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Whether you are setting up your computer speakers or a complex home theatre bundle, understanding the art and science of speaker channels and placement is the most critical step in enjoying your new sound system. Read on for a crash course in surround sound setup.
How Do I Configure Optimum 5.1 Channel Surround Sound?
Configure Stereo 5.1 Channel Surround sound to gain maximum output of stereo system meant for home theatre, desktop or television. To produce awesome soundtracks and movie scores and to get optimal performance in sound, place the correct speaker at the perfect place meant for it. A system of 5.1 stereo means 5 channels, one subwoofer and accompanying low-frequency effects channels which power it and a receiver which receives signals from the source, amplifies and sends to speakers.
Stereo 5.1 helps to create immersive surround sound and it is absolute minimum speaker set up to get best results. The first step is to place subwoofer at a convenient place in the room so that it receives the signals directly from the source as it is Omnidirectional. It must not be placed beneath a cabinetry or architectural shape otherwise Omni directional signals may become more directional deteriorating the quality of sound.
Left and Right Front Channels:
Sound effects, music dialogues will come out of speakers placed in front. One speaker should be placed 3 to 4 feet from centre line of viewing in left and the other at an approximately same distance in right at ear-height while seated on a chair. Place the speaker at an inner toe angle of 22 to 30 degree directed towards the centre of sitting area. One can set up this arrangement more precisely to get the best results in sound.
Now add the centre and surround channels. Sound delivery is spread amongst the additional speakers used in 5.1 systems. Place one speaker in the centre to the main viewing seat with no angle to the left or right side. It should be as accurate to ear height as possible because it is responsible for direct dialogue delivery from the screen. One can angle the speaker in such fashion that sound reaches to listener’s ear directly.
Surrounding Sound Channels:
The surrounding channels help to distribute the load and are responsible for the spread of environmental and ambient sounds. Cheers and whistles produced in a concert are delivered by these channels in making you feel to be sitting in the front row of the hall of a concert. So for maximum real impact left and right surround sound channels are placed at an angle of 90 to 110 degree relative to listening position.
How Do I Configure Optimum 7.1 Channel Surround Sound?
The standard setup for a 7.1 configuration includes a centre channel speaker, left and right front channel speakers, a subwoofer, left and right surround speakers and left and right rear surround speakers.
The rear surround speakers add more depth to the surround sound experience by spreading the sound across four speakers (the left and right surrounds and rears), rather than two, resulting in more directed, immersive sound.
The two additional speakers also help to fill larger rooms more completely. Plus, more and more films are being released or home viewing in 7.1 formats, adding to its appeal.
Place the centre channel speaker immediately above or below the screen, directly facing the listening area. If the speaker is being set on a shelf or stand, be sure that the leading edge of the speaker is flush with the edge of the stand, to maintain dialogue clarity.
The three most common subwoofer locations include corners, placement along a wall or beside a front speaker, which can create a better blend with the front speaker, at the cost of sacrificing overall volume.
Experimentation with subwoofer placement is highly encouraged; slight adjustments can create big differences in bass reproduction.
Left and Right Front Channels:
The left and right front speakers should be placed at an equal distance from the screen and at least six feet apart; the left, right and centre front speakers should be an equal distance from the ideal viewing position. To enhance the experience, some toe-in might be desirable. If so, be sure to identically angle each speaker and maintain equal distance from the viewing position.
The left and right surround speakers must be placed equally on each side and slightly above and behind the viewing position. Left and right rear surround speakers should also be about three feet above (and behind) the seated listeners’ heads.
Upgrading from a 5.1 system? Or perhaps you’re trying to decide whether a 5.1 or 7.1 channel home theatre receiver is best for you.
Either way, Integrated Audio Technology is here to show you how to set up a 7.1 system step by step.
The Tangent Ampster BT is a mini amplifier with a big sound. Just connect your personal music player to the new Tangent Ampster BT, and experience how good your music sounds when played out loud.
Bluetooth, Digital, and Analogue Inputs
The Tangent Ampster BT has got the possibility of connecting via various sources such as 4.0 Bluetooth, AUX in, optical in. Choose Bluetooth for wirelessly connecting your smartphone or tablet, optical for your TV and the two line inputs – one phono and the other 3.5mm mini-jack – for everything else.
Wake on Bluetooth
When left idle on the Bluetooth source Tangent Ampster BT will go to standby automatically and wake automatically when you start playing Bluetooth again.
A stylish remote to control sources and volume comes with the Tangent Ampster BT.
Compact but Powerful
Despite the compact size the Ampster BT holds its own against larger amplifiers. Tangent Ampster BT sends out a punchy 50 Watts per channel, which is more than enough for most speakers.
For top quality music from your smartphone, tablet, TV and music sources, just add speakers. We have great package deals check them out here.
Compact Audio’s new range of integrated speakers is design to offer the best possible full range sound from an in-ceiling speaker installation. Just connect them to the Tangent Ampster BT Amplifier and pair up to your phone or tablet via the Bluetooth function and experience powerful and yet detailed sound from your personal music collection. Or just connect an optical digital cable from your TV to the Tangent Ampster BT Optical input and experience seamless TV sound from the Compact Audio Ceiling speakers.
For top quality music from your smartphone, tablet, TV and music sources, just add speakers. We have great package deals check them out here.
Dolby Atmos roars on to Sky Q! See epic blockbusters brought to life with Dolby Atmos on Sky Q.
With Sky Q, you can now immerse yourself in breath-taking cinematic sound as Dolby Atmos puts you at the heart of the movie action.
The arrival of Dolby Atmos on Sky Q now brings you an unrivalled movie experience, combining the stunning visuals of Ultra HD with incredible three-dimensional sound.
Dolby Atmos is an object-based surround sound format that uses numerous speakers placed around a room to create an all-enveloping, ‘3D; sound experience where specific sounds or audio ‘objects’ can be moved around the room separate from the rest of the audio.
BT Sport also supports Dolby Atmos for its 4K Premier League broadcasts, and Atmos is general is starting to hit the mainstream, with a number of cinemas supporting the standard for recent releases like Doctor Strange and Guardians of the Galaxy 2.
Dolby Atmos is a surround sound technology, first developed in 2012, that pimps 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound setups by adding Atmos speakers all around the room, or, in the case of soundbars, up-firing drivers send sound overhead to create the impression that the user is enveloped in a “sound bubble”. Up to 64 speakers can be used in a top-notch Dolby Atmos cinema setup.
The high-end surround sound technology has been appearing in more and more consumer tech products recently and is no longer the preserve of audiophile brands.
Dolby Atmos transports you into the story with moving audio that flows all around you with breathtaking realism.
Making its way from film sets and post-production suites all the way into living rooms, Dolby’s latest surround-sound technology has quickly become one of the most important technologies in home cinema.
Over the past few years, Dolby Atmos has firmly transitioned from the “future of home audio” to very much the here and now. That’s not only thanks to the surround-sound technology gaining traction in Hollywood but also its support throughout the chain that runs from content creation and hardware to device support.
What is Dolby Atmos and why should you consider integrating it into your home entertainment system?
Dolby Atoms is a new audio format capable of multichannel movie soundtracks; think of it as 3D sound in 3D virtual spaces such as your home. It was developed to bring three-dimensional effects to home theatre systems. Traditionally a home theatre would be either 5.1 or 7.1 channel surround sound setups that were capable of delivering sound around your room. However, they were not capable of delivery sound above you.
The overhead sound brought to life by Dolby Atmos extends the height of your system’s soundstage. Imagine hearing a helicopter flying overhead, with the traditional setups they would mimic this by playing the sound behind you, however with Dolby Atmos the sound is projected and delivered from above. This is the most realistic sound experience available to your home entertainment sound system.
What do I need?
You’ll need an AVR such as Compact Audio Fidelity C6 LCR In-Ceiling Front Home Cinema and Dolby Atmos Speaker. This handles the necessary signal processing and rendering. Additionally, you will need ceiling speakers. Installing ceiling and in wall, speakers offer accurate overhead surround sound, for a new level of home theatre immersion. This is a great option if you are designing a new home theatre entertainment system, or want to upgrade to the best possible home audio listening experience.
Dolby Atmos transports you from ordinary auditory experiences into the extraordinary
Moves sound all around you – Rather than being constrained to channels, sounds can be precisely placed and moved in three-dimensional space. Adds an overhead dimension – A new sensation of height immerses you in the action, creating a full audio atmosphere and realistically depicting objects moving overhead. Produces breathtaking sound quality – Dolby Atmos renders everything from dialogue to quiet scenes to whirlwind action with astonishing clarity, richness, detail, and depth. Creates a powerfully moving entertainment experience – It all comes together in a sound that excites your senses and inspires your emotions to deliver the full impact of entertainment.
Compact Audio In-Ceiling Fidelity C6 with Kevlar and Titanium Drivers
Introducing Compact Audio’s new range of integrated speakers, designed to offer the best possible full range sound from ceiling installation. The UK based audio design company is founded by a former London studio engineer. Who has a particularly keen ear for music reproduction! In addition, Compact Audio are so confident in the Fidelity C6 in-ceiling loudspeaker, they are offering a 14-day money back guarantee if you are not 100% satisfied!
The Fidelity series bass drivers utilise Kevlar, a synthetic aramid fibre probably best known for its use in bulletproof vests. The mechanical properties of its strength and the ability to dissipate energy also make it the perfect speaker cone material. The results are a more constant dispersion pattern at all frequencies in its range with a clearer more natural tone.
First of all, put simply, the Compact Audio Fidelity C6 is one of the most superior sounding ceiling speakers you will hear. It features a 6.5” Kevlar bass driver coupled with a 1” Titanium dome tweeter, tuned and engineered to deliver a full spectrum of detailed, exciting sound.
Furthermore, the bass driver incorporates a large 18oz magnet with an AVS voice coil, enabling controlled performance at increased volume levels. This assembly and it’s long thrown cone surround results in an excellent in-ceiling bass response.
As well as high-quality components for sound quality the speaker is designed to be as astatically pleasing as possible. The pure white magnetic grill is a trim-less design with micro-perforated holes and low profile.
As with all of the Fidelity C6 series, the bass driver is made of Kevlar, a synthetic aramid fibre. The mechanical properties of its strength and the ability to dissipate energy make it the perfect speaker cone material. The results are a more constant dispersion pattern at all frequencies in its range, with a clearer more natural tone.
The Fidelity C6 series features Titanium dome tweeters. Most vital, Titanium is an incredibly light material that is twice as solid as Aluminum and also very impervious to erosion. These qualities make it an ideal material for a quick and responsive tweeter, delivering detailed clarity with a wide scattering design.
Audio grade capacitors and coils are used in the crossover design to achieve the best possible transition between bass driver and tweeter. The components are linked to a front mounted +/-3db equalizer to compensate for the rooms HF response.
The micro-perforated grill is a frameless magnetic design, with only a 4mm profile. The closely-knit fine holes and very thin edging result in an aesthetically pleasing design. To finish its aesthetical perfection, the grill is finished in pure white, with the ability to be painted so it can match your decor preferences and interior design!
- Application: Stereo music or Surround effect channels
- Bass driver: 1 x 6.5” Kevlar, ASV coil, 18oz magnet
- Tweeter: 1” Titanium Dome with +/- 3db control
- Power Handling: 60w RMS
- Impedance: 8ohm
- Sensitivity: 90db (1w/1m)
- Frequency response: 60Hz – 20KHz
- Dimensions: W227 x D87mm
- Cut out: 210mm
As a result, if you have a home theatre system already installed, consider upgrading your in-ceiling speakers to the Fidelity C6. If if you are planning to install a home theatre, consider Compact Audio Fidelity C6.
In true small business fashion, Integrated Audio Technology shunned Black Friday unable to offer the same sale prices as tech giants such as Apple. However, despite the lack of a momentous sale, they are giving away a free award-winning Dali Katch portable Bluetooth speaker!
Dali Katch is a battery-powered Bluetooth speaker. Wrapped in an elegantly rounded solid housing the specially developed drivers deliver the audio signal from the internal digital amplifier. Easily connectable via Bluetooth, and the possibility to enjoy the improved audio quality of Apt-X if supported. The Dali Katch also support analogue input via mini-jack. Knowing that you will bring you Dali Katch on the road we included a USB charge output to keep your phone or tablet charged while you rock your beats.
Available in three different colour schemes, Dark Shadow, Cloud Grey and Green Moss, the Dali Katch will blend elegantly into almost any environment. The integrated leather carry strap makes it easy and comfortable to bring along the Dali Katch and the durable design makes it safe to do so.
The Dali Katch has already received its very first review by WHAT HI-FI? Who gives it 5 out of 5 stars. it has since gone on to win an award from WHAT HI-FI for best portable wireless speaker!
According to Mark Sparrow, who reviewed the speaker explains the Dali Katch is the loudest little Bluetooth speaker you have ever heard. “How the engineers at DALI managed to produce something so small that sounds so big, I’ll never know.” And he continues: “When it comes to sound performance, the Dali Katch blows the competition away.” He adds that it handles quiet music subtly and it always seems to have more volume to deliver and never loses control of the music even for a moment. “I never felt the need for more bass or less treble. The sound is spot on and won’t fail to delight,” Mark Sparrow explains.
The verdict of the Dali Katch is that “the sound is superb and the battery life generous. To be honest, at this price there’s nothing to catch the KATCH. It’s just one gorgeous speaker that will satisfy the fussiest of ears.” The review can be found here.
Integrated Audio Technology Limited supplies a wide range of quality ceiling speakers, wall speakers, outdoor speakers, subwoofers, bathroom TVs and audio-visual accessories direct from our warehouse in the UK.
Their qualified employees have over 10 years experience in home cinema and audio installations. They offer expert advice, a price match guarantee and free delivery to all UK customers. Integrated Audio Technology offers a free, no-obligation quote.
To enter into Integrated Audio Technology’s competition and be in with a chance to win a Dali Katch speaker, please visit their Facebook page, which can be found here and follow the instructions on the pinned post at the top of the page.
Home theatres are most likely a one-off ‘major purchase’ for most homeowners or home audio enthusiasts. You spend a lot of time, research and money on such a project. The last thing you want at the end of installation is something feeling off, not seeming quite right. Did you make a mistake? Here are the top 5 home theatre mistakes and how to avoid them!
1. Buying the wrong size TV
With the wide range of choice of TV’s these days everyone wants a big TV, and with the average screen size purchased by consumers now 55-inches, a lot of larger screen sets are finding places in many households. However, a large TV is not always best for a particular size room or viewing distance.
With today’s trend towards 4K Ultra HD TV, the seating distance rules change somewhat as you can get a better viewing experience at closer seating distances than previously available.
For 720p and 1080p HDTVs, a good rule of thumb to follow is that the minimum optimum viewing distance from the viewer to an analog or standard definition TV screen (if you still have one) should be about 2 times the width of the TV screen, and for an HDTV the optimum viewing distance is about 1-1/2 times the width of the television screen.
In other words, if you have a 55-inch Plasma, LCD, or OLED HDTV, you should sit about 5 to 6 feet from the screen. If you sit too close to a TV screen, there is a greater chance that you may see the line or pixel structure of the image, which cannot only be distracting, but uncomfortable.
To determine the best screen size option for your TV, first, make sure you take stock of the space the TV is to be placed in. Measure both the available width and height available – also, measure the seating distance(s) from the screen that you have available to view the TV. Base your TV size buying decision on the combination of what looks best to you in relation to your available space.
2. Buying The Wrong Speakers
One of the most common mistakes is investing money into the aesthetics of a home theatre system and not enough into the speaker/subwoofer systems. This doesn’t mean you have to spend thousands for a modest system, but you should consider speakers that can do the job.
Speakers come in several sizes and shapes, from floor-standers to compact bookshelf’s, and both box and spherical shapes – and, of course, for home theatre, don’t for about the subwoofer – you need a place for that too.
Tiny standalone speakers are not going to fill a large room with great sound, as they just can’t move enough air. Large floor-standing speakers might not be the best match for a really small room because they just take up too much space.
If you have a medium, or large size room, a set of floor-standing speakers may be the best option, as they typically provide a full range sound and larger drivers that can move enough air to fill the room. On the hand, if you don’t have a lot of space, then a set of bookshelf speakers, combined subwoofer for the lower frequencies, may be your best option.
3. Buying by Brand or Price, Instead of What You Really Need
Although considering a brand is a good starting point, it does not guarantee that the “top” brand for a particular item is right for you. When shopping, make sure you consider a variety of brands, models, and prices into consideration.
Also, avoid prices that seem to be too good to be true. Although a high-priced item is not necessarily a guarantee of a good product, more often than not, that “doorbuster” AD item will not be able to fill the bill, in terms of performance or flexibility. It is always advised to seek out opinions and help from professionals.
4. Not Budgeting For Needed Cables and Accessories
A common home theatre mistake is not including enough money for all the needed cable or other accessories that you might need for your components to work. Of course, connection cables and speaker wires are the most important.
There is a constant debate on whether it is necessary to purchase very high priced cables for a basic home theatre system. However, one thing to consider is that the thin, cheaply constructed cables that come with many DVD players, probably should be replaced by something that is a little more heavy-duty. The reasons are that a more heavy-duty cable can provide better shielding from interference, and will also stand up over the years to any physical abuse that occurs along the way
5. Not getting professional help!
Lastly, the most common and worst home theatre mistakes are not seeking out the professionals and taking on such a job oneself! Professional help and installation can help avoid a home theatre disaster, and ensure home cinema gold!
After spending much time researching, deciding on your system and spending a ton on your equipment, the last thing you want is to run into hiccups at the finish line.
You provide the room and budget; the home theatre installer can provide a complete component package for access to all desired audio and video content.
Looking to design your home theatre system? Contact us for a chat!
A home theatre system is an immersive viewing and listening experience. Excitement can get the better of you and you can find yourself in the deep end with what you need and what you should buy! A home theatre can be anything from a smart TV to a sophisticated built system with inwall and ceiling speakers. Whatever system is best for you, there is a lot of information to consider before you embark on setting up a system.
Here are 10 things to keep in mind.
1. The Room
The most important thing to consider is room size, it will determine the size and type of video display system, TV or projector and which is best to use. How much ambient light is present? Images can be washed out or result in screen glare if there is too much light present. Is the flooring carpeted? In particular, flooring is important, especially bass distribution through the listening area. Carpets absorb audio whereas hardwood floors can reflect audio!
Depending on how you want the room to look will determine where and how you place your components. Also, whether ceiling or in-wall speakers (and speaker placement in general) are best depends on what surround sound formats you will be most commonly use. How will your room be set up? This will determine the optimal screen size for the best visual experience. Before embarking on buying your actual home theatre system components, especially for a medium-to-high end system, it might be a good idea to consult with a home theatre installer to come onsite and assess your room and address the above questions.
2. The Video Display Device
The most important element of this experience is the visual experience of viewing a large image on a screen. The actual size of the room will help determine the size of the screen that can be accommodated. From there, you need to decide what type of video display device would be most appropriate. This is where you have a choice of:
A Flat Panel LCD or OLED. Also, you have a choice of TVs that can display 720p, 1080p, or 4K Ultra HD resolution images or a Video Projector/Screen Combination.
3. Audio Reproduction
Once you have your visual viewing equipment selected, the next thing to consider is sound! The way this is implemented in a home theatre system is either a home theatre receiver or Preamplifier/Amplifier combination. A Home Theater Receiver usually combines the functions of three components.
A radio tuner for AM/FM and, in some cases, HD (High Definition Radio), Internet Radio, or XM and/or Sirius Satellite Radio. A Preamplifier that switches and controls which audio and video source is selected and processes the incoming stereo or surround sound signals and distributes them to the correct amplifier channels and the subwoofer output. The preamp in an AV receiver can also route video signals coming from source components, such as a DVD player and direct the video signal to the TV. A built-in Multi-channel amplifier 5.1, 6.1, 7.1, or more, channels that sends the surround sound signals and power to the speaker system.
4. A Home Theater, AV, Surround Sound Receiver or Separate Preamp and Amplifier
The Home Theatre/AV Surround Sound receiver is the heart of a home theatre system and provides most, if not all, the inputs and outputs that you connect everything, including your television, into. A Receiver provides an easy and cost-effective way of centralizing your home theatre system.
Loudspeakers can be determined again, by the size and layout of your room. The most important point to consider is to try and buy the same brand and related audio equipment to ensure a better acoustic match between the room and speakers. Consider listening to several types of speakers and setups to find out which is the best match for you and your room.
The advent of home theatre has introduced the Subwoofer to many consumers. A subwoofer is a specialized speaker that only reproduces the extreme low frequencies present in movies or music. There are several types of subwoofers you can use in a home theatre system, and, once again, the size and type of room, and issues such as whether the room is carpeted or not will help you determine which subwoofer is right for your setup.
6. Source Components
At a minimum, you need some type of DVD player for your home theatre system. Also, if you decide to get a Blu-ray Disc player to access true high definition source content, instead, or in addition to, a DVD player, you can also use it to play standard DVDs and, in most cases, audio CDs as well. Antenna/Cable/Satellite – Also, you need to decide how you will receive your primary television programming: Antenna, Cable, or Satellite. If you opt to subscribe to a Cable or Satellite Service, you might also consider combining that service with a DVR. DVRs provide a way to record your TV programs on a Hard Drive, rather than disc or tape.
Another home theatre source option is the Internet. If you have high-speed internet access, you can stream both music and movies, without having to buy a DVD or Blu-ray Disc.
7. Surge Protector
Although they are not foolproof, providing your system with some sort of surge protection is a good idea. You never know when you might have a sudden power outage, or even a brownout that may affect your system. Surge protectors are the unsung heroes of a home theatre system.
8. Connection Cables and Speaker Wire:
You can’t have a home theatre system unless everything is connected; whether you buy basic connection cables and speaker wire or the really high-end stuff. The main things to consider is to use the right type, right length, and to connect everything correctly.
9. Control Options
One of the most confusing parts of a home theatre system is not all components and the connections, but actually managing and controlling it. Each component in a home theatre system comes with its own remote, leading to a collection that can number half-a-dozen or more.
One solution is to opt for a sophisticated, but easy to use, universal remote that can control most of the functions of each of your components. After the initial hurdle of programming the remote for your system, such a device will enable everyone in the family to use the home theatre system without frustration.
You have a fancy home theatre system, now you need a place put your components, such as stands and racks, as well as some comfortable seating that will make you want to spend your time with your home theatre. Check out some home theatre seating options.