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That mostly depends on your room size and speaker placement. If you have a moderate sized room and your Top Front/Top Rear speakers are positioned at close to recommended angles (45 degrees before and behind your seats), the need for Top Middle speakers between them is minimized. Those speakers will probably do a fine job of imaging sounds between them right above your head.

But if you have a very large room and/or your height speakers are in compromised locations (e.g. Front Heights and Rear Heights far away from each other), you may not get much imaging. That's when an extra pair of Top Middle speakers between them is most helpful.
That’s a great breakdown.

But is it an accurate observation, that in a 6 (Dolby atmos) height speaker setup, most of the activity is concentrated in the middles? I’m really getting some mixed feedback. Hope you could shed some light on this. Thanks for being such an awesome resource on this board. Cheers!!
 

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That’s a great breakdown.

But is it an accurate observation, that in a 6 (Dolby atmos) height speaker setup, most of the activity is concentrated in the middles? I’m really getting some mixed feedback. Hope you could shed some light on this. Thanks for being such an awesome resource on this board. Cheers!!
It all depends on the audio mix. They are all nicely used in the better mixes and not at all used in the really bad ones.
 

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But is it an accurate observation, that in a 6 (Dolby atmos) height speaker setup, most of the activity is concentrated in the middles? I’m really getting some mixed feedback. Hope you could shed some light on this.
I don't think it's correct to say "most" of the activity. As Mashie says, it depends on the mix, which may depend on the studio. Soundtracks that use 3D sound objects the way they're intended should utilize all your height speakers.

Unfortunately, some studios (primarily Disney, which owns half of Hollywood) typically force their Atmos tracks into either a 7.1.4 or sometimes just 7.1.2 channel printout for some reason. That means no Front Wide activity and only specific height speakers get used. If a 7.1.4 track, Top Middles are inactive. If a 7.1.2 track, only Top Middles are used and no Top Front/Top Rear if you have six speakers. (If you have four height speakers, those x.x.2 channels get split between them.)

This isn't exclusively a Disney problem, but they are the biggest offender. Notably, Saving Private Ryan (Paramount) is also a 7.1.2 Atmos mix.
 
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If wides were not possible in a room, would you prefer a 7.1.4 setup to a 7.1.6 setup for that reason?
Yes. I had a 7.1.6 layout for about a year (matrixed) and ended up going back to 7.1.4 as I found it offered the same precision but offered better envelopment, stability and no chance of things falling into the middle pair. It is unfortunate that since 2016, when I removed the six channel overhead system, there have been many poor uses of Atmos on premium titles and that has been more of a trend than an exception it seems.

Even if I had a large room and unlimited budget, I would still be okay with 7.1.4 layout. But that's me.
 

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Q: Yamaha RX-A2080 Dolby 7.2.4?

Ok, I'm not the smartest guy in the room, but I'm told the 2080 will not handle 7.2.4, but it looks like there are 11 channels, with two speaker connections marked "Extra SP1"' and "Extra SP2". Can't I connect 6 and 7 to these posts? Am I missing something?

And I know this picture is of the 3080 but the back of my 2080 has similar channel layout.

1610641158144.png
 

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I'm told the 2080 will not handle 7.2.4, but it looks like there are 11 channels, with two speaker connections marked "Extra SP1"' and "Extra SP2".
9 channels but 11 speaker connections. Of the 11 speakers, only 9 can be used at any given time (5.1.4 or 7.1.2 configuration).
 

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You can connect 11 speakers in the main zone, but only use 9 of them at any given time. The 2080 has 9 processing channels and 9 amp channels. The next model up (3080) has 11 processing channels and 9 amp channels, allowing it to do 7.1.4 with an external 2-channel amp.
 

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is it worth $68?
It depends on what you look for.

If you look for the music itself, obviously you have to be a fan of Yello.

If you have an Atmos room with at least 7.1.4, This is one of the best Reference Demo of Dolby Atmos music with many discrete sounds coming and panning from everywhere in the room.

I recently added Front Wides speakers for testing 9.1.4 and this Yello-Point has improved in some parts, over my current 7.1.4
 

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I don't think it's correct to say "most" of the activity. As Mashie says, it depends on the mix, which may depend on the studio. Soundtracks that use 3D sound objects the way they're intended should utilize all your height speakers.

Unfortunately, some studios (primarily Disney, which owns half of Hollywood) typically force their Atmos tracks into either a 7.1.4 or sometimes just 7.1.2 channel printout for some reason. That means no Front Wide activity and only specific height speakers get used. If a 7.1.4 track, Top Middles are inactive. If a 7.1.2 track, only Top Middles are used and no Top Front/Top Rear if you have six speakers. (If you have four height speakers, those x.x.2 channels get split between them.)

This isn't exclusively a Disney problem, but they are the biggest offender. Notably, Saving Private Ryan (Paramount) is also a 7.1.2 Atmos mix.
Yes I was listening to the YouTube live stream of SpareChange featuring Patrick /Grobi tv Germany. They were both alluding to the allocation of funds (or lack thereof) for the poor implementation. I wish studios would replicate what Gravity did to set a benchmark/ reference standard.

For me personally, out of the 3 immersive audio formats (Dolby atmos/Auro-3D/Dts-X); I find Auro-3D to have a more captivating effect compared to the rest. The imaging is more precise and in your face and nothing left to the imagination or discreet etc. I also like the way they tell you how the track has been implemented e.g. 9.1/ 11.1/ 13.1. Unfortunately this never gained any traction here in the US and you have to go through some serious hoops, in order to source the limited titles from Europe. Lol.
 

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I don't think it's correct to say "most" of the activity. As Mashie says, it depends on the mix, which may depend on the studio. Soundtracks that use 3D sound objects the way they're intended should utilize all your height speakers.

Unfortunately, some studios (primarily Disney, which owns half of Hollywood) typically force their Atmos tracks into either a 7.1.4 or sometimes just 7.1.2 channel printout for some reason. That means no Front Wide activity and only specific height speakers get used. If a 7.1.4 track, Top Middles are inactive. If a 7.1.2 track, only Top Middles are used and no Top Front/Top Rear if you have six speakers. (If you have four height speakers, those x.x.2 channels get split between them.)

This isn't exclusively a Disney problem, but they are the biggest offender. Notably, Saving Private Ryan (Paramount) is also a 7.1.2 Atmos mix.
Are you sure about Saving Private Ryan? I just watched it on my 9.1.4 system (in pure Atmos, no upmixer involved) and there's a lot of front wides activity.
 

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Are you sure about Saving Private Ryan? I just watched it on my 9.1.4 system (in pure Atmos, no upmixer involved) and there's a lot of front wides activity.
It may be 9.1.2, but I'm pretty sure about the height channels.
 
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Oh yeah.....OHHHHHHHH YEAAAAAHH!! Beautiful! MORE Beautiful!

I just listened to Yello's POINT album in Dolby Atmos like 3 times and used the track Way Down to try out Dolby Digital EX 6.1 + Surround Modes and PCM 24-bit 2.0 stereo from 2.0 to 17.1 with the surround modes.
.......
To complement this @MagnumX Yello-Point Atmos extensive review I attach a video showing the great use of speakers with the “Way Down” track. Using my recently finished DIY 13-channel VUmeter (see THIS POST if you are curious).

I have added some old spare Front Wide Speakers to get a 9.1.4 Dolby Atmos system. With this Yello-Point Atmos mix I get much use of the Wides that really enhance the listening over 7.1.4

The VUmeter legend stands for Heights, but in this video Atmos Tops are sounding. Also, at the right most VUmeter, Wides are sounding, not VOG CH (for Auro use).

The VUmeters are more or less ‘calibrated’ to show same bar amount using the ‘Speaker level’ test of the AVR.

Look at the right most VUmeter how much the Wides are used.

This test has convinced me to buy two more good Speakers for Wides, as I was testing with old spare speakers.

In the video below, please click and enable the sound on the imgur page. You should see and listen the complete 1 minute video.

 
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