Surround Sound for Stereo Music…Sacrilege??

How Do You Listen to Two-Channel Music?

  • Keep it pure. Two-Channel all the way!

    Votes: 26 53.1%
  • I'm a minamalist. Give me Mono!

    Votes: 1 2.0%
  • 5.1 or beyond using Dolby PLII / DSU, DTS:X, etc.

    Votes: 22 44.9%

  • Total voters
    49
3db

3db

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
3,630 11 12
#82
Back on subject, I have my receiver set up so when I select "turntable" it is in stereo mode, with subwoofer. I often change it to "analog bypass" (direct) mode for many LP's that don't need it. Never any surround, it just sounds odd to me.
Thats because it is odd. :p Every venue I went to had the band or orchestra in front of me, never in the middle of it. From that perpesctive, I think multichannel music is a bit gimmicky. I'm glad I've never suscribed to that.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Ratings
7,732 16 25
#83
Thats because it is odd. :p Every venue I went to had the band or orchestra in front of me, never in the middle of it. From that perpesctive, I think multichannel music is a bit gimmicky. I'm glad I've never suscribed to that.
On my rig, PL 2x with 7.1 always keeps the sound field in front, and almost always moves it furthr away. It never puts me in the middle.
 
3db

3db

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
3,630 11 12
#84
On my rig, PL 2x with 7.1 always keeps the sound field in front, and almost always moves it furthr away. It never puts me in the middle.
Agreed. Even with 6.1 PL2x adds "venue" ambiance. I was referring to dedicated multichannel audio discs. That I don't understand.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
Ratings
7,732 16 25
#85
Agreed. Even with 6.1 PL2x adds "venue" ambiance. I was referring to dedicated multichannel audio discs. That I don't understand.
I can answer that. Dedicated multi channel discs do do a better job of conveying the original acoustic usually.

Some music is antiphonal and there are musicians in the rear, Like the Benjamin Britten War Requiem. I have one SACD that reproduces the circular drumming in Aho's Symphony No. 12 perfectly. I make sure the surrounds channels come from the rear for these recordings.
 
Eric Seaberg

Eric Seaberg

Audiophyte
#86
I've had 5.1 music (DVD-A and SACD) since the early 2000s, and currently do music production in 5.1 on a $500k console. I'm always taking mixes home to "confirm" and am very accustomed to listening that way.

Every piece of music I've ever purchased, even SACD and DVD-A, is on a music server pushing to a high-end player connected to my theater system.

I have done considerable tweaking to the settings within Dolby's PL2 and listen to everything in this manner. When a discrete 5.1 mix comes on, the receiver knows and switches to Dolby Digital or DTS, depending on how I've encoded it. If it's stereo them PL2 comes back and it feels very natural. Most TV shows that aren't AC3 encoded (rarely done anymore) also sound natural.

Don't get frustrated with the stock settings of PL2... take out your manual or look it up on Dolby's site and play with it! You can "spread" that center channel a bit between left and right, as well, to match your liking.

Thanks for some good info!
 
Eric Seaberg

Eric Seaberg

Audiophyte
#88
In our studios and controlrooms, we use strictly Genelec, and I have a pair for my personal home mix suite, but my 5.1 system is Tannoy. The difference tells me a lot. I've been in the recording biz 45-years... a lot has changed!!
 
H

hang fire

Audiophyte
#89
When I had a two channel system I was an audiophile snob who thought that multi-channel use was only for movies. Then I moved to another country and gave away my beloved audio gear and built a home theater with an AVR having Dolby Pro Logic IIx.

I have since realized how much more enjoyable listening to music is in seven channels as compared with two!
 
D

Diesel57

Full Audioholic
Ratings
128 1 2
#90
I'M always open to obtaining knowledge and experimenting but maybe listening to music in different setups is a preference and going back to what a individual is seeking to fine tune weather it be a multi setup or 2 channel setup, preference and what your ears hear and enjoy rules...Cheers
 
J

Jeffrey S. Albaugh

Audioholic
Ratings
27 4 21
#93
I must say that I am very recent to this forum, but I was previously on two other such Forums. I must say that I am very impressed with TLS Guy. Like you guys have said, he is very intelligent and has a lot of experience in Audio/ Video. My tastes do not match up with some others systems and formats, but it's all good. I'm not much of a two channel guy. Mostly, I use 2 channel in just a few ways. The original SACD discs were Hi Resolution, but no surround sound. As it later evolved to include surround sound, I do have discs that I would use 2 channel; a few times with All Channel Surround. I also own some of the old MFSL diss, some of which are Gold recordings. Excellent, but I use either 2 channel or All Channel. I still have a Turntable, but I rarely use it. It is an older Technics Linear tracking model.

However, mostly I enjoy Surround Sound, whether it's SACD, DVD Audio, Blu Ray Audio. I really enjoy all of these. I have a pretty large collection of these discs. ( see my earlier post here: My post; Surround Sound Collection of discs. This is only part of my collection. One disc in particular is Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, MOJO on Blu Ray Audio. This is an exceptionally recorded disc. Tom uses Ryan Ullayte, Surround Sound Engineer extroidinaire. They went to extreme lengths in the recording process. The surround mix is fantastic. I usually close my eyes while listening to it. My system is separates. An Integra surround processor with an ADA Professional 8 channel HT Amp, rack mount and fan cooled. My subs are a pair of cylindrical tower subs with 12" drivers, and they are powered with the matching HSU 500 watt Sub amp also fan cooled & rack mount. Bass clean down to 16 Hz. This Petty disc has some interesting things going on with it. For one thing, they use a Leslie cabinet for a few songs. This really adds character to a surround mix. If you are familiar with Leslie's. The horn drivers are large and they spin and actually throws the sound out & about according to the speed that it spins. I, also being a fan of Pink Floyd, and having seen them live recall that they also use the Leslie Cabinet which is unlike anything else. You just can't take in what's going on on this disc with only one listening.
\
My system which is 10.2, and has height channels, front & rear Center channels, and side channels. In addition, I have a Vocopro Karaoke player. The biggest advantage to my player is the fact that I am using digital optical Toslink for the music, and my player also has analog vocals from both mics. I have spent a lot of time experimenting & tweaking the Karaoke sound. The vocals (which are always analog) goes out via RCA's into a separate Sonance Amplifier, and front & rear vocal speakers, with an EQ in the loop. The sound is seemless and I use All Channel Surround for it. I went to great lengths to blend the Digital & analog sound together. I have in excess of 100 Karaoke CD + G's, with a huge array of musical tastes, but more often then not, I listen to Rock classics from Jimi Hendrix to Pink Floyd & beyond. It goes far back to Elvis. Many types of music. (again, see my list of surround discs in a different thread). Surround Format that I use most often is DTS HD Master Audio.

I appreciate what you guys bring to the table. I don't know many of you guys yet, but hopefully that will change over time.
 
B

Blues Doctor

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
18
#94
I'm an old school two-channel guy. Music is my priority, with movies next. I just put together a 5.2 home theater rig and a seperate two-channel (2.1) stereo system for music only. I just wanted a dedicated stereo rig. It makes me feel good. 63 and live alone, so no WAF to consider. (Happily divorced!) I now have 11 speakers in my living room. I set the home theater surround sound up first, and admit that I've grown to enjoy listening to my music in 5.1 mode. It seems to be a fuller sound, especially if moving around. So much so, that I've had second thoughts about seperate systems. However, I still like having a dedicated rig for music. My listening position is the sweet spot.
 
MathePRo

MathePRo

Audiophyte
Ratings
2
#95
I'm sorry, my english is terrible, but i gonna try ;)
I usually use my desktop for HTPC things, one of those is listen to music, my system is a custom 7.2 surround sound, and i don't have money to buy a receiver so i use my pc to do this job. My player is the MPC (K Lite codec Pack) i tried a lot of DSP to "transform" stereo to surround, but the best still being the AC3 Filter+custom matrix

AC3custom.JPG
 
Noelmt

Noelmt

Audiophyte
Ratings
1
#96
Hi,
I've just joined the forum after reading "Surround Sound for Stereo Music....Sacrilege?"
I have been a big fan of surround sound music for quite a number of years and have built up a bit of collection of 5.1 Surround Sound albums.

R.E.M
- New Adventures in HiFi
- Monster
- Reveal
- Up
- Around the Sun

Talking Heads
- Talking Heads: 77
- More Songs About Buildings and Food
- Fear of Music
- Remain in Light
- Speaking in Tongues
- True Stories

The Doors
- The Doors
- Strange Days
- Waiting for the Sun
- The Soft Parade
- Morrison Hotel
- L.A. Woman

Jethro Tull
- Benefit
- Aqualung
- War Child

King Crimson
- In the Court of the Crimson King

All of these are remastered beautifully and the surround sound is all encompassing.
But, after reading this article, I am now revisiting all my CD's and discovering a whole new listening experience and the multiple layers of audio delights that had previously been hidden in the stereo image.
Thank you for a great article and the heads up on this amazing technological wonder.
 
herbu

herbu

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
1,404 10 36
#97
have built up a bit of collection of 5.1 Surround Sound albums.
Welcome, and nice post.
I'm guessing you're getting a little long in the tooth? The clue is your reference to "albums". Even more intriguing is "Surround Sound albums". I remember playing albums on a quadraphonic system, but not sure I've ever heard a surround sound album. (Just kidding. ;))

Welcome again, and get ready for some fun. (Some of the guys what ain't got much culture here like to poke fun a bit.)
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Slumlord
Ratings
5,901 21 47
#98
Albums aren't limited to vinyl....but the music itself does often indicate if we're children of the 60s and 70s :)
 
3db

3db

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
3,630 11 12
#99
I'm mainly a 2 channel guy. I've tried Dolby PLXII but prefer 2 channel over it. Everyone has there preferences.
 
R

RXP

Enthusiast
Ratings
7
I've been playing with surround sound for music recently. I used to use it and love it in the Dolby Pro Logic II days with my receiver. Flipped to stereo the last couple of years because I didn't really like what the single "Dolby Surround" mode on my newer SR6011/6012 does for music. But after listening in stereo for so long I flipped back to Dolby Surround and I found the little tricks I used to do before like center spread weren't needed anymore. I love how stereo tracks come across - especially vocals. I get a ton of my new music off YouTube (Jam in the Van is a great channel, well mastered live recordings) and the center channel helps so much.

Also moving about the room and for when my wife and I listen -it's a big upgrade over stereo. A literal pin point stereo image and because the vocals are from the center you don't get hit with side wall reflections as much in the frequency area your brain is really sensitive to.

A phantom center and a real center aren't distinguishable in a custom HRTF headphone. I've never been able to get my rooms to that studio quality where I get a real laser phantom center - so the surround sound makes up for it.
 

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