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What stand-alone, center channel speaker would I get to go with a set of 6 kevlar in-wall speakers?


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#1 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 03 2013 - 03:21 PM

i have a budget of about $160 to spend on this one speaker. I actually have the OSD IW 550LCR kevlar speaker, but I just ran into one unforseen issue- my flat screen is already mounted in the middle of a stud, and I'd have to either mount the center channel speaker vertically, or off-center if I were to mount it above my TV. I'm not totally thrilled with either idea (and want to know if that is even plausible to mount it vertically without big audio issues)? If that is a really bad idea, then I'm looking for recommendations on the best "bookshelf" type of center channel speaker, and I will just set it horizontally on my media stand below my TV.

#2 of 21 OFFLINE   Robert_J

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Posted January 04 2013 - 01:21 AM

Is the wall load bearing? No - A little bit of work and you can mount a matching in-wall speaker. And by a little, I mean sawing 2x4s and doing drywall repair.

#3 of 21 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 04 2013 - 01:34 AM

Like Robert is saying... Essentially "build a box" on the wall by cutting out the appropriate drywall spot, then make an extension "box" that becomes flush with the TV. Unless you bought some "super trick" mount that holds the TV at 1/4" off the wall... 1/2 of removed drywall + 1 1/2" of TV + Whatever the distance is "off the wall" = More than enough depth for an in-wall

#4 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 04 2013 - 03:08 AM

Thanks for the suggestions. Unfortunately I don't think sawing into the 2x4's would be an option as my mount is a dual-arm Cheetah mount ($59 on Amazon) that enables the TV to move out from the wall by about a foot, and turn in either direction (probably overkill for my room, but that's what it is)- and the TV is mounted directly into the stud that would have to be cut (and is holding at least 50% of the load of my TV). I imagine that there would be some way to brace that stud by cross-connecting it with a horizontal support- but that would take a lot of work, and I'd have to rip apart the whole middle of wall to reinforce it properly- So that being said, I will probably have to return my in-wall center channel speaker- but I'm not acoustic genius by a long shot, and I really don't know what kind of center channel speaker I should get that would sound OK with 6.5" kevlar speakers on all 6 other speakers. If anyone can help me match up something that should sound OK with that type of equipment, I'd be very appreciative- I'm really an acoustic novice (and don't need it to be perfect), but I'd like it to sound as decent as possible. I assume my only options would be to sit it on the cabinet directly below my TV, or mount it externally on the wall above my TV. So suggestions on another center channel speaker? Thanks for the help!

#5 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 04 2013 - 03:22 AM

For instance- Would this be a reasonable alternative (that would sound OK with my current in-wall kevlar speakers): http://www.amazon.co...kevlar speakers

#6 of 21 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 04 2013 - 03:51 AM

I fail to understand why you can't simply extend this speaker out from the wall with a "built box". But of course, don't bother matching what you've got.

#7 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 04 2013 - 04:22 AM

I assume you are talking about building a cabinet around the speaker that I already have- but bottom line is that I did the in-wall speakers to appease my wife so that the room would still "look nice"- and frankly, I don't think I could do a great job of building a "finished looking" speaker box- and it would probably end up costing me another $25 and end up looking bad in the process- I'd just rather find something that will look clean. Is there any big disadvantage to using the same type of "side speakers" (I have OSD IW690 series for my other 6 speakers) and just using that as a center channel?- and since it's not quite as long, I could mount it vertically without it looking quite so stupid). As I mentioned, I'm not really a huge audiphile- but I wonder what the big difference would be between that and a 2-woofer LCR speaker? I think I'd be better off just getting a center channel speaker somewhere and mounting that- My biggest question is if I need to get kevlar since all of the other speakers are kevlar?

#8 of 21 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 04 2013 - 04:29 AM

The "box idea" I have is to use the drywall you've already cut out of the wall...and you will cut out for this one. I'm not talking about plywood. Cut your drywall, flipt it 90 degrees and attach the speaker out that way. Are your speakers "free air" or did they come with/did you use a box? Regardless. Fabricating a drywall extension to sit the current speaker(or return that one and buy one that matches the rest...same difference) in. If you cut the holes for your speakers, you can fabricate a simple 2-3 inch drywall extension...and match the depth of the TV. It isn't rocket science.

#9 of 21 OFFLINE   BrennanOSD

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Posted January 04 2013 - 07:52 AM

I assume you are talking about building a cabinet around the speaker that I already have- but bottom line is that I did the in-wall speakers to appease my wife so that the room would still "look nice"- and frankly, I don't think I could do a great job of building a "finished looking" speaker box- and it would probably end up costing me another $25 and end up looking bad in the process- I'd just rather find something that will look clean. Is there any big disadvantage to using the same type of "side speakers" (I have OSD IW690 series for my other 6 speakers) and just using that as a center channel?- and since it's not quite as long, I could mount it vertically without it looking quite so stupid). As I mentioned, I'm not really a huge audiphile- but I wonder what the big difference would be between that and a 2-woofer LCR speaker? I think I'd be better off just getting a center channel speaker somewhere and mounting that- My biggest question is if I need to get kevlar since all of the other speakers are kevlar?

Derick, I'm a representative over here at OSD Audio and I can help you out. There's a couple of different options for what you can do here. 1) You can actually cut a chunk out of the stud to get the IW-550LCR to fit. You wouldn't be cutting through the entire stud, so you wouldn't have to worry about compromising the structure. This will give you a better sound than downgrading to another speaker. 2) You can return the IW-550LCR and exchange it for an IW690. It's not a dedicated center channel, but it'll do the job. You'll have matching tweeters all around which is very important, especially for the front LCR speakers. Mounting it vertically is fine, as the crossovers aren't designed specifically for horizontal installation. 3) Then of course you can go with SChan's advice and build a simple extension from the drywall. Mull it over and let me know if you have any questions. You can also call us here for further help. Best of luck! - Brennan, OSD Audio

#10 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 04 2013 - 03:05 PM

Brennan: Thanks for the feedback- Can you tell me how much of the stud I would be cutting through? I thought the speakers are 3.5" deep- so I'm assuming that would be the 1/4" depth of the drywall that i would have left over. Do you think that would keep any stability in a stud? I know you want to sell your own speakers, but is there really no similar sounding kevlar speaker/tweeter that would work? If I had a clean way to mount that 550 lcr outside the wall (even an inch to lessen the impact on the stud), I would probably do that- but I'm no finishing expert, and I'm not really sure how to make it look good. I just cancelled my order for the LCR speaker today since it has been back-ordered. Do you even know if they are going to be back in stock soon? Also, I just ran into another issue that I was wondering about. On one side of my room, I have no place to mount the one middle surround speaker at an optimal level (eye/ear level), and I had to go about 8 inches lower than I wanted. Is it best to match the height on the opposite wall, or should I put the one on the other wall at the best height for surround speakers (these are the middle surrounds, not the rear surrounds on a 7.1 system)? I guess the question I really have is if it's bad to have them at different heights, or if I can just compensate by aiming the tweeters? Schan: As much as it isn't rocket science- I just don't want it to look like shit, and I'm not confidant that I can do decent finish work to make it look clean- I also don't know how I would support the box unless I first built a sturdy shelf to affix the drywall to- these speakers are made to sit inside the wall and clamp to the back of the drywall (I guess this is what you mean by "free air"). All of the components are open in the back- and they're aren't really right angles to mount drywall to either.

#11 of 21 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 04 2013 - 03:36 PM

"Free air" means the wall(between the studs) is the box. Not "free air" means there was a box you put in the wall first, then put the speaker in. From the sounds of it, these are "free air". This makes this even more simple. As a free air in-wall needs zero backing...so it makes no difference if the free air was 1 section of stud, or 2. Sadly, I can't find the dims on this speaker, as the OSD owners manual that they link for the speaker...includes every other speaker...but this one. Go figure.

#12 of 21 OFFLINE   BrennanOSD

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Posted January 07 2013 - 10:02 AM

Brennan: Thanks for the feedback- Can you tell me how much of the stud I would be cutting through? I thought the speakers are 3.5" deep- so I'm assuming that would be the 1/4" depth of the drywall that i would have left over. Do you think that would keep any stability in a stud? I know you want to sell your own speakers, but is there really no similar sounding kevlar speaker/tweeter that would work? If I had a clean way to mount that 550 lcr outside the wall (even an inch to lessen the impact on the stud), I would probably do that- but I'm no finishing expert, and I'm not really sure how to make it look good. I just cancelled my order for the LCR speaker today since it has been back-ordered. Do you even know if they are going to be back in stock soon?

It depends on which part of the back of the speaker that would be in the way of the stud. If it's the back of the woofers, the cut would need to be deeper than if it was the crossover that was in the way. You're probably looking at a 1/2" to 3/4" deep cut, and about 6" in height. The stability of the stud should be okay. There are studs every 16", so support should be fine. My purpose here is to help you get the best sound for your buck, not to sell our products. If you can find a speaker with a similar tweeter, you can use it! Pay attention to the frequency response and decibels when looking for the speaker. Try to match it up to the front left/right. In regards to inventory, we should be getting the Spitfire series MK-IW550LCR in this week, but the standard IW550LCR should be a few more weeks.

Also, I just ran into another issue that I was wondering about. On one side of my room, I have no place to mount the one middle surround speaker at an optimal level (eye/ear level), and I had to go about 8 inches lower than I wanted. Is it best to match the height on the opposite wall, or should I put the one on the other wall at the best height for surround speakers (these are the middle surrounds, not the rear surrounds on a 7.1 system)? I guess the question I really have is if it's bad to have them at different heights, or if I can just compensate by aiming the tweeters?

For symmetrical purposes, you can mount them at the same height and then angle the tweeters up towards your listening zone. That's the beauty of having angled tweeters!

"Free air" means the wall(between the studs) is the box. Not "free air" means there was a box you put in the wall first, then put the speaker in. From the sounds of it, these are "free air". This makes this even more simple. As a free air in-wall needs zero backing...so it makes no difference if the free air was 1 section of stud, or 2. Sadly, I can't find the dims on this speaker, as the OSD owners manual that they link for the speaker...includes every other speaker...but this one. Go figure.

The dimensions for the speaker and the cutout are in the specifications section of the web page, under "view more". See below: Dimensions (H x W x D): 8" x 15 15⁄16" x 3 7⁄16" Wall Cut Out (H x W): 14" x 6 3⁄16" The dimensions for the IW-550LCR can be found on page 4 of the owner's manual, in the center of the page. The dimensions for the IW-690 on page 3. - Brennan, OSD Audio

#13 of 21 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 07 2013 - 10:11 AM

Is that 3 7/16 the "corner mount studs" or the actual depth of the speaker to back of crossover...or back of cones? It would help to know the depth of the speaker AT the crossover/tweeter. If that part is thinner than 2"(heck even as much as 2 1/2), than that is the depth "off the wall" to make this work. He could get 2x4, cut it like a picture frame, attach it, then cut the drywall inside the 2x4. Done in 30 minutes.

#14 of 21 OFFLINE   BrennanOSD

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Posted January 07 2013 - 10:23 AM

The 3 7/16" is the depth of the speaker cones. The depth of the cross over is about 2 7/8". The depth of the dog-ear clamps at each corner is 2 3/8". - Brennan, Outdoor Speaker Depot

#15 of 21 OFFLINE   schan1269

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Posted January 07 2013 - 10:29 AM

Cool, so with rudimentary mitre box skills...he could use a 2x4(or even a 2x2) to create his speaker frame and attach that to the wall and mount the speaker to it. I would assume the drywall is 3/4 depth, at least. Most drywall is 5/8. So add that 5/8 to the 2"... 2 5/8...he'd have to shave 1/4" off the wall stud for about what...2-3 inches?

#16 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 08 2013 - 03:58 AM

Thanks guys- I will attempt to cut into the stud and see how it goes from there. I think the stud should be stable enough anyway as it will be screwed into the drywall at (at least) 3 different spots below my cutout anyway- and the TV is also mounted equally to the next stud over which will be uncut. If need be, i can attempt to cross-attach another small 2x4 or even use some liquid nails to make sure it doesn't move near the cutout.

#17 of 21 OFFLINE   BrennanOSD

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Posted January 08 2013 - 07:07 AM

Cool, so with rudimentary mitre box skills...he could use a 2x4(or even a 2x2) to create his speaker frame and attach that to the wall and mount the speaker to it. I would assume the drywall is 3/4 depth, at least. Most drywall is 5/8. So add that 5/8 to the 2"... 2 5/8...he'd have to shave 1/4" off the wall stud for about what...2-3 inches?

Sounds about right!

Thanks guys- I will attempt to cut into the stud and see how it goes from there. I think the stud should be stable enough anyway as it will be screwed into the drywall at (at least) 3 different spots below my cutout anyway- and the TV is also mounted equally to the next stud over which will be uncut. If need be, i can attempt to cross-attach another small 2x4 or even use some liquid nails to make sure it doesn't move near the cutout.

Let us know how it goes! - Brennan, OSD Audio

#18 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 08 2013 - 08:04 AM

Sounds about right! Let us know how it goes! - Brennan, OSD Audio

The sooner it gets back in stock, the sooner I can finish this up!

#19 of 21 OFFLINE   BrennanOSD

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Posted January 08 2013 - 11:57 AM

The sooner it gets back in stock, the sooner I can finish this up!

I just learned that we'll be getting them in sooner than we thought. It looks like sometime next week, but there's always a chance of delays. I'll try to remind you on here when they arrive. - Brennan, OSD Audio

#20 of 21 OFFLINE   cbaywolf

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Posted January 10 2013 - 09:47 AM

Brennan: Please let me know- The website currently lists the IW550lcr as coming back into stock on: "Available ETA 11/16/13" I hope that some sort of misprint. I'm in the middle of this project, and I'd really like to get if finished.




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