The quandary: do I move on from my superb sounding 5.1 setup to be able to enjoy the latest surround technology? Thoughts/experiences welcome.

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Assuming you have that ricochet path time aligned for...
I've set the rear speaker distances by measuring up to the ceiling and back down to the speakers.
Everything is relative. There are certainly examples of speakers so bad that a better speaker bouncing off a wall would sound better. There aren't really full fidelity reflective surfaces. Maybe close...
The ceiling is not smooth it is textured with stuff called Artex. Whether that is better or worse for this application is unclear. I found the attached picture online which is almost identical to what mine looks like, each large circular area is about 8 inches in diameter.
Good luck with that cave you have going with something like that.
It's an average sized modern UK living room, ie small.
 

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I honestly think the shitbars are crafty for movies. Those are very idiosyncratic mixes though. Dialog and then reverb and things that go "zing" across the room. That can be stepped on and still deliver the experience.

It's pretty far from a high fidelity system! For wherever that falls between good and bad for you. You might have a decent quality of audio from the speaker points directly in the best cases but there's no way phantom imaging is on point with something like that no matter what. There would be more to hear in the mixes being made if you had that. Not every mix is like this. Some are still very old school with everything crammed directly into the speaker points.
 
I've been doing this since the mid 1970s and very seldom does new tech
appear that isn't in some way backway compatable. The only place I can see
that with my latest Denon AVR is it's inablity to decode the SQ, QS, or CD4 quad
formats from back then. But those formats had been considered obsolete by
all except the hardcore enthusiasts like those here. Much the same as finding
a preamp that has a phono preamp with the proper playback EQ for 78 records.
I don't see any evil intent from this, time does march on after all. ;)
Considered??? More like forced to be obsolete.

Dolby is forcing obsolescence of the Pro Logic systems because they can no longer make money from them.
They want you to buy their new system (which they can make money from) instead.

Likewise, nobody can make money from the '70s quad systems because patents have expired.

I won't buy any piece of equipment that won't let me play my old recordings the way they were intended to be played.

Why do they still sell turntables and record players with the 78 speed if no preamps or 3 mil styli are provided?
Actually, all you need for 78 and early LP EQ is a graphic equalizer and a list of record companies and the EQ used.
 
I won't buy any piece of equipment that won't let me play my old recordings the way they were intended to be played.
So you'll never enjoy the newer high resolution multich music.
Who's the loser?

Dolby is forcing obsolescence of the Pro Logic systems because they can no longer make money from them.
They want you to buy their new system (which they can make money from) instead.
And I gladly buy them for the advantages listed above.
Yep Dolby is making money, that's the free market and what their investors expect.
Do you work for free?
Does all this paranoia keep you awake at night? LOL
 
I didn't read the entire thread, but if you have the AR pre-amp, why don't you run an AVR (via its preamp outputs) through the AR?
Your existing system will stay exactly the same, and you can simply switch the AR appropriately for Atmos playback.
This is basically what I do, except via a Coleman 7.1 audio switch.
 
One more OT post - anyone have any ideas about trying to convince the DTS company to add their old DTS Stereo decoding to their family of decoding options (could be just L-R + 7kHz LPF, probably close enough to Dolby Surround decoding to work fairly well)?


Kirk Bayne
 
So you'll never enjoy the newer high resolution multich music.
Who's the loser?


And I gladly buy them for the advantages listed above.
Yep Dolby is making money, that's the free market and what their investors expect.
Do you work for free?
Does all this paranoia keep you awake at night? LOL

So I should lose the ability to play all of the thousands of recordings I paid good money for, just to get these "advantages" I probably could not hear any improvement from.

And why can't I have both in the same equipment? Because they want me to spend money to replace all of the old recordings with new ones (so they can collect the same royalties again). Cheaty cheaty! This is like the clones who want to be paid every time their record is played.

And over half of the recordings I have were never re-released on CD. I want to hear those too.
 
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And over half of the recordings I have were never re-released on CD. I want to hear those too.
Half, Really? You must have some super specialized / unusual tastes in music?
I find that comment a bit hard to believe.
I listen to music from a very wide range of styles and genres and can't think of a
single recording I desire that's completely unavailable on digital.
Besides, with so many new recordings coming into my field of vision almost daily, a few here and there wouldn't matter too much. So much music and so little time.
 
There's a difference between a new device not including a depreciated feature vs a device fully including a circuit (and building it into the cost) but locking you out of using it with some post-sale subscription service or planned obsolescence style ability to disable a function.

If I need a preamp with 3 eq choices, it's on me to find it and buy it. Sucks if it isn't a standard feature anymore and we can comment about that. Can't force someone to make something. It's when they actually do make the thing but try to charge rent after selling it that makes for bad attitudes.
 
So I should lose the ability to play all of the thousands of recordings I paid good money for, just to get these "advantages" I probably could not hear any improvement from.

And why can't I have both in the same equipment? Because they want me to spend money to replace all of the old recordings with new ones (so they can collect the same royalties again). Cheaty cheaty! This is like the clones who want to be paid every time their record is played.

And over half of the recordings I have were never re-released on CD. I want to hear those too.
I’d say my record collection is as varied as yours, and I certainly don’t want to lose my ability to hear those old beloved chestnuts, either.

But my point was that a lot of those old formats are totally obsolete, or were intended for a particular marketplace that no longer exists - I cite Edison cylinder recordings as an example. Or 2” quadruplex videotape - not a consumer format, but a few wealthy folks had decks in their homes. You won’t find any equipment that can play them and UHD BDs.

That doesn’t mean you can’t have it all. Sometimes integrating a piece of equipment into your system can be a challenge. Multiple quad decoders into a single MCH audio input on our AVR being one most of us have had to address. All it really means is hanging on to your legacy gear and caring enough about it to learn how to keep it alive and kicking.

A 7.4.6 system can still be configured to play DAT.
 
I'm a drummer and I've tried one of those before. It can be quite helpful to get that physical feedback when using electronic drums, or in the studio when using headphones, but I was just refering to an el cheapo, sad little POS subwoofer.

Edit: I mean, if you're going to cheap out on the main speakers with a Shitbar, might as well cheap out on the bottom end with a Fartbox too!
 
I’d say my record collection is as varied as yours, and I certainly don’t want to lose my ability to hear those old beloved chestnuts, either.

But my point was that a lot of those old formats are totally obsolete, or were intended for a particular marketplace that no longer exists - I cite Edison cylinder recordings as an example. Or 2” quadruplex videotape - not a consumer format, but a few wealthy folks had decks in their homes. You won’t find any equipment that can play them and UHD BDs.

That doesn’t mean you can’t have it all. Sometimes integrating a piece of equipment into your system can be a challenge. Multiple quad decoders into a single MCH audio input on our AVR being one most of us have had to address. All it really means is hanging on to your legacy gear and caring enough about it to learn how to keep it alive and kicking.

A 7.4.6 system can still be configured to play DAT.

None of those, but I did have some Beta and U-matic videos. I managed to find DVDs of them.

I am not upset so much about lost physical formats as losing playback modes (especially matrix).
Many of my DVDs are Dolby Pro Logic. One is in QS. All of my VHS are Pro Logic.

I have:
- records in sizes from 4-inch to 16-inch
- record speeds of all 4 standard speeds, plus a few odd shellac record speeds
- recording modes lateral, vertical, diagonal, stereo, and many quad formats
- two turntables that together can play all but two of them (the 16-inch ones)
- Almost 200 matrix records (QS, SQ, EV, DQ, DS, and Seeburg)
- Matrix CDs I recorded myself of local bands and my own compositions in QS
- Cassettes in mono, stereo, and matrix
- TV and FM reception in DS

My biggest problem with planned obsolescence is in computers:

I wrote about 4000 programs over my lifetime. Many were for little single purpose calculations.
About 900 of these are still in use, including about 400 webpages.
I have created over 2500 images, of which about 1900 still exist.
The rest cannot be used because no computers still exist to run them, or because nothing is left to read the media they are stored on.
When I started, we were using punch cards.
Many of them won't run on newer versions of Windows.
I have written the same program 7 times and another one 4 times to be able to keep using them on newer computers.
 
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There shouldn't be any reason to maintain a separate 5.1 setup. I don't know of a single person local that does who enjoys spatial audio. My own room was 5.1 for a while, then 7.1, 7.2.2 and finally 7.2.4. No issues encountered with sound quality expanding out. 5.1 didn't change, though changing preamps did impact things due to how different manufacturers handled things. Denon/Marantz can force upmixing if not using Pure Mode on some models. I ran into it on my 7702MK2 and it was one of the reasons I got rid of it. I suspect something like that is happening if 5.1 somehow sounds worse on an Atmos setup.

You verified this is the exact same mix and you've done this with assistance to allow for completely blind level matched testing right?
One thing I don't see discussed here at all (tho I haven't read them ALL), is something Jim Fosgate did with his Dolby Pro Logic-II invention, and moreso, the improvements he did to it after DPL-II. Screw the quad records - he was happy with what he did with the Tate 101-A (and his later tweaks). Screw the fact that DPL-II decoded ac3 files with 39 dB of separation. He was happy with that. But What he did at his many home demos that he hosted over the years was to listen to STEREO records and listen to what DPl-II did to THOSE. He made dozens and dozens of mix CD's of stereo stuff that worked really well, using DPL-II. The more "ambient, the better". I swear if he wasn't inventing stuff (which he always was, up to his death-the last one came out 2 weeks after he passed), he was making mix CD's-- Of STEREO content, to be played at his demos. I have dozennnns of them. He could have cared less about how DPL-II decoded DPL-II files anymore, what he wanted to show the world was "USE IT ON YOUR STEREO RECORDINGS!"
And THAT is why I suggest keeping your 5.1 DPL-II alive. It's why I do. Expand your stereo stuff to 5.1 (to 7.1 if you're lucky enuff to have a FAP-1 in 7.1-I have 3). It does things that can be quite shocking. Like a clarinet in the rear right that from a Bruce Swedien record, seeems like it was mixed that way. An album I MADE for a blues-rock band decodes with 1 guitar in the rear left. I didn't mix it that way... but it's only in the rear left.
Look, Regardless of the quality of your system, enjoy what is does to stereo. I teach at a university in Digital Media (Audio, duh) and I encourage my students to use that system to make albeit "fake" surrounds, definitely a form of spatial audio that you don't get from your lazy-ass stereo mixes (yes I encourage them to mix in surround and atmos, but how many take me up on that? Yes, you are correct, 3%).
Yeah, I record in surround alot, and you can move alot of your surround (and stereo) stuff up to dolby atmos. But what modern formats, which can render your 7.1 files or 7.2.4 from a bluray or game, into your speaker set, without loss, but they DO NOT upconvert the files like DPL-II does. Like it or not, it does enhance stereo. That statement comes from the inventor, and from me as well as. One thing Jim taught me that stuck.
-MikeWiz
 
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None of those, but I did have some Beta and U-matic videos. I managed to find DVDs of them.

I am not upset so much about lost physical formats as losing playback modes (especially matrix).
Many of my DVDs are Dolby Pro Logic. One is in QS. All of my VHS are Pro Logic.

I have:
- records in sizes from 4-inch to 16-inch
- record speeds of all 4 standard speeds, plus a few odd shellac record speeds
- recording modes lateral, vertical, diagonal, stereo, and many quad formats
- two turntables that together can play all but two of them (the 16-inch ones)
- Almost 200 matrix records (QS, SQ, EV, DQ, DS, and Seeburg)
- Matrix CDs I recorded myself of local bands and my own compositions in QS
- Cassettes in mono, stereo, and matrix
- TV and FM reception in DS

My biggest problem with planned obsolescence is in computers:

I wrote about 4000 programs over my lifetime. Many were for little single purpose calculations.
About 900 of these are still in use, including about 400 webpages.
I have created over 2500 images, of which about 1900 still exist.
The rest cannot be used because no computers still exist to run them, or because nothing is left to read the media they are stored on.
When I started, we were using punch cards.
Many of them won't run on newer versions of Windows.
I have written the same program 7 times and another one 4 times to be able to keep using them on newer computers.
Well, I digitized all of my tapes when I realized that repairing the decks was going to be a second and third career. A lot of VHS, a few R-R, and probably a couple dozen cassettes, so I was at least ahead of the game on that front. A few VHS wouldn’t play on any deck I could get my hands on (looks like the control track weakened), and I still have them in the hopes that I’ll get a deck that will work, but it’s another bucket list project.

I also have vinyl in four speeds and three sizes, going back to about 80 Edison Diamond Discs. I have a Shure cartridge with a 78 stylus. Only one 16-2/3 record - a 7” recording of Scheherezade. It sounds like crap, but my dear old Miracord plays it.

I also have a fair collection of laserdiscs. I’ve replaced all the movies, but a lot of the music productions are unique to the format. I hang on to the hardware for that, too.

My unique collection is EVR films. (Search “Motorola Teleplayer.”) I probably have 30 or 40 of those, and three decks to play them in - one to use (slightly modified so the audio isn’t stupid on playback) and two for parts you’ll have to machine yourself. I know why it never caught on, but it’s still a format younwon’t be able to play on “modern” gear. NTSC video out, but my AVR handles that.

I definitely hear you on the old computer programs, though. I had my own shop for a couple of uears, and busted my ass setting up an inventory and parts list database on PCFILE-R, which worked well on my dear old DOS machine if you transferred all the files to a RAM drive before you used it. Otherwise it would wear out your 32MB hard drive, opening and closing various files as it looked up stuff. Although I no longer care about parts lists, I do have a fair inventory of parts for hobby purposes, and I had to build a new database in Access for that. It’s nowhere near as tidy.

I also had a large recipe database (looking at the files directly, it seems unnecessarily complicated) that won’t come close to running on a modern PC, even in a command window.

Wordstar files can be opened with a file reader program and the text extracted, but it’s a pain. Fortunately, I did all of those years ago, so that’s not an issue, either.

I will say, though, that I don’t miss dot-matrix printers. Even though all my .mac images were unreadable decades ago.
 
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