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Speaker Layout

545 Views 2 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  sdurani
Looking for some layout advice. (About to tackle some proper room treatment as well, the foam is temporary.)

I am currently running a Marantz SR7010, with 9 Golden Ear speakers, which is all the receiver can power (but it can process 2 more channels).

I bought two new matching surrounds Golden Ear MPX (all the surrounds are the same) to install, and will be getting an amp to drive the front LCRs (Triton 1s and a Supercenter XXL), and take some load off the AVR (endgame is moving fully to separates, but not sure timetable there yet).

My question is given room size (about 15.5 feet by 17 feet, and 10 foot ceilings at the highest) and constraints of where walls, seating, and speakers are, what makes the most layout sense. Right now it is a 7.2.2, although the rear surrounds are really positioned where rear heights should go . The rear row is on a 28 inch riser (again... pretty big jump up over a normal riser.)

I just pulled my side surrounds down through the wall, from way above my head (and too close to the Atmos channels), and it sounds way better. I kind of see three options (see ABC below).

A. Do I do the same with the rear surrounds, moving from the angled wall down above to the back wall above the rear seats, and then change the overhead layout from a .2 to a .4 layout (is this going to sound worse as it is so high above the MLP -about 6.5 feet up from ear height and 7ish feet back, and not angled down, am I better off keeping them on the angled wall pointing at MLP?)

B. Or do I leave the rear surrounds where they are and instead go for front heights (new speakers) and top middle (which is already there)?

C. Or pull the rear surrounds down to the back wall, and still do front heights and top middle as well, instead of a true .4 setup?

I am looking for what is likely to sound the best for immersive audio soundtracks, mostly movie watching but a little bit of music 90%/10. There are some constraints over where I can put my speakers room wise, and also some constraints over how I can map speakers in my AVP/Prepro.

All my problems might be alleviated if I could tell the Processor to use 5 channels on the bed layer, and front & rear heights and top middle in the height channels. Unfortunately, I am unaware of anything short of a Trinnov that would allow me to do a 5.2.6 setup. Am I wrong there?

(Or am I just being cheap and should I just bite the bullet and switch to a prepro/amps and getting another set of MPX speakers and doing a 7.2.6 setup if that's ultimately where I should be speaker wise given the room layout and what I am wanting/trying to achieve.)
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Any suggestions and or help is appreciated by the everyone!! Thanks in advance.
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Option A would be the recommended layout.
Most Dolby Atmos mixes only use front height speakers as a blend of 2 other inputs (Fronts & heights) in audio transition only, so mixes utilizing front heights exclusively are far between. Most audio engineering mixes take advantage of the .4 above more so, even if the mix only contains a .2 mix, it will blend (audio positioned) across all .4 speakers, giving you a more immersive overhead sound coverage. The 6.5ft above MLP will provide a good ambience, furthering the ‘above you’ audio experience without the pinpointing effect of where it’s coming from exactly.
As far as the rear speakers, lower them, targeting ear level of MLP.
Forego any thought of .6 for heights exclusively(tops), as you will have the same effect of only having a . 2 system, as the audio engineers use that more so than any .6 mixes.
I’d recommend reading some of the Dolby Atmos threads and the mixes most movies are coming out with that the audio engineering are doing before adding a bunch of speakers and cost to your system. You may find that you have a much better system audio wise than most movies take advantage of as the audio engineering was not done to take full advantage of systems some of us are running. This only leads to you being disappointed in audio quality in the end after having spent a significant amount of time a money into your system only to learn later that you might have been better off with less.
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Move the Rear speakers down near the back corners of the room. Install new height speakers near the front and back edge of the flat part of the ceiling.
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