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  • Proper number of surround channels?

    This was originally posted by willdoa on June 18 in another thread. Moving it here as 1) it is more appropriate subject matter for this forum and 2) to defedd against a clearly blatant attempt to hijack the other thread!!! :biglaugh:

    Here is the original post:

    Hey, while I have you, and "just slightly" OT (I'm lyin'):

    There's a bit of a hoopla raging over at AVS (yes, I've stirred the pot of snark admirably!), regarding a poll of what members think is the "proper" number of surround sound channels. Needless to say, it's been fun to poke the "majority bears," being the Audyssey DSX 11.X fan that I am. The majority, of course, think the proper number is pretty much what they've already invested in, which isn't the spankin' new DSX--gotta justify one's purchase, and all that. And, most have never heard anything over 7.1 (or 5.1--they probably don't know how to setup their existing gear, using DPLIIx to get 7.1 if it isn't a discrete mix, and they probably don't have any discrete 7.1 media...and, and...and...easy targets). There are a few knowledgable puritans, however, and I'd respect their opinions...except that they're mostly too righteous to even audition something so outre as 11.X.

    What's your take (Craig, Ajax and/or everyone) on 5.X + channels. (Well, I guess we can figure out the ".X' part, Craig. And don't feed me/us what we want to hear just to sell more Pro-10s!)

    [EDIT] Move this outa this thread, if you like--or tell me where to take it--if it isn't proper here. I expect it isn't. Hey! What a cool way to hijak a thread: find a brawl elsewhere, and invite it home! Lemme go tell everybody; pass the tequila; let's get the site's stats up, lol!
    Ray


  • #2
    As a 90% two-channel guy my completely uneducated opinion is whatever floats your boat. :D
    Is the surround experience enjoyable and convincing, if not, time for an upgrade. As a purist, I tend to prefer using the mix that it was intended for. Pro-Logic was not great, but as a casual movie watcher (compared to this crowd) I have been happy with 5.1. I do prefer DTS over Dolby Digital, but don't have a BlueRay player yet.

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    • #3
      Tsk, tsk, Don.

      Now that's WAY to benign and uncontroversial a post for a true PITA!


      :boom:


      Will

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      • #4
        Well, maybe it'll have to do that we invite TCA members to join the AVS fray...

        "POLL ON SURROUND SOUND FOR AVS FORUM MEMBERS.... Rumors are afoot on the number of surround channel to be offered on coming home theater gear. So we thought we would pose the question on how many speakers would you like to see for home surround sound? What do you think? PLEASE VOTE IN OUR POLL" Here's the link at AVS:


        http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1256647


        :woo:


        Will

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        • #5
          How about a single continuous speaker all the way around your room? Call it (infinity).1 :biglaugh:

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          • #6
            Originally posted by bkellison
            How about a single continuous speaker all the way around your room? Call it (infinity).1 :biglaugh:
            Holy cow, thanks!

            I have been planning a multi sub system for my living room for a while now. To simplify matters, I told my girlfriend that I should just move into one giant subwoofer. Now this idea can be taken even further, 1.1 surround sound! :rock:

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            • #7
              Originally posted by tesseract
              Holy cow, thanks!

              I have been planning a multi sub system for my living room for a while now. To simplify matters, I told my girlfriend that I should just move into one giant subwoofer. Now this idea can be taken even further, 1.1 surround sound! :rock:
              some guy built a speaker setup in a shipping container... was some fancy art installation..


              Tried googling for it but couldn't find anything..

              edit: also forgot about this thing.. lol http://blog.sounddomain.com/gadget/2...n-of-bass.html

              Matt
              Still think Craig is in the "Chase" for that sense of humour. :neener 1:

              Comment


              • #8
                That was built for the military.

                http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=822144
                http://www.danleysoundlabs.com/matterhorn.htm

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by bkellison
                  How about a single continuous speaker all the way around your room? Call it (infinity).1 :biglaugh:

                  Like, a 15-foot driver.

                  You could put the barcalounger in the very middle, in lieu of dustcap.

                  Put a duncecap on your head, and you're the phase plug.

                  And I don't even wanna think about the sexual possibilities...:whistle:




                  ...with 16Hz pipe-organ test-tones, natch.



                  Baby got back.


                  Booty got bounce.


                  Daddy got hip dysplasia.


                  :dizzy:

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I always thought it depended on room size. If one had a small room then 7.1 could seem like one continious speaker.

                    The sources are usually only 5.1 or stereo, though newer ones are 7.1. So the chances are, one would only have 5.1 so why have more? Added cost, added hassle of placement, few sources, etc... Now if one had a fancy theater and went through all that trouble, then only had 5.1, it would seem like a waste just like those HTiB 7.1 systems just seem silly.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Mep
                      ...just like those HTiB 7.1 systems just seem silly.


                      I know. (Sigh.) And ya gotta know that 11.1 HTIBs with little fartboxes are coming.



                      As sure as death, taxes, and SOME SERIOUS TCA SUBS!

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                      • #12
                        FYI: For those who've perused the AVS link, you may know that AVS member Roger Dressler (a member and "good thinker" there that I greatly respect, and with whom I've had some terrific "conversations"--including the one, below) and I have had a very serious and rigorous debate about the Audyssey DSX system--particularly regarding whether the processing "adds" sounds to the mix, e.g. "manufactured" early reflections created for the Wides--or, whether it merely "steers" existing info., e.g. from the fronts, primarily, to those positions. It has all been very collegial, if somewhat intense. My take was on "original to the mix"; Roger's was "created."

                        Chris Kyriakakis of Audyssey has chimed in and settled the debate, once and for all. The oracle has spoken. I won't ruin it for you...the relevant posts begin about Post 260, here:

                        http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...1256647&page=9

                        (Note that the quotes Roger uses in #260 are from a prior post I had made in response to another poster, not to one of Roger's posts. That poster had been making statements that I felt, perhaps a little harshly in retrospect (NAH!), were simultaneously overbroad, inaccurate, and nonsensical (No mean feat, when you think about it!). But, this started the ball rolling between Roger and me--a debate which was considerably more polite and refined, if passionate. And, I think, informative. Although it never was really about who was right, in any event, I guess--as you'll see if you click through...I guess all it ever really was all about was "the beer"...perhaps the women...you'll see what I mean...but, anyway: ain't that always how it finally devolves?!)


                        Will

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by willdao
                          Chris Kyriakakis of Audyssey has chimed in and settled the debate, once and for all. The oracle has spoken. I won't ruin it for you...the relevant posts begin about Post 260, here:
                          I don't see any posts from Chris in that thread. Where did he chime in?

                          I voted for 7.1 because I think room space dictates to a great extent what is "necessary." My room is 12ft wide, but my speakers already create a soundstage that extends beyond the actual room size. Adding another speaker right next to the wall boundary probably won't extend the soundstage any. However, it may provide a little more dynamics for the effects that are steered to it.

                          By the way, I use JRSS for surround processing to 7.1.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by mojave
                            I don't see any posts from Chris in that thread. Where did he chime in?

                            I voted for 7.1 because I think room space dictates to a great extent what is "necessary." My room is 12ft wide, but my speakers already create a soundstage that extends beyond the actual room size. Adding another speaker right next to the wall boundary probably won't extend the soundstage any. However, it may provide a little more dynamics for the effects that are steered to it.

                            By the way, I use JRSS for surround processing to 7.1.

                            Sorry, mojave, I misspoke; AVS member "streetsmart88," a.k.a. Mark, was kind enough to bring posts 260-ff to the attention of the Audyssey thread habitues, and Chris responded there; Mark then brought the "verdict" back, at post #295, with a quote.

                            I thought folks might like to read the actual dynamic debate from 260-295 (only a few actual posts scattered among the 35, promise!) before jumping to the writ-from-on-high conclusion. Spolier alert, and all that, too.

                            Regarding whether to use Wides given your narrow room, and the already nice presentation "beyond the frame": by setting up the Wides on the line of 15 degrees wider (i.e. sliding them closer along the side walls from 45 at the front left/right from center, to the wides at 60 degrees from center) I think you may find dramatically increased width, even still. They're not actually going wider, because of the width limits (duh), but they'll sound like it--when appropriate--because of the complimentary MultiEQ delay and other processing. But, of course, we're always talking in terms of the law of diminishing returns. However, the greatest benefit, IMHO of Audyssey is NOT in promoting the use of more channels, but of helping us to redefine the ideal paradigm according to the speakers added that have the most effect, given the psychoacoustic principles they've rigorously tested: after 5.1, and given the way we hear, the next most important set of speakers is the Wides, then followed by the Heights, then followed, finally, by the Rear Surrounds.

                            So, a 7.1 system with Wides, not Rears, will have a far more realistic soundfield presentation than with the Dolby Rear 7.1 paradigm. Especially as the Audyssey recommendation for the Sides is not to place them at the 90 degree lateral plane (90 degrees from the front Center, or directly to the sides), but 15 degrees beyond this, i.e 105 degrees, or slightly behind the listener. so, the rear fill is enhanced, the "stereo surround" effect maintained, "flyovers" still correctly image (actually, the heights help with rear-to-front fill, here, too), and the accuracy to the original (presumably, or usually 5.1) source, where the side surrounds, properly, have most of the surround burden, is maintained. Our ears are most sensitive to front info, so the Wides help here (albeit at the expense of strict conformity to the "pure" source). And, also, help with sound reinforcement, as you mentioned--and with the front to rear fill. So, the "sonic bubble" is enhanced, all around.

                            Enough for now! My hands are tired.

                            Well, execpt to say: regarding the use of the Wides in some 5.1 games: the effects don't work well because of this reinforcment--e.g. almost double the sound from the left and right, with the contribution of the Wides, compared to the center. Not good. But, this apparently is with only a few games. Not sure, as I'm not really a gamer. Read it on AVS, somewhere. Maybe early in the very thread we're talking about, if anyone's interested. In any event, the deleterious effect does not happen with movies, and only a few games. The Wides, of course, can be switched off as needed...if rarely.

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                            • #15
                              I use 7.1, but I admit I've wanted to try some of the new 9.1 receivers to see how the "height" dimension goes. I prefer a really enveloping sound field.

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