How important are rear surround speakers is a question a friend of mine asked and I responded with a very loud, WHAT??? We have looked at some great surround sound systems and to me if you are setting up a home theatre, rear surround speakers have to be included in this setup. Today I thought we would have a little bit of fun by looking at why rear surround speakers are important as well as giving some advice for what you need to know about them.
Why They Are Important
Many people these days will get a soundbar and just call it a day and that is cool. I would say for most people out there who just want to improve their sound quality as most TVs these days are really lacking in the sound department due to people wanting their TVs to be thinner and thinner. (also check out the compact soundbars under$200 that are great for TV) The reason that a set of rear surround speakers are important are first of all, if you want surround sound, you cannot get it without them.
If we take this Bomaker 190W Sound Bar for example, this and about a million other soundbars will claim that they offer surround sound. While they offer great sound, there is no way that they can make the sound come from the rear, it is impossible!
At the end of the day, if you want surround sound, you NEED rear speakers. These can be any kind of speakers. Most people like to use bookshelf speakers as they take up far less space and that makes sense. For me, if you have the space, tower speakers look so much more badass, but I get why they are not practical for everyone.
Many big movies will have surround sound tracks on the disc. Look at Avengers Endgame for example. On here you have your standard stereo sound and that is fine. However, this also supports 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound too and the only way you will actually get the full benefit of that is by having rear speakers. It is worth noting that some old movies do not have a surround sound track and, in that case,, the sound will just blast you from all angles.
What About If I Just Listen To Music?
If you listen to music and are not a big movie buff then I would have to say that rear surround speakers are not important at all. Most albums are recorded in stereo and they should be listened to in that format.
Case in point, just last weekend I was rocking out to Poison’s Greatest Hits 1986-1996 which is a record I love! Anyway, I was screwing around with my setup and I played it in surround sound and honestly, it was not as crisp as it was when I had it playing in stereo.
I am sure that some people will love to sit in the middle of the room and have their favorite music blasting them from all angles. For me, there is nothing that can beat good old stereo sound when it comes to music. There are some exceptions there is apparently a version of The Globe Sessions by Sheryl Crow which was recorded with 5.1 in mind and from what I have heard this is amazing.
Should I Just Buy A Surround Sound System?
The easiest way to ensure that you have a solid surround sound setup that all matches is to buy an all in one package. These are at all ends of the pricing spectrum. For example, we have this Acoustic Audio by Goldwood Bluetooth 5.1 Surround Sound System that has your rear surround speakers as well as your center and side and it only costs around the 100 bucks mark. This is a great way to get affordable surround sound. It is also a neat way to dip your toe in the water of surround sound without spending a ton of money.
If you are looking to spend a little bit more money, I highly recommend that you take a closer look at this awesome VIZIO Sound Bar for TV, 36” 5.1 Channel Home Theater Surround Sound System which does cost 250 bucks, but I feel that is a great price for a product like this. What is awesome about this is that you get the soundbar for your center channels, a subwoofer and you also get two wireless rear surround speakers so you do not have wires trawling all through your living room or home theatre.
Wired Or Wireless?
This is something that is all about personal preference if you ask me. If you look through our speaker reviews you will notice that we have a good mixture of wired and wireless speakers in there. To me this all depends on your setup.
I am kind of weird in that I have a ton and I mean a ton of speaker cable in my house. In my experience when you buy a set of wired speakers they either come with no speaker cable at all or they come with the smallest amount so if you did want to use them as rear speakers you would be out of luck. There are also some speakers that have the cable already attached, thankfully, cutting and extended speaker cable is easy.
Wireless rear speakers are so much more convenient. While I am always a wire man at heart. I must admit it is so much better to be able to just pair the speakers and then put them where you want.
In my living room we have these Edifier R1280DB Powered Bluetooth Bookshelf Speakers as our rear speakers. The reason for this was that my wife hated the cable that we had running along the sideboard and up the wall. I have to admit, it looked ugly as sin. With wireless speakers you do not have that worry.
In our home theatre I do have these Sony SSCSE Dolby Atmos Enabled Speakers and as it is a home theater, I was able to hide the cable more. In a living room, it is not always as easy to hide the cables.