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Mixing AV, Music and Conversation: an about face

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by ditton15, Apr 21, 2003.

  1. ditton15

    Standard Member

    Oct 20, 2002
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    I imagine I am not alone in this: my listening/viewing space is first of all a shared living space, in which good conversation and music have greater priority than AV. I have recently moved stuff about the stitting room to seek best compromise. As ever, comments appreciated.

    Before September 2002, when I first stumbled on AVForums, the focal point for the two easy chairs & a sofa in the 5m x 5m sitting room was a wooden fireplace (on North facing wall), with TV (21inch Sony) to the right and main speakers (Celestion Ditton 15 standmounts) on either side. [Large bay window to right ... ie West, to further set the scene.]

    For the past six months I've been on an AV/HiFi upgrade path. The centre piece of the AV is the w-s Tosh 32ZD26, which sits large on other (North) side of room, off the bay window, providing an alternative/competing focal point. (It would not fit in place of old TV because of the 'press': Scots' full inset cupboard with full length door, used as giant, hidden-drinker cabinet.) As first seemed sensible, I placed the main speakers on either side of the TV. Newly acquired surrounds (Gallo Micros) then went to do duties at the rear. Upgraditits led me, as several others here, to take the audio from DVDs into the left/right front speakers via stereo amp: in my case, Denon AVR pre-outs into the PowerAmpIn on the AudioLab 8000S and the out via the PrePower AV setting to the Dittons as front speakers.

    I'd been concentrating on upgrading kit. However, when considering where to put the latest arrival, the bably Velo sub., I started a total re-think about placement of speakers.

    This was mainly prompted by recent bouts of entertaining house guests; that made me realise that when listening to music, even if fire is not ablaze, the fireplace is a better focal point for conversation than a blank, let alone a noisy TV. (Not every friend/guest wants to watch the latest DVD!!)

    So, I have now moved main (Ditton) speakers back to either side of fireplace; I feed them music CD replay via my AudioLab stereo amp, as before.

    But for AV, the sofa now gets moved, to face the TV which remains in the opposite corner, but with Micros as left/right fronts, now supported by a sub., fed from Denon AVR, but with the Dittons as the surrounds, fed from the AVR's (surround) pre-out, again into the AudioLab's PowerAmpIn and played on via the PrePower AV setting.

    Friday evening (facing North-North-West), I tested out new sub. and the re-positioned AV set-up watching the Extended LOTR, with picture to TV, front stage to Gallo Micros, and with effects from slightly re-positioned Dittons. I had set all speakers to small, with cross-over at 100Hz, and the baby Velo VX10 sub. did the low-end business without letting me know where I had put it (to the right side of TV, as it happens).

    Spent much of yesterday & today chatting to friends and listening to music, (facing South) with back turned on the TV, both literally and metaphorically.

    I feel a sense of balance returning ....


    ps I've not finished with upgraditis, however:

    1. I have yet to buy a dedicated centre speaker. With the Dittons, I dithered about matching. Now with Micros and a sub in place, I can make some progress. I am considering the A'Diva, or another another Micro (with the other serving as the centre rear). For the present, I am using the AVR pre-out to feed into the Tosh TV, into the audio feed next to the RGB component.

    2. I will probably buy some QED Silver anniversary speaker cable to the Dittons.

    3. I still have to resolve my CD source dilemma.

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