Question Can I come here for advice on setting up Atmos for my soon to be finished basement?


Jul 29, 2021
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Hi all, brand new, registered specifically for this question. Hope I'm coming to the right place, and this is appropriate. If anyone knows a better place for me to seek this advice, I welcome being directed there.

My situation is this: I'm finishing my basement! This will be the place I get to have my setup for movies, gaming, and geekiness. I know I want Atmos, but I find trying to figure out setup a bit anxiety inducing - I've had too many audio disappointments because of lack of knowledge.

I'm hoping to get some suggestions/guidance from folks more informed and experienced in audio than I am to help me choose the right way to implement Atmos. One of my primary goals is that I can still clearly hear and understand dialogue. My typical watching choices are things like MCU movies, but also things like Big Brother, and I'll be playing various video games on it - if that impacts advice.

I'd ideally like to keep budget around $1500 or under, but have wiggle room to go over if a bit more spend is well worth it. (Or someone explains to me that I just can't get anything worthwhile in my price range.) I'm looking to pair the sound with a 75 - 85 inch tv, my eye currently being on LG's 77" C1 OLED.

I'm attaching a picture with the layout and some dimensions of the basement plan and where I'm intending to put the tv and my primary seating location. Hopefully, this is enough for people to work with to give advice, but I'm happy to give more details on whatever will help. I thank everyone who is up for being helpful in advance!


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Well-known member
Hi and welcome! I'm not sure how many folk over here will be clued in on the subject. Sadly, I'm not, neither do I know where to point you towards. I'd be happy to talk room acoustics if that's of any help to you. Also you mentioning budget of $1500 is this for the whole setup not including TV?


Well-known member
One of my primary goals is that I can still clearly hear and understand dialogue.
I would point out that most of the sound ‘on screen’ comes from the centre channel in movies (80%) So, for clear dialogue, get the best centre channel speaker you can. The other channels are primarily for special effects and ‘surround effects’. Often not much is coming out of the rear speakers for example at all….
Obviously you need an AV receiver that can decode Dolby Atmos and a minimum of 5.1.2 channels. The ‘.2’ refers to the Atmos height channels. You can have 4 height channels if you want to go the whole hog but I find even just two ‘ceiling speakers’ gives a very good effect. As always your budget will determine how far you go. 🙂
It's an open plan room and the home cinema system will be based in the first half.

Few questions:

1) if you're finishing your basement, you can consider in-wall and in-ceiling speakers? I'm mindful of your budget and in-wall and in-ceiling speakers will be cheaper and don't intrude into the room.

2) How many speakers are you considering? 5.1.2 system is minimum. Because your home cinema room doesn't have a "back", I would ideally recommend 5.1.4 system as you don't have space for rear surrounds. If your budget only allows 5.1.2 at present, you can always put speaker wires in to enable 5.1.4 in the future.

The most important speakers in your system will be the subwoofer and the centre speaker. Are you based in the US?


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