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Old 11th August 2003, 03:40 PM   #1
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Location: South India
Question How to set a 5.1 channel surround system

Hi All,

Can anyone help me to set a 5.1 Dolby Digital/DTS Surround sound system.
I have a SONY A/V receiver Model number STRDE-595. It has a RMS power of 100W/CH.

Now I need some info on how to set the Speaker unit for this Receiver. I am planning to buy DAINTY/PHILIPS/PEERLESS speakers at my local Market.

Now as far as I know I need:
1) 2 Front Towers
2) 2 Rear Bookshelfs
3) 1 Center speaker

I dont want to put a Active Sub-woofer seperately. My Receiver can distribute the LFE signals to all the 5 channels in the absence of SWoofer.

Now I want to know what RATING of speakers I should buy.
Some of my friends told these configurations:
For Front speakers:
a) 1 Tweeter
b) 1 Mid-range
c) 1 Full range
d) 1 woofer
e) 3 way crossover

For rear speakers:
a) 1 tweeters
b) 1 Full range speakers
c) 2 way crossover

For Center speakers:
a) 1 tweeter
b) 1 Woofer
c) 1 Full range

BTW what is that 3 way and 2 way crossover mean. I am preety confused on what RATING of speaker to buy.

Can anyone help me.
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Old 11th August 2003, 07:54 PM   #2
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Location: London, Ontario, Canada
Hi Sundar,

I checked the specs on your Sony receiver and it only draws 210 watts power consumption so I think the rated output power is for peak and only for short periods of time. Regardless, before you choose your speakers, you may want to find the RMS power rating at each output channel and rate each speaker's overall power capability accordingly. Personally, I like to have a little extra between amp output and crossover input. BTW a speaker with 3 drivers normally needs a 3-way crossover and one with 2 drivers usually has a 2-way crossover. There are examples of designs without crossovers but this is quite unusual.

You will also want to look at the size of the room and your typical entertainment before choosing speakers. You may not need big towers in a small room. Also, it might be easier and/or cheaper to have 5 small speakers and a small active subwoofer.

My advice is to go and listen to many different set-ups in various shops. This will help sort out the details you need to know.

If you buy your speakers, then ratings of 50-100W RMS will usually be more than sufficient provided you are not driving the receiver to distortion (you will become deaf before then) which can be quite harmful at any level. What brands are available where you are?

If you are constructing your speakers, as I believe, then others on this forum can advise on choice of drivers, cross-overs and cabinet construction. Like you I am new to speaker building.

:)ensen
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Old 12th August 2003, 04:49 AM   #3
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Hi,

All the necessary info about my reciever is available at :

http://www.sonystyle.com/is-bin/INTE...cAAAD25hi8UODs

Best Regards,
Sundar.
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Old 12th August 2003, 07:16 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by sundareg
Hi,

All the necessary info about my reciever is available at :

http://www.sonystyle.com/is-bin/INTE...cAAAD25hi8UODs

Best Regards,
Sundar.
That where I found the power supply spec. At no time does it say power output is RMS so I have to guess the ratings are for peak power. Also, the 5 channel rating is quoted at quite a high distortion so I also have to say that the undistorted practical power will probably be much less than the quoted figures.

Still, if you choose reasonably efficient speakers of >85 dB/watt @ 1m, then 4 watts RMS will give you 91db @ 1m and very loud volumes in the rest of the room.

Are you building your speakers or buying them?

:)ensen.
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Old 12th August 2003, 01:03 PM   #5
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Dollars to donuts, the REAL power spec is 100w/ch, "music power", one channel driven, the other 4 idle. You won't see 100 w/ch RMS, 5 channels driven much under $1000.

Mo opinion only, you need to spend at least $500 on your receiver if you are at all interested in SQ.

Bob
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Old 12th August 2003, 03:35 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Bob Brines
Dollars to donuts, the REAL power spec is 100w/ch, "music power", one channel driven, the other 4 idle. You won't see 100 w/ch RMS, 5 channels driven much under $1000.

Mo opinion only, you need to spend at least $500 on your receiver if you are at all interested in SQ.

Bob
Bob, you may be right about the power rating as being only for one channel at at a time. Still, the receiver has already been acquired and efficient speakers will help prevent pushing the amp to levels that distort.

Sundar, may I suggest a Mordaunt-Short combination. That may be in your price range, if it is available where you live.

:)ensen.
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Old 12th August 2003, 10:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: How to set a 5.1 channel surround system

Quote:
Originally posted by sundareg
Hi All,

Can anyone help me to set a 5.1 Dolby Digital/DTS Surround sound system.
Now I want to know what RATING of speakers I should buy.
Some of my friends told these configurations:
For Front speakers:
a) 1 Tweeter
b) 1 Mid-range
c) 1 Full range
d) 1 woofer
e) 3 way crossover

For rear speakers:
a) 1 tweeters
b) 1 Full range speakers
c) 2 way crossover

For Center speakers:
a) 1 tweeter
b) 1 Woofer
c) 1 Full range

BTW what is that 3 way and 2 way crossover mean. I am preety confused on what RATING of speaker to buy.

Can anyone help me.

I remember somewhere that for best results all 5 speakers should be identical in design (since thats what the 5.1 processor models in its algorithms?), with either a sub or additional woofer in the fronts.

So you could want
For all Speakers
a) 1 Tweeter
b) 1 Woofer (8 inches or 2 * 4 inches)
c) 2 way crossover

Additional for front speaker (left & right)
d) 1 Woofer > 10 inches
e) replace 2 way with 3 way crossover (This will be an expensive XO)


But easier and cheaper would be:
For all Speakers
a) 1 Tweeter
b) 1 Woofer (8 inches or 2 * 4 inches)
c) 2 way crossover

And 1 powered subwoofer connected to amps sub-out, you can still send the full range signal to the other 5 speakers to take advantage of their full bass response.


Cheers, Tim.
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Old 13th August 2003, 02:48 PM   #8
Bose(o) is offline Bose(o)  Canada
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Honestly, I don't even care about watts. I think of loudspeakers as lamps, they will draw as much power as they can until watts+heat+design, limits to the performance increasing anymore. Mr.Sound&Vision even says "The type of matching you are trying will never work." It's used for salsemen at mainstream stores like Futureshop. My belief is the reason why I cringe when ppl tell me how many watts a system has...Now for receivers and amplifiers, watts matters. For high quality amps, about 60-75W per channel is good to go for headroom, etc. and on the lower quality amps, 100W.

Now, my votes:
Front speakers
a) two tweeters [two of each for bipolar config.]
b) two mids
c) single woofer (or two) in Dipole (like Orions subs) or a single for a TL.
d) two-way cross-over for mids and tweets and use the LFE channel for the woofer(s)

Surround Speakers
a) one tweeter
b) one mid-bass
c) two-way crossover, use as an Open baffle Dipole

Centre
a) Well, I'm exhausted of dreaming of all the different and possibly awesome sounding systems....mmm dreams, I let the others comment...can't wait to actually look at the drivers you'll purchase once you settle on designs.
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