Tips on Building an HT speaker system [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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12-06-2003, 06:24 AM
Can someone help and direct me on the best way to build a HT speaker system.

It seems that the first place to start would be a good set of front speakers. Is this correct? Do they necessarily need to be placed in front of you? I wanted to place them on the sides of my sofa. Is that okay?

Whats the next speaker that I should get? Surround?

12-06-2003, 09:11 AM
Well in a basic 5.1 setup There's FRONT Right and Left. REAR Right and LEft. and FRONT Center. usually placed on top or below the tv. No puting front speakers next to sofas.

12-07-2003, 12:44 AM
I just picked up a a harman kardon AVR325. I'm new at this I think it is 7.1 or has 7 channels. Does that mean I can have 2 front, 2back, 1 center, 1 surround, and 1 sub contected?

This Guy
12-07-2003, 10:49 AM
you have front left and right, center, surround left and right, back surrround left and right, and a subwoofer (.1)


12-07-2003, 08:48 PM
you have front left and right, center, surround left and right, back surrround left and right, and a subwoofer (.1)


what's the difference between surround left and right and back surround left and right? will two floor main speakers give me surround sound?

12-08-2003, 07:54 AM
Easiest way to think of surround left and right is to think of them as side left and right. Back surround left and right are your rear channels. If you only have two speakers now in your setup make them the main left and right speakers. If you have two additional speakers, be them bookshelf or floorstanders, make them the rear surround speakers. With a total of four speakers you can have surround sound but not with only two. An example of a 7.1 setup using what I have would be:

nOrh ( wood 5.1 - Left and right main speakers
nOrh ceramic 4.0 video package - Center, side surrounds, and rear surrounds
SVS ( 20-39PCi

12-12-2003, 05:28 PM
I might offer that you are on the right track with the reciever. You bought a middle of the road receiver that should last many many years. If you only have two speakers connect them to the reciever as the front left and right. Put the speakers in front of you not at your side. On your receiver select stereo or vmax. Vmax is h/k attempt at making two speakers immulate surround sound. Select the Vmax far or near depending how far away the speakers are. Also very important, and i mention this because you sound fairly new to audio, make sure when you connect the speaker wire from the speakers to the reciever that you keep the postive and negatives connected properly. The easiest way to ensure this to to buy speaker wire that has black and red jackets. Connect the red to (postive or the red connector on the speaker) and the black to (negative or the black connector on the speaker). Make sure the red is red on the reciever and black is black on the receiver. Of course, make sure the receiver is off before doing the connections, otherwise, you could damage your receiver. Hope this helps.

12-12-2003, 05:53 PM
thanks poneal,
i'm very new to this. as a matter of fact i just opened the box on my new reciever and i'm overwhelmed at all the different settings. i'm glad i got something mid road so i can work into something else down the road. i read a lot of reviews on the avr325 and for $400 seemed to be just fine. the damn thing is heavy compared to my cheap old Technics reciever. i did read that note in the manual regarding Vmax. if surround sound is controlled by the reciever why do they sell surround speakers. . my thought is that my fiance has a couple of old speakers (forget the brand, may be 5-6 years old but they sound allright) use those as the front speakers then eventually get in this order a subwoofer, center speaker and a couple of bookshelves. i've got about another $300-400 to spend on speakers. what is your thought? i'm just overwhelmed. from what i can see and i haven't read the whole manual but do you have to program speakers? if thats the case can i still use those old speakers i planned on? man i can see why people have professionals install this stuff. i'm bound and determined to learn more and figure it out.

12-12-2003, 06:13 PM
Start with the front two and work from there. The main reason for going with the front two is because any two-channel sources that you use will make use of the front L and R speakers. When doing your auditioning, just make sure that you listen to the matching center and surround speakers as well and see how well the sound matches.

The main speakers absolutely should directly face you. Side placements will make your music or movies sound like everything's occurring off to the side with nothing happening in front of you. The surround speakers should be mounted above ear level and point towards one another slightly behind the listening position.

Which speaker you get after the mains is debatable. Some would argue that the center speaker should come next. I personally would vouch for the surrounds, since those are the ones that impart the spatiality and directional cues in movie soundtracks. The center channel can get split into the L and R front speakers and should sound okay. But, the results can be variable, so a center speaker should be there in a full surround setup.