Is 7.1 any advantage over 6.1?


Beastie Boy

I am currently at the planning stage of a home cinema installation.
I am trying to decide where best to sit the speakers and wondered whether a 7.1 system would offer any real advantages over a 6.1.

As far as I am aware, not all DVDs fully support even 6.1. Do any support 7.1?
Is this something that may be more important in the future?

Sorry, if this is in the wrong place.

Cheers, Beastie.


Standard Member
6.1 is available as a format in DTS-ES, and as a matrixed in DD-EX. There are no 7.1 encoded disc its classed as 6.1 but you use 2 centre rear speakers instead of 1. 7.1 is pushed around because Dolby themselves say you should use 7 speakers and not 6. I have a 7.1 system and usually leave the system as a 7.1 as my amp allows this. As too whether there is a difference between 6 or 7 depends on budget, space, room acoustics, etc. Hope this helps.


Active Member
The problem with a single centre back speaker is that because of the way hearing works a sound placed in that rear channel can suddenly sound like it is coming from the front instead. Two spaced speakers producing the mono channel gets around that.

Beastie Boy

Thanks for the rplies, that certainly helps.

I think my decision may come down to 'what is the ideal speaker position for each setup'.

My seating position will be very much towards the rear of the room. With a 7.1 system do the surround speakers need to be positioned mid-way down the room, or are they sited either side of the listener? My room configuration makes it impossible to sit speakers mid-way down the room. However, I can mount speakers either side of the listening position.

Do this make my room more suitable for 6.1?

Also, with a 7.1 system, if the two rears are playing a mono source, do I need a 7.1 capable amp, or can I simply connect 2 speakers to the RC channel on a 6.1 amp?

Cheers, Beastie.


Novice Member
Surrounds are always placed parallel to or only slightly ahead or behind the viewing position, no matter what the shape of the room. The room's shape by and large is handled by setting the relative volumes of the front and rear channels in the amp.

You could connect two speaker in SERIES to a single output channel, but NOT IN PARALLEL since that halves the impedance seen by the power amp. and can cause it to fail. Connecting in series doubles the impedance but that can be taken care of by upping the volume on the RC channel relative to the others.

Beastie Boy


As most surround speakers are sold in pairs, I may well go for 7.1.

Cheers, Beastie.


Beastie, I have a denon 7.1 set up and in the instructions it says the left and right surround effect speakers should be placed parallel or slightly forward of the mani seating position, and I too sit far back in the room, the rear effects speaker are directly behind me and the side/surround effects speakers are approx 4' forward of my position, the effects are astounding!
I am using DiPole speakers as effects BTW, this helps a lot of course.

Best regards David

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