Different types of sound speakers for your home cinema setup

Part of the beauty of a trip to the cinema is that immersive audio experience: the rich spectrum of sound that really draws you into the world of the movie. So when it comes to recreating that experience with your home cinema installation, it’s important to get the right sound speaker configuration. Here we’ll take a look at how most home cinemas are set up, and the home sound systems that will deliver the best audio visual experience.

What are the different speaker setups?

When it comes to speakers in your home cinema set up, there are a number of different options, but 5:1, 7:1 and 9:1 are the most popular.

  • 5.1: The most common configuration for home cinema audio systems consists of two speakers at the front of the screen, two more to the left and right (for that immersive, surround sound experience) and a further speaker at the back. This is known as a 5:1 setup because there are 5 speakers in total plus one subwoofer
  • 7.1: Looking for a boost to your surround sound? A 7:1 configuration adds 2 extra speakers at the back of the room
  • 9.1: For the ultimate in immersive audio, a 9:1 configuration will bring a new dimension to your home cinema sound, with extra speakers above the two front units

Centre channel speaker

The centre channel speaker is the most important component when it comes to sound in a home cinema setup, because it does the majority of the work. This makes sense if you think about how you watch a film: the main action and conversation happen at the centre of your screen, so therefore your centre speaker will be producing the most important sounds.

Front left and right speakers

Not all of the sound comes from the centre channel speaker, however. For music and sound effects, and for dialogue when voices move around, the front left and right speakers will bring another dimension to your movie.

Surround speakers

Watching regular TV just isn’t the same as being in the cinema, and part of the reason is due to the superior surround sound that you get in a cinema setup. With surround speakers placed behind the listener, you become immersed in the world of the movie, with sound effects appearing to come from all around.


The subwoofer is the sound speaker that produces the lower frequencies, such as the bass and sub bass. In a home cinema the vibrations of the subwoofer actually enable you to feel the sound, for that rich, deep, bassy experience.

Dolby Atmos speakers

A top-of-the-range name in audio, Dolby Atmos speakers allow for instruments and vocals to be isolated and articulated with amazing clarity – with multi-dimensional sound that will make you feel as if you have stepped inside the movie!

Hidden speakers for a streamlined look and feel

Here at ADS Smart Home we pride ourselves on the immersive experience we can deliver, not just through amazing audio visual systems, but also through the overall design of your home cinema. So we create concealed speakers that help to create a sleek and streamlined experience in your home.

Contact us

Find out more about how we can create the perfect audio visual experience in your home cinema set up. Contact us for advice and a quote, or make an appointment to visit the home cinema in our showroom, on 0800 876 6258.