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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,
I'm in the process of setting up a 7 channel system in a dedicated HT room (13' x 22'). I'm still going through the speaker selection process, and am debating between compression driver based vs dome vs AMT (maybe thats for another thread)..Below are a few relevant details for my question-

Seating - 1st row at 15' from the screen wall and the 2nd row (on a riser) would be at 20'-21'.
Screen - 120" Diagonal (2.35) - Brand will depend on the AT vs non-AT
Speakers - ??

I've seen many recommendations for speakers behind a screen, but I'm not really sure if its the right option in my room. The screen would be approximately 9' wide, so I'm looking to sit atleast 13.5' - 14' away in the 1st row. So that leaves me with 12" - 18" of space (if I build a screen wall etc). Unless I go for In/On walls, it looks like that may be tight for most speakers (after considering linacoustic, absorption, space between the speaker and the screen etc).

So my question is...does it make sense to still pursue speakers behind an AT screen in my situation? If so, are in/on-walls (atleast the center) my best option, or are there any thin-nish speakers that may work in a 12" space behind the screen ?

Thanks in Advance!
 

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Iv had a projector both ways one with the speakers of to the side and the center below the screen. And my current setup is a 127 2.35 to 1 seymour at screen 16" from the wall with diy soundgroup fusion 10 pures behind with about 4" between the screen and the speakers which for these speakers I think is minimum. I'd never go back to s non AT screen I love how clean it looks. That's my 2 cents.

It sounds like you have the room to do it. I'd probly give up a little extra and put the speakers behind if possibly
 

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piling on... another vote for speakers behind the AT screen. Fantastic to have the dialogue come from the center of the screen. Depending on your speaker choices, you can give up less than 2 feet.

In addition to DIY options, Triad makes a few shallow in-wall speakers that can be used in for non in-wall applications.

Picture of my screen wall below. I have 14.5" between my screen and the front wall. I have 2" of Linacoustic on the wall. The Triad Silver LCRs are 4" deep. The front of the center channel is about 7" from the screen

 

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I am really pleased with my AT screen. I did a DIY build. My screen is 103 inches. I have the seating about 10 feet from the screen. My room is 13 by 17. The speakers behind the screen have been a hugh improvement in the enjoyment of films. I vote AT.
 

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AT screen is my favorite improvement between the HT in our new home vs the one in our previous house. In-ceiling surrounds with backer boxes also added to the clean look and although I thought sound would be compromised, I think they actually sound better... placement was a lot more flexible too, especially since I had non-symmetrical walls.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Wow..I really appreciate all the feedback. Your responses are very re-assuring and it looks like theres nothing left to debate :)

Follow-up question - if I do go with an in-room speaker, it looks like many of them are under 12" in depth. If I go based on that number, is there a general guideline on the additional space to be left behind the screen-wall ? Or is it going to vary a lot based on the speaker ?
 

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Wow..I really appreciate all the feedback. Your responses are very re-assuring and it looks like theres nothing left to debate :)

Follow-up question - if I do go with an in-room speaker, it looks like many of them are under 12" in depth. If I go based on that number, is there a general guideline on the additional space to be left behind the screen-wall ? Or is it going to vary a lot based on the speaker ?
As mentioned before, Triad in-wall Gold LCR/Monitor, Silver LCR's and others all have 4 " in depth. You could place screen 6-8 inches from wall. Pretty slick...,,,

Your only issue would be sub placement but there are many ideas to accommodate.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
piling on... another vote for speakers behind the AT screen. Fantastic to have the dialogue come from the center of the screen. Depending on your speaker choices, you can give up less than 2 feet.

In addition to DIY options, Triad makes a few shallow in-wall speakers that can be used in for non in-wall applications.

Picture of my screen wall below. I have 14.5" between my screen and the front wall. I have 2" of Linacoustic on the wall. The Triad Silver LCRs are 4" deep. The front of the center channel is about 7" from the screen
Thanks Redstripe. I've been looking into Triad and have seen a few suggestions anywhere between Bronze - Gold LCRs for my room. Wish everything was as unanimous as this thread :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I think you're putting your seating too far away.
I've seen some general guidelines suggesting 1.5 times screen width, and THX suggesting something ending up with similar results for the distance. Playing with painters tape, 13' - 14' from the 1st row felt good for me as well. Any reason why you feel its too far away?
 

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I've seen some general guidelines suggesting 1.5 times screen width, and THX suggesting something ending up with similar results for the distance. Playing with painters tape, 13' - 14' from the 1st row felt good for me as well. Any reason why you feel its too far away?
SMPTE recommendation is based on image HEIGHT, not width. It suggests 2x height to 3x height as being equal to middle and rear of modern theaters respectively. A 120" 2.35 screen will have an image height of 48", which means seating at 8' - 12'.

Having more than one row really dictates a much larger screen so the second row doesn't feel like the cheap seats. Putting people 20' away from a 120" screen is just mean. I would suggest a 160" AT screen with first row seatback at 12' and second at 19'.
 

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Another vote for the AT screen. I love mine, and would never go back. I've got about 20 inches of space behind mine, with a trio of bowers and Wilkins 683 towers. Another benefit of the AT screen is you don't need to use a compromised center channel, and can have matched LCRs.

As for speakers, take a look at some of the diy options. They are actually pretty simple to assemble, and the quality of parts used are better than speakers coating twice as much. I recently built a set of volt-8s from diysoundgroup.com and was extremely impressed. They also offer a 9 inch deep version called the 88 special. Uses a really high quality compression driver and 2 8 inch woofers. link here.
 

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Where are the speakers?! Of course, behind the screen!!

 

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Go with the AT Screen, so much nicer looking. No matter how pretty the speakers you get look, they are a distraction in my mind from the screen and the picture on it. I went with Triad Silver/6 (6" deep) in wall speakers for every speaker in my room (7 of them). I just put them on the little shelf I built and they work perfectly! The picture is an in progress shot during my build, but you can see the shelves I built to put the speakers on and the frame for the screen.
 

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I've seen some general guidelines suggesting 1.5 times screen width, and THX suggesting something ending up with similar results for the distance. Playing with painters tape, 13' - 14' from the 1st row felt good for me as well. Any reason why you feel its too far away?
Someone can correct me if I'm wrong, but I think those general guidelines you're referring to are for 16:9 screens. I think for 2:35 it's closer to 1:1 as far as screen width to seating distance goes. I have a 120" wide (130" diagonal) 2:35 screen and my first row is a few inches short of 11'.
 

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In the media room in my last house, I had initially planned on putting in a 16:9 solid screen with the center channel below the screen and left and rights outside the screen area. Then I watched Speed Racer on that set up. The panning heads wipes used throughout the movie sounded terrible. I ended up doing an AT 2.40 screen, and am doing the same in the new house.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
SMPTE recommendation is based on image HEIGHT, not width. It suggests 2x height to 3x height as being equal to middle and rear of modern theaters respectively. A 120" 2.35 screen will have an image height of 48", which means seating at 8' - 12'.

Having more than one row really dictates a much larger screen so the second row doesn't feel like the cheap seats. Putting people 20' away from a 120" screen is just mean. I would suggest a 160" AT screen with first row seatback at 12' and second at 19'.
Thanks Dreamer. I'll probably look at the distance again and see if I'm comfortable going closer. Regardless of distance, I see your point on the screen size and may be able to push to 130" diagonal. I'm constrained by a load bearing beam that will block some viewing, so may not be able to go much larger.
 
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