5.1.4 Bi-Amped vs 7.1.4 Normal

Z

zandaman

Enthusiast
Hi Folks!

Question posed to you as above - I've got a dedicated media room that's about ~2100 cubic feet (9' high x 13.5' wide x 17.5' long). Projector screen will go on the 9' x 13.5' wall.

Doing the math, the floor, 13.5' x 17.5', is approximately 235 square feet.

I have the option of either doing 5 bed level and 4 atmos speakers, with L and R passively bi-amped, or 7 bed level and 4 atmos, no bi-amping.

Which is better in the setup described above?

To provide further context - the tower speakers that I'm looking at are B&W 702 S2s.

Let me know what you think :D
 
Last edited:
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Ninja
There is absolutely zero good reason to passively bi-amp. I researched the hell out of it when I was setting up my system. Even talked with speaker designers about it.
Bottom line is it’s a waste of good amp channels, wire, and will do nothing audible to improve your sound quality.
 
Z

zandaman

Enthusiast
There is absolutely zero good reason to passively bi-amp. I researched the hell out of it when I was setting up my system. Even talked with speaker designers about it.
Bottom line is it’s a waste of good amp channels, wire, and will do nothing audible to improve your sound quality.
Thanks for your reply Ryanosaur!

Further question - for my room dimensions, is 7.1.4 worth the investment? Or will a 5.1.2 do? It is a dedicated, insulated media room.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
I'd think more along the lines of the 5.1.4 in that sized room. Where's your seating? Need some room behind you to make the 7ch bed work....
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Spartan
Thanks for your reply Ryanosaur!

Further question - for my room dimensions, is 7.1.4 worth the investment? Or will a 5.1.2 do? It is a dedicated, insulated media room.
5.1.4 is how I’d go. IF you can move the couch off the wall. IMO you should have 5-6’ behind the LP for a 7ch bed layer. The same is true for x.x.4 since the rear tops(or heights) should be around 45°. That means measure from your ear to the ceiling, and that distance will be how far fore and aft of the LP the speakers should be. Keep in mind there is a measurement range. Atmos is pretty forgiving, but you’ll want to be as close as you can. Here’s a little reading. You know, for fun...

 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Ninja
Thanks for your reply Ryanosaur!

Further question - for my room dimensions, is 7.1.4 worth the investment? Or will a 5.1.2 do? It is a dedicated, insulated media room.
I agree with Lovin on that, but I shoe-horned 7-channel bed layer in my floor plan, 11x15’.
I think it is important to consider your programming: games and some multi-channel music (DTS discs utilize a rear-center, but that signal will go to the rear surrounds if installed). I do both, so for me, it was worth the effort.
That said, 5.x.4 is supposed to be a very good seeet spot utilizing top-front and top-back positions.
 
Z

zandaman

Enthusiast
I'd think more along the lines of the 5.1.4 in that sized room. Where's your seating? Need some room behind you to make the 7ch bed work....
Seating... haven't determined that yet. At most, I'll have two rows of 3 seaters.

Given my room dimensions, would a 5.1.2. work, or is there meaningful value add in a 5.1.4?
 
AcuDefTechGuy

AcuDefTechGuy

Audioholic Jedi
That's a relatively small room, so I vote for 5.1.2 or 5.1.4 single-amp, not bi-amp.

Some will debate that 4 Atmos speakers is minimum since they want panning effects from Front Top to Rear Top.

But based on my experience, for smaller rooms, I don't think there is much difference with 2 vs 4 ceiling speakers. But there is also no HARM done if you go with 4 ceiling speakers. Overkill is better than under-kill. :D
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Spartan
That's a relatively small room, so I vote for 5.1.2 or 5.1.4 single-amp, not bi-amp.

Some will debate that 4 Atmos speakers is minimum since they want panning effects from Front Top to Rear Top.

But based on my experience, for smaller rooms, I don't think there is much difference with 2 vs 4 ceiling speakers. But there is also no HARM done if you go with 4 ceiling speakers. Overkill is better than under-kill. :D
I will pretty much agree with this. With the exception of overkill “always” being better. I’ve seen people shoehorn 7 and even 9ch in a 10x10 room. To me that seems dumb. Rear surrounds on the back wall just barely over the listeners heads? Plus sides in front... Sometimes too much of a good this is just a clusterfukk.
 
C

CoryW

Audioholic
Hi Folks!

Question posed to you as above - I've got a dedicated media room that's about ~2100 cubic feet (9' high x 13.5' wide x 17.5' long). Projector screen will go on the 9' x 13.5' wall.

Doing the math, the floor, 13.5' x 17.5', is approximately 235 square feet.

I have the option of either doing 5 bed level and 4 atmos speakers, with L and R passively bi-amped, or 7 bed level and 4 atmos, no bi-amping.

Which is better in the setup described above?

To provide further context - the tower speakers that I'm looking at are B&W 702 S2s.

Let me know what you think :D
I asked this question to the engineering guys at RBH. They kinda wrinkled their expression a bit. It was inferred that bi-wiring is a design principle that just makes people happy. Kinda funny
 

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