I just moved into a new apartment and I'm planning out a surround setup, based mostly on what I already have but with a few modifications. I previously had a 5.1.2 setup, which was sort of bastardized by way of wall-mounted overhead speakers (one-year lease and drywall!).
The hardware I'll be working with includes a STR-ZA5000ES, VPL-VW285ES/VW385ES (not yet bought), motorized 110" 1.1 gain screen, Klipsch for ear-level speakers (RP-280F for FR/FL, RP-450C, RP-150M for SL/SR/RL/RR, R-112SW), and Definitive Technologies ProMonitor 800s for TFL/TFR/TRL/TRR (downfiring on ceiling-mounted brackets).
I'm planning to set all of this up in my living room (see attached floorplan, not to scale). The dotted orange line is ~16 ft. The ceiling (10.5 ft) is concrete, but there's a 17" drywall drop that comes 53" out from the wall with the center channel. I'm thinking of mounting the screen on the edge of the drywall bit (solid blue line); the distance from it to the main listening position is ~10 ft. The two circles on the lower edge of windows are load-bearing concrete supports. The center will be on a media cabinet with height of 22" and SL/SR/RL/RR on 24" speaker stands. The placement of TRL/TRR is probably going to be a hair shallow, as it's ~76" from the ceiling to the MLP, with MLP being only 70" from the wall behind (it's an apartment with a lot of windows, I'm not expecting total perfection here!).
I'm open to any guidance or constructive criticism, but here are a few ideas/concerns/questions:
- In my last apartment, I had an ongoing situation with my upstairs neighbor and noise complaints; the floor/ceiling was so poorly sound-insulated that I could actually hear their dishwasher running. The floor separators here are concrete and this is a corner unit, so I have just one adjoining neighbor, behind the wall with the center speaker. The walls here seem to be pretty sound, though I've already managed to misalign artwork with a demo using four speakers, so if there's something I can do acoustically to still listen at reference volume and mitigate any potential run-ins, that'd be ideal. My subwoofer placement is based on it being front-firing and trying to take advantage of the concrete pillar behind, but I'm not an audio engineer, so I don't know how to best optimize it.
- The current 10 ft. distance of the MLP is a trade-off of the space dimensions and ideal viewing distance (going off of ~12 ft. for 1080 and ~8 ft. for 4K with 110"). However, I could extend the drop and ceiling-mount the screen on a track that allows me to slide it 3-4 feet (dotted blue line). I'd originally been concerned about blocking sound from FL/FR, as my screen is not acoustically-transparent, but there should be ~12" of buffer between the bottom of the screen and top of the front floorstanding speakers. Still, would this be overkill versus an intermediate viewing distance? (For reference, I was previously ~15 ft. from the same 110" screen with a 1080 projector and had no complaints, but always looking to improve, and would like to fully experience 4K to justify the upgrade.)
- I'm planning to make this a multipurpose space and add a desk, likely between SW and SL (or alternatively between RL/RR, but that could be snug). I'm all-ears on any strategies to optimize that area as a secondary listening position for mono/stereo music, so long as it doesn't affect the integrity of the MLP.
- As all of the overhead speakers are on highly-adjustable ball mounts, should they fire directly downwards or angle slightly towards the MLP?
- As my STR-ZA5000ES is only a 9.2-channel amp, I'm going to need an amplifier for FL/FR. I'm more cinephile than audiophile, so could use suggestions on what might play nicely with the Klipsch horns.