concern about QS4 surround

Posted by: axiomoholic

concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 03:26 PM

Hi Guys, I have a 2.1 system I want to expand out.
room details: pair of w22s about 6 feet apart for fronts. Room: 22 x 14, TV against long wall, listening position pushed AGAINST other back wall. A 350v2 sub sits in back corner. Amp/reciever: Sherwood Newcastle r-972. Ceiling is 8 foot in back, rises to about 16' over TV.

I want to got to 5.1, wish I could go to 7.1, but the fact that my seating position is flush against the back wall is causing me all sorts of issues. Ideally, I'd like to mount the bi-pole QS4's on back wall, but what would having the wall so close to me do to sound? And where would I position them? ~Note that they have to be about nine feet apart (back window) and also recall that ceiling sloops up from them...

Every diagram I've ever seen (using bipole rears) shows those speakers at least three feet behind the seating positon. Does the rear wall force me to consider something else, direct radiating speakers mounted to side walls perhaps? Thank you in advance!
Posted by: EFalardeau

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 03:32 PM

If you are going 5.1, the surrounds should be placed on the side, not at the back. Can mount 2 QS4 on side? (slightly to the back, 2-3' above ear level).
Posted by: SirQuack

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 03:50 PM

As Eric mentions, you want to place them to the side of the listening area, preferably 2-3ft above your ears or higher. The rear tweeter will then direct sound off the back wall, simulating a 7.1 setup.
Posted by: axiomoholic

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 04:23 PM

well - I'd thought 5.1 "rears" could go on back wall.
please see bottom illustration at : http://www.polkaudio.com/education/tech_article.php?id=27

Also, this site : http://www.technosound.co.uk/nav.php?pageid=hcg_settingup mentions: "With the seating against the rear wall, bipolar speakers must be placed on the rear wall half way between the seating & the side walls"

I'm hesitate to mount things to side wall because they would be so far away; room is 22 feet wide - and one of the side walls has our fireplace, so my wife would veto it...

Thanks for the feedback so far!
Posted by: BlueJays1

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 04:30 PM

Side placement of the QS4 is recommended but there is nothing wrong on mounting them on the back wall. This is even mentioned in the QS series manual.
Posted by: EFalardeau

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 04:34 PM

Since you must use the back wall, spread them as far apart as possible. The QS series is amazing at generating envelopping sound even in less than ideal situations (which probably half the installationsa are because of physical or wife constraints! \:\) ).
Posted by: Potatohead

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 05:23 PM

As the others said I would not worry too much about it, the side walls would be best but if they are on the back wall they will still be very good and (obviously) a huge improvement over nothing.

The height can vary, 2 - 3 feet above your ears seems ideal. Mine are about 16" above to the bottom of the speaker and they sound great.
Posted by: terzaghi

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 09:05 PM

My rooms is the same size as yours (within a foot or so each way). I have m80's vp150, 2 QS8's and an EP500. I also have my TV against the long wall and my couch against the opposite wall. I was unable to place my QS8's on the side walls because it is open on one side (into the kitchen) and there is a brick fireplace on the other. As a result, I mounted my QS8's on the back wall, separated almost as far as possible and about 6 feet off the ground. They are mounted flush to the wall with the supplied T brackets.

The QS8's sound amazing the way they are, an indicator that they are very forgiving for placement. Before I purchased my axioms I auditioned a similar setup at someones house that I met on the boards. They had the QS8's on stands at the side of the couch. In my opinion, the QS8's sound better up higher on the back wall than they did on the sides mounted on stands.

Here is a picture of my surrounds: Please forgive the poor quality, the picture was taken with my iPhone.


Posted by: JohnK

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 09:37 PM

Ax, welcome. Keep in mind that even if the surround speakers in a 5.1 setup are mounted on the back wall, they're still side surrounds. So, mounting about 2-3' above ear level and spread widely(say at least 10')to give primarily a side effect should work well.
Posted by: axiomoholic

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 10:53 PM

thanks SO, SO much everyone. and picture was perfect. Exactly the same as my room - even down to being open to our kitchens. Of course all your equipment is a bit scaled up from mine (I hope your foundation is bolted down) but geometry is same and I'm glad to hear that you're getting good results...

~ you have the QS8's about 12" from side walls? is that right? Also, what does the person sitting in your side chair hear? My wife would be in that general area - does the down-woofer of the QS8 bother/deafen the person in that area when system's been optimized for the center of couch a good eight feet away?
Posted by: terzaghi

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/20/10 11:32 PM

The QS8's are about 1 foot from the brick fire place on the Right and about 1.5-2 feet from the kitchen entrance on the left (They are not perfectly symmetrical since I screwed them into wall studs- drywall anchors could probably used successfully though- especially with a QS4) I can't comment too much on the side chair because I am always sitting in the center seat of the main couch . Of course, I have sat there a few times and there is not an overwhelming sound coming straight down on you from the QS8 driver. The surround field is off because one surround is right behind you and the other is way off to the right. Also sitting right next to the left m80 but being so far from the right m80 is not optimum (and you are pretty off axis from the center channel too.)

Basically, the love seat is not really used for watching movies or playing games unless company is over and it is the only choice. It is usually just my wife and me sitting on the main couch. During normal cable TV viewing the love seat is fine as most cable TV shows don't require a lot of surround sound effects. I angled the love seat so that it doesn't block the path between the main couch and the left 80
Posted by: axiomoholic

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/21/10 01:06 PM

If I'm going with a twenty foot spread between the QS4's, I wonder if alot would be gained from putting the QS4's on the side walls. Of course, that would involve convincing my wife to let me put a speaker on the fireplace wall - don't think that will happen...

I'd always origionally envisioned a back-wall mount positon only being about 10 feet apart becasue I thought you were supposed to try to match the spread of your fronts...
Posted by: Murph

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/21/10 01:17 PM

Heya Mr. Moholic,
I started to answer your question but remembered This excellent article on 5.1 and 7.1 layouts. It is a great article from resident audio expert Alan Loft and it has very well done diagrams showing the optimum layouts for both 5.1 and 7.1, direct radiating vs. di and quad-polar speakers, and even sub woofer locations. It also talks about how optimum is not always a possible reality so you do what you can with what you have.

I think it will answer a lot of your questions. It did for me a t the time.
Posted by: jakewash

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/21/10 03:14 PM

 Originally Posted By: axiomoholic

I'd always origionally envisioned a back-wall mount positon only being about 10 feet apart becasue I thought you were supposed to try to match the spread of your fronts...
That is what you do when running rear channels for a 7.X system or at least limit the width to the same, they can still be set narrower as per per Dolby specs.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/21/10 09:35 PM

Ax, as Jay pointed out, that concept of being spread about as widely as the mains applies to back surround speakers in a 7.1 setup, spreading them about as much as they're behind the listeners, in analogous fashion to the spread of the mains.

Since the 5.1 surrounds are side surrounds, they can be spread almost as far as they would be if they were actually mounted on the side walls rather than the back wall.
Posted by: Luke Smith

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/25/10 04:00 PM

Is my setup much the same as what you are planning? Sounds pretty damned awesome to me.
Posted by: axiomoholic

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/26/10 09:15 PM

yes luke, similiar. Can I ask why you choose to install on the rear wall? - it looks like you could have put the surrounds on the side walls.

Looks great.
Posted by: Luke Smith

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/28/10 11:39 PM

There is no wall on the left side of the room, its open into the rest of the living area and kitchen.
Posted by: Nick B

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/29/10 05:13 PM

I had a similar room setup as you and was really not very happy with the results. Putting your couch up against a wall is the biggest problem with this. This is because to get some envelopment from surround speakers you need to have at least a little bit of space behind you. The second problem with sitting against a wall is that the bass causes you problems there. I would suggest that you at least get your sofa two or three feet off of the wall so that you can get a sound-field behind you. Ideally you would want to turn the room so that your front speakers are firing into the longer dimension of the room. Now, I know that there are two big problems with you doing either of these things: 1. WAF 2. you already have your main speakers mounted in/on the walls. But, I just want you to know that your investment may not produce the results you want because of the way your room is setup.

Getting the room to look good (as far as how the furniture is laid out) and getting the speakers and seats in the right locations in the room is one of the toughest things to do in a non-dedicated room.
Posted by: Luke Smith

Re: concern about QS4 surround - 01/31/10 02:02 AM

Yep, its all a compromise... in all, the results are better than i thought possible.

I could move the lounge out to the middle of the room when I'm doing some hard-core watching/listening... maybe.