Originally Posted by dSly
Thanks to all contributors.
As far as my system setup/calibration is concerned, I am sure it is not optimal. I don't have anything fancy, I just use the Pioneer mic and receiver process. Are the speakers exactly where they were when I did the last calibration? Probably not. (and yes my player is in bitstream mode and the receiver shows proper 5.1 decoding)
Keep bumping up the rear surround channel levels until you are happy. I would add 3Db to start.
In my room I can stand next to my surrounds and have been next to them a lot.......it is in a walkway area for one side on the way to the bathroom, so it gets passed by all the time. It has content and is active all the time.
The idea is to create a soundfield all around you, like creating a stereo soundfield, so placement and calibration is the key.
Even if you just use the channel level tone and a phone DB meter app to calibrate all the channels for reference you should see a improvement in the soundfield.
Also , everyones ears are shaped and hear differently, calibrated is only a starting point...........just bump up the rear channels a few db at a time to get a idea.
What exactly is happeni9ng I can not say, but I can say if you stand next to a surround you will see it is active all the time, even if it is just ambient sounds, which if set up right should give the soundfield effect of being wherever the scene is.
When the movie shows a huge empty hall or large auditorium , that's what it sounds like in my room.....plus whatever explosions or bullets that come from a surround location.
Most issues are a set up issue..........if you simply do not like surround, that's fine too, but it sounds like you want to like it, but are not impressed with the performance right now of your system.
The above links and video will get the basics out of the way........