How Does the Number of Seats Factor Into Room Acoustic Design?

Learn how the number of seats you have in your room can impact your room’s acoustic design.

Creating the right effect for your home theater guests can sometimes be difficult to achieve, especially when choosing the correct number of seats to install. While there is not any right amount or wrong amount of seats in a home theater, certain factors will determine the maximum amount of seating options that you can install while ensuring the highest quality of room acoustic design. Ensuring an Exceptional Cinema Experience for Each Guest Room acoustic design is as much of an art as it is a science. Knowing where to place seats and speakers properly throughout the room is essential to achieving the best experience for every guest. Before installing your seats, install a sound system with subwoofers. The placement of each speaker and sub will determine how many seats you can install and where they go. Optimal Area Between Seats and Speakers Once you’ve installed your sound system and speakers, take measurements of each seat that you want to put in the room. Whether the seat be a couch, recliner or any number of standard movie theater-style seats, you’ll need the measurements to determine many you can integrate into your room acoustic design. All seats must be placed away from walls and speakers. Any seats that are installed too close to a wall will result in an overwhelming lower bass-type sound for those who choose to sit there. Placing seats too close to any of the speakers will cause what is known as incorrect localization (an inbalance in sound) for that particular seat. At a minimum, every seat should be more than 4 feet away from any wall or speaker. For example, if you have a home theater room that is 12 feet wide, you can add three rows of three standard theater recliners before reaching the allotted space between walls and speakers. If you have a larger room, a good way to figure out how many seats you can have is to divide the room size on each side by 4 feet. Make sure to adjust your calculation correctly if the room is oddly shaped or you’re using non-standard home theater furniture.


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