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Go Back   Blu-ray Forum > Audio > Speakers

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Old 02-05-2021, 03:12 PM   #21
canucksam canucksam is online now
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If they have big TVs, but are just watching re-runs of Friends, yeah, you don't need a sound system.
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Old 02-05-2021, 04:03 PM   #22
IRLM IRLM is offline
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Well, first reason for me is that most of what I watch are old movies, art-house, criterions, etc. So most of them come with mono soundtracks and really aren't about the sound. Even when I watch tv or youtube it's mostly news and talking heads shows so I just need a set where voices sound clear. I enjoy my share of mainstream and anime movies too but sound is never a reason why I get interested in them.

Second reason is a bit more complicated. Ask any serious audiophile and he'll laugh at your 1,000 dollars 7.1 home theater system. Then you'll see his big, ugly and unasuming two speakers and think he's a fool. He'll tell you about DAC's, amplifiers, tubes, power sources, cables, etc. You'll only get why his system is worth thousands of dollars until you listen.

A good stereo system should give you rich, detailed sound with a sense of space. Marketing is made to sell us the idea that five or seven speakers is "better", more is better. In reality, what happens is that it's cheaper to produce five, seven average speakers and place them all around your room than producing a quality stereo system that creates the same effect.

Now, I am sure that there's a lot of high end multi-speaker systems that sound great and justify their price tags. It's just that to me the concept seems rather gimmicky.

For the record, I go with the Edifier 1280db speakers which I got for around a hundred dollars a few years ago. I'm very content with those.
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Old 02-05-2021, 04:27 PM   #23
78deluxe 78deluxe is offline
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I'm an audiophile (recording engineer in my case is the more accurate label) and even own a recording studio.

While I never use TV audio, I'd imagine 80-90% of the content I consume on a TV comes out of the Center Channel speaker even though I have a speaker, amp, player setup that costs more than most people's entire home theatre setup.

(I own a 65 inch OLED, if I had to choose, I'd take the TV and get rid of the speakers). Way different if you are only consuming music.
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Old 02-05-2021, 05:11 PM   #24
smithb smithb is offline
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Originally Posted by IRLM View Post
A good stereo system should give you rich, detailed sound with a sense of space. Marketing is made to sell us the idea that five or seven speakers is "better", more is better. In reality, what happens is that it's cheaper to produce five, seven average speakers and place them all around your room than producing a quality stereo system that creates the same effect.
Sorry, but that makes no sense. A stereo system can not create the same effect as a multi-channel surround sound system playing back content with discrete surround sound channels, no matter how good the stereo system is.

I will agree that quality of the system matters, and most into audio will recommend that if money is limited, buy quality front speakers first and gradually add on over time, rather than try to buy all upfront and sacrifice quality.

Just as a person can buy a quality stereo system, they can buy a quality multi-channel surround sound system that will out perform the stereo system with multi-channel content. It will cost more but it can be done. There are generally diminishing returns as one continues up the quality chain. At some point one has to determine their financial cut-off point and determine where there focus is (stereo or multi-channel), but there is quality available in both directions.

Last edited by smithb; 02-05-2021 at 05:16 PM.
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Old 02-05-2021, 05:43 PM   #25
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In response to the Op's question, most just buy the TV, plug it in, and start watching. I'll bet the majority don't go through the process of configuring it for the best picture that generally requires additional knowledge/research/playing around to understand what everything means/does.

A separate audio system not only is an extra cost, but it also takes time to understand what to get, make room for, and configure. I just don't think many have the interest/inclination to go that far. Some may also believe it has to be this big gaudy system.

I recently upgraded the audio in my family room (55" flat screen) where we watch shows as a family after dinner. We were watching DS9 and some of the explosions were causing havoc to the TV speaker low-end. Some shows weren't handling the dialogue well when through TV stereo speakers (effects too loud and dialogue too soft). I found this Pioneer HT receiver only 2" high, grabbed two small bookshelf speakers with matching center that fit in our console and presto the audio is 10x better. No surround, just three distinct channels up front with clear audio.
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Old 02-05-2021, 05:54 PM   #26
KubrickKurasawa KubrickKurasawa is offline
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Originally Posted by Torgon View Post
You don't need to spend $1,500 to enjoy the sound. Heck, as you mentioned, most people are content with the TV speakers; sound is just sound (to them). A small 5.1 can satisfy your normal/casual TV/movie watcher IMO; not so much for the rest of us . Currently looking to upgrade my Subwoofer myself; I want to go deeper. My current sub starts at 37Hz; I want something at least in the 20-30Hz range.
25/26hz to 30 I notice it starting up, but right about 37-80 is where I prefer. I think a lot of people set their crossover in their receivers to handle front/center/surrounds at 80 and up like 80,90,100. More low range is preferred I guess. Or at least something to brag about ha ha. That's what I see on Youtube pro gear videos. Nothing wrong with more frequency range!

I notice when I leave my room I can hear sub in other rooms across in the house at a nice volume (Like the first scene of Kong Skull Island i.e.), and I notice when I walk in my room it sounds like walking into a movie at the theater mid way like when you get a popcorn refill etc. And that makes me happy. Aim for that I think is my advice for a set up, if it does that and makes you smile. You are good

Last edited by KubrickKurasawa; 02-05-2021 at 05:59 PM.
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Old 02-05-2021, 10:49 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by smithb View Post
Sorry, but that makes no sense. A stereo system can not create the same effect as a multi-channel surround sound system playing back content with discrete surround sound channels, no matter how good the stereo system is.

I will agree that quality of the system matters, and most into audio will recommend that if money is limited, buy quality front speakers first and gradually add on over time, rather than try to buy all upfront and sacrifice quality.

Just as a person can buy a quality stereo system, they can buy a quality multi-channel surround sound system that will out perform the stereo system with multi-channel content. It will cost more but it can be done. There are generally diminishing returns as one continues up the quality chain. At some point one has to determine their financial cut-off point and determine where there focus is (stereo or multi-channel), but there is quality available in both directions.
Like I said, I'm sure there's plenty of multiple speaker systems that offer great sound and justify their prices.

The goal is to fill your room with sound and provide the ilusion of "being there". You can choose to do it via simple acoustic theory and a stereo system or you can install speakers all over your room. Whatever you choose I don't care, knock yourself out.

I'm here just to argue against the popular conception of surround systems as "a proper setup" for home theaters and the implication that anything less than that is insufficient. It's not about the amount of channels available or how many speakers you have. The acoustics of your room, along with speaker and viewer placement are way more important.
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Old 02-05-2021, 11:56 PM   #28
smithb smithb is offline
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Originally Posted by IRLM View Post
Like I said, I'm sure there's plenty of multiple speaker systems that offer great sound and justify their prices.

The goal is to fill your room with sound and provide the ilusion of "being there". You can choose to do it via simple acoustic theory and a stereo system or you can install speakers all over your room. Whatever you choose I don't care, knock yourself out.

I'm here just to argue against the popular conception of surround systems as "a proper setup" for home theaters and the implication that anything less than that is insufficient. It's not about the amount of channels available or how many speakers you have. The acoustics of your room, along with speaker and viewer placement are way more important.
Sorry, your logic in general is flawed when a sound track was designed with more than two channels in mind (which many are). Room acoustics and speaker placement are all important, I don't deny that. But hearing the output in its intended format is equally important and taking a sound track with more than two channels and playing it through a two channel system will not replicate the intended sound no matter how good the two channel system or the acoustics of the room.

Now, if you want to say a mono or stereo sound track is best played without artificially adding surround sound, that is fine, but there is no substance to an argument that suggest it is best to intentionally ignore information that was purposely included within surround channels. Your logic escapes me.

I'm not about having extra speakers or channels just to have them. It's about using the information provided as it was intended to be used, and if that means more than two channels then that is what is needed. I also happen to have an acoustically treated room as well.
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Old 02-07-2021, 10:59 PM   #29
78deluxe 78deluxe is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smithb View Post
Sorry, your logic in general is flawed when a sound track was designed with more than two channels in mind (which many are). Room acoustics and speaker placement are all important, I don't deny that. But hearing the output in its intended format is equally important and taking a sound track with more than two channels and playing it through a two channel system will not replicate the intended sound no matter how good the two channel system or the acoustics of the room.

Now, if you want to say a mono or stereo sound track is best played without artificially adding surround sound, that is fine, but there is no substance to an argument that suggest it is best to intentionally ignore information that was purposely included within surround channels. Your logic escapes me.

I'm not about having extra speakers or channels just to have them. It's about using the information provided as it was intended to be used, and if that means more than two channels then that is what is needed. I also happen to have an acoustically treated room as well.
I wouldn't advise speaking in absolutes on this one.

Yes some sound tracks will have information going to the rear speakers (otherwise why would they mix in surround). However, there a way too many factors here to speak in absolutes.

I'd rather have a great stereo pair in a treated room than a low end 5.1 or 7.1 system in an untreated room (and as noted above, people pay me to create mixes).

The majority of content comes from the front in any mix. Most decoding recievers are going to do some downmixing of a surround sound track so some of that information gets put in the stereo pair, so it isn't like you lose everything. As I noted above, the vast majority of "movie" content that is important actually goes to the center channel.

While I recommend a surround sound setup for most people, the reality is in most homes, the 5.1 or 7.1 is going to bounce all over the place and muddy up a mix, sure it is imersive but it also isn't want the engineer intended either. At least a "front channel" only setup is more likley to feel fairly imersive and have less phase and reflection issues.

The Good the Bad and the Ugly has one of the best sound tracks of all time, guess how many speakers are needed to replicate the "original?"

The notion that surround sound is integral in the enjoyment of a film is utter non-sense. If the film doesn't draw you in with a single center channel speaker, then the moive wasn't worth a damn in the first place.
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Old 02-07-2021, 11:14 PM   #30
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I've often wondered the exact opposite of the original question here ... why do some people go for crazy audio overkill - home theater systems with massive speakers, multiple subs, etc, that completely dwarf their screens? I'm on a HT group on Facebook and I see that all the time. Here's a photo that another member posted the other day:
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Old 02-07-2021, 11:45 PM   #31
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If I can only have one, I’ll always take the better audio over the video.
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Old 02-08-2021, 01:18 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by charlieray1 View Post
I've often wondered the exact opposite of the original question here ... why do some people go for crazy audio overkill - home theater systems with massive speakers, multiple subs, etc, that completely dwarf their screens? I'm on a HT group on Facebook and I see that all the time. Here's a photo that another member posted the other day:
What I want to know is why the owner of this home theater have the bottom of the TV hidden behind the center channel speaker, where you can't see the entire screen. The center channel speaker is too big.
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Old 02-08-2021, 01:42 AM   #33
smithb smithb is offline
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Originally Posted by 78deluxe View Post
Yes some sound tracks will have information going to the rear speakers (otherwise why would they mix in surround). However, there a way too many factors here to speak in absolutes.

I'd rather have a great stereo pair in a treated room than a low end 5.1 or 7.1 system in an untreated room (and as noted above, people pay me to create mixes).
This is what I am taking exception to:

"A good stereo system should give you rich, detailed sound with a sense of space. Marketing is made to sell us the idea that five or seven speakers is "better", more is better. In reality, what happens is that it's cheaper to produce five, seven average speakers and place them all around your room than producing a quality stereo system that creates the same effect."

I'd rather have a great 5.1 or 7.1 system in a treated room. I never said anything about a cheap surround sound system in a untreated room. The statement above implies a great stereo system does not need surrounds or a center channel to create the appropriate effect. I disagree, all things being created equal a 3.1, 5.1 or 7.1 setup of the same components will best a stereo setup when it comes to audio that contains 3.1, 5.1 or 7.1 content (i.e., same room with three to seven speakers, each equivalent in quality to the stereo pair).

Quote:
Originally Posted by 78deluxe View Post
The majority of content comes from the front in any mix. Most decoding receivers are going to do some down-mixing of a surround sound track so some of that information gets put in the stereo pair, so it isn't like you lose everything. As I noted above, the vast majority of "movie" content that is important actually goes to the center channel.
Agreed, which is why I think a separate center speaker is needed and not some faux mixing to create one when only using stereo speakers (given that discrete center information is provided). Again mine is an argument focused specifically on whether stereo speakers can provide the same imaging as a 3.1, 5.1 or 7.1 speaker setup when all else is equal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 78deluxe View Post
While I recommend a surround sound setup for most people, the reality is in most homes, the 5.1 or 7.1 is going to bounce all over the place and muddy up a mix, sure it is immersive but it also isn't want the engineer intended either. At least a "front channel" only setup is more likely to feel fairly immersive and have less phase and reflection issues.
I have three setups in my house. My dedicated HT room is the only one that is 7.1, and it is a treated room. The other two are in more open areas and are 3.0. I generally recommend 3.0/1 to most people because it generally provides the most bang for the buck. I value the center channel too much to recommend a stereo setup.

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Originally Posted by 78deluxe View Post
The Good the Bad and the Ugly has one of the best sound tracks of all time, guess how many speakers are needed to replicate the "original?"
It doesn't matter to me, as long as I can replicate it. Whether I use all the speakers or not is not important to me as along as I support what was intended for the audio. I have movies and TV shows that run the gambit from mono to 7.1. Why should I not want to reproduce what was intended/provided?

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Originally Posted by 78deluxe View Post
The notion that surround sound is integral in the enjoyment of a film is utter non-sense. If the film doesn't draw you in with a single center channel speaker, then the movie wasn't worth a damn in the first place.
Never said anything of the kind, but now who is using absolutes. Very few movies are perfect. I'll bet most can point to certain movies where what they remember most is the story, others where it was the visuals, and others the audio. When utilized well surround and the center channel can greatly enhance the experience (e.g., Private Ryan), just like when having a large screen.

Using your same logic, if a film doesn't draw you in with a 19" screen watching from 12' away, then the movie wasn't worth a damn in the first place. Whether true or not, I'm sure glad I'm not doing that any more, and can enjoy films on a 92" screen with a 7.1 audio system. it sure is a lot more fun.
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Old 02-08-2021, 01:52 AM   #34
smithb smithb is offline
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Originally Posted by charlieray1 View Post
I've often wondered the exact opposite of the original question here ... why do some people go for crazy audio overkill - home theater systems with massive speakers, multiple subs, etc, that completely dwarf their screens? I'm on a HT group on Facebook and I see that all the time. Here's a photo that another member posted the other day:
Obviously, this person is influenced more by audio than video. I've tended towards a balance across all areas, video, audio, room dynamics, and comfort.

That said, the interesting thing about this thread is that most would look at this room and see the obvious disparity going on of audio over video. However, when most see a huge flat screen with nothing but TV speakers or a tiny soundbar, few see any disparity, yet it is there.

If someone says that audio just isn't that important to them, fine, whatever makes them happy. Just like the person above with all their audio gear. My only exception was the stating that with proper setup stereo can provide the same imaging as a multi-channel surround system (including center channel) when so much content available goes beyond two channels.

Last edited by smithb; 02-08-2021 at 02:00 AM.
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Old 02-08-2021, 04:05 AM   #35
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Maybe because I bought them all up first. I have owned over 50 pairs. I mean these are serious speakers. Like 100 pounds each. Laws of physics is are in full effect. Unless it is mounted on the wall or ceiling it has one or two 15" cones in it. No brain/auditory trickery applied here. Usually have 20 pairs somewhere around here. I have a couple of guesses why others shy away.
Space
Cosmetics
Wires
Cost
Installation/mounting
Required additional hardware
Lack of technical knowledge
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Old 02-08-2021, 04:14 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 78deluxe View Post
I wouldn't advise speaking in absolutes on this one.



The notion that surround sound is integral in the enjoyment of a film is utter non-sense. If the film doesn't draw you in with a single center channel speaker, then the moive wasn't worth a damn in the first place.
Not to me it ain't.
My 5.1.2 is at the lower end of mid-level, but it sure is enjoyable.
I've had 2-channel and cheap 5.1 and like what I have now much more.
If I were to trade the 5.1.2 for 2-channel in equal value, I wouldn't like it.
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Old 02-08-2021, 04:27 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 78deluxe View Post

The notion that surround sound is integral in the enjoyment of a film is utter non-sense. If the film doesn't draw you in with a single center channel speaker, then the moive wasn't worth a damn in the first place.
Speaking of utter nonsense...
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Old 02-08-2021, 04:16 PM   #38
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Speaking of utter nonsense...
Unless its the B & W HTM1 D3
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Old 02-14-2021, 10:42 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by Scarriere View Post
Not to me it ain't.
My 5.1.2 is at the lower end of mid-level, but it sure is enjoyable.
I've had 2-channel and cheap 5.1 and like what I have now much more.
If I were to trade the 5.1.2 for 2-channel in equal value, I wouldn't like it.
5.1.2 sounds good to me and the price to me looks like the sweet spot anyways.

5.1 has been strong for over a decade or 2.
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Old 02-14-2021, 06:55 PM   #40
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Almost everyone I know has a larger TV than me. I only have a 43" TV but most people I know have 50"+. But here's the funny thing, I'm the only that seems to have a 5.1 surround setup. Everyone else I know that has the nice big TV uses their TV speakers for their sound. Why spend money on such a big TV if you're not buying the proper speakers for it?
Part of it is that it is very easy to walk into a store, see a great picture and walk out with the TV.

Getting a good audio system requires more research and effort both before and after the purchase.

Plus there are things like the WAF and the money involved. A basic but enjoyable 5.1 system of an entry level Denon receiver, something like a BIC sub and some Polk speakers on sale is going to be close to $1000.

A 58” 4K Samsung TV is less than $500 at Costco and you plug it into the wall, your cable box and your streaming device and you are ready to go.

Last edited by bladerunner6; 02-15-2021 at 11:29 AM.
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