Home Theatre - Hoax or Substance?

Being a dyed in the wool 2 channel advocate,I do wonder about Home Theatre or Multi Channel. Have recently auditioned several multi channel units. None of the sound like music. Too much woof,woof,tweet,tweet,boom,boom. Auditioned a Bryston multi channel that was just awful.And I know Bryston makes great two channel equipment,although I dont own Bryston at the moment.
Multichannel music is still not that good. Though I did hear 1 demo that was very good. So good that it made me want a pre-amp that was clean on all 5.1 channels. It requires a hell of a lot more work to do correctly and only a few labels are probabely going to be willing to do the extra work. The rest, I expect are going to use a lot of gimicks that are going to make true audiophile run for the front door. One Bryston 5 channel amp was very favorably reviewed in Stereophile and is a class A amp in the recommended components issue now.
Personally, I find that there's more lousy sounding surround recordings than good ones. But when its a good one, it's awesome! So far, the best are DTS encoded.
I just did a post on long live 2 ch. Here is more elaboration.5 channel is easier to set up.The center speaker takes care of your "center image" The rear speakers,just put them where you like them.All processors have the built-in test tones to make things simple. Buy/rent/borrow DVD essentials,and you are a pro. With full range speakers (all) I find no need for a sub. I am one of those who think all music dvds sound best in 2 ch. (including "Hell Freezes Over")I own several DTS movies,and have rented lots more;not much difference over DD. On lazer disc;different thing. DTS was better.It just got to the marketplace to late, +,20 bucks more for titles.Back in the 50s/60s,we, who had good mono set ups, were put off at the expense of going "stereo". In the 70s we had quad in front of us.Incompatibilty of cartridge, and the vinyl killed that,along with the more equiptment aspect. Dvd is a better mouse trap,but all things being equal is the key.Quality of the processor/amps/and speakers,and the "wires".You can't expect a reciever,or a 5ch amp to be of the same quality as good separates.(from the other post -50 tubes) All this aside;the excitement of a movie at home, in SS, on budget equiptment,ain't bad at all.Think of it as a jacuzzi,you want to just stick your toes in,get all the way in? Or,do you have water phobia,and just stay on the sidelines? If you haven't heard good stuff,hold off the negatives till you have.
I am a truly dedicated two channel guy, but would never hesitate to switch on my 5.1 channel for movies. Would I listen to music in 5.1? No, I would not. But if ask, "do you enjoy the 5.1 channel presentation during these movies?" Yes, I do! 5.1 is perfectly acceptable for the effects in a film. In fact, it adds to the enjoyment of the visual presentation. Movies are designed (and their sound) to place the viewer directly in the action. In this situation, you would rightfully expect sources of sound to come from all around you. I would never expect to hear that type of presentation in a musical performance, as I am NOT a conductor or a player in a rock group. That being the case, I prefer not to hear these artificial effects in the traditional music listening mode. This has everything to do with "reality" expectations. For instance, in my automobile, my expectations are much less than at home. Sound coming at me from all around is acceptable here. Why? The car is not a place where you can have expectations of believable concert presentation. The multiple speakers in an automobile are almost a requirement to provide the proper distribution of sound. The high ambient noise levels of driving reduces the available signal to noise ratio so drastically, that multiple speaker presentation is needed so that everyone can hear the music at an intelligible level. If possible, own both types of systems, and enjoy each for what it was designed to do. You will (in my opinion) be happier if you can separate the two into the categories that they were designed to perform.
I'm a two-channel guy who fell into the trap of HT several years ago. Bought Lexicon DC-1, ML ReQuest fronts, SL3 for rear, Logos center, pair of velo FSR15's for subs, big rear projection set. Love it for DVD movies, DTS is better, ie, Eagles hell freezes over DVD. The thing sux for straight 2 channel. I ended up assembling a second system for straight 2 channel listening at considerable expense. If you like GOOD 2 channel, you will not be happy with even the most expensive HT processing units be they Lexicon, Theta, whatever. Long live 2 channel!!!! Long live HT, just not together!