Best place for a Sub in my mini Theater

I am finishing half of my basement into a 10’ x 20’ theater room. The viewing area is only 10’ deep. The tv and credenza will be recessed 2 feet so that they are flush with the wall. Picture them stuck in a closet.   I have in wall speakers for the fronts. Where is the best place for the sub and facing which direction? It’s front firing.

I can recess it into the wall and have it face the audience but it would be firing into a wall only 10 feet away.

I’m thinking maybe I should put it in the front left corner and have it fire towards the 20’ length but it may be blocking. A closet. 

The couch is against the back wall. What if I put it against the back left corner?

As you can see I’m a bit confused. 

All great advice thanks you guys. I love that trick where you put the sub where you will be sitting and crawl around. I do have two of the same sub but that means I would have to steal it from my 2.1 system upstairs. :)

Also, Auxinput, when you say the speakers worked best in the corners did you mean your two fronts?

i spoke to Monitor Audio today and they recommended I stick with all in wall speakers since I don’t have a lot of room.

i am a bit confused the best way to arrange my surrounds in the 5.1. I have read to keep them at the sides 90 degrees ear level. I have heard to put them a foot or two above ear level.

the problem is that my couch will be against the back wall.

i have an extra pair of bookshelves I can keep on the sides on stands, or I could buy another set of in wall and put them a little above and towards the outside of the coach so they aren’t firing directly into the in wall fronts! 

Any suggestions?

It's actually the limitation that you have to put the viewing panel / main speakers on a long wall.  I always recommend that people use the "short wall" for placing the tv / screen / main speakers because it usually works out better acoustically in this fashion.  But this isn't always doable in certain rooms (like yours).

If you have to use the long wall for the main screen (like your room), then the subwoofer would be best in a corner for sure.  In my opinion, the main left/right speakers should be relatively close to the center channel.  I would say you could get away with putting the main speakers probably about 25% away from the corner.  The left/center/right should be close enough where they present a more "cohesive" sound.  You could always try them in the corners if you want, but you should definitely put some acoustic absorption panels within the corners to prevent standing waves in the midrange area.  In the corners of such a wide room, I would worry that you won't be able to identify direction of sound sources between the front left/right and the surround left/right, since they are so widely placed.

For surrounds, technically the left/right surrounds should be at the same height as your ears.  However, this is not always possible and can become difficult in a small room where you have one person that is closer to a surround speaker (i.e. if you're on the left, the left speaker is 2 feet away, but it's 5 feet away from the person on the right).  So you have to make some decisions and compromises on placement so that surround speakers are somewhat equalized between all audience members. 

I have a small room (at only 11 feet wide) and my surround speakers are on the side walls about 1.5 feet above listening.  It works out okay, but there is still a little imbalance even with 2 people on my loveseat. 

In your room, I would consider these positions:

1. Bookshelves mounted on stands and directed towards the listeners. (your idea).

2.  Mounted on the back ceiling about 25% into the room angled down towards the listeners.

3. Mounted on the side walls maybe about 5% into the room at listener height (as long as there are no doors blocking).  The sound would reflect off the back wall for the listeners, which is find for surrounds.

4. Mounted on the back/top of the side walls angled towards the listeners.

Options 2/3 will have the surrounds placed far away from the listeners, which should decrease the imbalance where a listener may hear the left surround more than the right surround.

I actually like your idea of putting the surrounds on stands.   This allows you to adjust the position to where you think it sounds best.

You have helped me so much Auxinput, first with my ICs, now this. I really appreciate it. 

I found it interesting that you didn’t suggest mounting in-walls on the back wall since my couch is up against the back wall. 

The problem with mounting in walls on the side walls at 90 degrees is that the electrical panel is right in the spot the right surround would go. :( Otherise I think I would do that.

Also, I will have one set of atmos in wall ceiling speakers just in front of the couch. They are monitor audio FX speakers. 

I think i may go with speakers and stands at 90 degrees unless you recommend just putting In-walls in the back wall a bit wider than the couch. 

Yeah, have the surrounds be in-wall on the back wall wouldn't work too well because the left/right surrounds should really be aimed directly at the listeners.

There is an additional "rear surrounds" channel that can be process in 7.1 processors, but you don't have the room for this.  You really need space behind your couch, since the "rear surrounds" are processor ambient sound that will be reflected around on the rear side walls.  These "rear surrounds" are fine being mounted in-wall.

If you have to or want to use in-walls for your surrounds, they are definitely best on the side walls, but as you said, there is a physical block at one of the locations.

I generally don't recommend in-wall speakers because once you mount them, you cannot move them.  There are some tweaks such as changing the position or toe-in that can improve the sound.  It just depends.  If you are putting the couch right up against the back wall, then I think you will be fine if you choose to place normal tower speakers for your fronts.  Regular speakers have a benefit in that they are completely enclosed.  With in-wall, you are basically putting them into an infinite baffle loose enclosure.  Not the best, but they work.  Though, with in-wall, you generally don't have a problem with tweeter refraction on the edge of the cabinets.

Also, with in-wall speakers, you are limited to using CL rated speaker wire, which are generally the low cost version and most of them are basic stranded (even Audioquest and Kimber).  Don't know what your budget is.

Another thing is room acoustics (including bass).  Can you give me the exact room size, including the ceiling height?

I found this informative article that speaks to my situation. If I use my bookshelves on the sides of me it’s a more direct sound. If I get another pair of the Monitor Audio WT-CP380IDC to match my fronts they have a dipole switch to get more diffuse sound for the surrounds since they would be firing from the back wall instead of from the sides. 

What do you think?