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In Wall vs On Wall?


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25 replies to this topic

#1 of 26 OFFLINE   Arjcm72

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Posted March 12 2008 - 02:31 AM

Hello, I am building a new house with a 350 sq ft theater room. I am trying to figure out which is a better way to go, in wall vs on wall. Speaker budget is 5000. I have a VELODYNE 12 sub and a denon avr-2808 receiver. Also connected is a Nuvo Grand CONCERTO. Thank you for any help.

#2 of 26 OFFLINE   JohnRice

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Posted March 12 2008 - 03:31 AM

I personally believe the only time to get in wall speakers is when you have absolutely no option, due to SAF or whatever else.

With that budget you shouldn't even be considering in wall speakers. In fact, I wouldn't get on-wall, except for the surrounds. I would pick a good pair of floorstanders for L/R and a good matching center.

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#3 of 26 OFFLINE   MacD

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Posted March 12 2008 - 05:46 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnRice
I personally believe the only time to get in wall speakers is when you have absolutely no option, due to SAF or whatever else.

With that budget you shouldn't even be considering in wall speakers. In fact, I wouldn't get on-wall, except for the surrounds. I would pick a good pair of floorstanders for L/R and a good matching center.


I have to agree with John here. Unless budget is a concern or space, you definatley do not want to go the route of in-walls. Also, with the sub you have, I'd sink my money into the rest of the speakers and look at ones that do not have any built in subs as you seem to have that taken care of.

I am coming from experience here. I let someone talk me into in-walls in mine and I am not at all happy with the outcome.

#4 of 26 OFFLINE   Paul Padilla

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Posted March 12 2008 - 06:20 AM

I guess I get to be the first non-descenter. Mine isn't a dedicated HT, it's a combo family room but I was very concerned with audio quality while keeping the aesthetics of the room. I went all in-ceiling (except the Velo sub) and I'm very happy. I went with Energy Veritas Custom 2.0CMs all the way around...10 speakers total. I did some careful tweaking and balancing and I get great response.
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SACD, DVD Audio, DD Plus (no hdmi receiver yet) all sound fantastic. If there is a spouse involved who has a "hide the technology" edict I'd have no problem recommending in-ceiling or in-wall.

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#5 of 26 OFFLINE   Arjcm72

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Posted March 12 2008 - 10:08 AM

So is having speakers that are THX cert a big deal? Klipsch, Polk, and Speakercraft seem to be... when googling the brands that are most popular. Any other suggestions?
Thank you.

#6 of 26 OFFLINE   MacD

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Posted March 12 2008 - 11:27 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arjcm72
So is having speakers that are THX cert a big deal? Klipsch, Polk, and Speakercraft seem to be... when googling the brands that are most popular. Any other suggestions?
Thank you.

How much are you wanting to spend and how much value due you put in the certification? I know that depending on who you talk to or read, there is a lot of varying positions on THX certification and what it means. I can tell you that if THX certification is like other certifications, chances are that the majority of all the high end speakers meet the certification requirements on their own and the companies are just not willing to pay big bucks for THX to certify them and have to pass that cost on to the consumer.

I've worked with some certification bodies unrelated to this and generally most products we looked at meet the same standards. The only difference is that some decided not to invest the big bucks just to get a label put on their product.

I would suggest picking one or two THX certified speakers that you like and then one or two really good speakers that do not carry the label and talk to the non-THX companies about the difference between theirs and the THX ones. My guess, at least on the speaker side of it, you won't see enough of a difference to be concerned about it. Then you can get what you "like" the best.

Just my opinion but I think, at least on the speaker side, THX is like 1.3 certified HDMI cables. They are the same cables that everyone has used for the past 4 years. The only difference is that the companies went back to the certification company and got them certified that they would work with 1.3 compliant equipment so they could sell them for more to people who like labels.

#7 of 26 OFFLINE   Kurt Ferguson

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Posted March 16 2008 - 07:19 AM

I agree, in wall speakers generally suck. You'd want to mount normal speakers on the wall or on stands near the wall, but avoid the in-wall speakers if at all possible.
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#8 of 26 OFFLINE   PioneerFan

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Posted March 17 2008 - 08:58 AM

I would definetly go with floor standers in your situation, unless you absolutely hate the asthetics of a speaker being there. In wall speakers can sound good however if properly set up right. I see a lot of people just cut a hole and shove em in there, but if they would just set the time aside to make a cabinet for the speaker than it wouldnt sound so bad JMO...

#9 of 26 OFFLINE   pink

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Posted March 17 2008 - 11:35 AM

I have heard inwall speakers that will blow you mind, I even had the guy take down part of the wall because i did not believe the sound I heard from a 1" tweeter and a six inch driver totaly awesome, not cheap but mind blowing.. you know you get what you pay for. I did not hear speakers I just heard pure sound and that's the difference (once you can pinpoint a speaker you've got junk) and there are in walls that'll blow a lot of brandname floorstanding speakers away. from b&w on up. I walked out of a showroom in conneticut and I fellt like I just got a beating.. wow
Take apart a namebrand floorstanding speaker let's say $1000.00 each . most of them you can buy the drivers and crossovers for around $100.00-$150.00 so what are we talking about. profit-profit-profit. you can go to partsexpress or madisound and build you're own inwalls. The only thing I don't get is why would you want to spend $5000.-- on speakers and drive them with a Denon receiver with 110Watts, $5000.00 speakers need real power, that's like having a ferrari with a VW engine..
The only reason I am saying that is because you will never get the full benefit out of $5000.-- speakers with a denon receiver..

#10 of 26 OFFLINE   SethH

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Posted March 17 2008 - 11:39 AM

I'm going to go against the grain of most of this thread and say that in-walls aren't all that bad . . . especially with your budget. You have the money to pick up some very good in-walls from a company like B&W. Sure, it's a compromise and will not perform equal to a similar-priced floorstander, but we all have to make compromises with our setups.

#11 of 26 OFFLINE   pink

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Posted March 17 2008 - 01:16 PM

Posted Image

#12 of 26 OFFLINE   pink

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Posted March 17 2008 - 01:18 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arjcm72
So is having speakers that are THX cert a big deal? Klipsch, Polk, and Speakercraft seem to be... when googling the brands that are most popular. Any other suggestions?
Thank you.
to be honest with you I would'nt pay 10 cents on a dollar for any of these brands

#13 of 26 OFFLINE   PioneerFan

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Posted March 18 2008 - 01:47 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by pink
to be honest with you I would'nt pay 10 cents on a dollar for any of these brands

not to be rude or anything, but what is exactly so bad with any of these brands? I think the Polk and Klipsch are especially a good value for the money.

#14 of 26 OFFLINE   Paul Padilla

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Posted March 18 2008 - 02:14 AM

Chris.

One thing that would help people formulate their responses (personal prejudices aside) is your reason for considering built-ins. Is it just a musing or is there some more specific reason, I.e. a spouse who doesn't appreciate the beauty of HT equipment. Posted Image
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#15 of 26 OFFLINE   pink

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Posted March 18 2008 - 03:55 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by PioneerFan
not to be rude or anything, but what is exactly so bad with any of these brands? I think the Polk and Klipsch are especially a good value for the money.
I don't have anything against these brands or any other brand, but I don't think anybody with a $5000.-- budged would consider any these brands, but to each it's own, if you you're happy spending $5000.-- on Polks or Klipsch go for it. Not every ear likes the same speakers, what does'nt sound good to me might sound great to you or vise versa, there is no prejudice here against any brand. With that denon receiver you're using you can get speakers in the 15oo-2ooo range that would sound great, at least it would be intergrated...

#16 of 26 OFFLINE   PioneerFan

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Posted March 19 2008 - 02:10 AM

^^ yeah i got you know. Me personally ive never understood why people spend $5k on floorstanders. But then again ive never heard those kinds of speakers in person before either. To each his own i guess.

#17 of 26 OFFLINE   tysonschneider

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Posted March 20 2008 - 05:47 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by pink
I don't have anything against these brands or any other brand, but I don't think anybody with a $5000.-- budged would consider any these brands, but to each it's own, if you you're happy spending $5000.-- on Polks or Klipsch go for it. Not every ear likes the same speakers, what does'nt sound good to me might sound great to you or vise versa, there is no prejudice here against any brand. With that denon receiver you're using you can get speakers in the 15oo-2ooo range that would sound great, at least it would be intergrated...
I am not a fan of these brands either but Polk does have one line that sounds decent and sets it apart from all other speakers that they have made. That would be their LSI series. The in-wall version of these is the LCI series. Both use a ring radiator tweeter that gives the LSi and LCi series speakers a sound that so many have raved about.

#18 of 26 OFFLINE   tysonschneider

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Posted March 20 2008 - 05:51 AM

Here is the details of one LCI in-wall speaker from Amazon:
w w w .amazon.com/Polk-Audio-center-channel-speaker/dp/B000P4LAJ6

At $500 each, seven of them would cost $3,500. That leaves $1,500 for a second subwoofer to stay under the $5,000 budget. Or, just save the cash.

#19 of 26 OFFLINE   JohnRice

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Posted March 20 2008 - 06:33 AM

I'll just reiterate and go on my merry way. As I originally said, but will spell out more this time, where sound is the primary concern, you are best off not going with in-wall speakers, in the front at least. This is particularly with your budget. For one thing, in-wall speakers have this nasty habit of not wanting to be moved or fine tuned for imaging and other room interactions. Also, it is a simple aspect of physics that it is difficult if not impossible to get optimal imaging in a ordinary living environment with speakers which are part of the wall. Can they sound OK, or even better than most people have heard? Yes. Is it the best solution where sound is concerned? NO.

Unfortunately, the OP gives no indication of what considerations and limitations being dealt with, so suggestions are only speculation. I'm also sorry to be harsh on this one comment, but anyone who has installed an HT using nothing but in-ceiling speakers, thinks it sounds great and that others should follow suit, is not a reliable source of advice. That is an absolute last-ditch, no other possible option solution. Again, sorry to be harsh and I know you will take it badly, but it needs to be said.

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The Surround Part: Sherbourn PT-7030, Thiel SCS3, Emotiva XPA-5, Polk & Emotiva Surrounds.


#20 of 26 OFFLINE   pink

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Posted March 20 2008 - 06:42 AM

When it realy comes down to it John Rice makes the best sense, take his advise..


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