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Discussion Starter #1
OK, so hypothetically speaking, if you had a 30' x 40' x 16' theater room and cost were no object, what would you design/build for mains, center, and surrounds? I'm looking for the most accurate musical response possible while reproducing the dynamic range needed for action movies. Basically I want it all. :bigsmile: (BTW, in my case cost definitely is an object. I'm just looking for ideas.) Thanks!

Jason
 

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If cost is an object if you are comfortable sharing your budget it may help get you real answers instead of lottery fantasy systems.
I think cost no object would go into room and its sonics, the more you know and are around you realize what gear is really over priced and I just dont think I could throw out common sense at this point in my journey. But I would atleast explore Meridian gear and maybe ATC active powered speakers as rack space and wires would be minimizied as all speakers have internal amplification. I would have large 3 row theater designed with Audio performance in mind first, it would look fantastic and sound spectacular!
 

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OK, so hypothetically speaking, if you had a 30' x 40' x 16' theater room and cost were no object, what would you design/build for mains, center, and surrounds? I'm looking for the most accurate musical response possible while reproducing the dynamic range needed for action movies. Basically I want it all. :bigsmile: (BTW, in my case cost definitely is an object. I'm just looking for ideas.) Thanks!

Jason
I would build identical 3 or 4 way floorstanding towers all the way around (so 7 of them) and put a big sub in each corner! If price were really no option all the speakers would be line arrays.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks, guys. What I'm actually looking for is the pie in the sky lottery winner fantasy. I won't be able to build the ultimate, but I want to know what to shoot for, design wise. I want to know what you guys would build for a room that big, and why you'd build it. I have a basic understanding of most of the common speaker designs discussed here, but limited experience with / exposure to anything but commercially available sealed and vented designs.

The room in question hasn't even been built yet - ground breaking on the "barn" it will be in is scheduled for next monday. It will probably be a year or two before I can even start thinking about finishing the space and building the theater, so this is very much the beginning of the dreaming and planning stage. The room can be configured any way I want as far as finished size and shape goes as long as I don't get any bigger than the 30 x 40 dimention. I'll use accoustical treatment as needed, and speaker placement is wide open. As for budget, it's not set yet, but I can forsee $5,000 to $7,000 for the speakers.

Boomie and Geoff, you mentioned line arrays. I know arrays can be effecient and play quite loudly, but don't they suffer from poor horizontal off axis response? I'd like to have at least 3 rows of 5 seats each, so that could be an issue.

Thanks again.

Jason
 

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Pie in the sky levels.. $5-7k? for the speakers?? Thats not even a drop in the bucket, put at least 2 zero's after that for each speaker, then you are talking pie in the sky levels. :nerd:
 

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Boomie and Geoff, you mentioned line arrays. I know arrays can be effecient and play quite loudly, but don't they suffer from poor horizontal off axis response? I'd like to have at least 3 rows of 5 seats each, so that could be an issue.

Thanks again.

Jason
Quite the opposite - line arrays should have superior horizontal dispersion. Now $5k-$7k is a healthy budget but 5-7 line arrays will really eat into that. Completed (not DIY) they typically run $3k+ a pair. DIY may save some coin - you can design your own or use kits. The only kits I know of are the Zalytron ones. Still, at $900 each that doesn't leave much money for subs.
 

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Yep, the problem with line arrays is that you use a lot of drivers, which drives the cost up a lot. Also, for HT use if you're going to match the channels you pretty much have to have a projector and an AT screen. There's no real way to get the center speaker above or below a screen, it has to go behind it.

Does anyone here recall a pretty ridiculously expensive DIY line array? I believe the fellow had 7'+ towers, possibly two for each channel? I seem to recall them using more than one ribbon/planar per channel and a heap of scan speak drivers. It was in a really big HT room and IIRC he had matching a matching LCR setup.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well the budget's not carved in stone, but that $5,000 - $7,000 doesn't include the subs, just the mains, center, and surrounds.

Boomie, thanks for the info. DIY is definitely the plan, so I'll take a closer look at the Zalytrons. Not sure where I got the idea that arrays had poor horizontal dispersion - I guess the grey matter's deteriorating with age.
 

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Well the budget's not carved in stone, but that $5,000 - $7,000 doesn't include the subs, just the mains, center, and surrounds.

Boomie, thanks for the info. DIY is definitely the plan, so I'll take a closer look at the Zalytrons. Not sure where I got the idea that arrays had poor horizontal dispersion - I guess the grey matter's deteriorating with age.
No prob. Please note that I only said thost Zalytron line arrays were the only kit I knew of - I honestly don't know if they are any good. I'd design my own. I'd start out by reading this white paper on line arrays. I had designs on making a line array using Dayton Reference drivers and some kind of planar transducers for the tweets.
 

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Yep, the problem with line arrays is that you use a lot of drivers, which drives the cost up a lot. Also, for HT use if you're going to match the channels you pretty much have to have a projector and an AT screen. There's no real way to get the center speaker above or below a screen, it has to go behind it.

Does anyone here recall a pretty ridiculously expensive DIY line array? I believe the fellow had 7'+ towers, possibly two for each channel? I seem to recall them using more than one ribbon/planar per channel and a heap of scan speak drivers. It was in a really big HT room and IIRC he had matching a matching LCR setup.
I know that guy! He just built his own Turntable with 3 arms......the guy has talent!
 

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How much would electrostatic speakers combined with subs cost. they are supposed to sound really good
In my opinion* electrostats are great for music but don't have enough punch to be ideal for HT use. Also, their sweet spot is smaller than conventional speakers which could be a problem if you have a large seating area.

* opinions may vary​
 
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For music, I still prefer stereo, no need for the surround channels to be anything fancy, any half decent speakers will work great for home theater surrounds. Why waste all that money on effects speakers when, for the "mains" you still can't reach perfection no matter how much money you have. No matter what speakers you buy for the front L&R there are still going to be multiple compromises.

When I was going around to high end boutiques to audition speakers I found that I didn't even like about 9 out of 10 models I heard. The only ones I really liked much last time I listened to any extensive variety was about 5-6 years ago and it was the Madrigal Revel Salons at about $20,000. If I had $20,000 to spend on speakers though, I could build myself the speakers that I really want, which would be vaguely similar to Ohm Acoustics "Walsh 5" speakers, though, with some key differences.
 
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