Waterproof speakers, anyone?

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Chuck Schilling, Sep 6, 2017.

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  1. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm in, hopefully, the end stage of putting a pool into my backyard. Excavation began at the end of June and it's been a bit of a rocky road. Hurricane Harvey didn't help matters any, but we have a shell, coping/tile, and a poured concrete deck. I've been jonesing a bit lately (sitting around before/during/after a hurricane with nothing to do will do that to you) to put an outdoor audio system in to increase our enjoyment of the area and would like to leverage equipment I already own with perhaps some all weather speakers that won't break the bank and will, of course, sound reasonably good and accurate for music only. I already have a chromecast audio device, and that will be providing source music to the receiver.

    About half of the area I want the speakers to cover is enclosed on three sides and under a roof; the pool area is adjacent to it and is not covered (though there are two crepe myrtle trees that provide some shade to the rear of the pool. The entire area I want sound coverage for is about 40' x 40'. I have plenty of full size and bookshelf speakers to choose from for the covered part of the area (my porch), but nothing for the outside area. I'm kind of thinking I would like to mount at least two speakers in the myrtle trees behind the pool for reinforcement.

    To end a (perhaps) unnecessarily long preamble), I'm looking for all weather/weatherproof speakers I can use to cover the pool area. I'm not looking to spend vast sums - I just want good sounding speakers that can handle rock and country music at occasionally loud volumes. There are a lot more weatherproof speaker options out there than I had imagined, but precious little trustworthy information in the form of actual reviews by people that actually seem to know anything about audio. Can anyone help with some recommendations that include the rationale for the recommendation?
     
  2. Race Bannon

    Race Bannon Supporting Actor

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    I would get Polk Audio outdoor speakers, because it's a quality company and they have such an intentional effort to market their outdoor line, they seem to be serious about that application.

    They have at least three levels of price/quality in their Atrium outdoor speaker line.

    https://www.polkaudio.com/outdoors
     
  3. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for your feedback. Have you auditioned any of them? I've looked at those Atrium speakers and they get good reviews and certainly appear to be high quality. And I have own a pair of Polk R15's, so I'm not unfamiliar with Polk speakers. But it sure would be nice to hear from someone who has actually heard some of these speakers.
     
  4. Martino

    Martino Supporting Actor

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    I have had good luck with the HTD outdoor speakers

    I helped a friend install the $100/pair models on the underside of his 2 story house - overlooking his pool. He didn't want to spend a lot, and thought if they didn't sound good, he would just send them back and get either the more expensive models, or something else. Came with the mountings and hardware, and were easy to install.

    They sounded surprisingly good, and he ended up keeping them. Ended up having an issue with the neighbors, as he liked them so much he was blasting music out of them most of the time he was outside.

    I want to try out the top line models for my house, but had not gotten around to it yet...

    From a review on that linked site:

    "Had been using Polk Audio for outdoor Little League Park sound installation, but upon coming across HTD (budget challenged client)I found speakers that were comparable at 1/2 the price. Same quality of workmanship same great sound and ease of installation. Highly recommend these speakers. Great bang for the buck!"
     
  5. Race Bannon

    Race Bannon Supporting Actor

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    No, I've had good experience with my Polk speakers, but not outdoor ones. I had looked pretty closely at getting these for myself, which is why I passed it on. Just haven't pulled the trigger on any outdoors.
     
  6. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    DefTech!
     
  7. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks to all who responded! I keep going back and forth in my head - I keep getting more and more confused every day! One thing that strikes me as passing strange is that outdoors is the most demanding environment one could put a loudspeaker in, yet the makers all stick to the bookshelf form factor (unless you want a blatantly fake rock in your yard). I for one would be quite happy to consider a larger enclosure in order to get better sound, but there just doesn't seem to be anything out there.
     
  8. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    It's just too small a market segment for them. Search for latest outdoor speaker threads here for more input.
     
  9. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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    Decided to go with the following setup:
    Mains: NHT SuperOne xu
    Center: NHT VS1.4
    Sub; NHT SWS2i
    2nd set of mains: Def Tech AW6500
    Rear: Polk Audio Atrium 4

    Yes, I know these are mismatched. The NHT speakers I have had laying around for many years and they will be very well under cover, unexposed to any precipitation. The Def Techs will be just under the rear patio ceiling and may see water from time to time. The Polks will be secured to two crepe myrtle trees and will likely see fairly heavy rainfall, so I decided on the Atrium 4's as they are quite inexpensive yet should still offer more than acceptable performance. I went with a center channel since it's theoretically possible I'll be showing blu rays from time to time. I'll post photos once I have the audio set up.

    By the way, don't laugh - I was seriously considering attempting to use my Bose 901's in this mashup.
     
  10. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    I think the only reasonable response is "Good luck with that" =)
     
  11. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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    The way I figure it is the WORST that can happen is I put my NHT's back in the attic and just go with the Def Techs and Polks. How awful could that be?
     

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