“Wouldn’t it be cool if…”

…we could install the ideal immersive sound system in our home based on pure geometry.

There are many guides to configuring our speakers for the best multi-channel sound.

One of the most interesting comes from the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). These folks have been writing standards since 1865 when Napoleon III hosted a conference in Paris to develop rules that would facilitate international telegraph services. Their “reference loudspeaker arrangement” for 5.1 looks like this:

Crucially, all speakers should be identical. Starke Sound’s Lumi products make it possible to configure an ideal (awesome) immersive system at reasonable cost.

Lumi 5.1 is only $1688:

For immersive (Atmos, DTS:X, Auro3D) we also need “height speakers”.

Let’s configure a 7.2.4 system by adding six satellites and another sub.

We’ll need two Lumi 3.0 kits ($749 each):

And a SUB24 ($699):

Total cost: $3885.

Now it’s a matter of accurate positioning with a laser angle and distance measure ($47 on Amazon)

We want to locate each of the eleven satellites on the surface of a virtual hemisphere that will fit in our room, and aimed at the sweet spot.

The seven “bed” speakers should be placed with their centers at 38 inches off the floor (seated listening height of our ears).

We’ll use azimuths of 30, 0, and 30 degrees for LCR; 90 degrees for L-wide and R-wide; 135 degrees for L-surround and R-surround.

The two subs should be placed for smoothest overall bass response in our room, perhaps at right front and left rear.

Sanus HTBS stands ($40 a pair on Amazon) work well for this.

We can place the center channel speaker (38 inches off the floor) on a credenza under the TV.

Accurately mounting the four height speakers may be a challenge. They should be at 45-degree elevation from hemisphere center.

We can fashion some hardware extensions for our particular room and ceiling and utilize the included Lumi mounts.

A processor that fully and accurately decodes Atmos and other formats is essential to our full experience, eg Acurus MUSE ($5500).

But, when our "Lumi ITU” installation is completed, we’ll have created an environment for true immersion.