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Why do we need surround sound?

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  • #40022
    Participant
    D-Dan
    @d-dan

    I’ve just noticed that Led Zeppelin made as good a use of stereo as Queen did on Bohemian Rhapsody, and it got me thinking. 5.1 and 7.1 surround are all the rage for movies.

    As people, by and large, we only have two ears, and so are biologically programmed to stereo. Why do we need more channels?

    Arch Linux, on a Ryzen 7 1800X, 16 GB, 6 (yes - 6) HDs inc 2 SSDs, 4 RPi 3Bs + 1 RPi 4B - one as an NFS server with two more drives, PiHole (shut yours), Plex server, cloud server, and other random Pi stuff. Nice CoolerMaster case, NV GTX 1060 6GB, and a whopping 32" AOC 1440P monitor.

Viewing 7 replies - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
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  • #40027
    Moderator
    Dave Rice
    @ricedg
    Forumite Points: 7,667

    It’s behind you!

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    #40029
    Participant
    Richard
    @sawboman
    Forumite Points: 6,433

    I have only really seen it in action once and that was with a TV my SIL had a few years ago. I did not find it a pleasant experience having sounds that should be in front of me coming from behind. Her husband watches a lot of football and I think the idea was to recreate the in-stadium feel. It gave me a headache and a desire to get away. Though having said that, I have to confess my PC set up, an old sound system, inherited through several replacement systems. It has rear speakers, but they are small and the noise from them is modest. As I do not use the set up for music it has been less of an issue and possibly makes radio voices a little easier for my slightly failing ears to appreciate. I noticed that my SIL has ditched her set-up

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    #40030
    Participant
    Ed P
    @edps
    Forumite Points: 13,902

    As Dave implies – Gaming!

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    #40031
    Moderator
    The Duke
    @sgb101
    Forumite Points: 10,939

    I like surround. Works very well for horrors.

     

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    #40033
    Participant
    keith with the teef
    @thinktank
    Forumite Points: 2,391

    Its not really surround though is it. Because there is also above and below.

    The games i have played and actually haven’t got a clue as to whats going on because its on a different floor.

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    #40042
    Participant
    D-Dan
    @d-dan
    Forumite Points: 2,486

    But we still only have two ears, and so we can only physically listen in stereo.

    Arch Linux, on a Ryzen 7 1800X, 16 GB, 6 (yes - 6) HDs inc 2 SSDs, 4 RPi 3Bs + 1 RPi 4B - one as an NFS server with two more drives, PiHole (shut yours), Plex server, cloud server, and other random Pi stuff. Nice CoolerMaster case, NV GTX 1060 6GB, and a whopping 32" AOC 1440P monitor.

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    #40044
    Participant
    JayCeeDee
    @jayceedee
    Forumite Points: 4,134

    But we still only have two ears, and so we can only physically listen in stereo.

    Physically, that’s accurate, but those ears are directional, and we can hear from the level of sound that’s received by each ear from where the sound originates. As stereo only has two speakers, it would be difficult to ‘imitate’ a sound coming from behind you, to the left or right.

    I’m only aware of this because the wife’s hearingĀ  is 60+% down in one ear and 40+% down in the other – an unfortunate side effect of her Menieres. This means, if she can’t see the phone that is ringing, she can’t work out where it is – one reason we have a wired in landline for her, but also in the event of power cuts!!

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