Dolby Atmos, etc. and speaker selection

RBFC

WBF Founding Member & Super Moderator
Staff member
Apr 20, 2010
5,138
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585
Albuquerque, NM
www.fightingconcepts.com
I have to purchase new surround speakers for my system (combined audio/theater). The three front speakers (as described in my signature) will remain the same. B&W now offers the CT LCRS7.3, which is roughly equivalent to the current surrounds in my existing 6.1 system. I will be moving to 7.1, and possibly adding the overhead speakers for ATMOS-type processing. With a budget of $6000, I can either add 4 of the CT 7.3 speakers for traditional 7.1 ($1500 each), or I can add a total of 6 CT 7.5 speakers (smaller, $500 each) to use as the rear surrounds and four overhead speakers. Either path costs the same.

Does anyone have any thoughts on which method would produce better results? My first impression is that smaller rear surrounds won't be a big issue, and that the future-proofing of overhead speakers might be a good idea. My hesitation comes from the fact that this choice would not provide all matching speakers for the 7.1 implementation, which is the majority of soundtracks (until ATMOS up-processing is added to the system).

Thanks,

Lee
 

rhbblb1

Well-Known Member
May 5, 2010
52
0
411
I have to purchase new surround speakers for my system (combined audio/theater). The three front speakers (as described in my signature) will remain the same. B&W now offers the CT LCRS7.3, which is roughly equivalent to the current surrounds in my existing 6.1 system. I will be moving to 7.1, and possibly adding the overhead speakers for ATMOS-type processing. With a budget of $6000, I can either add 4 of the CT 7.3 speakers for traditional 7.1 ($1500 each), or I can add a total of 6 CT 7.5 speakers (smaller, $500 each) to use as the rear surrounds and four overhead speakers. Either path costs the same.

Does anyone have any thoughts on which method would produce better results? My first impression is that smaller rear surrounds won't be a big issue, and that the future-proofing of overhead speakers might be a good idea. My hesitation comes from the fact that this choice would not provide all matching speakers for the 7.1 implementation, which is the majority of soundtracks (until ATMOS up-processing is added to the system).

Thanks,

Lee

I have been living with a 7.1.4 Atmos system for a few months. Also, Audioguy lives near me and he also has a 7.1.4 Atmos system. I would recommend getting the 6 less expensive speakers. The difference between 7.1 and 7.1.4 is huge. Also, the surround and height speakers don't have to be super high end and do not need to match your main speakers to sound good. Room correction, which is available on most surround processors, timbre match the speakers satisfactorily.
By the way, DSU (Dolby Surround Upsampler) makes every movie, and I mean every movie, sound much better. No need to wait for a large number of Atmos encoded movies. Jump in the water is warm here in Atmosville.
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
15,409
4,887
940
London
Hi, the best system I have heard so far, is a 13.4 B&W Datasat dirac auro 3d system. All speakers are B&Ws, the front 2 being 802 diamonds. Room is shite, 7m * 3m, yet sound is incredible. His ceiling channels are the ones that make the big difference, and the voice of god channel. It might be worthwhile to fly to London and learn from that system if you are spending so much.
 

audioguy

WBF Founding Member
Apr 21, 2010
2,768
42
485
Near Atlanta, GA but not too near!
I have made a bazillion changes to my audio/video system in the last 9 years and my wife has only commented on two of them [in fact, didn't even know I had made any of the other changes]: I changed from a JVC RS55 to the Sony 4K 600ES and she was blown away; and then I went from 7.1 to 7.1.4 and she really loved it.

But as I recently learned, the ceiling speakers will need to be able to keep up with the LCR's. My Datasat has a front panel display showing the output of all speakers. In both DSU and Atmos, it was was not uncommon to see the output of the ceiling speakers exceed the output of the LCR's
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
15,409
4,887
940
London
I have to purchase new surround speakers for my system (combined audio/theater). The three front speakers (as described in my signature) will remain the same. B&W now offers the CT LCRS7.3, which is roughly equivalent to the current surrounds in my existing 6.1 system. I will be moving to 7.1, and possibly adding the overhead speakers for ATMOS-type processing. With a budget of $6000, I can either add 4 of the CT 7.3 speakers for traditional 7.1 ($1500 each), or I can add a total of 6 CT 7.5 speakers (smaller, $500 each) to use as the rear surrounds and four overhead speakers. Either path costs the same.

Does anyone have any thoughts on which method would produce better results? My first impression is that smaller rear surrounds won't be a big issue, and that the future-proofing of overhead speakers might be a good idea. My hesitation comes from the fact that this choice would not provide all matching speakers for the 7.1 implementation, which is the majority of soundtracks (until ATMOS up-processing is added to the system).

Thanks,

Lee

Hi Lee, I have heard a MCH system with Quads for the front 3 and ATC actives for the rear 2, and there were no issues with the timbre. So you can have small rears, I guess, not exactly related to the timbre of the front speakers

Apart from that, I have heard a Datasat Auro 3d B&W system that was awesome. Along with Apogee Full Range, did the best Mahler 2 I have heard. He had all B&W from 800 series - the front were 802s, and the rest were smaller, don't remember the model names but all from 800 series. He goes by djnickuk on AVSforum and djnickm on https://www.avforums.com/ . It was a 13.4 system - with 7 speakers down, 5 up, and 1 Voice of God channel that Auro 3d recommends directly overhead. That speaker is the key difference for me between a fantastic immersive system and an average one. The other 2 systems I heard with the VoG channel weren't as impressive, and in his, when I switched that channel off the 3d disappeared. It gives the length and depth from the stage feeling.

I respect Nick a lot, extremely sensible guy, knows ins and outs of acoustics and DRC, and has experience with both Datasat and Trinnov.

I have also demoed a 7.1 Atmos, cheap, with small 2k B&Ws and Pioneer Atmos that I was impressed with. One thing is for sure - you have to have overhead channels, otherwise Auro or Atmos is pointless to me. I think a cheap immersive systems can beat many high end 2-ch systems, especially one with expensive digital and expensive cones. It is only the expenses and possibility of going analog with the tone of a good ribbon magnetostat or a horn that keeps me in 2-ch.


If I owned cone speakers like you do, I would put vinyl for the front two, and extend the rest to to auro 3d for digital

I have heard a MCH system with Quads for the front 3 and ATC actives for the rear 2, and there were no issues with the timbre. So you can have small rears, I guess, not exactly related to the timbre of the front speakers
 

RBFC

WBF Founding Member & Super Moderator
Staff member
Apr 20, 2010
5,138
20
585
Albuquerque, NM
www.fightingconcepts.com
I am first in line for the new Krell unit, which will have DTS:X processing. I installed 4 GoldenEar Invisa 7000HTR speakers in the ceiling and have all wiring in place ready. If Krell can't deliver, then the Datasat is also under consideration.

Lee
 

NorthStar

Member
Feb 8, 2011
24,311
1,253
435
Vancouver Island, B.C. Canada
The JBL Synthesis version is on my to-buy list.

I was going to mention it, as they are the same, but most people into that higher caliber 3D sound immersion processors, they all know that already. :b

Wow Amir, you're going in grand style here...the apotheosis of 3D audio immersion! :cool:

* @ another internet site I am leaning about DTS:X which just started to make its first apparition on January 28, 2016...almost three weeks ago.
...In real consumer products...Denon/Marantz. ...It's quite a ride. ...All very fascinating to me...I will be eventually part of the new program...as soon that there will be great clarity and responsibility. ...For both Music and Movie reproduction...natively and up-mixed. ...And with precise understanding on what's best in space for the speaker's positioning. This is the new audio game rendition...based on objects in 3D space, and no more on channel/speaker's 2D positioning.

...Kind of like 2D UHD versus 3D HD.
 
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