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Surround (RS-7) Placement


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Hey HornEd,

Not to change the topic too much, but I will be starting to look into a TV in the next few months to finish off my HT. My 27" WEGA is nice, but the sound is way much for that small of a set. I saw you mention 65" and that is funny, that is precisely what I have been looking at. I saw a few Mitsubishi and Panasonic models that I liked, but I was curious what you had. I am looking for a 16:9 set obviously with HDTV. Any suggestions? I hear the old 9" CRT's are clearer than the 7". Other than that, and inputs, I am not sure what else to look for. Any help is appreciated.


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I have recently added two back surrounds to my HT (cmrising RF-3 fronts, RC-3 Center and RS-3 side surrounds).

After much experimenting and reading this thread in particular, I'm afraid my ears gave the thumbs up to a pair of RS-3 for rear surround.

While I accept (and respect) what Horned is saying, to me, the RS-3 simply sounded like it should - and I went with it, with the knowledge that later formats (such as the THX one) may well prompt me to buy a pair (or more?) to replace these. But I also recognise that that is at least some distance in the future - for the moment, this is what works for me.

One thing Horned keeps saying may well have been the reason for my preference - a relatively smaller room. Be that as it may, I'm more than happy with what I have. I like the diffused sound and also get a bit of directionality because of the design (i.e. the midrange where the null should have been on a dipolar).

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Not that an audio publication can be taken as gospel, but the new S&V has some nice systems they put together using different parameters. The "no holds barred, any price, any size" system, of coarse, uses Klipsch ref 7 series speakers. For both the rear sides and the back channels they use the RS-7's, thats four of them. They could have went with 6 RF-7's. I don't see a whole lot of controversy on this subject outside of the passionate audio enthusists' community. I would think that the politics of the industry would promote direct radiating rear speaks. Fronts are usually more expensive then rears, hence the consumer will spend more. I don't see a down side to promoting direct radiating speakers for the industry. That is what puzzles me about this subject. I personally plan on moving my RF-3's to the rear and adding RF-7's and a RC-7. I will then sell the RS-3's and RC-3. My future home theater room won't have a back wall, so the RF-3's will work nicely. My basement project will be starting as soon as I can get a job. My division had to down size and I got a pretty decent exit package. If I had the cash, the room would be perfect for 3 Belle's and a couple of KHorns. Everybody needs to have their dream.


Just for the record I don't have a strong opinion for either school of thought. This is one of those subjects where personal taste plays a huge part.


Enjoy and Happy Listening!

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SteveB, I have been fortunate to have had many big screen and projection units since they came out. The most expensive and clearest was a professional unit that magnificently filled a 9' x 18' screen... at a cost of $91k. It was supplied by the manufacturer for use in our InfoMart showroom theater. While not likely to be in most homes, it did set a standard of comparison... and highlight many areas of the selection process.

For a time, I used a very large, very hi-tech, very sharp, 4:3 screen Hitachi... but keeping it at it's best became a high maintenance chore an so it soon became history.

The closest I have gotten to that quality in a consumer unit has been with the 9" CRT's (guns) of a high end, Reverse Projection, Mitsubishi HDTV... fed with a higher-end progressive scan DVD player. IMHO, the 9" guns easily blow away the 7" competition. Be sure to get the "no glare" screen protection shield if one is available.

I like to have my HT room to double as a social area as well, and RPTV's tollerate a bit more ambient light than other big screen options... especially most projection units. The higher end Mitsu's have a feature that changes the amount of light to the screen based upon ambient room lighting... which I find helpful.

Plasma screens are exciting when new... but consume their internal gasses but within a year or so, they only emit about 50% of the light produced when new. I have not tested units that use a former client's (Texas Instruments) patented DLP technology in my HT... but it seems like a step in the right direction. My guess is that it has some room for improvement and further price reduction.

Avman uses a TV (probably about the size of yours) for casual stuff and has a 84" screen that drops down for serious HT. The disadvantage to RPTV is that the unit takes up a large footprint... but it's depth usually works well with rear ported speaker towers, equipment racks, and front effects speakers.

One of my greatest likes about big screen RPTV Mitsu's is that they have proven to be trouble free and retain their high resolution characteristics far longer than competitors that I have tried. Also, since they tend to be the most popular, good deals can be more often found. Good luck... and thanks for posing the question that led to some hopefully healthy Forum member ventilation. -HornED

PS: Avman's screen size was correctly adjusted by 16" in this edit.


Pic6.jpg Photo update soon! -HornEd

This message has been edited by HornEd on 05-17-2002 at 01:44 AM

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decibal man, to recap and synopsize what has been to me a short and uncomfortable journey in futility,I would like to say that I could not,and have not,stated the case better.I actually enjoyed reading your post and I thank you for posting it here.

I have heard my particular Klipsch HT speakers in my home with both monopoles and WDST surrounds and also the same speakers in a friends HT using the WDST surrounds only. I definitely would not short change the WDST surrounds, although I do like my matching monopole front L/R and rear L/R speakers. Tough choice.

My initial intent was to take exception to the fact that was repeatedly stated that monopoles were the clear choice for rear HT use (5/6 identical speakers.....). I simply felt that that statement was incorrect and a disservice to others than may have relied on information gathered here for the basis of their purchases.

If reading this thread has caused someone to go out and make the correct decision for themselves using their equipment in their room then perhaps it was worth it. Perhaps.


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my kv36xbr450 hd-ready tv was my choice because:

it looks good w/analog/dvd/digital satellite at the distance i sit from it(about 12ft.)

it displays high definition via hd sat.and digital tuner(yea!!we finally got 1(cbs)local hd station)

it is 4:3 w/16:9 enhanced mode(best of BOTH worlds)

not too small,not too big,not too expensive

when i want a bigger picture,i pull down my 84"screen and fire up the projector

between the sony hdtv and screen/projector i have about $4200 invested.



1-pair klf 30's

c-7 center

ksps-6 surrounds


sony strda-777ES receiver upgraded to v.2.02 including virtual matrix 6.1

sony playstation 2

sony dvpnc 650-v 5-disc dvd/cd/SACD changer

dishnetwork model 6000 HD sat rcvr w/digital off-air tuner

sony kv36xbr450 high-definition 4:3 tv

sharp xv-z1u lcd projector w/84" 4:3 sharp screen

Bello'international Italian-made a/v furniture

panamax max dbs+5 surge protector/power conditioner

monster cable and nxg interconnects/12 gua.speaker wire

Natuzzi red leather furniture set

KLIPSCH-So Good It Hz!

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I now have a 7.1 configuration:

Mains : RF-3

Center: RC-3

Side Surrounds : RS-3

Rear Surrounds : RS-3

Everything driven by a Denon 3802, except the 2 mains which are driven by a NAD power amp, using Denon's pre-outs (great idea for setting up your system to deliver two channel audio as well).

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I now have a 7.1 configuration:

Mains : RF-3

Center : RC-3

Side Surrounds - RS-3

Rear Surrounds - RS-3

All driven by a Denon 3802, except the mains, which are driven by an old NAD power amp from the Denon's pre-outs (this is a great idea if you want your HT system to deliver acceptable two channel audio as well).

I normally listen to audio in another room (on Heresy II, Carver (Tube) pre-amp + NAD (solid state)Power amp and a Marantz 67mkII CD player). I find this in a totally different class for audio, but the flexibility of the HT system to deliver good two channel audio, I think, is best acheived by simply sticking a power amp to drive the 2 mains and is desirable.

As for the size of the room, I had read more than one posts from Horned where he contends that using WDST speakers for rear surrounds works best in relatively smaller rooms and not in larger rooms - I don't quite know if that's true, but happy to take his word for it since my room is relatively small and the setup works just fine for me. That may or may not be the reason - I'm simply following my Dad's advice from many moons ago and letting my ears do the decision making!

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Thanks Keith, I think it is just pretty cool that we can have these discussions / debates. It can do nothing but make people think a bit more about an intrest that so many of us are passionate about.

Adding to my earlier post, there was a small article in S&V this year discussing the "pole" issue at hand. It was one of the more wishy washy articles that I have read in a while. It was simple and incomclusive. It just baffles me. To cloud things up a little bit more; take a good look at the RS-* series WDST lay out. It has the direct radiating mid/woofer and the bi/di polar tweeter display. Talk about indecisive. Once again, I can hear my pillow calling for my presence.



Enjoy and Happy Listening!

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For Steve re:mounting rear RC-7.

I'm using a Peerles T.V. wall mount for mine(in front).

It's a wall mount,size medium. Looks good,swivels,tilts =/- 10 deg.Cost about $70 at homedepot.Will hold 100 lbs.

My HT about same dimension as yours- but my T.V. is on small wall. Think a 60 inch set from your viewing position might be too muchSmile.gif.

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JT, yes I think the debates here are healthy too! Lots of information and thinking and reasoning are brought to bear and many times this is helpful to others in making their own personal decisions. The only problem being that often the information is based on personal opinion/non-use and not fact.

Although I certainly can't blame the Moderators for avoiding this thread like the plague, I do wish one of them would come forward and give us some good information/reasoning behind Klipsch's design/engineering of the WDST speakers for HOME THEATRE use. That info would not change what I have found that I like for my personal use, but would possibly serve to help us make better decisions regarding future setup/purchases.

As far as HOME THEATRE surround use goes, my personal opinion is that a combination of monopoles AND WDST surround speakers cannot be beat. Lets face it, the duty of suuround speakers are envelopment. A monopole radiates sound from one point/source. Your ear localizes that sound coming from that point NO MATTER HOW the sound is processed to sound. Let me give you an example. In "Captain Correlli's Mandolin" Nickolas Cage approaches a villa in a jeep like vehicle from the left rear side of camera view. The sound of the approaching vehicle starts out at a low volume and the volume in the left rear channel is increased as the vehicle nears so as to mimic how an approaching vehicle actually sounds. A monopole speaker will give sound exactly as I have just descibed, that is, a vehicle approaching from a single point/source. A WDST speaker will add a sense of MOVEMENT to the vehicle. A person could aim their monopole speaker so as to reflect or further diffuse the sound, or that person could have bought a WDST speaker in the first place and achieved the same thing.

I believe that the design differences in the KSP-S6's and the current RS-7's is due simply to the natural evolution/changes in technology. Just as the Klipsch KG series evolved into the Legend series,for example.

So,as far as surround speakers go,if you wanted the diffuse sound ALONG WITH localization in one package(which BTW is more or less what I'm getting using both monopole KSP300 and S-6 surrounds),you would design and build a speaker exactly like the KLIPSCH RS-7.

The 'WDST speakers are better for use in small rooms' theory I would personally file under "BS". I have found in my experience that just the opposite is true.

I could go on I guess, but I'm bored and need another cup of coffee.

Hope everyone has a nice weekend!


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Boring is a person that considers his personal opinion as "fact" and everyone who disagrees with him as "BS"... is that plain enough for you, Keith?

While I am passionate about my considered conclusions I represent them as my opinion under my conditions... and invite other people to experiment to broaden their audio horizons. This is a complex question to most authorities I've read... and not the easy "knee-jerk", "no-brainer" that you would have "newbies" believe... IMHO!

At least you seem to be coming around to a blend of monopoles and WDST in the rear... a configuration that I have often endorsed for those with a theater-in-the-living-room fixation.

Oh, yeah, and just about all of us take a back seat to you when it comes to barely veiled invective, half-baked innuendo and half vast factual presentation. But, I have to hand it to you Keith you really provide a hoot after we stand back and evaluate your act. cwm27.gif -HornED

PS: And to maintain your tradition... Have a nice day!

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Pot calling the kettle black response, huh ED!

No, you ARE BEYOND passionate about your conclusions ED. The word zealot comes to mind.

I "came around" to the monopole + WDST surround config before your arrival here,ED. Your posts have been highly critical of WDST speakers. I do remember you recommended their use in motorhomes.

The people here are not as stupid as you seem to think ED.


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"Convenient" memory is the tool of self-assumed facts. Sorry, Keith but your "convenience store of knowledge" approach to understanding my posts appears patently skewed and, therefore, untruthful.

If I thought the people of this Forum were stupid, I would not participate. There is no crime in being ignorant but to be stupid is to miss apply what knowledge one has. And that goes for me as well as you.

The history of my posts will verify that if I have been in error, I immediately acknowledge it and strive not to repeat that particular stupidity. You seem to revel in the ridicule of all who do not agree with you in all your vagaries and oft corrupted facts.

I don't pretend to be the smartest audio person on the block... let alone the planet. And neither should you. -HornED

PS: As a point of information, I take WDST speakers for what they are in this great sea of audio products... good swimmers that don't quite walk on water yet! And I have recommended them in many specific applications other than motorhomes. WDST speakers are a cost-effective, space-saving, tone & timbre compromising method of replacing multiple standalone speakers with one, ultra-compact, unit with multiple speakers aimed in three directions. Such an assessment is not meant to be derogatory... but rather explanatory.

I look at my Klipschorns as "tricked" up horn loaded speakers because the horns are so exquisitely folded as to deliver the goods without the compromise of the Nautilus effect or the huge mass of an unfolded speaker.

The WDST approach is similar in attacking the ambient sound vs. localized sound challenge... that probably should be more properly "fixed" by enlightened source mixing techniques and smarter pre-amps. But, until that day, WDST and tripoles have gone a long way to solve a lot of people's problems.

Attempting to paint me an anti-WDST zealot is a gross distortion and a slam against the open minded traditions that are the pillars of this Forum.

And, lest you be confused, that is my opinion... only time will tell if it is factual! -H.E.

This message has been edited by HornEd on 05-19-2002 at 12:19 PM

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Originally posted by talktoKeith:

"My bad experiences were with the RS-3's.

I actually never owned and used them in my place."

Your words USparc,not mine. Perhaps it would be wise to refrain from commenting on something you have little, or no, experience with. Just a thought.


Ok, but that doesn't mean that I didn't do any comparison between the two!!!

I did spent quite some time at audio-stores and people with an HT to hear the diffs (and there arecwm11.gif ). I also go to audio-meetings from time to time and pick up some good thougths from well respected audiophiles here!! So I do have some (shared) experiences!!!

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Originally posted by HornEd:

WDST speakers are a cost-effective, space-saving, tone & timbre compromising method of replacing multiple standalone speakers with one, ultra-compact, unit with multiple speakers aimed in three directions.

The WDST approach is similar in attacking the ambient sound vs. localized sound challenge... that probably should be more properly "fixed" by enlightened source mixing techniques and smarter pre-amps. But, until that day, WDST and tripoles have gone a long way to solve a lot of people's problems.

That is right on HornEd.

Also cinema speakers are monopole in nature to create the surround array. They use more (monopole) speakers because of the room size. Ok, the distance to the audience is larger, but this is not solved by WDST's as it is with a true dipole(not all the way). There should always be a certain distance to the speakers and in the end we all look for the sweet spot (even when we go to the cinema where the sweet spot is covered by a larger area).

Now leaves the question when WDST speakers should be used? Definitly in larger rooms and to avoid the cost of multiple speakers(also connections, amps,...), but like Horned said: "tone & timbre compromising method."

For smaller rooms dipoles can help.(quote) <<Because of the Precedence Effect, in a smaller room, anyone sitting closer to one monopole surround speaker than another would only hear the closest speaker. A dipole speaker directs sound to the front and back of the room and creates a null (no sound) toward the listener. The viewer hears the surround effects as they're reflected from room surfaces and can't place the speaker's location. Besides creating a naturally(leave out "naturally"cwm6.gif)diffuse soundfield, the dipole speaker should have the advantage of not calling attention to itself and thus not drawing the viewer's attention away from the action onscreen.>> What about the localisation of the effect(lost in space). That room has to be really small Smile.gif

For those it's time that the headphones are also updated to a full 5.1 channel cwm11.gif.

Wouldn't that be cool.

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WDST speakers are a cost-effective, space-saving, tone & timbre compromising method of replacing multiple standalone speakers with one, ultra-compact, unit with multiple speakers aimed in three directions. - HornEd

Perhaps you didn't intend this as a slam, but it is due to the misinformation contained therein; WDST speakers do not mandate the tone and timbre be compromised. The manufacturer, in the interest of cost-reductions may compromise, but it is not a feature of the speaker.


Also cinema speakers are monopole in nature to create the surround array. They use more (monopole) speakers because of the room size. - Usparc

Wrong. They use more monopole speakers because they must in order to create an enveloping sound field.

You guys simply miss the point. The surround formats for HT movies use the surrounds to create an ambient sound field that is enveloping and non-localized. They specifically recommend dipoles BECAUSE they don't want the sound to be localized. Go to their sites and look at the diagrams of dipoles and how the sound should reach you. WDST speakers were designed to give you good movie playback AND audio playback (which is better suited by monopoles.) This isn't rocket science and looking at the specifications makes it real clear in a hurry.

Much of what is argued here is simply subjective impressions often developed with minimal experience with the products being slighted. Much of that 'minimal experience' takes place in a dealer showroom where its applicability to the home is questionable at best. Using non-timbre matched surrounds does not answer any questions about the suitability of WDST as surrounds. There can be no right answer with that being the case and no objective facts can be deduced.

PS. I would be very interested in ED's thoughts were he to build himself some S-30 surrounds. I would bet money he would not go back to monopoles.

PSS. Keith has mentioned using a combination of monopoles and dispersion speakers for quite a long time. I don't think he is coming around, he has already been around. Smile.gif

BTW, Keith, I will mention to you, although it will not, nor should it, change your mind, that Dolby states your surrounds should all be the same speaker, i.e. no mixing of monopoles and dispersion speakers as your surrounds.


Home Theater

KSP 400's


KSP S6's

Yamaha RXV995 (Current)

Bryston 9BST (On the horizon)

Bryston SP1.7 (A little further on the horizon)

Music Room




Ella PP EL-34 (Coming soon)

This message has been edited by crash827 on 05-19-2002 at 10:12 PM

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if i may referee here. Smile.gif for the umpteeth time.

1) certain sounds are suited for wdst type speaks & other sounds are more suited for direct speaks.

2) material in whatever format still consists of a mix, & these usually contain all sound types as mentioned above, either at dif times in the material or at the same time.

3) therefore opinions on which speaker is best will be,

past, present or future, a multiple of (all the dif speakers) X (the # of dif mixes) X (the # of different sounds in each mix).

don't ask me to do the math. Biggrin.gif doesn't matter how engineers mix in the future. the fundamentals stay the same. iow, the types of sound are pretty much finite. i'd agree to disagree just on this premise. Smile.gif

if you have a sweeping from front to back sound, a speaker that covers a wider area does it better. if you have a localized sound, a direct should do it better. unless you have a room the size of a movie theater, the dif should be subtle, so i wouldn't sweat it. again a reason to agree to disagee Wink.gif

ambient sound mixing can help some, but it can't change the physicalities of the speaker itself. if the direct speak radiates 45 degrees, & if there's not another direct speak further down the line, it's not going to create the same effect as a speak that goes the extra 45 degrees. not saying it's totally necessary, but for panning sounds it will create a better effect for many.

this debate has never been absolutely resolved anywhere. i think the only thing to agree on is that they're too many variables to agree what's best for everybody. cwm38.gif


My Home Systems Page

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