I already have space for my home theater system. I set everything except for the speaker. Then I wonder, how many speakers should I buy to achieve a more surround system?
Using a home theatre with eleven speakers can be a creative option, but the single speaker set-up, just like having a soundbar, is growing in popularity because it produces superior sound quality.
When buying a speaker, we sometimes see numbers like 5.1, 7.1, and so on. Before deciding on what to buy, let me first explain to you the speakers’ different channel structures and the meaning of these numbers.
The meaning of the different channel speakers
The surround sound channels can have a number like 5.1 or 7.1. The first number shows us the number of primary speakers. When the number is 5, we have two speakers on the left, two speakers on the right, and one center channel speaker.
As we can see, the number is always an odd number to include a center speaker since it is the essential speaker to blend the speaker’s sound coming from the left and right speakers.
The second number shows the number of the subwoofer. One subwoofer is enough to create a surround sound system.
Sometimes, we can still see the third number, like 7.1.2. The third number shows the number of speakers in the ceiling or the upward-firing speakers.
- The upward-firing speakers
The upward-firing speakers appear to sit in the location above our left and right speakers. These speakers create a firing sound upward and bounce toward our ears to give the illusion of being located under our ceiling.
We can add these speakers if we want to create a vibrating sound as we hear in the cinema. It is only an option, but if we can afford it, why not purchase to create a unique sound in our home?
The different stereo and surround sound systems:
- The 2.0 Stereo Channel System
With a 2.0-channel speaker system, we only have two speakers placed next to our TV, one on each side. More likely, our speakers are plugged into a receiver or amplifier.
A 2.0 stereo system is a standard stereo used for music listening. Creatively, it’s an affordable system that could also serve as a platform for a small-scale home theater, but simply. It will be superior to tiny speakers as far as movies and TV audio quality are concerned, so this won’t be the wrong choice.
- The 2.1 Stereo Channel System
This channel is an improved 2.0 audio system that will enhance our home theater’s sound. We have the left and right speakers and one subwoofer, creating an added depth and bass sound on our TV.
Many soundbars are commonly used for movies, TV, and music enjoyment because they have a 2.1 channel system. We can hear lower frequencies with the soundbar coming out of the set, and our home theater will be cleaner and more straightforward.
- The 3.1 Sound System
This is an excellent set-up to create a more cinematic sound. In this system, four speakers are utilized.
❏ The left and right speakers for sound effects, music, and stereo set-up
❏ A center speaker to create a clearer dialogue sound, and
❏ A subwoofer to handle the critical sound frequency
- The 5.1 Surround Sound System
This set-up is composed of six speakers. This channel is an advanced set-up of the 3.1 channel system with an additional two surround speakers located at the main speakers’ back.
The 5.1 surround sound is standard for delivering surround sound, movie sound for DVDs, digital TV, and all types of home entertainment. Many computers and laptops include a 5.1 surround sound card designed to work with this set-up.
- The 7.1 and 7.1.2 Surround Sound System
The 7.1 channel has eight speakers, while the 7.1.2 has ten. We only have to add two speakers located at the back from a 5.1 channel for a more solid sound. To create a 7.1.2 channel, two ceiling or upward-firing speakers are added to make a vibrating sound coming from the top.
Could there be more to it?
While thinking the set-ups we examined are ideal for our home theater, there are still other choices to explore, so don’t despair. Select some other options to set up our home theater sound system. We can either add another two wide speakers in front of a 7.1.2 to create a 9.1.2 channel.
We can also omit the center speaker and create 4.1, 6.1, 8.1, and even 10.1 channels. This channel’s variations will be based on our preferences and our home theater space, of course.
It is up to us how many speakers we want as long as it complements our room and the sound is still pleasant to hear.