AVS Forum banner

21 - 40 of 59 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,568 Posts
I actually wasn't, which is why I asked. I don't plan on mine being right on the floor. I didn't want half my speaker to be sunk below the screen, if that makes sense.
So my bigger question was in line with how high up off the floor is too high for a tower speaker.
I'll probably do the best I can. I'm a bit limited with ceiling height where I'm building...so I have to make sure I have clearance for 2nd row.
Appreciate the advice/suggestions.

If you're placing the speakers behind an AT screen, why use tower speakers? You could instead use LCR-type speakers and use Bass Management to send the bass to the subwoofer(s). I assume you'll be using subwoofers as all well-designed Home Theaters are designed around good subwoofer systems. There are huge advantages to using subwoofers, including:
  1. Placement Flexibility that is not available with tower speakers, (Towers need to be placed where they image best and present the best soundstage. These placements are virtually never the best placements for bass reproduction.)
  2. Amplifier Headroom Increases, (Bass is the most power intensive portion of the audio spectrum. Redirecting the bass to the subwoofer channel(s) removes it from the mains channels, and therefore from the main amps and speakers. This frees up significant amplfier headroom, allowing the main amps to reproduce the rest of the spectrum louder and with less distortion.)
  3. Reduces Driver Excursion. (Every octave of deeper extension doubles driver excursion. Going from 80 to 40 Hz, doubles excursion. Going from 40 to 20 Hz doubles excursion again, or 4X the excursion at 80 Hz. Using 80 Hz crossovers on the speakers reduces woofer excursion significantly and allows the woofers to reproduce the >80 Hz bass louder and cleaner with less distortion.
In your case, the other advantage is that LCR-type speakers will be shorter and the drivers will be less likely to interfere with the screen frame.

In terms of mounting your screen, with a two-row theater, you need to figure that piece out before you calculate speaker placements. Here is a calculator for figuring screen height vs. 2nd row riser height:
Riser Height Calculator or you can email Mike Garrett and he can send you a spreadsheet that will do it for you: [email protected]

You'll need the height of your screen from the floor, your seating distances for your first and second rows and your seated eye height for each row. To calculate the height of the screen from the floor, you want the size of the screen, and it's aspect ratio. This will determine the height dimension of the screen. It is most optimal to have the eye height at 1/3 to 1/2 screen height. You'll need to decide whether the first or second row will be the primary row, and base your screen height off that row. Alternatively, you can split the difference between rows and use that height, which won't be optimal for either row, but will be "less-bad" for the non-primary row.

To calculate seated eye height you need the height of the seating plus the seated torso to eye height of the tallest listener you expect to have in your theater.

If you would like some help with these calculations, please post your anticipated screen size, aspect ratio and seating distances for each row, as well as room dimensions. Any info you have on the seating, such seatback height, recline clearance, seating height, etc. would also be helpful. Do you plan to build a false wall to mount screen in?

Craig
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
105 Posts
One of the advantages of having your screen up a bit higher, e.g. just above the top of the tower speakers, is that you don't need to elevate 2nd row seating in order for those seated in the 2nd row to have an unobstructed view of the screen.
Yeah I thought about that as well. And your right it works out perfect Also it doesn't perfectly center the sound on the screen but it comes very very very close. The wave guides on those JBL are really awesome
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,424 Posts
Heck I didn't even go with an AT screen!!!


And it sounds AWESOME shout out to Zorba922 for bringing up the 590's love mine for the price on sale just bought 4 more!
From a distance, those 590s don't look quite as scary as they do on the JBL website. :D

Dang, 7 of them all around...that's gotta sound amazing!
 
  • Like
Reactions: danzilla31

·
Registered
Joined
·
340 Posts
If you're placing the speakers behind an AT screen, why use tower speakers? You could instead use LCR-type speakers and use Bass Management to send the bass to the subwoofer(s). I assume you'll be using subwoofers as all well-designed Home Theaters are designed around good subwoofer systems. There are huge advantages to using subwoofers, including:
  1. Placement Flexibility that is not available with tower speakers, (Towers need to be placed where they image best and present the best soundstage. These placements are virtually never the best placements for bass reproduction.)
  2. Amplifier Headroom Increases, (Bass is the most power intensive portion of the audio spectrum. Redirecting the bass to the subwoofer channel(s) removes it from the mains channels, and therefore from the main amps and speakers. This frees up significant amplfier headroom, allowing the main amps to reproduce the rest of the spectrum louder and with less distortion.)
  3. Reduces Driver Excursion. (Every octave of deeper extension doubles driver excursion. Going from 80 to 40 Hz, doubles excursion. Going from 40 to 20 Hz doubles excursion again, or 4X the excursion at 80 Hz. Using 80 Hz crossovers on the speakers reduces woofer excursion significantly and allows the woofers to reproduce the >80 Hz bass louder and cleaner with less distortion.
In your case, the other advantage is that LCR-type speakers will be shorter and the drivers will be less likely to interfere with the screen frame.

In terms of mounting your screen, with a two-row theater, you need to figure that piece out before you calculate speaker placements. Here is a calculator for figuring screen height vs. 2nd row riser height:
Riser Height Calculator or you can email Mike Garrett and he can send you a spreadsheet that will do it for you: [email protected]

You'll need the height of your screen from the floor, your seating distances for your first and second rows and your seated eye height for each row. To calculate the height of the screen from the floor, you want the size of the screen, and it's aspect ratio. This will determine the height dimension of the screen. It is most optimal to have the eye height at 1/3 to 1/2 screen height. You'll need to decide whether the first or second row will be the primary row, and base your screen height off that row. Alternatively, you can split the difference between rows and use that height, which won't be optimal for either row, but will be "less-bad" for the non-primary row.

To calculate seated eye height you need the height of the seating plus the seated torso to eye height of the tallest listener you expect to have in your theater.

If you would like some help with these calculations, please post your anticipated screen size, aspect ratio and seating distances for each row, as well as room dimensions. Any info you have on the seating, such seatback height, recline clearance, seating height, etc. would also be helpful. Do you plan to build a false wall to mount screen in?

Craig
Craig,

Thanks for the response.

1. Yes, as of now I plan on building a false wall.
2. I already have the equipment I want to use. I used it at a previous home that had a HT setup, but I was a bit limited there as I could not modify the space. Right now I have a roughly 22 X 15 room that I can make. That 22 includes where the false wall will be for the acoustic screen, should I continue to want to go that route.
3. This is in an already finished basement area, therefor my ceiling height is already limited (8 feet). My plan was to put the screen close to ceiling to maximize that space for the 2nd row of seats.
4. Yes, the plan is to use subs. Right now I have one, and I had planned on picking up a 2nd.


For me...this won't be a high end theater, as I simply don't have the cash for that at this point. I do plan on making it so I can upgrade when I want, but that could be 5-10 years down the road. I liked the way my stuff sounded at the old house, so I'm not concerned about crazy changes, but if I go the false wall route, I have the ability then to do 3 tower speakers. I already own 4 Polk Monitor 70's...so using 3 of those would be fine (I had a 5.1 system in my living room, and used two towers there with a center...and a 7.1 in basement with a center and the two towers). I'm not concerned about a surround system in any other room at this time, so I can steal one of those towers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,248 Posts
I already own 4 Polk Monitor 70's...so using 3 of those would be fine (I had a 5.1 system in my living room, and used two towers there with a center...and a 7.1 in basement with a center and the two towers). I'm not concerned about a surround system in any other room at this time, so I can steal one of those towers.
That's certainly the free option, costing you nothing but time. A good LCR-style speaker like the Monoprice Monolith THX-365C MAY be used vertically (I just asked if the tweeters/mids can be rotated). Three of these behind an AT screen would be $1050 while on sale. Of course, for another $400/speaker, you could get the towers (ouch).
For the same price of the towers, there is the PowerSound Audio MTM-210 Pre-order: MTM210 Preorder which are SERIOUS HT speakers - pretty much an "end-game" loudspeaker for most. The sound quality of either of these choices would completely trounce those Polks. I would sell your existing speakers to fund whatever you plan on doing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: bungi43

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,568 Posts
Craig,

Thanks for the response.

1. Yes, as of now I plan on building a false wall.
2. I already have the equipment I want to use. I used it at a previous home that had a HT setup, but I was a bit limited there as I could not modify the space. Right now I have a roughly 22 X 15 room that I can make. That 22 includes where the false wall will be for the acoustic screen, should I continue to want to go that route.
3. This is in an already finished basement area, therefor my ceiling height is already limited (8 feet). My plan was to put the screen close to ceiling to maximize that space for the 2nd row of seats.
4. Yes, the plan is to use subs. Right now I have one, and I had planned on picking up a 2nd.


For me...this won't be a high end theater, as I simply don't have the cash for that at this point. I do plan on making it so I can upgrade when I want, but that could be 5-10 years down the road. I liked the way my stuff sounded at the old house, so I'm not concerned about crazy changes, but if I go the false wall route, I have the ability then to do 3 tower speakers. I already own 4 Polk Monitor 70's...so using 3 of those would be fine (I had a 5.1 system in my living room, and used two towers there with a center...and a 7.1 in basement with a center and the two towers). I'm not concerned about a surround system in any other room at this time, so I can steal one of those towers.
Looking at the Polk Monitor 70's, they appear to be a 2.5-way speaker, (Polk calls it a "tapered-array").



I can't find any spec that shows the crossover frequencies, but generally these types of speakers have the lower 2 woofers crossed at about 500 Hz to the upper 2 woofers and then those woofers crossed to the tweeter at about 2.5 kHz. What this means is that your lower woofers will be outputting mostly bass and lower midrange. Those frequencies have longer wavelengths which will be able to wrap around the screen frame with little impact. IOW, you can mount the screen frame in front of the lower woofers with minimal to trivial impact on the sound quality. If you want to get really fussy, you could mount the screen so the bottom frame sits between the lower 2 woofers, but it really won't matter than much. If you want the bottom of the screen higher than that, you could go between the 2nd and 3rd woofers, but you should avoid placing it in front of the upper mid/woofers.

Good luck with your project!

Craig
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
Use a dedicated center speaker with multiple drivers (a real 3 ways).
If it has the shape of a sound bar, place it just at the bottom of the screen and tilt it 60 degrees up.
That way the tweeter is at the center, one mid range on each side of the tweeter and one bass driver at each end of the sound bar.
I even have one bass reflex exit at each lateral extremity of the sound bar.
You cannot obtain the same spacial configuration with a tower that is vertical.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
105 Posts
From a distance, those 590s don't look quite as scary as they do on the JBL website. :D

Dang, 7 of them all around...that's gotta sound amazing!
Hah hah yeah from 13 feet away they don't look so beastly but stand up close to them Lol
Man 7 around me that's the plan BUT my family will kill me so I gotta use wall mounted surrounds for now but eventually when they lose interest which they will the other 4 are going in there until then 3 of them are being used in the bedroom but one day my friend one day! I will be surrounded by 7 590's it will be epic 😮
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,485 Posts
Hah hah yeah from 13 feet away they don't look so beastly but stand up close to them Lol
Man 7 around me that's the plan BUT my family will kill me so I gotta use wall mounted surrounds for now but eventually when they lose interest which they will the other 4 are going in there until then 3 of them are being used in the bedroom but one day my friend one day! I will be surrounded by 7 590's it will be epic 😮
Some people love full range surrounds, but with good bass management, I love high output surrounds. For a price, it is possible to have both, but IMO, it's better to direct those funds toward 4 subs (one in each corner or 1/4 positions on the front & back walls.)

Subs can do bass better, and the placement is important. The best speaker and sub locations are different.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
105 Posts
Some people love full range surrounds, but with good bass management, I love high output surrounds. For a price, it is possible to have both, but IMO, it's better to direct those funds toward 4 subs (one in each corner or 1/4 positions on the front & back walls.)

Subs can do bass better, and the placement is important. The best speaker and sub locations are different.
I actually never buy towers for full range most towers these days can never truly reach full range unless you want to pay ungodly amounts of money

I buy them fully intending to cross them over with subs

What I get from that is with that many 590's is amazing high output reference level if necessary with zero distortion but more important since I never listen at reference level amazing sound at lower volume levels which really takes any strain off the system sounds great at lower volumes with tons of headroom

Plus I love multichannel music listening

I also hate stands or wall mounts which people always run into and I like the fact that in my theater room I can perfectly just put them on the floor in the exact position I want and they will be spot on for imaging and for moving the sound around the room plus people will just move around them people always sooner or later bump into my surrounds on the wall

In addition they can crossover at 80 to 60 Hz and sound so good with subs in a way I find few bookshelves truly can.

I did find some on walls that match the output since my family hates towers but they are not cheap at all from RBH but they were just about the only company I found that could that could have an on wall speaker that can keep up with those 590's

That's just me though I know every ones different but once I went all towers all the way around crossed over to subs they're was no going back
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,485 Posts
I actually never buy towers for full range most towers these days can never truly reach full range unless you want to pay ungodly amounts of money

I buy them fully intending to cross them over with subs

What I get from that is with that many 590's is amazing high output reference level if necessary with zero distortion but more important since I never listen at reference level amazing sound at lower volume levels which really takes any strain off the system sounds great at lower volumes with tons of headroom

Plus I love multichannel music listening

I also hate stands or wall mounts which people always run into and I like the fact that in my theater room I can perfectly just put them on the floor in the exact position I want and they will be spot on for imaging and for moving the sound around the room plus people will just move around them people always sooner or later bump into my surrounds on the wall

In addition they can crossover at 80 to 60 Hz and sound so good with subs in a way I find few bookshelves truly can.

I did find some on walls that match the output since my family hates towers but they are not cheap at all from RBH but they were just about the only company I found that could that could have an on wall speaker that can keep up with those 590's

That's just me though I know every ones different but once I went all towers all the way around crossed over to subs they're was no going back
That all makes sense. You also can't beat it for timbre matching.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,858 Posts
I did something similar to danzilla31 with three PSB T-45 towers under the screen, but I then used an active mixer to send partial L/C/R to the front height speakers adjusted so that the front sound stage (not just center dialog but left/right mains too so it's all on the same plane) comes from near the center of the screen (about 40% up).

I call it dialog lift after the old Yamaha mode that gave me the idea, except it's really front soundstage lift (works well for panned dialog too). No acoustic transparent screen needed (I couldn't fit it in my room anyway due to the book shelves on either side of the screen).

It would be even better yet with center height speaker too as it would then be perfectly locked in place for all off-axis seats as well, but with the center speaker, dialog never drifts more than 20% or so in the room, still easily close to the center of the screen even for the extreme left and right seats. It would be hard to fit one up there here without blocking the top of the screen the way it's mounted.

Pictures are on my theater page in my signature.
 

·
Registered
Samsung 82Q90R / Pioneer Elite 5.1.2 / Denon AVRS730H
Joined
·
26 Posts
Discussion Starter #34
Heck I didn't even go with an AT screen!!!

And it sounds AWESOME shout out to Zorba922 for bringing up the 590's love mine for the price on sale just bought 4 more!
Very nice setup! I've got screen-greed though. I'm shooting for a 150" 16:9 screen (130"x73") in a 9' ceiling room. I don't think my screen can sit above a floor-standing speaker.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
105 Posts
Very nice setup! I've got screen-greed though. I'm shooting for a 150" 16:9 screen (130"x73") in a 9' ceiling room. I don't think my screen can sit above a floor-standing speaker.
Yeah we just barely got that screen to fit to it was very very close

A 150 16×9 screen will be massive I had a 120 in my old house and that screen was HUGE I can't even imagine
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,248 Posts
Use a dedicated center speaker with multiple drivers (a real 3 ways).
If it has the shape of a sound bar, place it just at the bottom of the screen and tilt it 60 degrees up.
That way the tweeter is at the center, one mid range on each side of the tweeter and one bass driver at each end of the sound bar.
I even have one bass reflex exit at each lateral extremity of the sound bar.
You cannot obtain the same spacial configuration with a tower that is vertical.
Completely incorrect. Take a look behind the screens of you local theatre, they will NOT be using horizontal WT/MW speakers as their centre...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
It is not a commercial theater, it is Home Theater.
By the way, commercial theater equipment will be for sale very cheap soon.
If you go to the Dolby Atmos web site you will see that every time the center speaker is horizontal below the screen.
There is no technical reason that it will not work with a projector and a retractable screen.

That said every one is able to test whatever configuration is in mind.
Hiding the speaker behind the screen will attenuate the high frequencies (-3dB).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,248 Posts
I don't care what you do, Valerian, but I am trying to help the OP not make the same mistake that you insist he do.
All the research in the world, and every sound engineer in the world, says that three identical speakers behind an AT screen is the acoustic ideal. Fullstop.

Properly designed horizontal centre speakers can work very well, just look at my signature. However, if the OP has the physical space for it, why NOT do the best thing possible?
 
  • Like
Reactions: craig john

·
Registered
Joined
·
120 Posts
As the screen attenuate the high frequencies by -3dB the tower speakers need to have a tweeter able to survive to a doubling of normal power level.
Usually tower speakers for consumer markets are very weak in the high frequencies to please the "audiophile" market.
The real error is there: blowing the tweeter driver or not getting a sufficient level in the high frequencies.

Professional speakers for commercial theater are using a completely different technology.
The problem is not placing the speakers behind the screen, but what kind of speaker to use.
I recommand using professional speakers with compression horn drivers for the high frequencies, or may be Klipsch (if the tweeter survive).

"I can tell you that the pro audio world has different kinds of speakers for different applications. There are PA or sound reinforcement speakers, instrument speakers, recording monitors. Each are designed with different goals in mind. "
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,858 Posts
It is not a commercial theater, it is Home Theater.
By the way, commercial theater equipment will be for sale very cheap soon.
If you go to the Dolby Atmos web site you will see that every time the center speaker is horizontal below the screen.
There is no technical reason that it will not work with a projector and a retractable screen.

That said every one is able to test whatever configuration is in mind.
Hiding the speaker behind the screen will attenuate the high frequencies (-3dB).
The diagrams are just examples of typical homes. They have nothing to do with "ideal" or "best" types of speakers or anything remotely like it. Dolby is pushing "bouncy" speakers for god's sake. They lost a lot of credibility with that, IMO just like THX lost theirs when they started licensing computer speakers and cables. There are some on here that act like Dolby's guidelines are the last word on setting up Atmos and that's not true either. They're a starting point for typical one couch setups. They do not generally take into consideration things like multi-row home theaters (except their largest diagram) or unusual room issues. There's a whole world of audio experience that isn't nullified just because someone at Dolby (or someone Dolby hired outside of Dolby) drew some diagrams.

In other words, things like arrays still work in the home even if Dolby doesn't talk about them. Their angles in most of the diagrams don't account for having 6 overheads either and some complained when they showed front/rear heights at 20 degree angle minimum in those newer drawings. WHY!? Well, it's because the truth is it's about old-fashioned 1960s stereo phantom imaging angles. If you bridge two stereo pairs with a third in the middle, the phantom imaging is much stronger and you don't need the overhead pairs as close together. Ideally, a full Atmos theater would have height speakers above the screen and across the ceiling to the back wall. That's ideal at home too if you have the room for it, but few people have the space or money to do it. People on here tend to prefer "tops" over "heights" because they say the direct overhead sounds are weak with heights (in decent sized rooms; small rooms wouldn't have an issue). That's because of the angles in-between too. Dolby doesn't discuss "why" in a diagram. They just show an example setup. People think they have to have the couch 2/3 back into the room. No, you don't. If you divide the room into equal spacing quadrants for the speakers, you can place the seats anywhere you like. "Side surround" can be in front of you or to the side of you or behind you. They're arrayed at a real theater. You can array them at home in larger setups too with an active mixer. That's something a high-end installer would likely know all about, but it's not shown in Dolby diagrams. I array my front wides, side surrounds and surround #1 speakers together. It works great at home just as it does at a real theater because the larger your home theater becomes, the more it's like an actual cinema theater.

Horizontal speakers typically produce comb effects and that's why they're bad. A few better designs do not, but the reason they are horizontally mounted in the first place has to do with early home theater using large CRT TVs or rear projectors and cabinets where the ONLY place to put a center speaker was generally on top of the TV. With flat screens and projectors, this is simply not the case any longer in many setups. If you want a consistent sound stage across the front, the speakers should ideally be IDENTICAL. This means the imaging won't shift or change in character or suffer lobing effects or anything else across the front sound stage.

You'll find a lot of people complaining about Dolby removing the "center spread" feature of DSU that they liked to use for music. Well, why did they like to use it for music? It's because their center channels don't match the mains and the music sounds superior using the mains more than the center channel (a simple workaround solution is to just turn off the center channel for music playback regardless of how many channels the music uses and let the mains create a phantom center which is better than a "center spread" center since it doesn't use that inferior center speaker at all. With three identical speakers set up precisely there is no audible difference between "center spread" and regular DSU for the MLP and center spread weakens the anchoring effect of the center speaker for off-axis seats by using mostly the L/R mains. That is why three identical speakers work best. They don't have to be three towers. They can be three satellite speakers with bass sent to the subwoofer. Ideally, it would be best to have identical speakers in every location in the home theater for the best possible sound match, but typically having similar or the same drivers works well enough for most people.)
 
21 - 40 of 59 Posts
Top