Theater speaker placement.

A customer of ours sent us a great web application that helps with placement in a theater set up.

Directly from Dolby Labs.

Dolby Home Theater Speaker Guide

The main thing is the concept of 45.

Dolby 5.1 Setup

Dolby 5.1 Setup

Front Left and Right Speakers:

Sit down in the best seat in the house in front of the TV, exactly how far your TV will allow for the best viewing of the size of the screen.  You’re going to do some math!  Your arms are now a protractor. Take your arms and point them directly at the screen.  That’s zero degrees in-between your arms  (For more reference, if you point your arms directly to your side walls next to you, that’s 180 degrees).
Now, spread your arms with about 45 degrees in-between.  Where your hands are pointed are generally the ideal location for the left and the right speakers.

Center Channel Placement:

Put the center channel directly centered above or below the TV.  There might be an ideal location for you, but it’s not a disaster with either location.  Just don’t put it where it might be blocked by furniture.

Rear Left and Right:

They should be basically on the same width as the front speakers or a bit wider.  They should be at least to the side of you and in my opinion, a little behind you, maybe 4-6 feet.  It depends on your room.

Mid Sides for 7.1 Setups:

If you’ve chosen this setup, the rears definitely go behind you and these will be directly beside you.  They should be at least as wide as the front left and right or slightly wider.  If they’re in the side walls, keep them pointing right at your couch/sofa/best listening spot.

Dolby Atmos:

Defer to Dolby’s page here on Atmos setups (longer explanation).

Placing the inwall/ceiling speakers into a theater setup is never perfect. You always have to compromise because you want to hide the speakers inside the walls or ceiling.

It’s not that bad. It’s probably at worst 90% from perfect sound.

The theater receivers available today do an AMAZING job of correcting for those placement challenges with their sound setup functions. They actually time align the sounds before they hit the speakers, giving great imaging in the correct places in your rooms.

Shop for Home Theater Kits from us, we help you save over more “known” brands.

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