Author Topic: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1  (Read 14503 times)

Offline Carlman

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Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« on: October 23, 2009, 08:09:35 AM »
Well, after having a pair of $1,k speakers do absolutely nothing for a few months, it's time to change from 7.1 to 5.1 in the HT.   ;)

I didn't really look into it.. and a few folks told me that 7.1 wasn't worth it... but I didn't listen... or more accurately, I didn't fully understand what they meant.

Out of the hundreds of DVD's I've found, maybe 1% has 7.1, of that 1% there are maybe 2 titles I'd want to own.  Of those 2 titles, they were probably put into 7.1 after the fact.. purely as a DVD marketing gimmick.. which is what I'm learning 7.1 is. sigh.

I can put my system into 7.1 and it does make more sound come from the rear, but it doesn't really add anything to the movie experience.. it's kind of like turning up the rears in 5.1.  It does spread it out more, though.

In any case, I tried it, it's there.. and the wiring is done if I ever want to go back to it. ;)

Anyone else have the same experience?  Or did you did you go to 8+ channels instead? ha.
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Offline bpape

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2009, 08:49:22 AM »
You're right.  There's very little native 7.1 out there.  Most processors extrapolate the 7.1 from the 5.1 native channels. 

7.1 can work very well if implemented right.  Rear surrounds are monopole, side surrounds directly to your side and dipoles.  This allows a better rear 'image', smoother panning front to back, etc.

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Offline Carlman

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2009, 03:12:21 PM »
I think I have it setup exactly as you've described.. but I know it needs more tweaking.. I guess I'm just not a videophile. ;)  Plus, most movies I watch aren't even in 5.1.. :(
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Offline Bob in St. Louis

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2009, 08:11:33 AM »
I had 7.1 for a while but was never happy with it. I've since gone to 5.1.
Much better.

Before you sell off your speakers Carl, if you'd rather watch some movies that are 7.1, check out > THIS SITE <. It has filters so you can weed out all movies except 7.1, or all movies that aren't DTS, or whatever. You'd be surprised how many movies are 7.1

Hope that helps,
Bob

Offline Carlman

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2009, 11:42:47 AM »
Wow, what a great resource, Bob!  Thanks for the link.  :thumb:  It's good for all sorts of searching, very cool. 

I have decided on the 5.1 conversion, though.. out of those DVD's, I would only like a couple... so it's just not worth it to me.  So, speakers will either be in a 2nd system or for sale.. not sure yet.

-C
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Offline Bob in St. Louis

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2009, 01:29:27 PM »
Yes, that is a pretty neat website indeed...and you're very welcome.
I'll take those speakers off your hands Carl. They'll just clutter up your closet otherwise.

And like you mentioned in your first post, the fact that so many 7.1 DVDs have those extra couple channels as a gimmick. You'd be spending a lot of money on speakers for those couple movies that really interest you, that it's not worth it.

Bob

Offline Rob S.

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2009, 08:05:03 PM »
Carl and gang,
      Good topic that I know little about....  7.1 was briefly in my little brain a while ago and I wondered how much better it really was.   I'm thinking I'll just stick with the 5.1 also, I don't know that I would really care much about the additional processing of the rear channels,  and don't think it would lessen my video experience with 5.1.  Wife and kids like the basic setup.

Rob S.
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Offline Carlman

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2009, 08:15:23 AM »
I can't actually figure out why it exists at the 'regular' consumer level. 

I understand it provides a 'more' immersive experience but I think that's pretty tough to quantify in a properly setup dedicated room.  I'm guessing if you A/B'd 5 to 7 with everything being equal and the setups optimized, in a fairly large room, I could see 7 being better.  Maybe that's it.. 7.1 is for very large HT rooms... like 23' x 35' and that sort of thing.. but not for me in a 15 x 27. 

So, why 7 channels exists on receivers is because they can and because more is better.  Further add to that 1% of DVD's have 7 channels on the disc, and that seals it, just a marketing gimmick.  But, I do understand the need to have it, big rooms where you change the surround processor to simulate rears into 2 more speakers..  But I don't think a receiver would be enough power in an application where 7 channels were really needed...

That's what I think.. mystery solved! Glad I learned about it but happy to move on.

-C
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Offline Bob in St. Louis

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2009, 11:46:16 AM »
I can't actually figure out why it exists at the 'regular' consumer level. 
Carl, Carl, Carl.....  :duh
My friend, we need to have a talk.
You haven't properly experienced a true surround system until you've heard the latest, greatest, biggest, meanest, baddest, plasticiest, fastest, mostest 1,000 watt 9.1 surround system. My company happens to be having a sale on these as we speak. While you're sitting at your PC typing of your disdain regarding these fine pieces of electronic artwork, your neighbor has just hooked up his new Bowfunct 9000 EXT-XLR system that he received from yours truly just moments ago. It has the newest XL9.100 digital audio processing chip, along with the Tri-Power-Avalanche Video Z-6600 video upconverting intergalactic bam circuitry as well as the newest special patent pending BaDaz-uber subwoofer NocUm-ded!1.6z technology. As far as the cost....It's MUCH less than you'd think. Plus, the main audio processing unit, video processing unit, Multi-Shiny disc unit, and amplification console weighs a mere 0.7 pounds TOTAL!!!!

You sir, have obviously become complacent with your existing "meager state of technological affairs" and haven't allowed yourself to experience the latest offerings available to you. Just think of the joy you could bring yourself and your family by calling me NOW.

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p.s. Actually, I think 7.1 has it's place....But not in 99% of residential homes. I just happen to be on my second beer and though that would be fun.

opnly bafld

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2009, 12:14:27 PM »
Let me start off by saying I couldn't care less about surround sound, if a movie is not worth watching in a 1.1 system IMHO 10,000 channels will not make it a "better" movie.

I have heard 7.1 in a 12' x 17' ? room and the difference from 5.1 was not subtle.

My understanding may be flawed, but as I understand it even if the movie is 5.1 the processor steers the side/rear sound much like the l/r/center with DPL (if you have a 5.1 only processor you can use an old Dolby Pro logic receiver in "3 stereo" mode to steer the surround channels for 6.1).
With 5.1 the "surround" sound is (in setups I've heard) either mostly to the sides OR behind you depending on where the rear speakers are placed, whereas with 7.1 if the surround information is "stereo" it will go to the side speakers, but if is "mono" it will be sent to the speaker(s) behind you.
Movies that are true 7.1 will have a dedicated 2 channel (or mono/6.1) signal in back also.

FWIW,
Lin
« Last Edit: October 25, 2009, 12:16:35 PM by opnly bafld »

Offline tmazz

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2009, 03:35:22 PM »
Here is a question, I realize that not much 7.1 material is available on DVD, but does the introduction of more and more movies on Blue-ray change the balance of how much software is available in 7.1? I really don't follow high end video that much, so I was just wondering if anyone had a handle on this?
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Offline Bob in St. Louis

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2009, 06:25:41 PM »
Well....I'm not sure anybody has a handle on what the movie industry has planned, but if there was ever a format that was best suited to 7.1 playback, I'd say it was the "Blue". What I mean by that, is that it seems the DVD has run it's course and they aren't looking to make it any "fancier" than it currently is. The BR is the next logical step for the movie/recording industry to expand into the eight or more channel releases.

Did you catch the link I provided a few posts ago?

Bob

Offline Barry (NJ)

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #12 on: August 15, 2019, 09:23:55 AM »
I know this thread is an antique, but I recently added 2 more surround channels to my system and I found the change rather significant and positive. With the proliferation of Blu-Ray and more advanced Surround Codecs, 7.1 is now pretty common. If you have the space to lay them out properly, the additional speakers can/do increase the envelopment aspect of the surround sound experience. The speakers that I recently added are to the sides of the couch, indicated by the [?]s...


media_room by Barry, on Flickr

Atmos is next on my radar, but I'll need a new player and processor for that, so it'll be a bit...
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Offline Nick B

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #13 on: August 15, 2019, 11:35:33 AM »
I know this thread is an antique, but I recently added 2 more surround channels to my system and I found the change rather significant and positive. With the proliferation of Blu-Ray and more advanced Surround Codecs, 7.1 is now pretty common. If you have the space to lay them out properly, the additional speakers can/do increase the envelopment aspect of the surround sound experience. The speakers that I recently added are to the sides of the couch, indicated by the [?]s...


media_room by Barry, on Flickr

Atmos is next on my radar, but I'll need a new player and processor for that, so it'll be a bit...

Barry, Very nice.... I’ve never experimented with a 5.1 or 7.1. Too many wires, etc!  Have heard some setups that way, but many are underwhelming. Pls keep us posted
Nick
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Offline Barry (NJ)

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Re: Moving from 7.1 to 5.1
« Reply #14 on: August 15, 2019, 03:15:51 PM »
Barry, Very nice.... I’ve never experimented with a 5.1 or 7.1. Too many wires, etc!  Have heard some setups that way, but many are underwhelming. Pls keep us posted
Nick

Thanks Nick. My surround set up is for primarily for movies, as I explained elsewhere, though I do have Pink Floyd "Dark Side of the Moon" in multi-channel SACD that plays in my Oppo BDP-83 from time to time. However, my 2-channel rig images well enough to throw sounds into every corner of my room and beyond. With a proper recording, the walls of my room melt away :wink:
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