Do you use the fireplace? You can probably fit 3 identical towers under it or evenly around the room if you use it , as far as surrounds place them somewhere your more comfortable with . S35 is too tiny I wouldn’t bother a passive soundbar is better .I’m seeking some advice from the community on how to best utilize my equipment in a unique space in my new home. In the attached photos you’ll see that my TV is mounted above the fireplace. I know this setup is considered a faux pas but trust that I explored all options and it truly is the only and best place to place the television in this room given the narrow dimensions. I installed a “Mantelmount” for the TV so it pulls down from the mantel to a comfortable viewing height and angles the TV towards the couch for relatively straight-on viewing; this can be seen in the view facing away from the window. Another unique architectural feature is that this room is lofted in the middle with 25’ or so ceilings.
This home was hardwired with a 5.0 Bose Acoustimass surround sound system that I surmise is original to the ~20 year old home. In my research I have gathered that the community is not fond of this brand or product. I must stress that the Bose was not my choice and it was here before I was. I have this running through a Onkyo NR626 receiver to which I’ve connected to my TV via ARC. The Bose system runs all 5 channels through this “module” which is a passive sub type device that serves as a crossover for the lows and sends the highs to the “cube” speakers. I’ve added a Polk sub for some lows. I actually don’t have a problem with how this unit sounds for music but the setup is not great for HT.
Given the dimensions of where the speakers are mounted it makes for an awkward setup. I have the Front Left and Front Right channels going to the cube speakers by the dining room which are some 12+’ away from the viewing area, 5’ behind the TV, and mounted 8’ high. The surrounds are also mounted 8’ high on either side of the couch; not ideal per Dolby recommendations but it’s not bad. The center channel cube is not mounted and is now just sitting on the mantel. I manually “aim” it towards the couch when watching movies and into the room for music. Audio wise, the center channel seems to be the worst part of the Bose system. During films dialogue is muddy and I find myself turning up the volume to hear it and then turning it down during action.
I know “soundbar” is another dirty word in this community but I think for my purposes adding a high quality passive 3 channel LCR soundbar to the setup may work well for my purposes. For example this Klipsch RP-440D-SB or this KEF HTF7003 Sound Bar or slightly larger HTF8003. This would attach below my TV on the Mantelmount and thus would face directly towards me on the couch when watching movies and directly out to the room for music when the TV is up. These soundbars retail for $600 and that’s about all I’d want to spend on this component. My NR626 does not support Atmos, unfortunately, but it does support Dolby Pro-Logic IIz Height for a 7.1 setup. My thought was to move the current Front Right and Front Left Bose cubes to be used at Front Height speakers. These would still be routed through the Bose “module” as I’ve read the cubes cannot be connected directly to the receiver. I’d use the same rear surrounds from the Bose as I have today, and I'd disconnect the Bose center cube speaker entirely.
Thoughts on this proposed setup? I know it’s not recommended to mix speaker sets and this Bose system gets a lot of flack but in this case I’d only be using the Bose for front height and surround speakers and I’d be using much higher quality drivers for the more important LCR channels.
Might it be more advantageous to upgrade to a stand alone center such as this Polk S35? My concern in doing that is that my front channels will be so far away. Even if I upgrade the Bose speakers eventually they'll be in the same location as that's where they're hardwired.
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Get a front view of the TV, I’m shocked a massive room like that has Bose speakers but there so popular due to tiny size in non audiophiles I’m not surprised...
go for largest speakers you can fit .... going to need some serious subs too . Polk which model? Could be a temporary fix
I’ve used towers as surrounds to successfully, on bookshelve speakers stands . But bookshelves may be fine ...
Small speakers are terrible for that room ... go big or go home 🏡..
I’ve seen smaller movie theaters 🎭 ...then that room.