All Giz Wants: Virtual Surround Sound Done Right

All Giz Wants: Virtual Surround Sound Done Right

As much as I love surround sound, I don't have the space in my living room to wire a 5.1 or 6.1 speaker set. So instead I rely on my Denon S301, a 2.1 system that emulates a 5.1 setup. But as much as I love it, the S301 (and most virtual surround sound systems I've heard) still have a few flaws. I realize virtual surround sound (VSS) will never replace a real surround sound system, but there are a few improvements I'd like to see...

1) A virtual surround sound system that does a good job at emulating rear speakers. Most of the systems I've heard do an outstanding job emulating front and side speakers, but none of them trick me into thinking I have a pair of satellites sitting behind me.

2) A system that doesn't limit me to sitting in a "sweet spot," which usually ends up being directly in the middle or in front of the speakers.


3) Some VSS systems consist of one speaker, usually a soundbar. While I like the minimalism, often times these setups lack bass. Show me a soundbar with solid bass and I'll be first in line to buy it.

4) Many of the VSS systems I've seen have been demoed in majestic hotel rooms. If I lived in such a room, I'd just buy a proper surround sound set up to begin with. So I'd like to see a VSS system that works with any size/shape room (including my funky L-shaped living room).