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multi channel home theatre

So, you’re in the market for a new multi channel home theatre system

Table Of Contents Open The Table Of Contents

You’re in for a fun ride! But if you just need a quick recommendation, then here are my top three picks.

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There are a ton of different options, features, and audio codecs to choose from when it comes to multi channel home theater systems.

It can be tough to figure out which one is right for you, but don’t worry as I’m here to help you out with this comprehensive buyer’s guide! 

By the time you’re finished reading, you’ll know everything there is to know about surround speakers.

And perhaps you’ll even be ready to buy one today, exciting!

What Is The Best Multi Channel Home Theater?

The following are the best multi channel home theaters to choose from in 2022, find the perfect system for your needs below.

1. Best Overall: Klipsch Reference
Best Wireless: Sonos ARC ONE Sub
Best Under $1k: Polk Audio T-Series
Best Premium: ELAC Debut 2.0
Best Budget: Logitech Z906 5.1
Best Wireless Alt: Enclave CineHome II
Best Party Banger: Rockville HTS56
Best 7.1 Overall: Klipsch Reference R-26FA
Best 7.1 Soundbar: Nakamichi Shockwafe Pro

| 1. Klipsch Reference

| Best 5.1 Overall Multi Channel Home Theater

If you’re looking for an incredible surround sound experience that both looks great and costs near to nothing, then look no further. 

With Klipsch Reference surround speakers you’ll get clean natural sound with punchy bass and a minimal footprint. 

Their innovative design and superior acoustics make them the perfect choice for any home theater systems enthusiast.

The flexible mounting options allow you to set up your theater anywhere in your home, while the wireless subwoofer creates great low frequencies for an immersive sound experience. 

To enjoy your favorite movies and shows like never before, consider getting the Sony STRDH590 AVR that fits perfectly with the system.

| What I Like / Dislike

Minimal satellite speakers that are easy to place on the perfect spot

Wireless subwoofer for an appropriate surround sound format

Clean sound and a decent bass 

Need a good AVR that doesn’t come natively in the box

| Great Features

⇢ High-quality aluminum tweeters

⇢ Keyhole mounts on satellites

⇢ Lightweight woofers with Injection Molded Graphite (IMG)

⇢ 2.4GHz connectivity on the subwoofer for premium sound

⇢ Linear Travel Suspension (LTS) tweeter that removes distortion

| User Experience

If you want to see more, make sure to check out this in-depth video review.

| 2. Sonos

| Best 5.1 Wireless Multi Channel Home Theater

Sonos has been taking over the world with its wireless speakers that work literally anywhere in the house, even as true surround sound systems!

The setup consists of the Sonos Arc 2x One Sub that looks minimalistic in nature and sounds absolutely fantastic. 

I personally settled on this system as I love wireless everything.

What really makes this surround sound system shine is the sound configuration that you can do with the Sonos app and “Trueplay”.

It customizes the sound experience for your specific room, without having to move speakers around, you can truly hear the difference.

And if you don’t need the surround sound after a while, just use the rear speakers in other rooms to fill out the house with fantastically sounding music, easy and versatile.

| What I Like / Dislike

Wireless freedom without having to compromise on sound quality

Works both as a true surround sound system and standalone

Effortless installation and melts in with the environment

Entirely dependent on your wireless internet, doesn’t work without

Your TV needs to support HDMI ARC for the system to work

| Great Features

⇢ Flexible and customizable, start with the soundbar, add surround sound speakers or the bass later on if you really need it.

⇢ 3D sound with Dolby Atmos

⇢ Voice control with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant

⇢ Adjustes acoustics for your specific room for a unique sound

| User Experience

If you want to see more, make sure to check out this in-depth video review.

| 3. Polk Audio T-Series

| Best 5.1 Multi Channel Home Theater Under $1000

Experience theater-quality sound in the comfort of your own home with Polk Audio 5.1 home theater system, a tight contender to the Klipsch Reference.

With 15 speakers delivering immense surround sound and a 100-watt subwoofer for shaking your floors, this 5.1 channel system is perfect for movie nights and gaming marathons alike! 

With wider dispersion and minimal distortions, you’ll feel like you’re right in the middle of the action, right in your own home theater.

At an affordable price, it’s easy to get swept up in the excitement, and customers testify to this. 

Just don’t forget to pair it with a powerful AVR to get the most out of the multi channel surround sound system, I recommend the Denon S650H.

| What I Like / Dislike

Comparable to a premium surround sound setup

Affordable price

Works with most AVRs

Sounds great but looks bulky

Needs plenty of space to get the sound right

| Great Features

⇢ Each bookshelf speaker comes with a 5.25” driver and 0.75” tweeter

⇢ 6.5” Bass that fills the room nicely, great balance on low frequencies

⇢ Features Polk’s “Dynamic Balance Technology” for a signature sound

⇢ Upgradable from a 3.1 system all the way to 9.1

| User Experience

If you want to see more, make sure to check out this in-depth video review.

| 4. ELAC Debut 2.0

| Best 5.1 Premium Multi Channel Home Theater

Elevate your home entertainment experience with the premium Elac Debut 2.0 Dolby Atmos surround sound speaker system. 

The incredible surround speakers provide accurate sound reproduction with reduced cabinet vibration for an immersive audio experience. 

With its easy room placement and frequency response out to 35kHz, it’s perfect for any audiophile. 

Pair it up with the Denon AVR-X4700H AVR and you’re gold.

With its Dolby Atmos capabilities, this multi channel audio system creates an immersive soundscape that puts you in the middle of the action. 

From tight, clean bass to the crisp sound, it can deliver surround sound on every level imaginable.

| What I Like / Dislike

Premium Dolby Atmos experience for the true movie lover in all of us

I love how the sound does not interfere with each other, super clean

The subwoofer delivers epic low-frequency sound without any rattle

Takes a while to get all of the components in place

| Great Features

⇢ Frequency response from 44Hz all the way to 35kHz

⇢ Relatively easy to install

⇢ Woven Aramid-Fiber woofer with 120 Watts output

⇢ Custom 10” bass driver with braced MDF cabinet

| User Experience

| 5. Logitech Z906 5.1

| Best 5.1 Budget Multi Channel Home Surround Speakers

Amp up your audio experience with the Logitech Z906 5.1 multi channel surround sound speakers. 

Enjoy THX, Dolby Digital, and DTS support for the ultimate home theater experience. 

With 165 watts, this subwoofer produces room-shaking audio with deep bass. 

Whether you’re gaming on your computer or streaming your favorite movie on your game console, you’ll be enveloped in rich, detailed surround sound. 

The wireless remote gives you ultimate control over your audio experience. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the show.

| What I Like / Dislike

Dolby Digital DTS on your PC and gaming consoles!

Perfect for any gaming desk setup and smaller rooms

The remote is perfect when you want to chill in bed or on the couch

You’ll need to use optical or coaxial cables to get DTS HD master audio

Questionable quality as some users report breakdowns after a few months of use

| Great Features

⇢ Small footprint and easily placeable on any desk

⇢ Insane bass for small rooms, you’ll neighbor below will hate you

⇢ 500 to 1000 Watts of power

⇢ The 4 x 65 Watt satellite speakers are wall mountable

| User Experience

| 6. Enclave CineHome II

| Best 5.1 Wireless Budget Surround Speakers

Bring the theater experience home with the Enclave CineHome II 5.1 Wireless Home Theater Surround Sound System. 

This six-speaker system provides premium quality sound without the need for any AVR or WiFi, just plug it in and enjoy movie-theater quality sound right in your living room. 

With Dolby Audio and DTS, you’ll feel like you’re right in the middle of the action. 

Plus, the Enclave CineHome II is WiSA certified for easy setup and compatibility with most modern TVs.

| What I Like / Dislike About CineHome II

Simple, clean, a plug & play option without any cable management

Looks great in any modern living room

Supports Dolby Audio and DTS

As with Sonos, needs HDMI ARC or optical on your TV

| Great Features

⇢ Extremely easy to connect and install

⇢ Premium wireless sound quality that is immersive

⇢ Works with your TV remote

⇢ Stream music from your smartphone via Bluetooth

| User Experience

| 7. Rockville HTS56 1000w

| Best 5.1 Party Banger With Multi Channel Audio

The Rockville HTS56 is a little bit of everything.

This 5.1 channel plug-and-play system is perfect for anyone who wants to add some movie magic to their home. 

With 1000 Watts of peak power, it’s loud enough to fill any room with sound, and the subwoofer comes with a built-in receiver. 

While the LED light effects set the mood for your favorite films, they work equally great for the home party or even as a sound system for a gym.

One thing is guaranteed, the Rockville HTS56 will have you feeling like you’re right in the middle of the action, wherever you are.

| What I Like / Dislike Rockville HTS56

Old-school vibes from this multi channel audio system

Has both USB input, Bluetooth connectivity, and even an FM receiver

Just as great for parties and karaoke as lazy Sunday movies

Kinda ugly and bulky but that’s my personal opinion

| Great Features

⇢ Independendently control each speaker for any occasion

⇢ Has mic input for karaoke nights

⇢ Plug & Play with tons of power, a real part banger

| User Experience

| 8. Klipsch Reference R-26FA

| Best 7.1 Overall Multi Channel Home Theater

Experience the difference with Klipsch Reference R-26FA 7.1 Home Theaters System. 

With aluminum diaphragm tweeters, you’ll appreciate the nuanced details in your audio. 

The floor-standing speakers have Dolby Atmos channels built-in, so you can enjoy an immersive overhead sound experience. 

The sound is reflected off the ceiling to create a cinema-like soundstage right in your own home.

Klipsch’s signature acoustic technology results in a powerful yet refined sound, letting you enjoy blockbuster films like never before.

| What I Like / Dislike About Klipsch R-26FA

Having Dolby Atmos built into the floor standing speakers is neat

Sounds amazing and looks great in any serious home theater

I will definitely get these for my next man cave

The speakers are way bigger than you might think, make room!

| Great Features

⇢ 400 Watt peak power subwoofer and center speaker

⇢ High-end response and powerful dynamics

⇢ Linear Travel Suspension (LTS) minimizes distortion

⇢ High-quality terminals

| User Experience

| 9. Nakamichi Shockwafe Pro

| Best 7.1 Virtual Surround Sound Systems

Elevate your movie and gaming experience with the Nakamichi Shockwafe Pro 7.1 Dolby Atmos and DT Soundbar. 

Winner of the best Dolby Atmos soundbar battle, this soundbar is sure to give you an immersive experience. 

With spatial surround elevation (SSE) technology, 105dB full dynamics, room-filling sound, tight low frequencies, and a down-firing wireless subwoofer, this soundbar has it all. 

Connect up to 6 devices to the Nakamichi Shockwafe Pro 7.1 Dolby Atmos for the ultimate audio experience.

| What I Like / Dislike About Shockwafe Pro

One of the better soundbars out there with 7.1 capabilities

Easy plug & play installation with up to 6 devices

2-way rear surround speakers!

Takes 9-10 seconds for sound to come out after switching devices

| Great Features

⇢ Dolby Atmos virtual surround sound systems from a soundbar

⇢ 105db of room-filling sound for a real theater experience

⇢ Wireless downwards directed subwoofer, feel the entire floor shake

⇢ 35% wider soundstage compared to other soundbars

| User Experience

What Is Multi Channel Home Theater?

A multi channel home theater system allows the listener to experience cinematic audio in the comfort of their own home through surround sound.

These multi channel home theater systems typically consist of five or more speakers that are placed around the room to create a 360-degree audio experience.

This means that you can hear sound coming from all directions, even from behind (5.1), and above (Dolby Atmos) just like you would in a movie theater.

The best multi channel home theater systems will offer surround sound decoding and precise speaker calibration for the best listening experience possible. 

They also include a subwoofer to provide deep bass and thunderous sound effects.

What Are the Benefits of a Multi Channel Home Theater Systems?

There are plenty of reasons to invest in a multi channel home theater system.

Home theater systems offer the best possible audio experience. Whether you’re watching a movie or playing a video game, the sound will be immersive and completely surround you.

Sound systems are perfect for large rooms, and home theater systems will make it feel even larger if your living space is large enough.

True surround sound systems are just plain fun! Once you experience the immersive and incredible surround sound audio formats of home theater systems, you’ll never want to go back to watching TV the old way ever again.

What are the drawbacks of a Multi-Channel Home Theater?

While a multi channel home theater can be an amazing entertainment experience, there are a few drawbacks that you should be aware of before purchasing one.

The first is the price. A quality home theater system can be expensive, so it’s important to make sure that you’re getting the features that you want and need.

Another potential drawback is the amount of wiring and cables that are required to set up a multi channel home theater. 

If you’re not comfortable with DIY projects or are tight on space, then a wireless option might be just what you need.

Finally, they can be difficult to set up and configure properly. If you’re not familiar with electronics or audio equipment, it may be best to go with a package that is plug & play.

Alternatives to Multi-Channel Home Theaters

While a multi channel home theater system is the best way to get the most out of your audio experience at home, it’s not your only option. 

If you’re not quite sure if a multi-channel system is right for you, or if you’re on a budget, there are a few alternatives:

A soundbar is a great option if you want better audio quality but don’t have the space for a full home theater system. They’re usually moderately affordable and super easy to set up.

Another option is a simple 5.1 surround sound system that reminds more of computer speakers than anything else. 

This will give you an immersive audio experience but won’t be as good as a full home theater system.

The Ultimate Multi Channel Home Theater Buying Guide

| How to Choose the Best Multi Channel Home Theater?

There are a few factors you need to consider when choosing the best multi channel home theater for your needs.

| The Type And Size Of The System

The type of system you need is based on the size of your room. If you have a smaller room, you’ll need a 3.1 or 5.1 system, or even a soundbar. 

This will give you enough sound to fill the room without being too overpowering.

For larger rooms, a 5.1 to 7.1 system and beyond would be recommended as it will provide more depth and range.

You’ll also want to make sure that the system you choose is compatible with your other electronics, like your TV and Blu-ray player.

When it comes to size, make sure to measure the width, height, and depth of your room so you can purchase a system that will fit comfortably.

| Price

Price is always an important consideration when it comes to electronics. You want to make sure you’re getting the most value for your money.

When it comes to multi channel home theater, you can expect to pay a little more than you would for standard speakers. 

However, the extra cost is well worth it, as you’ll get a richer, more immersive audio experience.

I recommend spending a little more on a system that will offer you the best possible sound quality. 

After all, your home theater is an important piece of your entertainment setup and should be treated as such. Also, it’s a pain to redo the installation.

You also need to consider your budget and what features you want your home theater system to have. 

Do you want a system that can play DVDs and Blu-rays, or do you just want one that can stream Netflix and TV shows? 

Do you want a full-on 7.1 surround sound system, or is a soundbar good enough?

| Ease Of Installation

One of the deciding factors for any home theater system is how easy it is to install. 

If you’re not tech-savvy, you’ll want to opt for a model that’s relatively easy to set up, something that’s plug and play.

Most multi channel home theater systems come with a standard installation process, but there are a few that are a little more complicated. 

Make sure you take the time to read the instructions carefully and follow them step-by-step, or you could run into some issues.

| Sound Quality

It’s no secret that sound quality is one of the most important factors to consider when purchasing a multi channel home theater. 

After all, what’s the point of having an amazing system if the sound quality is poor?

When looking for a system with great sound quality, you’ll want to consider the type of speakers being used. 

Some systems utilize front-firing speakers, which are placed near the front of the room. This is great for those who want a more immersive experience, as you’ll feel like you’re right in the middle of the action.

Other systems use upward-firing speakers, such as Dolby Atmos. This is a great option as it creates an increased sense of height and spaciousness for the listener.

Once you’ve decided on what features you want, you can start narrowing down your choices by reading the listed theater systems in this article, they are all great choices and will suit a variety of budgets and needs.

| Parts of a Multi Channel Home Theater System

A multi channel home theater system usually consists of the following:

  • A receiver

  • Front speakers

  • Center speaker

  • Surround/rear speakers

  • Subwoofer

The receiver is the most important part of the system, as it’s responsible for decoding and amplifying audio signals. It’s also where you’ll connect all of your other components.

The front, center and surround/rear speakers are essential for reproducing the surround sound experience. 

The subwoofer is responsible for delivering low-frequency bass notes, giving your movie watching and music listening experiences a huge boost.

| Speakers

Selecting the right speakers for your home theater is essential for getting the best possible sound. There are a few things to consider when making your choice:

First, think about where you’ll be placing your speakers. If you have a large room, you’ll need larger speakers to fill it with sound. 

If you have a small room, on the other hand, you’ll need smaller speakers or even just a soundbar.

Second, consider what type of audio you want to experience. If you want cinema-quality sound, then you’ll need to purchase surround sound speakers. 

If you’re just looking for something more basic, then a set of front speakers will be fine.

Last but not least, make sure to check the specs of each speaker before making your purchase. 

You’ll want to make sure that the wattage and impedance of each speaker are compatible with your receiver or amplifier.

| AV Receiver

An AV Receiver is a must for any great home theater system. It’s the central component that ties all of your other devices together and allows you to control everything from one place.

When shopping for an AV Receiver, it’s important to consider how many channels your system will need. A 5.1 system, for example, would need five channels for the speakers and one channel for the subwoofer.

Some other factors you’ll want to consider include power output, decoding capabilities, and whether or not the receiver has an HDMI input/output.

| Interconnects And Wires

When it comes to interconnects and speaker wires, you’ll want to make sure you get something that’s high quality. This will ensure that you’re getting the best possible sound quality from your home theater system.

There are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind when choosing interconnects and speaker wires:

The gauge of the wire: The lower the gauge, the thicker the wire. Heavier wires are better for carrying more power and are less likely to distort the signal.

The type of insulation: There are two main types of insulation, PVC and polyethylene. PVC is cheaper but can be less effective at preventing interference. Polyethylene is more expensive, but it’s better at preventing interference and is also more durable.

The length of the wire: The longer the wire, the more opportunities for interference. Try to keep your wire lengths as short as possible for the best sound quality.

| Types of Multi-Channel Home Theater Systems

There are many different types of home theater systems to choose from. You have to decide what is best for your needs.

A multi-channel home theater system can be either a:

Surround Sound System: This system has five or more channels and reproduces surround sound. It’s perfect for watching movies and gaming.

Soundbar: A soundbar is a great option if you want better quality audio but don’t have the space for a surround sound system. They come at various sizes and prices.

Home Theater in a Box (HTIB): An HTIB system is perfect for those who want everything they need in one package. It usually includes a receiver (AVR), rear speakers, front speakers, a mid speaker, and a subwoofer.

Multi channel home theaters are usually classified by the number of channels or the number of speakers that the system has.

| 2.0 or 2.1 Stereo Systems

A 2.0 stereo system is a classic choice for anyone looking for quality sound on a budget. 

This type of system usually consists of two speakers- one for the left channel and one for the right- along with a subwoofer (which makes it 2.1) to handle the lower frequencies.

This setup is great for small rooms, as it can provide good coverage without being too overpowering.

| 3.1 Multi-Channel Home Theater System

A 3.1 channel home theater system is similar to a 2.1 channel system, but it comes with an extra center channel for more clear dialogues in movies.

| 5.1 Multi-Channel Home Theater System

5.1 surround sound is the most common, and includes five channels: left, right, center, left surround, and right surround. This is perfect for basic home cinema setups and for watching movies or TV shows.

If you’re looking for an EVEN MORE immersive experience, you may want to consider a 7.1 channel system instead.

| 7.1 Multi-Channel Home Theater System

7.1 surround sound includes an additional two channels which are related to Dolby Atmos or audio channels that are directed upwards. 

This offers an immersive experience that needs to be experienced and is great for larger rooms.

| True Surround Sound vs Virtual Surround Sound

With a true surround sound system, you’ll be able to enjoy realistic and lifelike audio that puts you right in the middle of the action.

A virtual surround sound system is a great option if you’re looking for a more affordable way to get that cinema-like experience in your own home.

It uses digital processing to create the surround sound effect, which means you won’t get the same level of quality as with a true surround sound system. However, it’s still a great way to improve your TV watching experience.

Wrap Up

A multi-channel home theater is the perfect way to bring the cinema experience into your home. 

Whether you’re a movie buff or just enjoy watching TV, a multi-channel home theater can provide an immersive audio and video experience.

After a ton of research and testing sound systems, I think I’ve listed the absolute best multi channel home theaters on the market.

So, whether you’re looking for a new multi-channel home theater or just want to learn more about them, I hope that you found this article helpful.

Now I’m off watching the Matrix (the first one). 

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