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Need some speaker help....


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#1 of 8 DrMilhouse

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Posted September 06 2011 - 09:43 AM

So I'm working on rebuilding a wall... here's the thread - LINK. I'm still working on speaker selection and placement. Most in wall speakers do not have any sort of enclosure. What I know of speakers is that they'll perform better in an enclosure. Is there an in wall speaker with an enclosure? Should I build one? Is there a mid-grade center channel in wall? Any draw back to using normal shelf type speakers and just screwing them to the studs before dry walling? The answer I'm not getting on the other thread is about placement. The wall is still apart, this image is a quick photoshop of. Am I wasting time placing speakers like this? http://static.hometh...um.com/imgrepo/ Thanks!

#2 of 8 David Willow

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Posted September 06 2011 - 11:58 AM

I suppose you've heard about the issues with putting a TV above a fireplace, but I'll through it out here anyways. Get ready for a kink in your neck as you look up at your TV. Even if you angle it down, you still have to look up. There are speakers designed for placement in walls. Most manufacturers have them. While not ideal since they are not aim-able, they can sound decent. You can get everything from cheap ones to uber expensive ones. Post your budget and what you have listened to (and liked) and maybe we can make a suggestion. BTW - It is never a good idea to put a speaker that has been designed to breathe in a wall. Stick with the ones made for this. Also, I would personally skip the heights (those are heights in your drawing, right?).

#3 of 8 DrMilhouse

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Posted September 06 2011 - 12:36 PM

Thanks man. I doubt that fireplace will ever be turned on. It's not efficient to justify using it. I'm looking to spend only a few hundred, maybe 300-400 for speakers. I'm flexible on that, but I think that should get something decent enough. The in walls I have almost purchased are Polk RC85i. They seem to be rated well and are fairly inexpensive. My main holdback here is that since I have an excellent opportunity to have some sort of enclosure instead of just a free air baffle, I'd like more information as to whether or not it's worth doing. With the wall being built this way leaves really a closet sized space of free air behind the speakers. That seems to me that it would make them next to useless as woofers (there is a sub in the system). I'm curious. What do you mean by breath? I'm talking about the enclosed, boxed, shelf speakers with a basic woofer and tweeter in them. Not something ported or anything like that. Yes, heights is what I meant with the drawing. It's a waste?

#4 of 8 DrMilhouse

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Posted September 06 2011 - 12:42 PM

oh, and I'm a dope because it wasn't heat you were talking about with the fireplace. I didn't catch the neck part of that. I think it'll be fine. It's really about the same level as the 46" that we had sitting there was at, it'll be a few inches higher at the bottom, but I think it'll be alright.

#5 of 8 DrMilhouse

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Posted September 06 2011 - 01:49 PM

I'm too lazy to photoshop it, but I think I'm going to move the TV down and put the center channel at the top. It doesn't seem that high from the viewing seats, but I can see where it might get that way. I think I'll leave a pre-wired speaker outlet at the bottom behind the TV just in case the center channel sound is odd from being so high up. I can always mount a center non wall mount speaker just below the TV.

#6 of 8 David Willow

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Posted September 07 2011 - 03:28 AM

I can't say if the heights would make any difference, but since you have a budget in mind I suggest using it to buy better speakers rather than more speakers. IMO, you'll get more bang for your buck. I can't answer the enclosure question. Perhaps someone with some experience can chime in. You could ask Polk directly as well. My comment about enclosing free standing speakers applies to non ported as well as ported. When speakers are designed, a big part of that design is the enclosure. By adding an additional enclosure you are changing the original intent of the designer. I'm not saying it wouldn't work, but anytime you make changes you risk hurting the sound. I would say try it but once it is done it will be harder to undo. A good example of how external surfaces impact the sound of a speaker can be easily seen by moving a free standing speaker closer to a wall. As the speaker gets closer to the wall, the lower frequency gets stronger. We sometimes use this trick to get more bass out of speakers (the drawback is it also can excite room modes that could have a negative impact on the sound).

#7 of 8 DrMilhouse

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Posted September 07 2011 - 02:24 PM

Alright, I've ordered speakers. I ended up purchasing this center channel - 255c-RT. I got a pair of these for front left/right - 265-RT. These things are typically designed to fit between studs that have an inner finished wall and most likely another wall behind them (outside or other finished wall), this kind of makes for an enclosure of sorts by having two studs as the left and right side of the "box" and the walls as the front and back with the top and bottom of the box being formed by the top and bottom of the wall. With that in mind, should I do something to duplicate the same sort of situation and put drywall on the back side if this wall? This will keep it from being mounted to what is basically just wide open space. I can actually build full enclosures on these since it's all basically the same as new construction at this point. Will that help or hurt the sound? Thanks! Mike

#8 of 8 David Willow

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Posted September 08 2011 - 01:53 AM

A quick glance at the manual indicates they ship a port plug with the speakers to be used when you are mounting the speakers in an area that is bigger than the standard stud opening. My suggestion is talk to Polk. I believe they have a forum you can use as well (but please come back here and let us know how it turns out).