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Rear surround speaker options (5,1) in small room

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I am in the process of upgrading my speakers which are being using for music and movies (5.1 surround).

 

I have replaced my front L/R main speakers and soon to get the associated centre speaker to keep the speaker "family" the same.

 

Given the rear speakers are primarily used for effects, the understanding is that they don't necessarily have to be the same "family" sonically as the front/centre channel.

 

My current rear speakers have been a set of small bookshelf speakers located directly behind the couch. However I would ideally like to sell these with the other speakers and use something a bit more discrete.

 

My options are either to find a set of small discrete speakers to again locate behind the couch or look at budget ceiling mounted speakers.

 

With a small room (about 2.5m from seating to tv) I am a bit concerned about ceiling mounting the rear speakers. Firstly the ceiling mounted speakers would have to fitted directly above the couch as I cannot mount the ceiling speakers behind the couch due to a wall - not sure whether this would reduce the rear effects being directly above? Secondly I'm wondering whether this would sound unusual with rear effects in the ceiling and mains at floor level in a small room?

 

I am also wondering whether I am underestimating the role of the rear surround speakers and whether I should actually be investing in better quality  surround speakers?

 

 

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I had a pair of towers and a matching bookshelf (as in exactly the same speaker but a shorter cabinet) as the centre and 2 bookshelf surrounds from the same line (same cabinet but slightly different woofer) all with 8" drivers and it sounded OK.

 

On a whim I swapped them all for smaller 5" driver bookshelfs from the same line and the improvement in soundfield, cohesion and immersion was significant. So much so that I now run them as all  13 speakers in my 7.x.6 setup.

 

So no you do not have to match the surrounds but the closer you get to matching all your speakers the better it will sound.

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can you post the speakers you have bought. i bet the centre will be undersized, most centres are not matched with fronts (for movies that is) by manufacturers.

 

cant understand going small surrounds (they are "side surrounds, rears come in a 7.1 set up and are placed differently)

 

 

 

 

Edited by hopefullguy

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If you are doing a 5.1 setup, the rears should be at your ear level or up to 5 feet high but not more.

The speaker position is going to matter more than just the matching the brand / tweeter... cheers

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ear level.. maybe if using atmos. most guides i have seen place them 300-600mm above seated ear level.. but if it works then do it

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surround sound and achieving that where dont have walls and cant have floor standing speakers as a compromise indeed can go inceilings for the L&R surrounds... I've heard a few systems where do this...eg open plan settings and can get away with it !

 

however rear is probably not the most ideal location for them. note you can get in ceilings eg the krix that even have angled drivers... most in ceilings can even point tweeters quite a bit to you. sound will still come from the ceiling but it will work.

 

as per dolby guidelines should new at 90 deg to 110 degree of listening position... so either to L&R of couch or slightly behind :) 

 

also these days and depends how far go... but mixes are quite sophisticated and can have stuff panning all over the room. so those early days of surrounds where surround speakers were jsut effects are now gone with who speaker set being used to create a sound field :) 

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With in wall/ceiling speakers you can even do 5.1.2 or 5.1.1. There are single stereo in ceiling speakers for dolby atmos for small spaces. 

  

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14 hours ago, hopefullguy said:

can you post the speakers you have bought. i bet the centre will be undersized, most centres are not matched with fronts (for movies that is) by manufacturers.

 

cant understand going small surrounds (they are "side surrounds, rears come in a 7.1 set up and are placed differently)

 

 

 

 

Recently purchased the Elac FS 249.3 floorstanding speakers.

 

I believe the matching centre speaker is the Elac CC 400. However due to my budget and size issues I might have to look at the Elac CC241.3 centre speaker instead.

 

Ideally I would like to get Elac speakers for the rears however my budget was blown by getting the new floorstanders... I couldn't resist them!

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14 hours ago, Irek said:

With in wall/ceiling speakers you can even do 5.1.2 or 5.1.1. There are single stereo in ceiling speakers for dolby atmos for small spaces. 

  

Cool... didn't realise there were single stereo speakers available. Presumably they have adjustable tweeters to effectively "direct" the stereo image?

 

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What about amplification? 

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1 hour ago, Irek said:

What about amplification? 

In regards to amplification I am using a Denon AVR4311 which I believe is rated at around 140w @ 8ohms (for the surround channels). The Denon is only used to drive the centre and surround speakers. The mains are driven by a Musical Fidelity integrated amp with Home Theater bypass.

 

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the denon works out at roughly

9 channels driven.. 56w

7 channels.. 76w

5 channels 96w

goes up from there.. mine powers the 2 front wides.

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Small tripoles mounted on the wall worked well for me. My couch is up against the back wall. The improvement over small bookshelf speakers was quite noticeable.

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Get the Elac CC 400. If you can't get it now than use one of the existing bookshelf speaker for time being. It saves you money long term. 

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