I was thinking about the two-channel illusion last night when I was listening to my system. Some of us have noticed some people bemoaning the fact there is no center channel and yet others find they feel like they do have a phantom center channel because the sound coming from between the two speakers is so powerful and palpable that you would swear there is a center channel. That’s the camp I’m in, but then I happen to like my system and I like two-channel audio.
It only stands to reason that the better your system is, the better the illusion you conjure up in your room will be. Conversely, the worse the system is, the more the illusion suffers and your unhappiness increases exponentially.
So for those that don’t think they have a solid phantom center channel, I think their system may not be up to the task of pulling off a really good illusion. This could easily lead to teeth gnashing and erroneous conclusions about what two-channel audio is capable of pulling off.