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  1. #1
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    What exactly is the point of 6.1 & 7.1 systems ?

    From what I can gather, almost all DVD's are available for current movies on 5.1 surround sound. They are not recorded for 6.1. or 7.1 sound. What then is the pount of a 6.1 or 7.1 receiver other than to justify increasing prices on receivers? I think I just saw a 9.1 system listed somewhere. Can someone please explain to me.
    Last edited by Geoffcin; 02-26-2005 at 01:24 PM.

  2. #2
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    Listen to a 6.1 soundtrack on a 6.1 system and decide whether or not it is worth it for you. I personally think that it is worth it but you may not. In terms of raising prices on receivers, generally when a new generation receiver comes out they offer more power, new features (i.e. 6 channels or 7 channels over the previous 5), supposedly better sound quality, etc, for generally not that much more money than the one they replaced. Of course buying the speakers to take advantage of the channels will cost you. Also I would think most receivers nowadays can create information for the rear center channel from a standard 5.1 soundtrack. So even if the DVD is 5.1 you will still be able to get 6.1 sound (though it won't be discrete).
    Definitive Technology Fan, Owner and Advocate!!!!! never paying retail IS half the fun of buying audio products!!!! Good shopping!

  3. #3
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    Oh there are 6.1 DVD's- My Mistake then

    I wasn't aware there were any 6.1 or 7.1 DVD's being commercially sold. If so, OK I can see the need for one of these systems. I'm aware that these systems offer improvements over previous receivers that were 5.1 but I just wish they would come out with improved 5.1
    receivers. Even if I wanted a 6.1 or 7.1 setup, there literally would be no place to put these extra speakers unless I wanted them on my wall which I don't.


    Quote Originally Posted by chimera128
    Listen to a 6.1 soundtrack on a 6.1 system and decide whether or not it is worth it for you. I personally think that it is worth it but you may not. In terms of raising prices on receivers, generally when a new generation receiver comes out they offer more power, new features (i.e. 6 channels or 7 channels over the previous 5), supposedly better sound quality, etc, for generally not that much more money than the one they replaced. Of course buying the speakers to take advantage of the channels will cost you. Also I would think most receivers nowadays can create information for the rear center channel from a standard 5.1 soundtrack. So even if the DVD is 5.1 you will still be able to get 6.1 sound (though it won't be discrete).

  4. #4
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    You have to remember that ALL of these surround formats were first introduced in Theaters for commercial use; even going back to the days of Dolby Surround and Dolby Pro Logic. Then they were made available for home use -- that's why they call it HOME THEATER. Nothing has changed in that regard. In the right room, with the proper setup, and with the right material, a 6.1 or 7.1 setup will sound better than a 5.1 system. Certainly, there is marketing involved, but the technology itself is aimed at drawing more people into the local multiplex; then it spills over into the consumer electronics market.

    Q

  5. #5
    nightflier
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    Other than LOTR?

    Sorry if this has been asked before, but apart from The Lord Of The Rings series (which I own already), what other movies are available in 6.1? I've been looking, but haven't found any.

    LOTR sounds excellent in discrete 7.1, I'm just looking for more...

  6. #6
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    Star Wars Box Set - Dolby ex
    Terminator 2 (extreme DVD) - Dolby ex
    We Were Soldiers - Dolby ex

    Not sure what 5.1 ex means. I've only got 5.1, so...

  7. #7
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    They improve their 5.1 systems as well Hershon. People couldn't stay in business long if they just kept selling the same product. They probably give their 5.1 receivers more power, better dsp modes (though how they define better doesn't necessarily mean better), outputs/inputs etc.
    Definitive Technology Fan, Owner and Advocate!!!!! never paying retail IS half the fun of buying audio products!!!! Good shopping!

  8. #8
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nightflier
    Sorry if this has been asked before, but apart from The Lord Of The Rings series (which I own already), what other movies are available in 6.1? I've been looking, but haven't found any.

    LOTR sounds excellent in discrete 7.1, I'm just looking for more...
    No such thing as 7.1 discrete for the home. 6.1 discrete is all that comes close.
    Sir Terrence

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  9. #9
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    I'll explain it to you

    Quote Originally Posted by hershon
    From what I can gather, almost all DVD's are available for current movies on 5.1 surround sound. They are not recorded for 6.1. or 7.1 sound. What then is the pount of a 6.1 or 7.1 receiver other than to justify increasing prices on receivers? I think I just saw a 9.1 system listed somewhere. Can someone please explain to me.
    I use a 7.1 HT system. Contrary to what you've been told, Dolby EX provides a very encompassing rear soundfield. DTS-ES is even better, although the amount of DVD's encoded with DTS-ES is pretty slim. The HT effect of 7.1 is SUPERIOR to a 5.1 system by a good margin on SOME material.

    The bad news is that if you don't have room, at least 3ft, behind your seating area then a 7.1 system is not reccomended.
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  10. #10
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    I've got a 7.2 setup and love it, the extra speakers on the side walls really give a great surround sound feel. The 2 rear speakers are of course not discrete, there is nothing available in 7 channel, so a rear centre or 6. system would be just as good.

  11. #11
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    6.1 is not 7.1

    Quote Originally Posted by htfan14
    I've got a 7.2 setup and love it, the extra speakers on the side walls really give a great surround sound feel. The 2 rear speakers are of course not discrete, there is nothing available in 7 channel, so a rear centre or 6. system would be just as good.
    Even though the rear channels are not discrete, the EX encoded tracks have a good deal of information encoded, and two channels are needed to make it work correctly. I've tried it 6.1, and 7.1 was better .
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  12. #12
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoffcin
    I use a 7.1 HT system. Contrary to what you've been told, Dolby EX provides a very encompassing rear soundfield. DTS-ES is even better, although the amount of DVD's encoded with DTS-ES is pretty slim. The HT effect of 7.1 is SUPERIOR to a 5.1 system by a good margin on SOME material.

    The bad news is that if you don't have room, at least 3ft, behind your seating area then a 7.1 system is not reccomended.
    I wish I could agree with you Geoff, but I get EX without the decoder and the speakers. Rooms that are 14ft and less in width will probably get very little benefit if the listener sits exactly in between the speakers. If there is more than one person watching, then the benefits of 5.1+1 become pretty obvious. With my system, at least three people can clearly hear EX effects without the decoder and speakers.

    EX was never intended for the home in all truth. It was designed to fill in the sonic hole in between the left and right surround speaker array. It was also meant to enhance steering effects and to mitigate the comb filtering when images are panned from front to rear(and visa versa). Our left and right speakers are much closer in the home, and since we only use two speakers in the surrounds, comb filtering is not really a problem.

    THX certification program was pretty stagnant at the time EX was introduced into the theaters. In order to bring life back into their liscensing program, EX was introduced into the home. 5.1 is still the standard, and the majority of movies are still released
    Sir Terrence

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  13. #13
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    I can only comment on my systems performance.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible
    I wish I could agree with you Geoff, but I get EX without the decoder and the speakers. Rooms that are 14ft and less in width will probably get very little benefit if the listener sits exactly in between the speakers. If there is more than one person watching, then the benefits of 5.1+1 become pretty obvious. With my system, at least three people can clearly hear EX effects without the decoder and speakers.

    EX was never intended for the home in all truth. It was designed to fill in the sonic hole in between the left and right surround speaker array. It was also meant to enhance steering effects and to mitigate the comb filtering when images are panned from front to rear(and visa versa). Our left and right speakers are much closer in the home, and since we only use two speakers in the surrounds, comb filtering is not really a problem.

    THX certification program was pretty stagnant at the time EX was introduced into the theaters. In order to bring life back into their liscensing program, EX was introduced into the home. 5.1 is still the standard, and the majority of movies are still released
    When I moved to 7.1 I noticed a marked increase in spatial effects. I get a kick out if when we play a movie like Harry Potter II and the Basolith slithers behind the walls to a point behind the seating area. Several of my kids friends have jumped out of their seats when this happend! They just got Lion King II, and there's several times that lions are roaring behind your head. For my part, music DVDs really sound "fuller" with the two rear speakers engaged, especially the DTS-ES encoded ones like Peter Gabriel's "Growing Up". For me the increased sense of space is what 7.1 is all about. The fact that the 2 rear channels are not discreet does not affect this IMHO.
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  14. #14
    Loving This kexodusc's Avatar
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    I have a rather large room, but I have to agree with Geoffcin on this one...I was very skeptical at first, but an home demo helped me make up my mind. I use the processing most of the time for TV or movies to take advantage of 7 speakers. There are som odd ball exceptions where I can't hear a difference, or don't like the difference I hear.
    I think Sir Terrence summed it up though, the benefits decreas in smaller rooms.

    I'd recommend getting a handle on 5.1 before adding more speakers, though.

  15. #15
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    On a related topic, which is preferred for the back surrounds, dipole, bipole, or direct radiating?

    Q

  16. #16
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    I use in-wall speakers for the rear

    Quote Originally Posted by Quagmire
    On a related topic, which is preferred for the back surrounds, dipole, bipole, or direct radiating?

    Q
    They are direct radiating, but have a wide dispersion pattern. I use speakers set to bipole
    for the side surrounds. They have both direct, and indirect facing drivers.
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  17. #17
    BooBs are elitist jerks shokhead's Avatar
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    Red face

    8.1 9.1 10.1 but i bet whats next will be .2. Its not stopping no matter if the tracks are there or not,they will fake it up somehow to sell and boy,we'll byt it. Well i wont,i got smarter a few years ago when i noticed how broke i was and couldnt keep up with the new formats. Then i got pissed and stopped. I'll stay with 5.1 and would rather get better speakers then more,but thats me.
    Look & Listen

  18. #18
    Loving This kexodusc's Avatar
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    I use bookshelf monitors on tall, sturdy stands for my rears. Six identical speakers and a center channel that lies horizontally on my TV. I've heard some people reporting excellent results with dipoles as rears. Sir T is really on the ball with dispersion and the way ears pick up sounds tough, he'd probably be the best to consult.

    Shokhead: I think you're right, many people would benefit more from a higher quality 5.1 system than a lower quality 7.1 system.
    I don't think 6.1 or 7.1 has taken off as well as the industry hoped, so you might see it stop at 7.1 for most models (except the high-end receivers) at least for awhile.

  19. #19
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    One more 6.1 discreet soundtrack -

    I just rented the movie "Saw"

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387564/

    And this had a 6.1 DTS Discreet option...

    And it was fantastic. Made me actually glad that I had taken the trouble to put in the 6th speaker in my 6.1 system.....first time in a while.

    Hopefully we'll see more normal dvd's like this one coming out...

  20. #20
    nightflier
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    A Few More 6.1 titles

    Blade II (DTS ES)
    Monsters Inc. (DD)
    Signs (DTS ES)

    I don't know if Any of the Superbit titles (Panic Room, 5th Element, SW Episode II, etc.) have 6.1 sound, either....

  21. #21
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    If you don't like it, DONT BUY IT, BOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Who's your DADDY, FOOL????????????????

  22. #22
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    The remastered Top Gun is 6.1 DTS-ES as well.

  23. #23
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aldo WIngate
    If you don't like it, DONT BUY IT, BOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Who's your DADDY, FOOL????????????????
    Hey Aldo, can you participate in the discussion and please refrain from asking everyone who is their daddy. I think everyone here knows who their father is.

    Thanks
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  24. #24
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    There is this thing called Neo:6 which can expand standard stereo and 5.1 audio to utilize the 6th speaker. The one reason I would add more speakers is to reduce the sweet spot. Ideally, there would be no sweet spot, I wouldn't have to worry about comfort vs best listening position.

  25. #25
    BooBs are elitist jerks shokhead's Avatar
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    Dont think that would effect that at all.
    Look & Listen

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