Originally Posted by Nalleh
No need to "downgrade" as such, you can have a 7.1.4 setup with rear surrounds, and they will work in Atmos and DTS:X. When you switch to Auro, the rear surrounds go silent, but no need to reconfigure or recalibrate. Rear surrounds are there, connected and everything, they are just not used in Auro, just as VOG are not used in Atmos or DTS.
That is true, but I always figured that the speaker placement would be different with the surround channel depending which layout is used. For example, with 5.1 you'd be better off having speakers in the corners of a square shaped room (or two quadraphonic layers + center with auro) and when utilizing 7.1 you would get more out of the system if you had the surround speakers more towards your sides. When I think about it that way, it actually makes sense forgoing the back surround(s) altogether because you would need a height center channel to balance them out for the sake of 3D.
I don't think I'm going to complicate it too much though, I'll get the paid upgrade when I have everything put together except for the VOG speaker. Then depending on how Auro-3D performs with music using 9.2, it I'll decide if that top layer is worth pursuing or if the surround backs need upgrading, choosing which floor speaker layout suits my taste the most and try to perfect the speaker placement for it.
It is a shame that the Marantz 7011 dropped 2 pre-outs from the 7010 and has to use one of the subwoofer channels for the top speaker though, no idea how audyssey handles subwoofer management when you throw two at it with a Y splitter. I only have room for 5.2 at the moment but I'm purchasing 6 more speakers simultaneously while moving to a bigger place, where I can decorate everything with the audio setup in mind so I don't have to build an audio setup on top of a already decorated room. I have a strong feeling that the surround speakers will end up in a different spot if I end up utilizing the back surrounds, that's why the Auro-3D feels like a sacrifice or compromise, but not necessarily a "downgrade" though. To my understanding it's the most demanding format when it comes to speaker placement and my current room height is only 2.5 meters so doesn't really feel like there is enought room to create a top layer that blends with others.
Oh damn, I was writing a really long post but due to a misclick lost a good portion of very some interesting ideas about auro-3D speaker implementation (official recommendation is all speakers down to 20hz, does anyone use elevated subwoofers crossed with the height channels using miniDSP products for example? I mean there has to be a reason for basically recommending having subwoofers in your ceiling) so I guess I have to write it up again after I get to do some actual testing. 2 ported 12" subwoofers for LFE channels will hopefully be enough, which would leave me with 2 sealed 10" ones to experiment with. Stereo subwoofers for front channel, or elevated two mono subwoofers extending the frequency for both front and back height channels
Won't know until you try so I think the question I meant to ask was more akin to "does anyone miss the rear surrounds when using 10.1 Auro-3D?".