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Top Scenes to Demo Your Home Audio Gear

Staff-selected clips for dialing-in your sound bar and AV receiver.

You just got a new sound bar. Or maybe an AV receiver. Now it’s time to make it shine.

Getting new audio gear can be as exciting as it is overwhelming. We polled our resident audio experts for the scenes they use to demo their home gear. These include setups with the following:

– Sound bar

– AV Receiver with 5.1.2-channel Dolby Atmos®

– AV Receiver with Dolby Digital 5.1™

Take a look and try them out!

Sound Bar Demo

by Ted Goslin, Content Marketing Specialist

Title: Starship Troopers

Scene: Klendathu Drop

Time Mark: 59:21 to 1:07:12

Gear: Yamaha SR-B20A sound bar

When stepping up from your TV speakers to a sound bar, you want to demo dynamic content that shows off the full frequency and dynamic range. Action and sci-fi movies check all the boxes. Starship Troopers is a big, loud, fun action movie set in space, chronicling the war between humans and an insect-like alien race.

Long thin speaker laying on a counter underneath a flat screen TV which hangs on the wall above it.

What to Listen for:

While this is an invasion / attack scene, some of the most ear-catching moments come from the low end. Listen for the roar of the spaceship engines as they move through space and touch down on the planet, the slam of the loading ramps, the stomping of feet as the soldiers run through the battlefield, and the litany of explosions throughout the battle. It’s at these moments when features like 3D virtual surround sound and built-in subwoofers really make their presence known.

This clip also showcases the sound bar’s high-frequency and midrange capability. Listen for each character’s breath as they run toward certain death, the metallic rattle of the trooper’s gear, and the crisp, clear dialogue (“Remember your training and you will make it back alive!”), all perfectly balanced with the rest of the audio. It’s loud, intense and graphic, so be sure to take stock of who may be around you (especially if they’re sleeping!) before you try it out.

AV Receiver with 5.1.2-Channel Dolby Atmos Demo

by Mark Fisher, Product Planning Manager

Title: Ready Player One

Scene: The First Challenge

Time Mark: 12:26 to 16:55

Gear: Yamaha RX-V6A AV receiver, NS-IC800 in-ceiling speakers

Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One has long been one of the best home theater demos. Not only does this movie allow your gear to display the brilliant CGI animations with crystal clarity, but it also features an outstanding Dolby Atmos soundtrack designed by Gary Rydstrom, also known for Jurassic Park, Saving Private Ryan, T2: Judgment Day and Ad Astra.

The vehicle race through New York City has everything you need to demonstrate the full capabilities of a 5.1.2-channel surround setup. As a bonus, it includes several well-known vehicles in pop culture, including the DeLorean from Back to the Future, the original Batmobile, Stephen King’s Christine, Bigfoot, Speed Racer’s Mach 5 and even the van from A-Team.

Modern living room with couch facing TV and surround sound speakers.

What to Listen for:

The scene begins with a low rumble from a bridge forming, followed by fireworks soaring overhead from the Statue of Liberty. Enjoy the softer audio subtleties there, because once the race starts, it’s nonstop, jaw-dropping mayhem.

You can feel the powerful impact of cars smashing into barriers and collisions from other vehicles in all directions. It’s surround sound at its best, with each speaker accentuating the sounds of tires bouncing and screeching, plus the low-end roar of Kaneda’s red motorcycle (from Akira) as it weaves in and out of traffic.

All this action provides your subwoofer with a nice, punchy workout, which shines in conjunction with a wide variety of atmospheric sounds in the surround and Dolby Atmos height channels. Perhaps the best is saved for last, as King Kong leaps from the Empire State Building and pursues Parzival to the finish line, stomping on top of buildings and bridges along the way.

AV Receiver with Dolby Digital 5.1 Demo

by Phil Shea, Content Development Manager

Title: Twister

Scene: Tornado / opening scene

Time Mark: 00:01 to 04:40

Gear: Yamaha RX-A2A AV receiver, NS-1000 speakers, YST-SW800 subwoofer, NS-IC800 in-ceiling speakers

The whole point of building a home theater is to transport you from reality and into the movie’s action. With that guiding principle, this 25-year-old classic can go toe-to-toe with any modern film. You not only hear it — you feel it. For the most immersive experience, it’s best experienced on a surround sound system enhanced with overhead speakers.

Modern living room with couch facing large flat screen TV. The TV is flanked by tall speakers.

What to Listen for:

You see a farm in the Central Plains. A storm is imminent. Listen to the wind begin rustling through the trees and the sound of debris blowing around the yard. All your speakers will be engaged at this point and your subwoofer will start coming to life.

You then get taken inside a farmhouse. The dialogue from a TV weather broadcaster is clear, and the creaking of wood flooring inside the house is distinct. The storm continues to build outside the home.

The final minute literally speaks for itself. The soundtrack takes over and your receiver, speakers and subwoofer flex to their full potential. After the storm passes, the scene is virtually silent. It takes a handful of seconds to realize that you too are holding your breath.

Go ahead and breathe. You’ve just experienced the very reason you invested in a home theater.


Looking for more tips to set up and dial in your gear? Check out these blog articles:

How to Install Banana Plugs on Your Speaker Wire

How to Connect a Turntable to an AV Receiver

How to Configure an AV Receiver for Gaming

How and Why to Bi-Amp Your Speakers

How to Connect a Subwoofer to a Sound Bar

How to Install Speaker Wire

How to Install In-Ceiling Speakers


Click here for more information about Yamaha sound bars.

Click here for more information about Yamaha AV receivers.

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