Originally Posted by rrahman
Hey Guys, I need advice.
I am building an atmos 5.2.4 home theater onto my existing 2 channel system and struggling to pick out my rear/ceiling speakers. I've considered a lot of different brands, but Monitor Audio's are my top choice. My front end are Magnepan 3.7i and Magnepan CCR. Subs will be (2) Rythmik F25s. Everything will be powered my Parasound Halo Amps (A51, A21, (2) JC1s). I attached a diagram of my room, X is the center of the sweet spot.
I can luckily afford a couple different options, which do you think is best and why.
Option 1) (2) Monitor Audio Gold FX in monopole operation on the R/L of the seating position, 6' and 9' feet away from sweet spot respectively. For the in-ceilings (4) CP-CT380. I am leaning a bit towards this option because of the ribbon tweeters. I don't like how both speakers are different distances apart.
Option 2) (2) Monitor Audio Gold FX in dipole operation behind the seating position flanking the window, equidistant ~6' away from sweet spot. For the in-ceilings (4) CP-CT380. I love this configuration but am not sold on dipole operation and also this does not make use of the ribbon tweeter.
Option 3) (2) Monitor Audio Silver FX in bipole operation behind the seating position flanking the window, equidistant ~6' away from sweet spot. For the in-ceilings (4) CP-CT380IDC. I like this option, but it seems like the ceiling speakers are out performing the rear surrounds.
Option 4) (4) Monitor Audio Silver FX in a 7.2.4 configuration, with two behind the seating position flanking the window, equidistant ~6' away from sweet spot and two on the R/L of the seating position, 6' and 9' feet away respectively . For the in-ceilings (4) CP-CT380. I like this option too, but might be too costly with extra install and amp costs.
Option 5) (2) Monitor Audio Gold 100 in the back R/L of the seating position, 7' feet away on speaker stands. For the in-ceilings (4) CP-CT380. I suspect this would sound the best, but my gf opposes the use of stands on the back.
I'm surprised that none of the forum usuals have chimed in on this, but I'll give my tuppeny worth...
I would avoid the FX speakers these days - I have the GSFX in my 7.1 setup as the side surrounds and the original purpose of the dipole was to create a diffused non localised source (Plus I switch them using triggers to monopole for 5.1 musical audio where diffused sound is not intended). I've had them over ten years and at the time I bought them, they were more in vogue. They can still be useful in a confined environment if you have to sit too close to a speaker when it would be difficult to NOT hear every sound clearly coming from a direct radiator, which can be distracting.
However, modern audio mixing is much better, and in particular, you mention you are specifically setting up an Object Based Audio (DTS-X, Atmos etc) setup where the sound is specifically directed to be localised to one or more speakers for more "precise" as-intended audio placement. I don't think you want to obscure the object placement with out of phase speakers like Dipole, or even with bipole speakers. Direct radiating single point of source speaker cabinets will be better. The FX can be set to monopole of course, but then you are spending a lot of money to have redundant drivers.
Also, note that FX speakers by MA are Dipole or monopole only, no bipole option exists.
I find the debate over 7.2.4 and 5.2.4 difficult to choose, in your options, mainly because of the FX in the 7.2.4.
I would also throw in 7.2.2 as an option if the extra amplifier channels is an issue. I don't have any experience of ceiling or Atmos speakers to know how 2 or 4 would work, but there is so much more audio optimised for 7 surround channels (Including the audio coded into Atmos presentations) that having both rear and side surrounds makes a lot of sense. I originally had a 5.1 (with those GSFX side surrounds) and added in two GS10 for the two rear surrounds which made a big difference for sound coming from behind me. I have a feeling that being able to localise sound in a 360 degree circle around you may be more important than localising sound coming from above you with four rather than two speakers in the ceiling but maybe Atmos people can help there.