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Old 05-01-2019, 04:54 PM
 
Location: Peru, Maine
290 posts, read 259,064 times
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Hi Group,
I am planning on buying either a Home Theater System vrs a Home Stereo System (good ole 2 channel stereo AM/FM, turntable, cassette tape,cd etc).


I have been doing much reading/studying about all of this.


Home Stereo = understandable to me.
Home Theater = Confusing stuff.


Home Theater Systems can be 5.1, 7.1, 9.2, 11.1, or 12.1 Channels (WHAT!?) - What happened to "Two Channel Stereo" ?


Sooo, I read that I CAN use a Home Theater [Receiver/base/main unit] as a Hub for Home Stereo equipment. (Turntable, AM/FM Receiver, cassette, CD, etc)as well as TV, DVD, Blueray/Games etc.


Can I utilize my exsisting Home Stereo Speakers (I do have six) as "Surround Sound" speakers, and just possibly get s separate subwoofer?


Would these speakers 'sound' right in a Surround Sound System?


OR...are specific 'Surround Sound Speakers' better geared for Surround Sound???


*Will I have to spend the additional $'s on just specific Surround Sound Speakers?


Geez, whatever happened to the good ole days of TWO channel stereo?


Any help or information will be greatly appreciated!


Thanks,


CT2MEwoodnutt
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Old 05-02-2019, 03:18 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
18,507 posts, read 55,427,357 times
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IME, surround in a home theatre setup is not terribly great. YMMV

As long as the impedences are similar, yes, you can use existing speakers if you are on a budget.
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Old 05-02-2019, 08:30 AM
 
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
11,815 posts, read 13,954,365 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harry chickpea View Post
IME, surround in a home theatre setup is not terribly great. YMMV
Wh-at? Harry harry harry... tsk tsk.

You have obviously not heard even a semi decent one.


Quote:

As long as the impedences are similar, yes, you can use existing speakers if you are on a budget.
This is true.


OP, keep it simple and go with a 5.1. This is a total of 6 speaker (5+1).

2 front, 2 rear, one center channel and the +1: a subwoofer.

All your speakers can be used for this but it would sound better with a dedicated sub and center channel.



There are some great sounding inexpensive systems out there nowadays though. I personally wouldn't spend a ton on it.
https://www.bestbuy.com/site/vizio-s...?skuId=5768100
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Old 05-02-2019, 10:17 AM
 
Location: McAllen, TX
3,957 posts, read 2,608,667 times
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Home theater (surround) can also run in stereo, your preference. If you only listen to music, stereo is fine. If you want to listen to/watch movies on DVD and Bluray and enjoy the theater "experience", then get a surround system. The 5.1 which is the lowest on the scale nowadays is 2 front, 2 rear, 1 center and a subwoofer (.1). It goes up from there. Turntables are back in style, the cassette is gone. Your two stereo speakers could double up as the "front" speakers in a surround set up.

BTW: You can also listen to movies in stereo, it still beats the hell out of listening on the TV speakers.
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Old 05-02-2019, 10:47 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
18,507 posts, read 55,427,357 times
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"Wh-at? Harry harry harry... tsk tsk.

You have obviously not heard even a semi decent one."


Could be. Then again, I have biases. Surround sound was almost always a "gimmick" in movie theatres, starting around the time of "Earthquake." The channels were dead most of the time, until an off-screen elephant had to enter stage left, go through rampaging across left, derived center, right, and finally exit stage right. It stuck around because it was cheaper than 3D and then THX sound (which included it for Lucas's tie fighters) became a marketing draw for audiences tired of cheap theatres with a single speaker.

Surround sound has no real place outside of the full immersion systems like Omnimax and the 360 cameras. To bring it home, I experienced a production recently that had wild sound that included the sound of one of those ubiquitous beeping noises emitted by half the appliances in the U.S. It sounded at times as though it was coming off screen, and I found it super-annoying that I couldn't track it just using my ears, to locate where it was or if it was something of mine that was beeping. Our ears are amazing natural technology, capable of discerning the location of sounds within a couple of degrees.

On screen action is generally covering less than 40 degrees in our visual field and even fewer degrees in the 360 of reality. It gets three sound emitting sources and is relatively accurate. In a 5.1 system, about 160 degrees has to make do with a single audio source. Theatres would hang about four speakers along each side wall to spread that out and avoid a lot of the obvious misalignment. Home systems use a single speaker pr channel, so the elephant jumps from behind the wife's easy chair to the screen and then hides behind the floor lamp. Yep, realistic. NOT.

Further, some of the sound mixers for movies do strange drugs and are influenced by clueless studio execs who determine if they get to work on the next big project. I can't count the number of movies where I've walked in an auditorium in a properly calibrated theatre and experienced surround sound mix that was cartoonish and unprofessional because some jerk at a studio wanted to toss his weight around "to enhance the audience experience." I have 5.1 at home, but have balanced the surrounds to be barely audible. Makes me happy. Audiophiles can do what makes them happy, which sometimes seems more like jerking off to the technology specs and money spent than understanding total experience.
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Old 05-02-2019, 02:17 PM
 
Location: McAllen, TX
3,957 posts, read 2,608,667 times
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^^^ Generally speaking, yes, the surround experience is lacking for movies, especially if the movie is mostly dialog instead of action. For music concerts, it is another story entirely. When you listen to a Bluray of your favorite musical group in DTS-HD with all of the speakers running at full speed, you would know what I mean. Surround systems do have their place, maybe not with run of the mill movies, but they do still have a place. You can also turn on "5 channel" or "7 channel" stereo where all of the speakers are on, providing stereo sound on multiple speakers. This is nice for music as well.
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Old 05-02-2019, 09:55 PM
 
471 posts, read 125,721 times
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Are you planning to use for music or are you planning to use it for movies? Or both? What is the brand of your speakers?

There are receivers that are dedicated for 2 channel listening only. But the majority of receivers now have at least 5.1 options. Like others have said, you can choose to listen to music in stereo mode on a 5.1 receiver if you wish. There are options to turn off the surrounding speakers. Higher end receivers give you even more options to plug in more speakers. I myself enjoy listening to music with all my speakers on.


Some speakers are designed for best use as surround sound but I doubt that you have those speakers. So in general speaking, you can use your speakers for main speakers, you can use them for surrounds. It is up to you. Your main two front speakers, along with your center speakers should be your best and most expensive speakers. Prefer that they are the same brand and model if you want to use it for movies.


There are unlimited choices. It depends on how serious you are and on how deep your wallet is. You can buy a cheap theater in a box for $200-$400 that comes with everything. Or you can buy products separately and spend thousands of dollars on each item itself.
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Old 05-03-2019, 07:50 AM
 
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
11,815 posts, read 13,954,365 times
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The opening sequence of Lethal Weapon II on a decent home surround system blew my mind the first time I heard it. And the 2nd time, too. No one can tell me home surround sucks.
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Old 05-03-2019, 12:39 PM
 
471 posts, read 125,721 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peregrine View Post
The opening sequence of Lethal Weapon II on a decent home surround system blew my mind the first time I heard it. And the 2nd time, too. No one can tell me home surround sucks.

HELL YEAH!!!! Mother of GOD.....Especially if you have a good home theater system that cost above $1,000. Real Floorstanding speakers and huge subwoofers.


For me, it's the beach battle scene in Saving Private Ryan and the beginning scene of Fellowship of the Ring. Holy Crap, especially if you have some bad azz subwoofers. I have four 15 inch subwoofers. Oh my goodness! Feels like I'm watching it at a movie theater.


I also love watching the scene where the little girl taps the fish tank in Finding Nemo. My whole house rattled. Along with my windows, dishes, and glasses in the kitchen. That Thump, Thump.....find a happy place. LOL. Holy Cow!!!!!!
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Old 05-03-2019, 08:45 PM
 
Location: Greensboro, NC
5,894 posts, read 4,414,648 times
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OK, when my family and I move into our new house, I plan to revamp the surround sound. I guess I'm going to need to pick up a copy of Lethal Weapon II LOL!
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