Q: “Should I use a consumer surround system to check my mixes in surround?”
A: We’re starting to see more and more commercial studios installing consumer surround systems in their studios for monitoring purposes. While this certainly isn’t necessary for you to mix in surround, it could be extremely beneficial. Much like the old days when we all used Auratone speakers for reference, listening to a mix on a decent consumer surround system will let you know what your audience is going to hear. For instance, it helps to hear what the codec (compressor/decompressor) will do to the final product because codecs can change the sound considerably. So, is it necessary? No. Would it help? You bet.