Soo, what do you all think of this idea to wire my surrounds?

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Greg Robertson, Nov 4, 2003.

  1. Greg Robertson

    Greg Robertson Stunt Coordinator

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    ..or lack of wire.
    I have an HK avr 520, an old Denon 1700, and a new apartment that'll be a nightmare to wire up the rear speakers. How horrible would it be to send the surround signal wirelessly to the denon in the back of the living room? The HK has preouts and I could run the denon in stereo. How bad would the sound quality degrade, and would the difference in amps be that noticable?

    (Putting on potential flame suit!) [​IMG]
     
  2. Adam Barratt

    Adam Barratt Cinematographer

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    You mean using some sort of wireless RF or infrared transmitter and receiver system? Some of these systems are capable of full frequency audio transmission, so should be OK in that department. I would be worried about signal to noise capability though, and possible interference problems.

    Just how much sound quality might be degraded really depends on the quality of the wireless system. I doubt amplifier differences would be an issue.

    Adam
     
  3. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Greg,

    This question comes up pretty frequently, but you’re the first one I’ve seen to figure out in advance that the signal to the rear speakers will have to be amplified once it reaches its destination.

    Still, there are a few problems to overcome – the first being finding the suitable equipment. There are some receiver/transmitter systems for home audio on the market, but most I’ve seen like this one from SmartHome.com get mixed reviews. A Google search for “wireless audio” came up with a few other hits, but from the physical appearances and descriptions offered, it appears the others differ little from the one SmartHome sells.

    Which leaves us with the only robust wireless systems that I’m aware of - wireless mics and guitar rigs from the pro audio realm. But even these are problematic:
    • The good ones that have stable RF characteristics will run you probably between $100-300 each (remember, you’ll need two of them).
    • Both types – guitar and mic – operate with an extremely low-level incoming signal – much lower than the outputs of a home theater pre-amp. Thus you would have to come up with a scheme to pad down the pre-outs before they would be compatible with a home theater system.
    • The transmitters are obviously all battery-powered, so you would have to change batteries a lot or come up with an A/C adapter for them (actually, this is probably the easiest issue to overcome).
    • If you are able to get past all that, you are still facing the fact that these systems were not designed for high-fidelity use, so little things like signal-to-noise ratio, frequency response, total harmonic distortion etc. are anybody’s guess.
    • Okay, you’ve managed to overcome all the obstacles and get the signal over the airwaves to the back of the room. Now the problem is, you have to amplify it! Where you gonna stuff that amp? Of course, you have to have wires between the amp and speakers, so in the end it really isn’t wireless at all, is it?
    Bottom line, Greg, you’ll probably have to just bite the bullet and figure out a way hard-wire your rear speakers. Going wireless seems to be just as much trouble, or more. And it’s certainly way more expensive – I expect you could hire a professional to run your wires for a lot less than what a good wireless set-up would cost.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  4. JeremyFr

    JeremyFr Supporting Actor

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    Greg I feel your pain I'm an apartment dweller myself. Here's a little trick I found when I was a teenager growing up in an apartment.

    A great way to hard wire without seing the wire or majority of it is to hide the wires between the molding and carpet (this of course is assuming you have some type of wood moulding that goe's around the base of your walls.

    This will tend to allow you to hide the majority of wiring without having to worry about destroying anything.

    In my many years of apartment life I've learned great ways to creatively hide wiring using furniture, carpet molding, and other things like floor mats/rugs that when people come to my place to watch a movie they always ask, "where'd you put all the wires???" hehe hope this is of some help.

    Remember there are no walls to stop you, only obstacles to overcome!

    Jeremy
     
  5. Bryon_M

    Bryon_M Extra

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    I just moved into an apartment and it took me a long time to figure out how to get my rear speakers setup. I went with running the lines under the carpet. I just cut a slit in the back where I wanted the speaker and slit in front where the receiver is. Then took electrician's fish line and ran the wire between the 2. It took a long time to actually do this but it was worth it. you can't even tell I did it that way.
     
  6. Greg Robertson

    Greg Robertson Stunt Coordinator

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    Yeah, I think ya'll are right. I'm just going to bite the bullet and do it with wires. With all the other hassles of moving I was trying to make the HT a little easier. But thanks for the valuable feedback. Wireless might still be interesting to consider if I want to setup the rcvr in 7.1 mode. Heck, it'll need an external amp anyway.

    Bryon, do you know if there's a way to 'reseal' a slit in the carpet. If I can go under instead of over, I know exactly how I'd do it.
     
  7. Bryon_M

    Bryon_M Extra

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    dunno if there's a way to reseal it or not. I'm not talking about a huge hole in the carpet I'm talking about a slit about 1-2 inches in length. From my experiments once I pull up the wire I couldn't see the slit and only knew it was there because I did it. Plus it's an apartment so I don't really care if I screw something up that's what the deposit is for [​IMG]
     
  8. James_A

    James_A Stunt Coordinator

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    I posted this on another page, but I don't want to retype it all...

    RCA makes a wireless transmitter reciever kit that will allow transmission of rear channel sound by plugging in regular speakers to it. The transmitter and reciever work at 5.8Ghz and all you need to do is plug the speaker connections from your reciever into the transmitter unit, and then plug the speakers into the reciever unit... voila, instant rear channel. However, this is limited to 50 watts right now.

    $100.00 at Radioshack... cat # 15-1974
    Best part? 30 day return policy.
     
  9. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Fifty watts means only 25 per channel – which is pretty pitiful. Plus, if you look at specs in the owner’s manual there are no qualifications at all on the amplifier performance – no THD or S/N specs, or no indication if power rating is delivered at 20Hz-20kHz or even the down-and-dirty 1kHz, both channels or only one driven, etc.

    Bottom line, it might be good for a lower-end HTIB system, but not much else.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     

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