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#287363 - 01/18/10 10:20 AM Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions?
BWeasner Offline
old hand

Registered: 08/24/09
Posts: 71
I am currently running a 5.1 surround system, using QS4s as the surrounds. Unfortunately, due to a difficult room layout, my QS4s are actually in front of the main listening position by about 18 inches. This speaker placement was suggested by JC during my HT construction, as the radiating nature of the QS4 would help to create an enveloping rear surround field despite the less than optimal position.

Long story short, the surround field is quite diffuse, but there are times that it is obvious that the QS4s are in front of the listener...in other words, the surround does not really wrap around behind the listener.

I'm toying with the idea of adding a single QS4 "behind" the listener. I say "behind" because it will actually be mostly above the listener. Again, because of my difficult room, I do not have a back wall on which to mount a speaker.

So, my idea was to ceiling mount the QS4, pointing it down towards the listening area. The speaker will be just slightly behind the listening position (a few inches, at most), and about 4 feet above the listener's head. I figured that even if I have to turn the level of this speaker way down in my receiver's software, the radiating QS4 would still add a bit of diffuse sound behind the listener.

Any advice or comments about this idea would be greatly appreciated. Is it a bad idea (sound wise) to mount a speaker above the listener's heads, pointing down? Will adding this speaker actually help to accomplish my goal of having sound behind the listener? Should I just suck it up and enjoy my 5.1 surround as it is (which, despite this minor flaw, is pretty darn amazing!). Thanks again for any help you can give!

To make this a little clearer, I will post some pictures of where I would like to mount the speaker this evening after I get home from work.


Edited by BWeasner (01/18/10 10:22 AM)

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#287391 - 01/18/10 01:46 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: BWeasner]
Adrian Offline
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Registered: 12/27/08
Posts: 6865
Loc: It's all about the location.
BW, you can also do a little bit of experimenting by tilting the QS4 on the ceiling bracket as well, since the bracket allows various positions.
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#287407 - 01/18/10 02:44 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: Adrian]
grunt Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/04/06
Posts: 3569
Loc: Nirvana
I think it’s worth a try but you might find using two will work better especially considering how close they will be to the listeners. Presently I’m using a single VP150 about 5 feet back but because it’s both directly back and a direct radiator it’s hard to tell if the sound from its is coming from behind in in front when sitting in the sweat spot. Previously I tried a QS8 in the same position and it worked a little better. However, the best configuration was 2 QS8s placed so they were spaced out so that they were between the middle and each side listener. I think this both diffused out the sound better and also gave better directional queues because the speakers weren’t directly behind a listen which makes it difficult to tell if the sound is coming from directly behind or directly in front.

Another thing to try if you have the room is to put your seating on carpet sliders and pull the seating out a little for critical movie watching. In my apartment I had my futon on sliders so I could pull it forward to get optimal angles for 2 channel music and push it back for optimal angles for 5.1/7.1 movies and music. It worked great. Even getting your seating off the wall a little bit more could make a big difference when you really want to hear the benefit of surround sound.
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#287408 - 01/18/10 02:44 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: Adrian]
tomtuttle Offline
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Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8488
Loc: Tacoma
Seems like a reasonable scenario to me. Good luck!
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#287412 - 01/18/10 03:03 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: tomtuttle]
BWeasner Offline
old hand

Registered: 08/24/09
Posts: 71
Thanks for the replies!

In response to grunt's reply: I wish I could put up two QS4, but two things prevent that 1)the horrible room layout and 2) I only put one additional speaker wire in the ceiling...never figured I would need 7.1 because my room is so small. This may become clearer when I post pictures.

A wide rear surround field is not really necessary because it is only my wife and I watching movies, sitting in the sweet spot, 99% of the time. If any of my guest complain about a less-than-optimal rear surround field...well, they can suck it and build their own home theaters \:\)

If you guys feel that a speaker over the listener's heads won't be too weird, then I may give this a try in a couple months when the funds become available!

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#287416 - 01/18/10 03:25 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: BWeasner]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13565
Loc: Iowa
I take it the reason your side surrounds were put in front of the listening position was because of room restrictions to place them to the side? Can you move the seating slightly forward from the current location, this would help both your side and rear options.
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#287437 - 01/18/10 04:37 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: SirQuack]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10415
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
I had my surrounds mounted forward of the main listening positon and adding a rear center channel greatly helped my surround field, but I was corner loaded(TV in a corner with seating on the opposing walls to that corner which left a BIG void in the Middle. I am going to try a single QS8 above the main seating once I get into my new house, so I will let you know \:\)
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#287468 - 01/18/10 09:20 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: BWeasner]
JohnK Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/11/02
Posts: 10621
Brandon, I question whether a single speaker positioned essentially above you would be a significant improvement. The more common suggestion in a 5.1 setup is to to have the side surrounds about 18" behind the listening position rather than that distance in front. Even considering the wide dispersion of the QSs, when material about equal in level in both surrounds is played with the side surrounds in front, they "phantom" image what should be heard in back in front of you. If at all possible with your room arrangement try to accomplish this with a combination of moving the surrounds back a bit and/or moving the seating forward. To see if this would help, you might temporarily move the seating 3-4' forward(or place a chair there)and listen to the effect.
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#287486 - 01/18/10 11:24 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: JohnK]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 18044
Loc: NoVA
I feel your pain, but I don't know much about 6.1 or 7.1. My QS4s are mounted in front of the listening position as well.
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#287487 - 01/18/10 11:29 PM Re: Thinking of upgrading to 6.1...suggestions? [Re: Ken.C]
Micah Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 11/16/08
Posts: 1789
Loc: Indiana you hoser!!!!
You know you could save us all a lot of trouble if you would just go out and buy yourself a perfect room already!
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