DIY In-Ceilings to blend with M&K fronts

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Antony, Jun 26, 2003.

  1. Antony

    Antony Agent

    Oct 31, 2002
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    Hello all,

    After seeing how well my Shiva sub enclosure is coming together, I have started to think about other projects that I can build. Right now, my HT set up consists of the M&K 750THX L/C/R trio powered by a Pioneer Elite 45TX (and no, I have not experienced any shut down issues with the 4ohm loads). The rears are el cheapo Nutone 2-way in-walls that I mounted in the ceiling. They do an OK job, but I can definitely tell that there is a difference in sound reproduction/timbre during movies, etc.

    We are now in the process of building a new home (and selling our current one), and my wife is allowing me a little more latitude for rears (but not much). The Family Room/HT will still need to utilize in-ceilings for the side and rear surrounds. What I'd like to do is build enclosures out of 0.75" MDF to fit between the ceiling joists and use some DIY crossovers/drivers from PE, then fabricate my own grills (basically flush-mount a regular speaker enclosure with the ceiling drywall). I'm trying to keep cost down (or very close to store bought in-walls), while getting much better sound.

    Now rewind to the early '90's when I was into car audio competition. I bought a pair of Peerless MR-10 (1" silk dome tweets - I think) for a custom install that never happened. They are unused, unopened, and still in their original cardboard boxes. The problem is that they've been stored in my many garages/storage units throughout my moves during college and beyond.

    So I already have the MDF, tweets, and woofs, and many high-end caps/coils from Speaker City in L.A. from my old car audio days. My only expense would perhaps be buying caps/coils of other values and materials for the grills.


    1) Are these tweets still any good? I do have the specs, but would heat have degraded anything?

    2) Obviously I will not be able to find the exact drivers that M&K uses to perfectly blend my rears to the 750's, so can I expect these to sound at least closer than the cheapos?

    3) Any other brands I should consider?

    4) I also have a pair of Vifa 6.5" midbasses from that same era. Any thoughts? (obviously M&K has someone build their drivers to specific specs if they don't build them themselves, so I'm just looking for something as close as possible without being $$$).

    Thanks for any suggestions,
  2. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

    Feb 1, 2002
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    If I was in your shoes, I'd build a cabinet and the speakers for the surrounds, but test out their "timbre" and integration with the M&Ks before ceiling mounting them. The tweeters shouldn't go "bad" unless they were in harsh conditions. I don't know if heat alone would damage the tweeters but I guess you can always test them out.

    If you'd like to see how I installed a full size bookshelf into a ceiling you can see a shot here.

    What I did is build the cabinet to spec with a front firing port. After the box was completely painted, I added moulding to the edge, and wrapped the whole front in speaker grille cloth. This was a very quick and easy solution yet looks nice. I suppose we could have installed the speaker grill on the inside of the moulding, but that woulda costed more. [​IMG]

    I then cut a hole in the drywall and lifted the speaker up into the hole. Then, my friend attached 2 bars of MDF to the sides of the speaker so that the ends of the strips hung over 2 ceiling studs. Those strips were screwed directly into the speaker.

    Worked out well.

    Good luck with your speakers.

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