Cinema!

A_Venables

Active Member
I've just been to the local Cinemas to watch 21, there are 2 local to me, Odeon and another which I wont name. I was highly disapointed at the sound at the cinema as it sounded as if I was listening to Prologic! My local Odeon, the one I usually use advertises dolby digital, this one did not. So my question is are there cinemas still using Prologic decoders? I find this very poor, even the girlfreind noticed! Or am I just spoiled with my nice kit at home? :rolleyes:
 

HSC

Active Member
sound that is encoded on film is usually much higher compression that DVD or HD movies
that can lead to poor quality

the setup of the cinema, its decoding equipment and equipment quality can also factor.
remember a cinema has to fill a much larger room with sound than your home system does.

some cinemas have got it right though - for example if you are ever in London, see a movie in screen 1 at the Empire in Leicester Square - this is a very good example of what can be done with film audio.
 

Gadgetcity

Active Member
At home my system sounds great in the "sweet" spot. It is clear wherever you are BUT to get that immersed feeling you need to be on the left of the sofa.

The trouble with cinemas is that they have 100 people in there. They don't set it up for your seating position, they flood the room to cover everyone. They also use multiple left and right surround speakers. This washes out the clarity you get at home.

HSC is right though - a well kitted out cinema can still sound very good, but you also get corporate run multiplexes who just want to get the punters in for the cash. I walked out once and got a refund because one of the speakers was distorting. I can't remember exactly how long, but about 6 weeks later we went to watch another movie and I swear that it was the same distorted speaker in there (we then popped into a screen showing the same movie that started 20 mins after ours :smashin:, had to watch the same trailers again though :thumbsdow)
 

A_Venables

Active Member
It was the way the effects moved round the room, or in this case didnt! And the way when a music track sounded as if it were coming through the centre speaker, in a very muted way - as if matrixed. Sounded like my first venture in to Home Cinema - an AIWA prologic hifi! Very poor by todays standards. I understand that a commercial cinema isnt going to have as good sweet spot as a home cinema, but I expect an emersing sound.:rolleyes: Just couldnt believe how poor it was!:rotfl:
 

Alien370mm

Banned
sound that is encoded on film is usually much higher compression that DVD or HD movies
that can lead to poor quality

the setup of the cinema, its decoding equipment and equipment quality can also factor.
remember a cinema has to fill a much larger room with sound than your home system does.

some cinemas have got it right though - for example if you are ever in London, see a movie in screen 1 at the Empire in Leicester Square - this is a very good example of what can be done with film audio.

I second that and the new JBL custom array along with crown amplifiers and dbx4800 makes it worthy in fact Empire is back on the map with its 56KW THX, truly untouchable.:smashin::smashin::smashin::smashin::smashin: Odeon say there “fanatical about film” and when you speak to the, staff or ushers, they sound or rather come off sounding like bunch of total Muppets.

Odeon Leicester Square screen 6 sounds poor :thumbsdow:thumbsdow:thumbsdow:thumbsdow:thumbsdow with its lame 10 or 12Kw sound system and the JBL is put to shame in that cinema and Odeon don’t have any pride to figure out the sound issues of poor narrow stereo fronts poor stereo surrounds and sub bass that can only do 108db, that’s what I monitored back in April with Leatherheads, and it was embarrassing.

Even the local Odeon in my home town as poor sound playback and all, you’ll ever hear from the staff is excuses.
 
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Derek S-H

Distinguished Member
Agree with all of the above: it's a mixture of the material and the space that ruins the sound in a lot of cinemas.
But what's put me off going to see a film is the price - £6 off peak!:eek: I can borrow two DVDs for that price, choose my own properly priced nibbles and drinks and pause the film if I need a wee!
And I don't know if this is relevant, but at gigs, the soundchecks are usually done in an empty auditorium but the sound engineer will mix the sound live at the actual performance, taking into account any acoustic changes due to audience numbers or room temperature.
I don't get the impression that many projectionists worry about the sound mix during a film, they just seem to focus on the image quality.
I think DVD sound remixers are lucky - they know that they are probably dealing with a smaller space and smaller speakers, so they can go for a far more precise, punchy and tighter soundstage.
I prefer watching DVDs at home now.
Derek
 

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