in symmetry would be nice. Wish I could say the same thing for my ceiling. Now if it were just me I would have move all four speakers up by 1' as my preferred viewing distance from my 100" screen is around 9'. Unfortunately, I have a family member who needs to sit back at least 10'6" from the screen to feel comfortable. Actually they prefer more like 14' from the screen. For a small space with an AC closet it really makes things a bit challenging. When the house was originally built they only gave me two options for where they could place the AC. One option was to move it to an adjacent bedroom closet which would render it useless. The other option is where it is now. When the AC finally quits on me I'm going to have the replacement unit moved into the attic space and then remove the AC closet so I can regain that corner finally. I also have the option to bump out the entire front wall by two feet with additional space above 3' from the floor to even go another two more feet if I decide to place the speakers behind the screen. This should have all been done by the builder however the home was not a custom build so I was limited by how the architect originally designed the space. With these two home remodels I will have enough space for two rows of seating allowing everyone to be happy.

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post #14 of 20 Old 05-29-2020, 01:00 PM
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Well, that's a good question - what's more important, the geometry/symmetry, or boundary proximity for optimum Atmos performance?
So I managed to locate a Klipsch authorized dealer who will sell me the CDT-5650-C II 55% off msrp. So I'm very close to pulling the trigger. The only thing holding me back again is whether to stick with the 5650 or pay another $25 each and get the 5800. I spent over a couple of months looking into the matter and it seems to me 8" is more popular than 6.5" when it came to in-ceiling speakers in general. Of course some of the reasoning there maybe due to the absence of a good pair of subwoofers to handle the low end. I've noticed the 8" Micca & Polk speakers seem to be the biggest sellers across the board. Likely due to their price points. With that said, they also offer 6.5" for even less however their 8" models keep making the top of the lists.

So I decided to contact Klipsch technical support and spoke with two different techs. The first tech informed me due to the small space I'll be placing these in along with the support of two dual 12" SVS subs at a crossover at 80 Hz the difference in sound between the 5650 and the 5800 would be "identical". He recommended the 5650. So thinking to myself, that's awesome, so the 6.5" will do nicely then........wait, not so fast. So I called them again regarding another matter and spoke with another tech. He sounded more informative about their products compared to the other tech and was more enthusiastic. He informed me even with dual subs the sound difference between the 5650 and 5800 is quite noticeable. Even at a crossover of 80 to 100Hz there will still be some mid and upper bass present on up to around 300Hz depending on the Atmos movie the 5650 will not be able to recreate regardless of room size. If they are too loud he suggested just dialing them back in the AVR. He recommended the 5800. Perhaps I should call again and speak to a third tech to see which model gets the two out of three votes. lol

I also read two testimonies here on the AVS forums where the posters were comparing the RSL C34E and the Micca M-8C during a listening session. Both of them ended up going with the Micca's primarily due to the difference in sound production even though the RSL's are of higher quality. Now the RSL's do require a larger hole in the ceiling and retail for $125 each so that may have had some influence in their decision as well. Of course comparing dual lateral 4.25" drivers to a high excursion 8" driver may not be a fair fight in this particular case.



Other comments I've come across online "based on my notes in my own words".... (could be nonsense or personal preference) Myth , plausible, or fact?

- Due to the open design of in-ceiling speakers a 6.5" will not perform as well in the lower frequencies as compared to a 6.5" cabinet speaker. By going with 8" it will help make up for the difference.

- 8" ceiling speakers are more dynamic than 6.5".

- 8" ceiling speakers may have too much presence or bass output in a smaller room so go with at least one pair of 8" for the front and 6.5" for the rear or vice versa in a .4 in-ceiling speaker Atmos setup.

- The three primary reasons to go with 6.5" over 8" is smaller hole size (aesthetics/WAF), limited space between ceiling joists and budget.

- Since Atmos is very capable of moving sound around the room like an object an 8" or 10" ceiling speaker will help better triangulate whether a deep sounding effect such as an aerial explosion, thunder in the clouds, aircraft flying over or a spaceship hovering overhead is either above you vs elsewhere around the room.



Anyhow, it sounds like I'm trying to convince myself to go with the 8" but I still think 6.5" will be just fine. I recall reading one of your posts regarding your choice to go with 8" Definitive Technology DI8R speakers and how you felt about it. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe you had hinted within that particular post of being a bit dissatisfied with going that large. If true, why?

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post #15 of 20 Old 05-29-2020, 03:21 PM
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So did a little more reading. I definitely want to do 7.1.4 as the speaker angles work better in my room. I'm going to use the Infinity Beta ES250's as the side surrounds(90 deg) in bi-pole mode as the seating positions are only about 2-3 feet away. The rear wall has 2 doors near each side so I don't think I can get enough separation between 2 rear surrounds. My solution is to use the 3rd Infinity Beta ES250 as 2 speakers by removing the bridge connector and wiring each side individually as L & R surround rears. Thoughts?

For the 4 Atmos speakers I am deciding between up-firing modules or height speakers at the top of the wall/ceiling junction. There seems to be camps for each type. My ceiling height is 7 1/2 feet and flat. I am leaning towards the height speakers as more tend to feel that is the better way and having the speakers up high at the ceiling avoids the rear door problem and looks better than modules mounted 1/2 way up the back wall. I saw some speakers that can be used as both height speakers(mounted at the ceiling with the speaker angled down towards the MLP) and up-firing modules(angled up and bouncing off the ceiling). The SVS Prime Elevation and the Dali Alteco C-1. Both are pricey $200 each and I can't even find the Dali's anywhere. I also saw that the Sony SS-CSE Atmos speakers can be used as both up-firing modules or height speakers at the ceiling. Are there any other speakers that can be used as both up-firing modules and height speakers? Preferably less expensive. My thinking is that the Atmos speakers don't get that much sound info so why spend a lot of $ for speakers that are mostly for filler sound. I don't want to get crap but $200 per speaker x 4 is a lot. I probably would like to keep it at $300-400 max for all 4 speakers.

Lastly, for a receiver I am thinking of either the Denon x3600 or x4500 when they go on sale or I can get one as a factory refurb. My main factor is the Audyssey XT32. And then add an inexpensive 2 ch amp.

Any thoughts, concerns or recommendations are greatly appreciated.
From what I've gathered height or in-ceiling speakers is the way to go. Up firing speakers are the bare minimum for Atmos so if it were me I would definitely go with height speakers.

For the AVR I currently have the Denon X3600H and I'm very happy with it so far. In my case one of the main reasons I went with this model as you also brought up was the option to expand from 5.2.4 to a 7.2.4 without paying hundreds of dollars more. For under $100 for a two channel external amp and another pair of speakers for around $200 or less I'm good to go. Also, when I purchased the X3600H I got it on sale for $899.00 from Crutchfield which made the choice even sweeter. The savings quite literally covers both the two channel amp and a pair of inexpensive rear surround speakers. To me it was a no brainer.

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post #16 of 20 Old 05-29-2020, 07:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
From what I've gathered height or in-ceiling speakers is the way to go. Up firing speakers are the bare minimum for Atmos so if it were me I would definitely go with height speakers.

For the AVR I currently have the Denon X3600H and I'm very happy with it so far. In my case one of the main reasons I went with this model as you also brought up was the option to expand from 5.2.4 to a 7.2.4 without paying hundreds of dollars more. For under $100 for a two channel external amp and another pair of speakers for around $200 or less I'm good to go. Also, when I purchased the X3600H I got it on sale for $899.00 from Crutchfield which made the choice even sweeter. The savings quite literally covers both the two channel amp and a pair of inexpensive rear surround speakers. To me it was a no brainer.
Definitely doing the height speakers for Atmos. Got 4 Sony SS-CSE's. Trying to decide between the X3600 and X4500. The X3600 can upmix non-Atmos 5.1 or 7.1 into 5.1.4 and 7.1.4 right? I believe a software update now only allows it to use Dolby upmixer for Dolby content whereas the X4500 can use both Dolby and DTS/Neuro upmixers for Dolby content. I definitely will need to wait for a sale or factory refurb for either. What 2 ch amp did you get?
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post #17 of 20 Old 05-30-2020, 09:52 AM
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Definitely doing the height speakers for Atmos. Got 4 Sony SS-CSE's. Trying to decide between the X3600 and X4500. The X3600 can upmix non-Atmos 5.1 or 7.1 into 5.1.4 and 7.1.4 right? I believe a software update now only allows it to use Dolby upmixer for Dolby content whereas the X4500 can use both Dolby and DTS/Neuro upmixers for Dolby content. I definitely will need to wait for a sale or factory refurb for either. What 2 ch amp did you get?

For upmixing I believe so. From what I understand Dolby withdrew the upmixing restrictions last year. I attached the specs on the X3600h below. If you go refurb many here recommend Accesseries4Less. I'm not sure when Denon will have another big sale. The last one was back in March I believe. They may have a summer sale but who knows. I haven't purchased the 2 ch amp yet. I may go with either OSD Audio or AudioSource. Just need something simple to power the rear surrounds or atmos.
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post #18 of 20 Old 05-30-2020, 10:20 AM
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I spent over a couple of months looking into the matter and it seems to me 8" is more popular than 6.5" when it came to in-ceiling speakers in general. Of course some of the reasoning there maybe due to the absence of a good pair of subwoofers to handle the low end. I've noticed the 8" Micca & Polk speakers seem to be the biggest sellers across the board. Likely due to their price points. With that said, they also offer 6.5" for even less however their 8" models keep making the top of the lists.
Part of that could be perception - bigger is better - and in reality, that might be the case, might not be the case. I think it somewhat depends on a listener's preferences too. And for just a *bit* more money, this even compels further the desire to acquire them. $25.00 more per speaker? Not bad, so why not, right? Tempting....!

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So I decided to contact Klipsch technical support and spoke with two different techs. The first tech informed me due to the small space I'll be placing these in along with the support of two dual 12" SVS subs at a crossover at 80 Hz the difference in sound between the 5650 and the 5800 would be "identical". He recommended the 5650. So thinking to myself, that's awesome, so the 6.5" will do nicely then........wait, not so fast. So I called them again regarding another matter and spoke with another tech. He sounded more informative about their products compared to the other tech and was more enthusiastic. He informed me even with dual subs the sound difference between the 5650 and 5800 is quite noticeable. Even at a crossover of 80 to 100Hz there will still be some mid and upper bass present on up to around 300Hz depending on the Atmos movie the 5650 will not be able to recreate regardless of room size. If they are too loud he suggested just dialing them back in the AVR. He recommended the 5800. Perhaps I should call again and speak to a third tech to see which model gets the two out of three votes. lol
Interesting strategy! As long as you don't get one of the same techs. twice, ha ha... Of course this totally depends on a speaker's design, but I'd like to at least think that the smaller driver could potentially be capable of better mid-range clarity. Maybe not. Don't know about that, from the crossover up to 300Hz that the 5650 is incapable, but Klipsch knows their speakers certainly better than I do. Don't know why the larger speaker would be too loud though? Doesn't make sense to me. Personal opinion, you'd be O.K. with either one. I'd maybe pose this in the Klipsch owner's thread (gotta be one here....). Gte the opinions and experiences of those that hopefully have ownership experiences with these models...

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I also read two testimonies here on the AVS forums where the posters were comparing the RSL C34E and the Micca M-8C during a listening session. Both of them ended up going with the Micca's primarily due to the difference in sound production even though the RSL's are of higher quality. Now the RSL's do require a larger hole in the ceiling and retail for $125 each so that may have had some influence in their decision as well. Of course comparing dual lateral 4.25" drivers to a high excursion 8" driver may not be a fair fight in this particular case.
No need to play fair! Given the speakers are serving a single function, they need to perform that function to the liking of the owner. Again, listening preferences, will play into this. Like when I compared the well-regarded Revel speaker to the Deftech - in the limited capacity to do so - I just preferred the performance of the DT over the Revel, in my system. I'd imagine the vast majority of folks would find the Revel a generally superior speaker, but I just did not. Not apples to apples of course, as it was a 6.5" Revel vs. an 8" DefTec, but I found the DefTec to perform more to my liking in the higher frequencies, and with voices, plus the blending with my mains, just seemed to be more of the winning combo.

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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
Other comments I've come across online "based on my notes in my own words".... (could be nonsense or personal preference) Myth , plausible, or fact?

- Due to the open design of in-ceiling speakers a 6.5" will not perform as well in the lower frequencies as compared to a 6.5" cabinet speaker. By going with 8" it will help make up for the difference.
Hmmm....as a general comment? I could see that in the case of the first sentence, don't know that I'd necessarily agree with the second sentence. Maybe in a same line comparison? Like in your Klipsch case? I'm still gonna say it boils down to the overall speaker design.

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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
- 8" ceiling speakers are more dynamic than 6.5".
Possibly in the Klipsch case, but will it matter for this purpose? Dunno....

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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
- 8" ceiling speakers may have too much presence or bass output in a smaller room so go with at least one pair of 8" for the front and 6.5" for the rear or vice versa in a .4 in-ceiling speaker Atmos setup.
Poppycock in my opinion. Keep the speakers the same, because it is easy to do. Atmos speakers are often panning sounds from one speaker to the next, and I want to keep that as uniform as possible. You've got the Klipsch guy telling you there is a very noticeable difference between the 6.5" and the 8" - if that's true, that noticeable difference might not manifest in a good way. If an 8" might be too much for a small room, then why would I want any in there? Why wouldn't I just keep all 4 of them at 6.5"? Maybe under certain, specific room conditions you might consider it, but generally speaking, I don't think I'd but that one.

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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
- The three primary reasons to go with 6.5" over 8" is smaller hole size (aesthetics/WAF), limited space between ceiling joists and budget.
All legit. But I'm going to throw in there again, the potential for better mid-range performance. Depends on the speaker too - my 8" DT actually required a smaller hole than the 6.5" Revel! It's also a shallower speaker. Go figure.

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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
- Since Atmos is very capable of moving sound around the room like an object an 8" or 10" ceiling speaker will help better triangulate whether a deep sounding effect such as an aerial explosion, thunder in the clouds, aircraft flying over or a spaceship hovering overhead is either above you vs elsewhere around the room.
Dunno.

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Originally Posted by BeeAVision View Post
Anyhow, it sounds like I'm trying to convince myself to go with the 8" but I still think 6.5" will be just fine. I recall reading one of your posts regarding your choice to go with 8" Definitive Technology DI8R speakers and how you felt about it. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe you had hinted within that particular post of being a bit dissatisfied with going that large. If true, why?
I agree, I think either would be fine. Oh, now you're asking me to actually try and remember something I wrote? The only thing that I could think of as any kind of regret, I'd imagine would revolve around that wondering if the 6.5" would have been better for the mid-range? Other than that, I can't recall. I think they have been pretty good in both their Atmos duty, and music upmixing duty. 13' x 16' space, crossed over at 80Hz, and there is in no way a sense of too much presence. They perform in line with what the system is supposed to be doing, at least to my expectations.

I do know however that I've expressed some regret about not being able to try the RSLs, as I very much wanted to, but their cutout was a non-starter. Compared to the DefTec, it's like the Grand Canyon vs. the local creek. Well, O.k., not that bad, but it was too significant and would have forced really poor placement due to the joists and my quest for getting things as close to Dolby spec. as I could.

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post #19 of 20 Old 05-30-2020, 10:58 AM
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One other thing to think about before making a decision - the dispersion characteristics of the various speakers.
You seem to be looking at down-firing, as opposed to angled, speakers. Nothing wrong with that.
You just have to be aware that if a seat isn't within the speaker's "cone", then that seat will not hear very much from that speaker. I have read that SOME larger drivers tend to have a narrower dispersion than smaller drivers. IIRC, this is why Andrew Jones demoed the original Elac Debut B5 instead of the B6.
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post #20 of 20 Old 05-30-2020, 01:53 PM
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And for just a *bit* more money, this even compels further the desire to acquire them. $25.00 more per speaker? Not bad, so why not, right? Tempting....!
Yeah, price is part of why I'm bringing this old argument up again. Its pure madness!!!!


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Of course this totally depends on a speaker's design, but I'd like to at least think that the smaller driver could potentially be capable of better mid-range clarity. Maybe not. Don't know about that, from the crossover up to 300Hz that the 5650 is incapable, but Klipsch knows their speakers certainly better than I do. Don't know why the larger speaker would be too loud though? Doesn't make sense to me. Personal opinion, you'd be O.K. with either one. I'd maybe pose this in the Klipsch owner's thread (gotta be one here....). Gte the opinions and experiences of those that hopefully have ownership experiences with these models...

I feel the same way. If I go larger I may gain more presence in bass but perhaps at the expense of losing some mid range detail since its only a 2 way speaker. The only reason for the comment regarding loudness was based on my earlier concerns that an 8" speaker may sound louder or more present in my room compared to my 6.5" LCR speakers. I guess it's not really a big deal according to Klipsch. I did comment in the Klipsch thread but only had a couple of replies. There is a lot of push for the RSL's and Miccas here on this forum. When looking at member's signatures throughout the Klipsch thread I could only find a handful of owners listing either the 5650 or the 5800 while the rest were primarily using 8" Micca's or Klipsch's height speakers. Of course I can't speak for those without signatures. The problem here is since the Klipsch in-ceilling speakers are so darn expensive to begin with that might explain the lack of customer reviews. With that said, apparently they are selling fast according to sites like Amazon and Crtuchfield but for some odd reason no one is saying much. The other thought is when it comes to Atmos many seem to feel any in-ceiling speaker over $100 each starts to cross over into the law of diminishing returns. I guess when someone finds themselves spending around the same or more on ceiling speakers than the cost of their LCR and side/rear surrounds combined they should probably start questioning their reasoning. lol


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Originally Posted by Jonas2 View Post
No need to play fair! Given the speakers are serving a single function, they need to perform that function to the liking of the owner. Again, listening preferences, will play into this. Like when I compared the well-regarded Revel speaker to the Deftech - in the limited capacity to do so - I just preferred the performance of the DT over the Revel, in my system. I'd imagine the vast majority of folks would find the Revel a generally superior speaker, but I just did not. Not apples to apples of course, as it was a 6.5" Revel vs. an 8" DefTec, but I found the DefTec to perform more to my liking in the higher frequencies, and with voices, plus the blending with my mains, just seemed to be more of the winning combo.

I wish I had the option to try them both side by side so I could judge for myself. The dealer offering the discount accepts returns but only if they are unopened. If they are open box there is a 25% restocking fee. If they're installed no returns unless they are defective. Now Crutchfield has both in stock with a better return policy however I'll end up paying msrp.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonas2 View Post
Hmmm....as a general comment? I could see that in the case of the first sentence, don't know that I'd necessarily agree with the second sentence. Maybe in a same line comparison? Like in your Klipsch case? I'm still gonna say it boils down to the overall speaker design.
Possibly in the Klipsch case, but will it matter for this purpose? Dunno....
Poppycock in my opinion. Keep the speakers the same, because it is easy to do. Atmos speakers are often panning sounds from one speaker to the next, and I want to keep that as uniform as possible. You've got the Klipsch guy telling you there is a very noticeable difference between the 6.5" and the 8" - if that's true, that noticeable difference might not manifest in a good way. If an 8" might be too much for a small room, then why would I want any in there? Why wouldn't I just keep all 4 of them at 6.5"? Maybe under certain, specific room conditions you might consider it, but generally speaking, I don't think I'd but that one.
All legit. But I'm going to throw in there again, the potential for better mid-range performance. Depends on the speaker too - my 8" DT actually required a smaller hole than the 6.5" Revel! It's also a shallower speaker. Go figure.
Dunno.

Some of the earlier information I presented is likely hearsay. It can be hard sometimes to decipher fact from opinion when researching speakers especially when new to the hobby or profession. All one can do is report it and see what others have to say on the matter. A couple of these did not sit well with me either but was curious.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonas2 View Post
I agree, I think either would be fine. Oh, now you're asking me to actually try and remember something I wrote? The only thing that I could think of as any kind of regret, I'd imagine would revolve around that wondering if the 6.5" would have been better for the mid-range? Other than that, I can't recall. I think they have been pretty good in both their Atmos duty, and music upmixing duty. 13' x 16' space, crossed over at 80Hz, and there is in no way a sense of too much presence. They perform in line with what the system is supposed to be doing, at least to my expectations.
I do know however that I've expressed some regret about not being able to try the RSLs, as I very much wanted to, but their cutout was a non-starter. Compared to the DefTec, it's like the Grand Canyon vs. the local creek. Well, O.k., not that bad, but it was too significant and would have forced really poor placement due to the joists and my quest for getting things as close to Dolby spec. as I could.

Thanks for sharing. Yeah, I do agree what kills the RSL's for me is definitely the larger hole size.







Quote:
Originally Posted by sigpig View Post
One other thing to think about before making a decision - the dispersion characteristics of the various speakers.
You seem to be looking at down-firing, as opposed to angled, speakers. Nothing wrong with that.You just have to be aware that if a seat isn't within the speaker's "cone", then that seat will not hear very much from that speaker. I have read that SOME larger drivers tend to have a narrower dispersion than smaller drivers. IIRC, this is why Andrew Jones demoed the original Elac Debut B5 instead of the B6.

Already looked into that however thanks for letting me know. The Klipsch 5650 and 5800 have a 100° dispersion with a 15° pivoting tweeter and driver with 360° rotation.
sigpig and Jonas2 like this.

Projector: EPSON Home Cinema 1060 | Screen: 100" Silver Ticket (fixed/white) | Receiver: DENON X3600h (5.2.4) | Receiver fan: AC Infinity Aircom T8 | Blu-ray: Panasonic DP-UB420 | Logitech Harmony Hub | Amazon Echo Dot 3rd Gen. | Center: Emotiva Airmotiv C2+ | Front L/R: JBL Studio 530 & Klipsch RP-600M | Surrounds: Klipsch R-51M | Atmos: N/A | Sub: SVS PB-2000 Pro (dual) | Other: ELAC Debut 2.0 B6.2 & Polk Audio S20

Last edited by BeeAVision; 05-30-2020 at 02:01 PM.
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