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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Alright, I've been patiently saving and waiting to pull the trigger on an Onkyo HT-S5100 and now that I'm within a few weeks from making the purchase I finally measured to see how everything would fit within my existing layout.


Of course I found a problem. Here's a crappy mspaint drawing of what my setup would have to be like with the HT-S5100:



To give the basic outline of what's shown, the Sub would be at the far left, then a shelf with the Onkyo receiver, cable box, DVD player, and Wii. TV is wall mounted above another shelf that has junk on it. On the opposite side of the TV is another shelf.


My problem is that my TV's centerline is already 8" or so above eye-level, and the shelves I have flanking the TV on either side do not have enough space between shelves to fit the HT-S5100's front left & right speakers, forcing me to place the front left & right on the top shelf. The center channel will fit fine below the TV, and will actually only be a little below ear level.


I know people on here recommend that the front speakers be located at ear level, and with smaller fronts I could accomplish that (the HT-S4100's speakers would fit).


But is it really that much of a problem? My rear surround speakers (I have space to run 7.1, room is 18x28) would need to be elevated at a similar level, and I could run the other speakers at a similar height.


Aesthetically, I would prefer to have the speakers on one of the intermediate shelves instead of the top shelf, but I really prefer the HT-S5100's wood speakers over most other HTIB's plastic units.


I'm afraid of going with a less powerful unit than the 5100 due to the room size (the 4100's sub is a pretty big step down).


Basically, if all speakers are at the 'wrong' height, is it really that big of a deal? They would all be in a similar plane, and shouldn't the Audyssey system account for their less than ideal location?


I'm pretty anal about doing research and making sure beforehand that I'm going to be happy with my purchase, and I know that if I really wanted the best audio quality I wouldn't be going with a HTIB, but I'm married, with a stay-at-home wife, a kid and another on the way so budget is always a factor. I just don't want to buy the 5100 if I would have possibly been happier with a lower quality unit that was optimally located.


Suggestions?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
If it helps, here's a crappy drawing of the room layout.


The 2 circles are the 2 primary seating positions. The rest of the seats aren't used 90% of the time. If there were another place I'd like to have it sound nice it'd be the chair sitting there... that's where I sit when we have several people over, but we are alone far more often than we entertain.




-c
 

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Not sure how up to scale your 2nd illustration is, but your Front speakers might be close together. Ideally, the distance between them should be equal to the distance of each one to the central listening position - thereby making an equilateral triangle with Front speakers and the central listening position making the vertices.


I have my Front speakers kinda close, like yours - on either side of a 52" LCD, and I have to say that it doesn't sound optimal. The side-to-side surround effects on the Front speaker don't sound nearly as "epic", for lack of a better word. But yeah, I have space limitations so I make do.


You're also right about the speakers being high. If they're THAT high, you might want to somehow tilt them toward your ears. Otherwise, most of the sound will go over your head.
 
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