5.1 OR 6.1?


hi everyone. Im just about to upgrade from pro logic to the new multi channel surround but confused wether 5.1 or 6.1. I am impressed with NADT742 but afraid if its 5.1 capability will become obsolete in the future and that 6.1 will prevail. My old prologic amplifier do not sound quite good and may spoil the great sound if I combine it with T752. The T762 is too expensive for me. Please give me a guide. Thanks.

Unless you have a very big room and want to add a second set of surround speakers, there really is no reason to go beyond 5.1 or 6.1. Even in 6.1 or 7.1 applications there currently is little to no discrete soundtracks available for the second surround pair. It is really only useful for those with long rooms that want extra sound in the back. Or those that just want to guild the lily.

My brother-in-law has a fairly expensive 7.1 system with 2 sets of surrounds and when he wants to listen or watch DVD's critically he comes over to my house to listen to my 5.1 His extra set of surrounds are within 3 feet of his first surrounds. Waste of money to his hearing, my sister's, and mine. He would have been better off just putting the first surrounds in the rear position.

Most people have the surrounds right near their watching/listening seat or sofa. For them they would have to knock down the rear wall and extend the room at least another 5 feet for sound that is only a repitition of the first surrounds.

Just make sure you get at least a 5.1 receiver with Dobly Pro Logic II and good amplification.

The NAD T752 is undoubtedly more than adequate and will not be obsolete for many years.

I have one 7.1 receiver and one 7.1 A/V separate unit in my house and have both hooked up in 5.1 formats. Five speakers and a subwoofer. The only change I may ever do is add another subwoofer in the huge living room which is about 30 feet X 25 feet.

Afterall, just about all the software (DVD Audio and Video) are designed for 5.1 applications--not 6.1 or 7.1

G-Man, I've seen a few people comment on how they prefer a so-called 5.2 setup to either 6.1 or 7.1. What are your thoughts on the sub combination? Would there be any benefit to combining say a large 10" or 12" sub and a smaller 8" sub or would two identical subs be better?

Not to throw a Monkey Wrench but I noticed two day ago that Dolby Labs anounced a 7.1 derived format. It's called Dolby Pro-Logic IIx. See http://www.dolby.com/events/CEDIA/PLIIx/ and http://www.3dsoundsurge.com/press/pr2785.html.

Glad I didn't pick up that 601 or 1804...

If you feel you want 7.1 then you should get a receiver that has that capability. Of course, who knows if Dolby and other manufacturers will stop here? My advice--buy a receiver that has the ability to have its software upgraded. This will future-proof your receiver under most circumstances.

If the 5.1 NAD is upgradeable (I haven't read their brochure, so I don't know), I see no reason to discount it. If a 5.1 receiver is upgradeable you can always get the upgrade at another time and then buy and connect the extra amplification to your a/v receiver to power two or more extra speakers.

Both my Pioneer Elite (upstairs) and my Aragon separates (downstairs) have the ability to be upgraded. Marantz, NAD, Outlaw Audio all make good one channel and two channel amplifiers that are great for future upgrades.

Currently, I don't know of any 7 channel discrete recordings or movies. You just get repetitive and matrixed sound to the extra speakers. This is good if you have a room of at least 15 feet (preferably 20 feet) from the front speakers. Otherwise it is rather pointless.

Regarding a 5.2 set-up, if you have a big room, are unable to set up your subwoofer in an optimal spot, or need extra bass boost it makes sense.

Personally, I wouldn't mix subwoofers--but I doubt there is anything wrong with doing it. I would much rather get a pair of HSU VTF-2's or whatever, then risk having one of the subs have different bass boost characteristics. It isn't the timbre or sonic characteristics I would worry about, as subwoofers have almost no tonal qualities. What is to worry about is that (for instance) a HSU VTF-2 that plays at very low distortion at 30 Hz and can play at 30 Hz with low distortion at 95 db's and higher be mated with a cheaper or worse subwoofer that will struggle and have high distortion at 30 Hz and 95 db's.
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