In-Celing Speakers for new house

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Matt_Whitehorn, Dec 30, 2003.

  1. Matt_Whitehorn

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    I've read that in-wall/in-celing speakers are not the best for a home theater, but in order to get a home theater, I had to compromise with my wife that the electronics will be seen as little as possible. My searches have showed me that I can spend from $30 to $300 a speaker. Does anyone have any suggestions for in-ceiling mounted speakers?
     
  2. Rick_Brown

    Rick_Brown Second Unit

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    I have use Polk Audio and they sound very good. Even my wife likes how they look - which is very inconspicuous on a light-colored wall.

    If you have a choice, go for in-wall. You will get way better imaging tahn in-ceiling.
     
  3. Jeff Aguilar

    Jeff Aguilar Stunt Coordinator

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    I bought my in wall and in ceiling speakers from Home Theater Direct, they range from $50 a pair to $160 a pair. They are sold only on the internet. They really sound good. For the money, I cannot imagine finding a better sounding speaker. I have them all over my house. Oh, it was nice that I could paint the fronts of the speakers so that they matched the wall colors. They blend in beautifully.
    Jeff Aguilar
     
  4. Matt_Whitehorn

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    Thanks to both of you. I'm a novice at home theater, but since I'm building a new house, I figured now is the time to learn. Home Theater Direct looks great, thanks for that suggestion! Rick, I'll look at Polk too, thanks for that. I don't really have a choice - the wife has spoken...LOL. Thanks guys!
     
  5. Jeff Aguilar

    Jeff Aguilar Stunt Coordinator

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    One of the nice things with HTD is that they sell other things you will need for inwall speakers besides the speakers themselves.

    If you are planning on putting speakers in the formal living room or outside on the patio, it is a must to have a volume control seperate from the stereo. HTD has them for less money than anywhere I could find. They also have an 8 pair speaker selector, for really cheap. They are a good company with good products.

    I did the same thing. I had my house built a couple of years ago and bought HTD stuff for my inwall stuff. Worked like a charm.

    Jeff
     
  6. Michael Knieriemen

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    Matt - I'm in the same boat as you with a new house I'm building. The house I'm in currently has a Bose AM system installed in the Family room. We use it for TV and DVD mostly. I was leaning toward in-ceiling speakers that I would put in later (having the house pre-wired by the builder).

    Jeff - Looks from the HTD site that the in-ceiling speakers look pretty easy to install. No box needed? Also, how do they sound (I know a hard question) for things like TV and DVDs?
     
  7. Jeff Aguilar

    Jeff Aguilar Stunt Coordinator

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    The HTD speakers are very easy to install. A rotozip helps a lot! You can cut the holes in under a minute each.

    As far as what they sound like...

    I have a set of the Level III in-wall speakers as part of my 7.1 setup setup. They are acting as my rear center channels. I am running Energy Veritas di-poles as rears, Energy Veritas as a center and Martin Logan for my mains. They do not stick out like a sore thumb. But they are not music speakers like my Martin Logan's. I have several in-wall ones around the house and they sound great, but once again, no where near the Martin Logans.

    On my recommendation I convinced a friend to get some in-walls for his entire home theater. His theater sounds pretty good. He bought the digital series, they do sound much better than the standard series.

    If you are wanting a more criticle music system, I would stay completely away from in-wall speakers. I would go with much more expensive floor standing speakers. But for home theater, they sound really good. You really need a sub though, they do not reproduce bass very well.

    If you are wanting a more musical in-wall, Energy is now making a variation of the Veritas. I am sure those would sound much better than my beloved HTD speakers, but they are VERY expensive.

    Hope that helps some. I really think that if you invest in the HTD speakers, you will be very happy. They truely are a great bargain.

    Jeff Aguilar
     
  8. Matt_Whitehorn

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    Jeff- I know that I'll need a volume control for each room, and I've heard that I need a switch like you mentioned, what does the combination of those 2 actually do? I've heard it levels the impedance so that the receiver isn't blown. Is that all it does?

    Here's another simple question. Along with this family room, I'm going to have 2 other pairs in 2 other rooms and 1 pair outside (these will be for music only). They'll all be run back to the same receiver. Does this mean that I will need to get a receiver that provides at least 5 pairs of outputs? Or does it mean that I just need to get a 8 pair speaker selector and it'll balance the impedance? Is there an online tutorial that you know of about the basics of these type novice questions?

    Michael- I'll let you know how it goes. My house should be finished about May. You may be closer to completion than I am. My wife wants the speakers to be seen as little as possible, so we agreed on the in-ceiling mount. I'm going to have all the wiring run back to a central closet so that no components save the TV are seen. I'm definately going to take pictures and post them.
     
  9. Jeff Aguilar

    Jeff Aguilar Stunt Coordinator

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    Matt,

    We did exactly the same thing. My wife got tired of looking at all of the gear and wires so when we had our house built, we ran everything to the den. Only the tv and the main speakers are showing. We even moved our fireplace out of the family room and had them frame in a hole to fit the big screen tv. Here is a picture of my Home Theater. The hole we had the tv built for is for a 65" tv, but the funds did not permit a 65", so we have a 57". He is a picture of the den with all of the equipment, Entertainment Center.

    What we did for our wiring is we ran a video, L&R rca cable to the master bedroom. I hooked up an inexpensive receiver in the bedroom to power the speakers in the master bathroom and bedroom. So I can watch whatever is being watched downstairs or listen to a CD from my megachanger from downstairs. I also put in an infared eye in the bedroom to the den so that I can change CD's or the DVD player.

    For the patio outside and the formal living room I am using another inexpensive receiver. I did not need to do that, but it was actually cheaper to do it that way at the time. HTD did not have their speaker selector out at that time and everyone else seemed to want an arm and a leg for a speaker selector that could run more than one set of speakers at a time.

    When you run one set of 8 Ohm speakers off of a receiver the load on your receiver is only 8 ohms. When you add another set of speakers it cuts it to 4 ohms. Some receivers can handle that, just not too loud. When you add a 3rd set, then it is 2 ohms, and will trip the protection circuit on it. A speaker selector prevents that from happining.

    Another friend of mine just finished building his house. He has eight pair of speakers running in his house and used the HTD switcher to run them. He also has HTD speakers throughout. The ceiling speakers. They really sound good. Home Theater Direct has a some good information about setting up a whole house system. Makes a good read, check it out. Here is an article about matching impeadance..

    Jeff Aguilar
     
  10. Matt_Whitehorn

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    Ok, Jeff, here's a crazy idea maybe you can shed some light on for me. I told you there is this closet where I've decided to put all components and make it a "command center". So the more and more I think about it, I don't think I need a bunch of components. I think all I need is a computer. If I rip all my CDs to MP3 on this computer, there's the music. This closet is where the network panel and network switch will be so there's the internet radio. With a DVD drive, there's your video. I could still hook up a VCR if ever desired I guess. But going with that same idea of having surround sound, is that computer idea even possible? I'm guessing that I'd still need a receiver to power the speakers and that the computer would be plugged into the receiver as an AUX input. But could I get something that would allow me to use the TV as the computer monitor? Is that too crazy of an idea? Do you see any drawbacks to doing that? I think I'll post this same idea in another forum since this is the speaker section, I just wanted your input.
     
  11. Jeff Aguilar

    Jeff Aguilar Stunt Coordinator

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    In my personal opinion, a computer would end up being to unstable. Would you really want to sit in your command center and download all the new music as it comes out? Wouldn't it just be easier to get a mega changer to do your cd/dvds? You are really only talking about a couple of pieces of equipment. You could get a 400 cd/dvd changer by Sony and then a receiver to power everything. Less chances of freezing up and it would probably not break down for years. Another thing to think about is the heat issue. If you are using a closet, the heat in there would be incredible. It would shorten the life of the computer or componets. You might want to put in some sort of ventelation in the closet. Even having my equipment in a seperate room, that room is 10 to 15 degrees warmer than my family room because of the heat generated from my equipment. That room is 10X12, a closet would get much hotter, much quicker.

    One of my friends who has the HTD speakers throughout his home built a little cubby for all of his equipment, he did end up venting it to the garage to help with the heat. It works very well for his application.

    I guess you would need three pieces of equipment, the receiver, dvd/cd player and the switcher from HTD. You could power your entire house that way with either the radio or the cd player.

    What do you think?

    Jeff
     
  12. Matt_Whitehorn

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    I understand what you're saying, but I like to keep my CDs in my car. Something as small as bringing them in at night just frustrates me. And at the same time, I don't really have a need to have all my DVDs in a changer. The only time I watch a movie is when friends come over anyway, I don't mind going into the closet and popping the night's movie in. I've heard of people ripping the DVDs to their harddrive too. That would take a massive harddrive, but can be done.

    Your heat idea is a concern. I didn't think about that. Would there not be a heat issue with multiple components as well? That heat issue is a good thought being that I'm talking about a closet, that'll make me think a bit, hmmmmm.

    If I do an HTPC, I'd also still need a reciever. I know that would end up being more expensive (the computer idea) but it's just so much cooler to me. It would be my house server, control the light schedule, music, DVDs. I'd hook up the monitor output to my TV and have a wireless keyboard and mouse....Wouldn't that be sweet? I'm going from novice to annoying moron aren't I? LOL.

    Well, I'll have to think about that. Those are good points about price and heat. Thanks.
     

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