6.5 Or 8 Inch Ceiling Speakers for Atmos: A Detailed Guide

The Dolby Atmos technology lets you experience the best sound for home theaters. For achieving that, the correct setup of speakers is a must.

There are several categories of speakers available in the market. 6.5-inch and 8-inch speakers are very popular among them. It is quite hard to choose between these two.

So, 6.5 or 8 inch ceiling speakers for Atmos?

With an 8 inch speaker, you get a wider coverage than the 6.5 inch speakers. Any room over 200 sq ft will require an 8 inch speaker for proper sound. Not only that, but you also get louder bass with the 8 inch speakers. But such advantages come with an increased cost as well.

That only grazed the surface. To select the best speaker you will need more knowledge. I have tried to cover this topic completely here. So please keep reading!

Short Comparison 

The use of proper speakers is a must to get the best Atmos experience. So can any ceiling speaker be used for Dolby Atmos? Yes, almost all modern speakers support Dolby Atmos. But the performance may vary depending on the size of the speaker. 

Source: smarthomesounds.co.uk

So it’s important to select the best size for your optimum enjoyment. Choosing between 6.5 vs 8 inch ceiling speakers requires lots of time. Just like comparing 5.12 with 7.14, there are many variables. Anyway, to cut it short I have made the following table.

Factors 6.5 Inch Ceiling Speakers 8 Inch Ceiling Speakers 
Room Size100-175 Square FeetOver 200 Square Feet
Mount SizeSmaller Larger 
Best ForBackground SoundSurround Sound 
Required Power LightHeavy 

You can select the size required for you easily from the above table. However, if you want to know more, keep scrolling. In the latter section, I will present to you an in-depth review of these speakers. 

Extended Comparison 

A detailed comparison will help greatly to select the best ceiling speakers. Dolby atmos-enabled speakers vs ceiling speakers are not the same. However, the differences between these aren’t as complicated as differentiating between mid range speakers and full range speakers.

So without wasting any more time let’s get to work.

Room Size

The size of the room is very significant for the size of the speaker. If you have a big room with small speakers, the sound will get weaker. You’ll get a better idea by comparing a 6.5 and a 6×8 speaker. It will not be distributed evenly across the room. So how many ceiling speakers per square foot?

Coverage Area of 6.5” and 8” ceiling speakers for atmos

The answer depends on the power and size of the speakers. For a medium-sized room, 6.5-inch speakers are enough for Atmos. The range of medium-sized rooms is from 100 square feet to 175 square feet. 

But this speaker will not cover big rooms above 200 square feet. 8-inch speakers are needed for this purpose. These speakers are powerful enough to spread the sound thoroughly across the room. 

Source: pinterest.com


The bass is an important part of the sound produced. Tones with low pitch and frequency are termed bass. Many times our ears fail to capture the bass. But that doesn’t reduce its importance. Bass is the bridge between percussion and trebles. 

The production of bass is proportional to the size of the speaker. That means larger speakers can generate more bass. So the 8 inch in-ceiling speakers are very powerful in this aspect. They can easily fill a big room with proper bass sounds.

On the other hand, the 6.5-inch in-ceiling speakers will produce less bass. But it will not have a high influence on your listening experience. Especially if you are in a small room, this low bass production will go unnoticeable. 

Mount Size

The mount size of the speakers is crucial for the view of the rooms. Dolby Atmos 7.2 2 speaker placement and other placements depend on the mount size. Large mounts are harder to hide. They are easily noticeable and can damage your interior design. 

Whereas the smaller speakers and mounts are easier to hide and handle. So the 6.5-inch speakers are better for easy placements. You will need small size mounts for these. However 4″ in-ceiling Speakers are much smaller. 

On the contrary, the 8 inch ceiling speakers are easily noticeable. For Atmos, you might need to place more than one speaker. In such a case, the 8-inch speakers will be a pain to hide. The mounts will attract the attention of the residents or the listeners.

Best For

The sound produced by the speaker can be loosely divided into two types. The Background sound and the surround sound. The background sound is soft, slow, and continuous. It gives a soothing feeling. Whereas the surround sound is loud.

Because of its small size, the six-and-a-half-inch speaker is best for background sound. It can create a peaceful environment by playing slow music. But that does not mean that it can not play Surround music.

Similarly, the eight-inch speaker plays the surround or foreground music beautifully. Being one of the largest in-ceiling speakers, it produces enough sound for powerful foreground music. Yet it can also be used for background sounds.

Required Power 

Only speakers are not enough for the ultimate listening experience. To get the best sound output a powerful amplifier is also needed. There must be proper synchronization between the amplifier and the speaker. Only then the required output can be achieved. 

The 6.5-inch speakers are medium in size. So the amplifier that matches best with it should be medium-powered too. Low to medium powered amplifiers will give the best output through it. If you get a high-power amplifier, the speaker will be a bottleneck. 

That means you won’t get enough output. The situation is similar for 8 inch speakers. Small amplifiers won’t be able to power it properly. You will need high-powered amplifiers for the best synchronization. And only then the best sound will be produced.

Source: digitaltrends.com


The price of the speakers also varies with their sizes. Depending on the price upgrade 5.1 to Dolby Atmos. So let’s see the price of 6.5-inch and 8 inch ceiling speakers for Atmos.

By comparing two similar speakers of different sizes, we can get a clear idea. The price of the 6.5-inch speakers is less than its competitor. It is more budget-friendly. And the 8-inch speakers are very costly. As they are big, the price also increases.

There are some cheaper alternatives to 8 inch Atmos ceiling speakers that you can try. We’ve tried and tested some other popular brands in the market as well. Here are some of our recommendations:

They are capable of providing a similar experience as Dolby atmos sound systems. Try them out!

And that’s everything to talk about in this comparison. Choosing the right one can be hard when comparing 18-inch and 21-inch subwoofers. To make it easy, I will give you my take on this matter in the next section. 

Final Discussion

There are several differences between the 6.5-inch and 8-inch speakers. I will give my neutral view after testing all the comparable factors.

If you want the speakers for a small room, 6.5-inch speakers will do the job. It also comes at less price. The sound output is enough. In a sentence, it bangs for the bucks. But you will have to compensate for the bass.

And if you have a big room, you must go for 8-inch speakers. It will cost more but will deliver proper sound. The bass is more and the sound will cover the complete room. A 6.5-inch speaker won’t cover a big room. So don’t try to save money here.


How do I choose Atmos ceiling speakers?

To get the complete Atmos experience the speakers must be loud. It should also match with the rest of your sound system. You have to pay attention to the size of the speaker. Select ceiling speakers based on your room size.

How many speakers are needed for Dolby Atmos?

Five speakers are needed for Dolby Atmos. This number is not constant. For smaller and bigger rooms the number of speakers will change. You can take a 5.1.2 system as an ideal. This means five speakers with one subwoofer and two height speakers. If needed you can increase the number of speakers. 

Do Atmos speakers need to match?

Atmos speakers need to match for better output. But they can work even when they are unmatched. There are several benefits of matching the speakers. For starting, there will be no distortion in the sound frequency. The volume will be equal to. And if they are unmatched, some problems might arise.


This is all I have on selecting 6.5 or 8 inch ceiling speakers for Atmos. Now you can easily make your decision. 

Only selecting the best speakers is not enough. You must be careful while choosing the amplifier, height speakers, and subwoofers too.

Best of luck!

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