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Discussion Starter #1
New here to the forum so hope this is in the right place. I am having a hard time to really find good ratings and comparisons of speakers for a home theater.

However, we are in the process of building a house and have the ability to add a theater room. It will be a 16x16 room where seating will likely be pushed to the back so kids can sit up front. Since we are pushing where the wife and I will sit I think that rules out a 7.x system.

So to the question what are some good speaker brands and what should I avoid. I was leaning to Klipsch however the one AV person that got back to me quoted Truaudio. I am not completely sold on having to use in wall speakers but might perfer them if I go Atmos with something like a 5.2.4 system.

Primary purpose for the system would be Movie watching. However, the wife and kid like to listen to music before or after a movie for as the kid puts it a dance party. I also like to play Xbox on the projector when I am afforded the time.

I have attached a picture of the layout. Also, the back of the room will beable to have what I call a service/pass through window open up to allow for extra seating for things like Super Bowl parties or if extra guests are over (or I imagine as the daughter gets older I will sent back there drinking watching some random RomCom that teenagers watch...). It will not be the 14ft that is on the drawing. We are still working out some details with the architect.

Thanks for the help in advance.
Screenshot_20201013-143801_Adobe Acrobat.jpg
 

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1) I need help with picking out an HT or stereo setup. What kind of information should I provide?

When creating a new thread in the Speaker forum for help with recommendations for an audio setup, be sure to include

1) Your budget.
2) Your listening interests: movies/gaming/music--and whether or not any of those are your primary concern.
3) Your existing audio equipment (make/models) if any. Include comments about what you hope to improve upon.
4) The size of your room. Please also mention if there are adjacent open areas and how big they are (important for subwoofer choice).
5) Any placement restrictions.
6) Any aesthetic or size concerns.
7) Any equipment you are already considering (or would not consider).
8) Any particular audio sonic signatures you know you prefer (e.g., you are a basshead, you have a preference for bright treble, etc.)

If you are seeking help with configuring or troubleshooting an existing setup, be sure to give the make/model for your entire setup and try to describe the problem with good detail.

Once you have given good, detailed information for what you need help with, provide a title for your post that helps people to understand what you are looking for.

Stay WELL away from Truaudio - they are a contractor/installer-grade product that "normal" people can't buy. This allows for 500% markups (joking, but not too much) for speakers that are barely adequate.

You could easily do a 5.1.4 setup with Klipsch fronts, surrounds, and in-ceiling Atmos speakers with a pair of high-output 12" subs from Hsu Research, Rythmik Audio, or SVS Sound. (probably in that order, too).
Your Atmos channels do NOT have to match your mains, the RSP C34E: C34E Ceiling Speaker - RSL Speakers are quite capable and have an angled baffle so you can aim them at your ears.
If you are going to use an AT (Acoustically Transparent) screen, you can use three identical speakers across the LCR, giving you the best audio possible. Since it seems like there will be a decent amount of gaming, then having matched surround speakers is more apparent than at first glance. If using towers up front, then the same-series bookshelfs should be used for surrounds AT A MINIMUM. Many gamers insist on identical speakers all around, but that is not possible all the time.
 
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If the seats are up against the back wall you cannot do 4 overhead speakers. Or at least do them properly per Dolby specs. The AV person just wants to sell you what they install. In wall speakers are rarely the best way to go and will cost more for the same quality as free standing speakers.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
If the seats are up against the back wall you cannot do 4 overhead speakers. Or at least do them properly per Dolby specs. The AV person just wants to sell you what they install. In wall speakers are rarely the best way to go and will cost more for the same quality as free standing speakers.
I see that now in the dolby picture... guess I get to save some money on 2 speakers.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
16 x 16 is a square room, horrible for audio. It does look like the actual wall boundaries are 17' 2" x 16' 4". Hope that's the case. What wall is the TV/screen going on? Draw in the seating arrangement.

Getting your room layout correct is as important as what speakers to use.
If you look those lines are not measuring internal dimensions. The room will be 16x16 or pretty close too it. Seating will be pushed back almost to the Bar in the room with screen on opposite wall. We originally had a bigger room ~17x25 if I remember, but had to kake some design changes to have a second office in the house. May not be ideal but at least we are still getting dedicated theater room. HA
 

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If you look those lines are not measuring internal dimensions. The room will be 16x16 or pretty close too it. Seating will be pushed back almost to the Bar in the room with screen on opposite wall. We originally had a bigger room ~17x25 if I remember, but had to make some design changes to have a second office in the house. May not be ideal but at least we are still getting dedicated theater room. HA
Plan for when the kids are gone and you can move the couch forward (or just do it now). Space L/R speakers 10' apart and sit at the apex of an equilateral triangle. Get two 12" subs, put one in each front corner.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
1) I need help with picking out an HT or stereo setup. What kind of information should I provide?

When creating a new thread in the Speaker forum for help with recommendations for an audio setup, be sure to include

1) Your budget.
2) Your listening interests: movies/gaming/music--and whether or not any of those are your primary concern.
3) Your existing audio equipment (make/models) if any. Include comments about what you hope to improve upon.
4) The size of your room. Please also mention if there are adjacent open areas and how big they are (important for subwoofer choice).
5) Any placement restrictions.
6) Any aesthetic or size concerns.
7) Any equipment you are already considering (or would not consider).
8) Any particular audio sonic signatures you know you prefer (e.g., you are a basshead, you have a preference for bright treble, etc.)

If you are seeking help with configuring or troubleshooting an existing setup, be sure to give the make/model for your entire setup and try to describe the problem with good detail.

Once you have given good, detailed information for what you need help with, provide a title for your post that helps people to understand what you are looking for.

Stay WELL away from Truaudio - they are a contractor/installer-grade product that "normal" people can't buy. This allows for 500% markups (joking, but not too much) for speakers that are barely adequate.

You could easily do a 5.1.4 setup with Klipsch fronts, surrounds, and in-ceiling Atmos speakers with a pair of high-output 12" subs from Hsu Research, Rythmik Audio, or SVS Sound. (probably in that order, too).
Your Atmos channels do NOT have to match your mains, the RSP C34E: C34E Ceiling Speaker - RSL Speakers are quite capable and have an angled baffle so you can aim them at your ears.
If you are going to use an AT (Acoustically Transparent) screen, you can use three identical speakers across the LCR, giving you the best audio possible. Since it seems like there will be a decent amount of gaming, then having matched surround speakers is more apparent than at first glance. If using towers up front, then the same-series bookshelfs should be used for surrounds AT A MINIMUM. Many gamers insist on identical speakers all around, but that is not possible all the time.

Thanks,

I guess one of the things I left out is I just do not want to break the bank as a budget.

Are there a group of speakers like Klipsch that should be searched? Most of the audio places around here won't even accept appointments to hear different one.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Plan for when the kids are gone and you can move the couch forward (or just do it now). Space L/R speakers 10' apart and sit at the apex of an equilateral triangle. Get two 12" subs, put one in each front corner.
Agree other than they are 5 so I got 13 years there haha. I think this is why I was leaning more towards not having in wall speakers other than the ceiling. Gives more options for the future.
 

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However, we are in the process of building a house and have the ability to add a theater room. It will be a 16x16 room where seating will likely be pushed to the back so kids can sit up front. Since we are pushing where the wife and I will sit I think that rules out a 7.x system.

So to the question what are some good speaker brands and what should I avoid.

Primary purpose for the system would be Movie watching. However, the wife and kid like to listen to music before or after a movie for as the kid puts it a dance party. I also like to play Xbox on the projector when I am afforded the time.
5 speakers instead of 7: almost always a good call, imo

Square room: I'd consider doing diagonal/corner placement

Brands I'd look at, for maximum bang for the buck for HT use:
  • JBL when on sale at jbl.com (currently, the Studio 570 and 590 are on sale at 1/3 and 1/2 of regular price) --- these are a no brainer, with their only drawback being aesthetic...how important is WAF here? Did you give your wife veto power or is she ok with this being "your" room to do with pretty much as you like? If the latter, grab the JBLs...they come with free return shipping so it's zero risk.
  • Emotiva: like JBL, aesthetics are a drawback. Unlike JBL, even without any sale pricing they are the best bang for the buck around. And they have extremely low risk of making your ears bleed due to excessive treble, unlike Klipsch or SVS.
  • Infinity Reference, when on sale at infinity.com --- similar to JBL, but more inoffensive looking.
  • Ascend 200SE/170SE/340SE
  • Hsu - subs and speakers
  • Rythmik - subs
  • HTD Level 3 (free return shipping for first time orders)
  • RSL (free return shipping for first time orders)

Brands I'd avoid, i.e. lousy bang for the buck:
  • SVS (except for BF sales on PB12 and SB12 discontinued models) - but you do get free return shipping and excellent customer service
  • Def Tech --- all of their stuff, esp. their subs
  • Golden Ear
  • anything sold by an installer, esp. dealer-only brands like "Truaudio" which you can't price shop or hear yourself first ... highly suspect
  • B&W: good for music for some people, not so much for HT and you're basically getting price gouged for the pretty cabinets and ritzy nameplate
 
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Thanks,

I guess one of the things I left out is I just do not want to break the bank as a budget.

Are there a group of speakers like Klipsch that should be searched? Most of the audio places around here won't even accept appointments to hear different one.
Though not the same as hearing them in person, Cruthfield has a speaker compare app that lets you listen to different speakers. It won't paint the full picture, but will at least give you a better idea of what you like and don't like. You can then take advantage of their $10 flat rate return fee ( bookshelf speakers per box) and try the ones you liked best in your environment.
 
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Discussion Starter #12
5 speakers instead of 7: almost always a good call, imo

Square room: I'd consider doing diagonal/corner placement

Brands I'd look at, for maximum bang for the buck for HT use:
  • JBL when on sale at jbl.com (currently, the Studio 570 and 590 are on sale at 1/3 and 1/2 of regular price) --- these are a no brainer, with their only drawback being aesthetic...how important is WAF here? Did you give your wife veto power or is she ok with this being "your" room to do with pretty much as you like? If the latter, grab the JBLs...they come with free return shipping so it's zero risk.
  • Emotiva: like JBL, aesthetics are a drawback. Unlike JBL, even without any sale pricing they are the best bang for the buck around. And they have extremely low risk of making your ears bleed due to excessive treble, unlike Klipsch or SVS.
  • Infinity Reference, when on sale at infinity.com --- similar to JBL, but more inoffensive looking.
  • Ascend 200SE/170SE/340SE
  • Hsu - subs and speakers
  • Rythmik - subs
  • HTD Level 3 (free return shipping for first time orders)
  • RSL (free return shipping for first time orders)
Brands I'd avoid, i.e. lousy bang for the buck:
  • SVS (except for BF sales on PB12 and SB12 discontinued models) - but you do get free return shipping and excellent customer service
  • Def Tech --- all of their stuff, esp. their subs
  • Golden Ear
  • anything sold by an installer, esp. dealer-only brands like "Truaudio" which you can't price shop or hear yourself first ... highly suspect
  • B&W: good for music for some people, not so much for HT and you're basically getting price gouged for the pretty cabinets and ritzy nameplate
We are a pretty big movie watching family so it is a joint want for the theater. Wife and I just don't want to spend a fortune but also don't want to waste money on something that might not work out well.

Our previous house had some JBLs in them from a previous owner. They were in wall speakers. Never know how good the were or if they had been abused. Also they were from 2008ish and they had only put in an awful projector so I just assumed they were some cheap of the line set up. I found they did things just do do them or because someone else had it so they wanted one.

I looked at JBL today just didn't know if they were good or not. I really don't find many reviews on things on the internet either. Thanks for the inputs.
 

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We are a pretty big movie watching family so it is a joint want for the theater. Wife and I just don't want to spend a fortune but also don't want to waste money on something that might not work out well.

Our previous house had some JBLs in them from a previous owner. They were in wall speakers. Never know how good the were or if they had been abused. Also they were from 2008ish and they had only put in an awful projector so I just assumed they were some cheap of the line set up. I found they did things just do do them or because someone else had it so they wanted one.

I looked at JBL today just didn't know if they were good or not. I really don't find many reviews on things on the internet either. Thanks for the inputs.
JBL's Studio line is their second from the top, which would be the HDI series. They get almost unanimous raves around here, for both HT and music.

In your room, you could get 5 of the 570 towers for just $1K all in, with the current sale. Throw in another $800 for a Hsu VTF-3 subwoofer and you'll be all set. Hardly "breaking the bank."
 
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JBL's Studio line is their second from the top, which would be the HDI series. They get almost unanimous raves around here, for both HT and music.

In your room, you could get 5 of the 570 towers for just $1K all in, with the current sale. Throw in another $800 for a Hsu VTF-3 subwoofer and you'll be all set. Hardly "breaking the bank."
Would you use one of them as the center or look for a different center?
 

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Would you use one of them as the center or look for a different center?
This is what I'd do if I were starting from scratch:
3047193
 

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hmm wonder if that would fit under the screen....
Just raise the screen a couple inches if needed...won't make any difference.

It puzzles me why some folks think their screens need to be super low to the floor. Mine is 40" above the floor, have never had any problems with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Just raise the screen a couple inches if needed...won't make any difference.

It puzzles me why some folks think their screens need to be super low to the floor. Mine is 40" above the floor, have never had any problems with it.
I think it will just have to depend on ceiling height there in the basement. It should have around 9 ft ceilings but if it will have to be dropped to go around a beam or something there I do not know yet.
 

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If I wanted to, I could raise my TV an INCH and use three identical towers too. I have a killer centre speaker, so this is not a necessity. In a dedicated room, using three identical speakers is the acoustic ideal.
The 570s aren't that tall, just under 35", so it shouldn't be an issue. If you wish, you could use a pair of 590s for your left and right and a 570 as a centre.
3047290
 
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If I wanted to, I could raise my TV an INCH and use three identical towers too. I have a killer centre speaker, so this is not a necessity. In a dedicated room, using three identical speakers is the acoustic ideal.
The 570s aren't that tall, just under 35", so it shouldn't be an issue. If you wish, you could use a pair of 590s for your left and right and a 570 as a centre.
View attachment 3047290
Maybe I am going to have a minimum of a 110in screen.
 
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