What Are Height Speakers?

What Are Height Speakers

Surround sound allows audiences to enjoy an immersive cinematic experience from the comfort of your home. With surround sound setups constantly evolving, the addition of heightened speakers shouldn’t be too surprising. But what exactly are height speakers?

Basic Understanding of Height Speakers

Height Speakers are relatively new to the market. They’re an advancement in the world of surround sound meant to create more realism in sound delivery. A conventional home theater surround sound reproduces sound on a single vertical plane, at around ear level. Height speakers, on the other hand, deliver immersive three-dimensional sound fields by overhead speakers.

We’re going to discuss how height speakers work in the context of your surround sound set-up and how they differ from current parts of the surround sound experience we’ve known until now.

Front Height Speakers

These two speakers produce the most superior and direct sound. They are usually aimed at the listener, directly above the main front speakers found on the ground. 

Center Speakers

A center speaker is required for the best audio experience. They can either be placed above or under the television screen. This speaker anchors the sound originating from the front heigh speakers and produces the audio’s dialog. 

This speaker helps play the same sound effects and dialogue as the front speakers don’t directly manage this aspect of the sound.

Surround Back

These are the audio fillers. They are essential to providing a more rounded sound and completing the audio experience. They do things like fill in the background noises like rushing water, dogs parking, background music, and other sounds. They also complement the height speakers.

Front Height Vs Surround Back Speakers

There are numerous key differences between front-height speakers and surround-back speakers. For starters, front-height speakers produce the most prominent sound, while surround-back fill-in background noises. In addition, the front-height center speaker anchors its sound, while the surround-back compliments the front-height speakers. 

Furthermore, the front height speakers are located in the front of the listening position instead of the surround-back, which are found behind the listening position. Finally, the front height speakers reproduce the show’s dialogue and the main action; the surround back focuses on actions and foliage/ambiance. 

Should a Surround Back or Front Height Speaker Be Louder?

Seeing as these speakers are complimentary of one another, you need to place them in the right areas to ensure they work together and not against one another. 

Front height speakers are designed to be louder than surround back speakers. This makes sense considering each one’s job. The front-height speakers are meant to provide sound from a different angle, whereas the surround backfills in sound gaps and background noises. 

Front heigh speakers feature numerous significant drivers that are specifically designed to produce higher-pitched sounds. 

Both speakers are capable of high volumes, but going too far would ruin the experience. Having surround back higher than height speakers and having either or both higher in volume than your center speaker means you’re losing some part of the media’s desired audio quality and output. 

In addition, you lose aspects of the audio, such as dialogue or action, with one or the other being overly produced while the other is fighting through the noise and minimizing background noises.

Some experimenting or trial and error might be useful in finding the perfect setup. 

How to Position Front Height Speakers

A perfect setup is dependent on you, but there are recommended setups for your speakers. The front-height speakers should be placed on the left and right sides of a wall that faces you and where the TV is as well. The center speaker should either be placed under the TV or above the TV in between your front-height speakers.

Then you also have your floor-standing front speakers, which are on the left and right of the television with a subwoofer beside one of them. Ensure that the left and right front speakers are at an equal distance from the television to create an equilateral triangle balanced sound. 

Surround back speakers should be placed behind your couch, behind you as the listener. They’re not meant to be a focused sound. Instead, they’re meant to fill in the gaps that are left from behind you. You are likely to also have additional speakers that go beside your seating area to fill in those gaps.

Additionally, you want to angle your speakers to not make them throw the sound at you. Instead, you want it bouncing around the room and filling it. This is something you’ll need to experiment with to get the results you are looking for. 

Final Thoughts

It is important to note that some surround sound systems still do not support the use of height speakers. So make sure yours can before purchasing them. They also require additional add-ons to make them work to the best of their ability. 

Purchasing and using height speakers is a matter of preference. Make sure to understand all the nuances of height speakers to avoid buying something you’re going to hate later.

This article was last updated on July 30, 2021 .

By Charl Jooste

Writing full time from home, Charl enjoys modern technology and advanced gadgets but still has a soft spot for quality reliable appliances. He is passionate about durability and quality going to great lengths to find the very best ideas and leading products to share with readers.