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5.1 Channel Audio




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See our Selection of Speakers



An audio format consisting of 5 or 6 separate audio signals. With most home theater and digital formats, the signals are:

  • Left Front (LF)
  • Center (C)
  • Right Front (RF)
  • Left Rear (LR)
  • Right Rear (RR)
  • sometimes a Low Frequency Effects (LFE) channel.



Depending on the format, the LFE may or may not be 'discrete' - that is, in some formats (particularly earlier Dolby Digital), the LFE was simply 'copied' from the front channels, run through a low-pass filter, and then sent to the subwoofer.


This method was used to help preserve bandwidth. With Blu-Ray becoming the standard, the audio format (Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio (MA) and Linear PCM) allows for 8 discrete (separate) channels of audio.


View our Range of Theater Amplifiers Here: Surround Sound Amplifiers

Speakers can be viewed here: Speaker Selection


Is it worth it?


Surround sound offers an immersive experience that in many ways surpasses stereo sound. However, becuase you are spreading your budget over more speakers, the overall quality for a given budget takes a nosedive. 


A general rule of thumb: For a given system of the same quality, you can expect to pay three times as much for the 5.1 version. 


So how do I put together a 5.1 System?

There are lots of components to think about, if it get's overwhelming, get in touch and we will endeavour to help out.



For true surround sound, you need a source mixed and distributed in surround sound. DVD's and Blu-Ray's are the obvious choice, but many streaming services and even sky now offer surround sound "over the air"



The amplifier needs to be a surround sound Amplifier. This means at least 5 channels of amplification and the neccessary inputs (Usually HDMI or Optical Digital) to enable it to work correctly.



The Most Important Part of the equation. Placing these correctly is the single most important factor in an awesome home theater. Choosing the correct speaker is the difference between a home theater you love for decades, and one you upgrade immediately.


A traditional surround sound system in our Christchurch Store



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