No. The center channel allows you to separate the front for a wider soundstage, and the rears mesh with the mains to create an ambience that pulls the front soundstage toward the listening position a bit, giving it depth and a slight ambience in the rear that creates the feeling of a larger room. It's a phase thing. The room isn't dead behind you. If fills in just enough to feel present, but not enough to shift the front stage.
My Yamaha AV receiver has a 7:1 Stereo DSP that takes stereo recordings and maintains the front stage and stereo placement, but opens it out to fill the room. Hard to describe, but if you cup your hands behind your ears while you listen to two channel, you'll sort of get the idea.
When you switch from mono to stereo on a 2 channel system the stage stays the same, but the phase fills in and opens it up. It's like that except all around you.
Sounds interesting. I hope I can try it out somewhere.
This morning I was also wondering about the way we make our transducers. The way I see it, most musical instruments that can produce sound unamplified will do so in a three dimensional manner.
I'm assuming the sound dispersion at won't be entirely uniform, but it will have a spherical spread. Now, this means that the current speaker design we have doesn't exactly produce sound in a fully spherical space, more like a part of it. This will affect the reflections and hence ambience.
Does that mean there's no real replacement for a musical instrument?
Edited by proton007 - 10/14/13 at 1:31am