Case Study

Utilizing Existing Setup and Improvements

The client purchased a new home and performed basic renovations before moving in (paint, flooring, as such).  
 
The home had existing speakers installed in the master bedroom ceiling, and on the outdoor lanai. The living room included wires for a home theater. The client desired to use the home’s existing wiring and speakers.  
 
Bedroom
Upon site visit, we identified that the master bedroom had five speakers in the ceiling for a mini home theater.  The clients wish to have music in his bedroom and not a home theater. 
 
We selected Sonos Connect music streamer and a Russound P75 stereo amplifier.  We set it up to use only four speakers, as the fifth speaker would be no value added (formerly used as a center channel).
 
Outdoor Lanai
The outdoor lanai already included two box speakers mounted in the eaves.  
 
Here we applied another Sonos Connect and Russound P75 stereo amplifier to enhance the outdoor speakers.  
 
Home Theater Wiring
With the inspection of the home theater wiring, we noticed that the front channels were mounted high up (a common location for DIY guys), with the center channel placement being offset (not in the middle) and the rear surrounds unevenly placed at the rear sides of the living room.  Plus, all the wires were routed along the top of the belly band in the living room.  
 
The client expressed he wanted good sound and a proper home theater setup with Dolby ATMOS.  
 
Application Home Theater
We first decided on a receiver to process and power everything.  Based on the difficulty of the room layout (living room ceiling is 17’ high with glass lanai doors to one side and the other side open to the entry foyer we selected the Anthem MRX receiver to take advantage of Anthem’s Room Correction processing which would help remove the negative audio effects the room would have.  
 
To meet the minimum requirements for Dolby ATMOS, we needed height channels.  Due to the height of the ceiling, it was impossible to use Dolby Enabled speakers (that fire up) or having in-ceiling speakers due to the dispersion caused by the significant distance the sound would have to travel from the ceiling negating the accurate depiction of sound coming from a specific area above you.  We eventually settled on front on-wall height channels, which are speakers mounted above the front left and right channels.  
 
Final Configuration Home Theater
Our recommended configuration was a 5.1.2 setup with Front Left, Front Right, Center, Surround Left, Surround Right, Subwoofer, It’s front height on wall vice front on wall. This would require seven channels of amplification; we selected Anthem’s MRX720, which is Dolby ATMOS compatible,  Anthem’s Room Correction software, and the seven channels of amplification.  Anthem had a trade-up program during this time, which allowed him to save 20% off the price of the MRX720.  
 
Good sound for that room required a great set of floor standing speakers.  I had a pair of Paradigm Prestige 85F floor standing speakers used formerly for demo. I was able to offer the client these open box speakers at a discount.  
 
The Prestige 85F is a perfect speaker for his multipurpose use of good music and fitting for movies.  Once he agreed with the Prestige 85F speakers, I wanted to voice match all the channels and decided with Paradigm speakers for the remaining channels.  We chose Paradigm Premier 500C Center Channel, Paradigm Surround 3s for the surround channels, Paradigm Surround 1 for the Front On-Wall channels, and a Paradigm Defiance X10 Subwoofer.  To finish it off we used the living room’s belly band and made all channels symmetrical while hiding all the wiring.  
 
TV Placement
At the time of installation the client’s existing TV was on a stand, and the center channel was too tall, so we mounted the TV over a set of windows (to make it centered on the room) using a full-motion mount and hiding all the wires by adding an outlet behind the TV and routing the wires in the wall.  
 
The result was a clean and crisp look with the gloss black speakers and floating TV.  Since sound quality was important to the client, we equipped him with some Wireworld speaker cables to help smooth the high frequencies and provide a warmer sound as the Paradigms can be a little bright.  In the end, the client now has a quality setup with a music and movie experience that sounds and looks amazing for years to come.
 
Chad Fukumoto, Owner
Audiophile Expert