Question KEF Atmos upgrade

Discussion in 'What Speakers Should I Buy?' started by Alps, Aug 17, 2018.

  1. Alps

    Alps
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    Hi guys, I’m planning on buying a Denon 4400 Atmos receiver soon. I also have a set of KEF 5005 speakers in a 5.1 setup. I have wiring for wall speakers (I wish I was aware of Atmos when I got the living room done, I then would have got ceiling wiring done as well). I’ve attached pictures below of my current setup. You can also see the wiring for the wall speakers. My cinema area is 16ft by 11ft.

    My questions to you guys are - should I buy some KEF Egg’s for where the wall wiring is and use these as my Atmos speakers? Or should I buy upfirers and mount them on the wall? If the latter, the upfirers will fire upwards BUT will they also fire towards me?

    Or do you guys have a better solution or options. Any suggestions greatly welcome.

    C1C58349-4656-476D-B8D9-D430B9FD01C5.jpeg C8BCDAE5-865A-451E-9694-F1A1A50FB059.jpeg 068BCF10-0C30-41B0-9F7E-BCE4348E2751.jpeg 26C5712B-DC4D-4B28-9272-8C7B70423459.jpeg
     
  2. Alps

    Alps
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    Right, I've been doing a little more research this morning, and going by the size of my room, a 7.1.4 setup is what would sound best. This complicates things a little as my wall speakers will then have to act as the heights AND Atmos speakers. Is this possible?
     
  3. pyrotenax

    pyrotenax
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    If you going for the Denon 4400 and want 7.1.4, wont you need an additional external stereo amplifier too ?
     
  4. Alps

    Alps
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    I thought 7.1.4 and 9.1.4 were possible - Channels 9.2/7.2.2/5.2.4. I'm still learning about all this Atmos stuff so could well be totally wrong.

    Also, having had a flash thought, I realised that I might be in trouble with my current speaker wiring. currently I have wiring for centre speaker, left, right, surround left, surround right, sub. I also have front heights and rear heights wiring, waiting for speakers.

    Now, if I were to go for the 9.1.4 - or even 7.1.4, I'll obviously be in trouble as I don't have the wiring for the Atmos speakers. For some reason, I stupidly thought that I can use the same wiring for the heights and Atmos speakers. A rookie error :facepalm:
     
  5. Gasp3621

    Gasp3621
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    As pyrotenax said you need to add 2ch amp for 7.1.4. Denon X4400H can do 5.1.4/7.1.2 out of box (9internal amps, 11.2 processing). For 7.1.4 you would need also another pair of KEF 5005.2 floorstanding speakers where kids stuff are at the back of room. (as surround backs) I am not sure how easy is to find those. If you want one box solution which can do 7.1.4 out of box then Denon X6400 (1500£), but with those speakers it`s little bit crazy money to spend. X4400H @ 799£ and 2ch stereo amp would cost about 100-150£, so no suprise why this route is more popular.

    " I also have front heights and rear heights wiring, waiting for speakers. "

    So basically you have wiring for "atmos speakers" then if you are going to have them on wall. The height speakers are normally installed high up on the wall just under the ceiling pointed towards MLP. You want some separation between your mains and those height speakers. So they would be near where spot lights are in your picture. Similar to this (Dali Altecos);

    [​IMG]

    You own very good receiver there Onkyo NR3010 (55lbs, THX Ultra2 Plus), you would need to spend quite lot money to get similar one these days. That is not to say you wouldn`t be happy with the cheaper Denon. Quite special (lifestyle) choice for speakers though with such a superb receiver. But i assume wife had some saying about it.. :D

    If this would be my room, i would think about something like KEF Q350 with Q650C (or older Q serie bookshelf/tower/center models as 2nd hand) as front three and then placing KEF Q50a top of the main speakers as upfiring if the distance from speakers to listener is in the ball park what works for those and also making you sure you meet these;

    "For optimal performance, the ceiling should be flat (not angled or vaulted), with a height between 7.5 and 14 feet (2.3 to 4.3 meters), and made of an acoustically reflective material (drywall, plaster, hardwood, or another rigid, non–sound-absorbing material). The ideal ceiling height is between 7.5 and 12 feet (2.3 to 3.66 meters)."

    Another option with Q50 would be to wall mount them high up on wall as dual keyhole slots on the “bottom” of the speaker allow it to hang on a wall and you already have wiring there. Available in white colour!
    KEF Q50a Atmos-Enabled Surround Speakers

    The new Q`s in front stage would be big step up from what you have now! You could then move 5002.2 from front to surround backs (keep another pair as side surrounds) and yet have UniQ drivers all around. Also that subwoofer barely has any business in that size room. You mentioned the cinema area dimensions, but the whole room with dinar area looks much larger and the total space is what counts. Cost would be anywhere from ~430£ to +1000£ depending of size/performance you would want.

    I know you didn´t ask this, but you got some lovely large room there and if you want to step up, this would be one way to do it. It wouldn`t be cheap, but rarely this hobby is.. :laugh: If nothing else, you can keep it in mind for future.
     
  6. Alps

    Alps
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    Thanks @Gasp3621 for such a detailed reply.

    I'm slowly getting to understand all this Dolby Atmos lark :D

    I now understand that:

    * the Denon X4400 will not do 7.1.4 without an additional amp.

    * maybe 7.1.4 would be overkill in my room and that 7.1.2 or 5.1.4 would suffice. What would you guys go for - 7.1.2 OR 7.1.4? OR spend a little more for a 7.1.4 receiver?

    * In the *.*.*. the first number relates to ONLY ear height speakers. In which case, as my existing wall wiring is so high up, I'd most likely have to go for a 5.1.4 setup. Alternatively, I'd somehow have to lower the rear wall wiring.

    * The KEF 5005's I have right now are not up to the job for fronts with the powerful Onkyo I have. Alas, these weren't picked due to the wife (she really loves watching films and so doesn't mind what I do with the speakers :clap: ). These were picked from advice from others. :( I will look at the KEF's you suggested.

    * my entire room size is 19ft x 16ft and so I would need a bigger sub. Although, I must say, that sub sure does cause the room to vibrate. Even the neighbours feel it. But thankfully, they're cool and don't mind :thumbsup:

    The distance between listening position and front speakers is approximately 11ft. And listening position to rear wall speakers is approximately 7ft.

    My ceiling height is 7.5ft and the ceiling is plasterboard.

    Taking all of this into consideration, if I were to go for a Denon X4400 along with 2 new fronts - most likely the KEF's recommended above, what would you guys go for - 5.1.4? OR 7.1.2?
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2018
  7. Gasp3621

    Gasp3621
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    @Alps

    I don`t think 7.1.4 would be overkill in large space if you can handle the wiring for surround backs (5005.2 which are moved from front to back when you upgrade front three). X6400H has "Monolithic Amplifier Design with Denon Custom Made Transistors", little bit more headroom power wise and made in Japan. 5year warranty for both at PT till end of August (not sure will they continue it over September), normally you get 2year warranty for the receiver so this is nice!

    Denon AVR-X4400H
    Denon AVR-X6400H


    If you read peoples experiences, then 5.1.4 rather than 7.1.2 . Should be more immersive!

    Happy to hear you have choosed the wife right as she doesn`t limit your choices. Those are rare ones.. :D :thumbsup:

    Well just wait until you hear something umm little bit more capable subwoofer! Lot of people would probably recommend dual subwoofers for a large room like that, but the placement will be critical to achieve best results and you don`t want the wires to be seen...
    Why Go Dual Subwoofers?

    I totally forgot the out going R-serie with low prices!:facepalm: If you aren`t tight with the budget you should look them cause you would get better bang for your buck! Example R300 (599-699£) and R200 or R600 as center channel and R50 for atmos, which would be harder to wall mount vs. Q50a (keyhole slots). Of course with a pair of R100 as surrounds sitting on speaker stands you could use them (R50) as upfiring and same for R300 +R50 at front, but this would add cost. Plus the wiring might be problematic. KEF will probably have keyhole slots with the new R50 which is to be announced next month as more and more competitors offers it plus they did it with Q50a which could be one option to "mix" little bit if you prefer to have them on walls high up!

    If you are not "allergic" to owning ex-display models, check these prices for the models i mentioned. Just like with receivers it`s wise to buy last years model and with speakers new model coming meaning you could get higher line for only little bit extra. Money well spent! I do hope you would live near one these shops to listen and maybe compare Q and R models head to head!

    Sevenoaks Sound and Vision

    5.1.4

    [​IMG]

    7.1.4

    [​IMG]

    PS. With the center channel you would have to figure out how to raise your tv up or wall mount it so the speaker wouldn`t block the picture! And for the main speakers you will need speaker stands (~100£).
     
  8. Alps

    Alps
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    Right, I think I'm not going to rush into this and make any mistakes that I regret later.

    My plan is this:

    1) Wait for prices to drop on the X6400. I'm not one of those who minds ex-display or used items. My Onkyo 3010 was ex-display and it was absolutely mint and I paid several hundred less than brand new prices.

    2) Assess whether I can remove my speakers wires from within the walls.

    3) If point 2 is possible, establish how much of a mess would be made, and how costly it would be, to re-wire for a 7.1.4 set-up.

    4) In the mean time, buy some cheap KEF Eggs such as KHT321156G for my current set-up and use them as front or rear heights. Do you guys think these are good speakers? They're not the 3001's, but I might be able to get them quite cheap.

    5) Go and get some demo's and see what suits me best.

    Anything else I need to add to the list? :)
     
  9. Gasp3621

    Gasp3621
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    1) Might be good idea if you want the X6400H. I remember PT had one time a deal if you buy receiver and the price goes lower than it is now, they will pay you the difference back. I would call them and ask is something like this possible, also mention that new model (X6500H) is coming soon and you can mention that last year the price went to lower with X6300H. I have heard countless times they have given better price when called, so you never know. Also i would ask will they continue that 5year warranty deal thru September. You just never know with receivers these days what could happen. Longer warranty would give more peace of mind. 5years vs. 2years. Calling them is (almost) free, so why not do that for starters. :) Also depending very much which speakers you choose, buying 3speakers + receiver you should be guaranteed to get some discount.

    2-3) So you would prefer some upfiring speakers then as the wiring now would be suited more for height/elevation speakers ?

    4) I googled with that number and picture came back as HTS 3001 speakers with code sticker of that number. Look here; Kef KHT321156G Egg Series Satellite/Stereo Speakers (Pair)! Gloss Black SP3513 • £29.99

    Kef KHT321156G Egg Series Satellite/Stereo Speakers (Pair)! Gloss Black SP3513 • £29.99

    If that is the case really, then it would be another cheaper option surely. Two pairs of Q50a would cost 900£, but with larger UniQ drivers and newer higher spec ones.

    5) This. Start demoing speakers as soon as possible to see which way to go. Normally one would choose speakers first and then receiver. But there is less cheap options for one box solution 11.2 .. If the 7.1.4 feels like little bit too hassle for now, nothing stops you starting with 5.1.4 setup which still should be very good! As i said, even if you would go with X4400H you always have the option to upgrade it 7.1.4 . I don`t know your total budget, but larger subwoofer will take large peace of that too.

    The KEF R-serie i linked would be very intresting option with those prices, but ex-display.

    "I'm not one of those who minds ex-display or used items. My Onkyo 3010 was ex-display and it was absolutely mint and I paid several hundred less than brand new prices. "

    Umm i don`t know what to think about this. :laugh: You don`t mind ex-display items, but you got one. Typo maybe. :p
     
  10. Alps

    Alps
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    Right, I've booked some time off next week to visit Richer Sounds and Superfi (where I bought my current setup from) to trial Atmos and hopefully the Denon X6400 or X4400 :thumbsup:

    "I'm not one of those who minds ex-display or used items. My Onkyo 3010 was ex-display and it was absolutely mint and I paid several hundred less than brand new prices. "

    Umm i don`t know what to think about this. :laugh: You don`t mind ex-display items, but you got one. Typo maybe. :p[/QUOTE]

    :rotfl: I think we got lost in translation :D "I'm not one of those who minds......" means I'm happy to go for. So, in this case, I'm happy to go for ex-display or used items, so long as they're in excellent condition. I bought mine and my wife's mobile phone's from AVForums - they were brand new items where the seller had wanted the latest model phone so returned their existing phone which had a fault, got a new phone under warranty, which they then sold at half the price of a new one. A win-win situation. :clap:

    I'll let you guys know how I get on next week. Really looking forward to it :)
     
  11. meagabyte

    meagabyte
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    I was in the same situation as you last weekend.
    Had been keeping my eyes on the KEF Q950 for fronts, 650c for centre and the Q50as to mount there the wall meets the ceiling. Running the Denon 4300H so can also only power 7.2 or 5.4 in atmos. But then a bunch of well known members (not sure if Gasp wasn't one of them) twisted my arm by showing me all the discounted REF Rs. A far superior speaker for about the same money as the current Q range Is new. However they have now stoked my upgrade fire and already looking for a 3 channel power amp lol.
     
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  12. Alps

    Alps
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    What setup are you currently running?
     
  13. meagabyte

    meagabyte
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    All in my signature ;)
    Started with MA bronze stuff plus a 150 pound pair of wharfedales.
    Now up to the R700s and R200c ( had my eye on the 600C but the 200 nearly doesn't fit on my TV bench.
    please feel free to have a look at my thread where you can see how members peer-pressured me into something that now im sorry I didn't get sooner lol.
     

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