December 31, 2012
| by Grant Clauser
4. Extra speaker: move from 5.1 to 7.1
If you’re still listening to movies on a 5.1 system, you’re practically a dinosaur. Audio progresses by dog years, so it’s time to catch up.
Remember how fun it was to show off the opening scene of Saving Private Ryan when you first got your home theater? By simply adding two more speakers on the back wall you can multiply that thrill—this time try the train crash scene on Super 8. The Dolby TrueHD soundtrack will have you covering the back of your head to protect yourself from flying debris.
Paradigm’s Monitor Series 7 rear/surround speaker.
Depending on your audio components, you may also need to upgrade your receiver or processor, but 7.1-capable receivers can be found for just a few hundred dollars.
Grant Clauser has been covering home electronics for more than 10 years with editorial roles in several consumer and trade magazines. He's done ISF-level damage to hundreds of reviewed products and has had audio training from Home Acoustics Alliance and Sencore. He's also the author of the book The Trouble with Rivers
. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.