Answered Dolby Atmos upfiring speaker placement...

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by KRW, Jun 7, 2016.


    1. KRW

      KRW
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      Looking at adding some upfiring Atmos speakers at some point but am confused as to placement. I'll probably get the Kef R50 ones as the rest of mine are Kef and even if I upgrade, I like the Kef sound so will probably stick with those.

      Just confused as to placement. My set up is a living room and next to the TV and projector screen are two tall matching units. The left and right front speakers sit beside them. I always had units earmarked for eventual 'one day' front height speakers as when the screen is down, they'd sit just above it perfectly. My question is, could I just pop the upfiring speakers there instead? They'd be about two feet away from the ceiling. From what I gather about the upfiring Atmos speaker is your supposed to put them on top of the front speakers. Does this really matter?

      Or would I be better off just getting a set of front height speakers?

      (I might consider ceiling speakers one day but not for a long, long time)
       
    2. Spraggle

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      My understanding of the upfiring speakers is that they need distance from ground to ceiling for two reasons - 1: to increase distance of where the sound comes from, and 2: to allow the correct timing of bouncing sounds off the ceiling.

      To elaborate a bit;

      1: because the sound is literally bouncing off the ceiling, the position of your upfiring speakers has to be such that the reflected sound from the ceiling is located near to where the in-ceiling speakers should have been. You don't say if it's a 5.1.2 or .4 system, but for easy explaination I'll say .2 - the speakers should be directly above your listening position, so the aim would be to get the sound to bounce off the ceiling just forward of there. Good luck getting that to happen with a position, just below the ceiling.

      2: to process the sound at the right time, the amps include a delay that is calculated with the amount of time it takes to get from the ceiling to the ears position. The height you want the upfiring speakers at, might not be allowed in the amp's configuration. You would have to check.

      Hope this helps!
       
    3. KRW

      KRW
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      Thanks Spraggle, that makes sense. I don't even think its possible to get atmos from front height speakers so I guess I'm best off with the upfiring speakers and experimenting.

      (It's a .2 system at the moment)
       
    4. Spraggle

      Spraggle
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      Well, I was in RS earlier buying myself an Atmos capable receiver (Onkyo NR-646, though I suspect I'll be sticking at 7.1 for now!), and the chap selling me the setup said that he's been experimenting with using a pair of Bookshelf speakers on the floor as upfiring speakers. Obviously, not as a permanent solution, but he confirmed it worked well!
       
    5. KRW

      KRW
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      I think experimentation is the order of the day!
       
    6. simonblue

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      Why not ceiling speaker for an long long time :confused:
       
    7. Spraggle

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      Simon blue: I know you've aimed that at KRW, but for me, it's the hassle of chopping in to the ceiling, as well as channelling the cables, plus the painting, etc etc - all for something that right now, only a handful of films supports, that seems to be destined for UHD releases only.

      Right now, I have only just bought all 1080p stuff, and don't want to re buy the components to go UHD either! (Technically, I only need a UHD player, as it'll scale down to 1080p for the Projector, but still - discs are expensive).

      I don't know if KRW is in the same boat, but here's my 1p's worth! ;-)
       
    8. Anton2015

      Anton2015
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      Hi KRW,

      I changed my 7.1 speaker configuration to 5.1.2 using 2 front heights for Atmos and it's the best thing I ever did.

      It's not only certainly possible but for me, was the 'cheapest' upstage is sound I've ever made lol

      [emoji106]
       
    9. Geoff_D

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      I can't say I'm getting much in the way of discernible Atmos sounds from my heights, but given what was said above I might aim them up at the ceiling instead of downwards, see if I can get dat bounce action working.
       
    10. Anton2015

      Anton2015
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      This may sound strange but whilst my speakers were front heights, they were extremely close to the top of the ceiling and pointing down I set them up as in ceiling on my amp. ( this was suggested to me by another forum member, Peter, on the Yamaha thread)

      I had a variety of people try a blind test of A / B (on my Yamaha you can easily save 2 speaker configurations so i set one to front heights and one as in ceiling) and all those tested preferred the sound of the in ceiling set up.

      I used the Atmos test disc, a scene in John wick (house fight scene as lots of shattering glass) and Star Wars - pod race scene as subject material.

      I really do get a much better sense of depth in the sound stage rather that just a wider one from setting to front heights.

      May be worth a try! :)

      A.
       
    11. Geoff_D

      Geoff_D
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      Thing is I remember you saying that before so I've already tried it, it didn't make any difference. Even unplugging all my fronts and just having the heights going yielded a subtle non-localised extension of the front soundstage when watching Fury Road, and not the swarm of spot effects that I expected. Or am I missing the point of Atmos? (Hence me asking that same question in the 2200 thread) Is MMFR not that great a demo disc for Atmos? Tune in next week, same bat-time, same bat-channel!
       
    12. Anton2015

      Anton2015
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      John wick Atmos is fantastic! When setting up the heights, mine were probably set around +4 compared to everything else around 0 (to reach 78db) using the internal test tone.
       
    13. garyc

      garyc
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      guys,

      excellent thread on atmos info just wondered how everyone is finding the atmos speakers types and locations etc?

      for me ceiling mounted doesn't really work so was looking at either height or up-firing but not easy finding up-firing to sit nice with the main fronts, so height speakers ok if they aren't atmos? just small effect speakers?

      what would give the better atmos effect height or up-firing?

      cheers
       
    14. gibbsy

      gibbsy
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      Upfiring, they will give roughly the same effect as height but with the addition of object based sound. However you must make sure you have configured your receiver correctly. I use a pair of KEF R50s and find them very effective.
       
    15. garyc

      garyc
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      hi sorry slightly confused , do you still get the full object based sound experience with height speakers?

      cheers
       
    16. avanzato

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      Are you talking about height speakers on the front wall?
      If so then I had no luck getting them to produce any sort of reasonable Atmos effect.
       
    17. garyc

      garyc
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      I'm only running a 5.1.2 setup at the mo,so the front atmos speakers would be height speakers above the main fronts. Having not tried it I dont know but you would think that since the main seating area is at the rear of the room (some 3m area) would there be much difference between ceiling speakers mounted over the front mains or height speakers close to the ceiling
       
    18. gibbsy

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      Have a browse here:
      Dolby Atmos Speaker Setup Guide
       
    19. avanzato

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      Can you put the height speakers on the side walls?
      That's where I put mine.
       
    20. garyc

      garyc
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      thx - umm reading the atmos doc, its not keen on the height speakers as no mention I guess. may have to rethink the height speaker idea, just that the look of bolting upfiring speakers to my fronts is not appealing and wouldn't know where to start with cutting ceiling speakers in and wiring them

      Can't put on sides either
       
      Last edited: Aug 25, 2016
    21. avanzato

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      Some of the Atmos up firing speakers come with wall mounting as an option but they still need to be relatively low down on the wall to align with the listening seat. Ceiling speakers are great until you need to move them or take them out, my ceiling has several dodgy plaster board patches waiting for me to get around to plastering/replacing the ceiling. Which is why I now try to avoid using them.
      My probably unpopular opinion is that Atmos has not been worth the hassle and money I've spent on it, even though it does work as advertised.
       
    22. Spraggle

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      I have yet to set anything up for Atmos, but despite buying a receiver that is capable, I am not sure if I will bother. There is so little material, and you're therefore reliant on upmixing. Only UHD holds the promise of ubiquitous atmos/DTS X and cost wise, it's a stretch to upgrade my projector and buy a UHD drive, when I own none of them.
       
    23. garyc

      garyc
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      how low can the atmos up firing speakers be positioned ie. front tv unit height?
       
    24. gibbsy

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      My KEF R50s are sitting at 90cm and are on top of R100s. They could potentially be placed even lower but sitting on top of the 100s they work perfectly well.
       
    25. garyc

      garyc
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      My mains have Rounded edges so reduced flat area to put anything on top
       
    26. garyc

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      anyone else read or seen this:-
      'Dolby have recently said that after testing front height speakers within an Atmos setup that they've concluded that you get the same results using them as you'd get using upward firing or ceiling speakers at the front'
       
    27. avanzato

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      Where is the quote from?
       
    28. garyc

      garyc
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      well found it on this forum and a few other interweb places but wondered real or myth
       
    29. avanzato

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      I can't find it in the official guidelines, perhaps it was a pragmatic off the cuff reply to "can I use my height speakers as I've already got them installed."
       
    30. gibbsy

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      Upfiring speakers, KEF R50s in my case, certainly bring heighth to the front sound stage and has certainly improved listening enjoyment over my 5.1 set up. Can you get the object based effects with just front height, directionally down from the ceiling? Those effects are certainly there, even in the pseudo modes, with the R50s.

      Could standard front heights reproduce the directionally down effects? I cannot see how this is possible without reflection.
       

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