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in ceiling speakers on a budget

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Anonymous
January 18, 2005 7:41:27 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Hi,

I am setting up a whole house audio system consisting of in ceiling speakers
linked to Phoenix Gold Transformerless volume controls which are connected
to an impedance adjusting Phoenix Gold SAM Panel. I am planning on using my
PC to feed line level audio signals to an amplifier that will power the SAM
Panel.

The only thing that I haven't purchased yet are the speakers to work with
the system. That's because there are so many brands out there in the full
price spectrum and I don't know which way to turn. I do have a four-year old
pair of MTX blueprint series 6.5" speakers still "new" in the box from my
last house, but I still need several other pair.

I need some advice on what brands you would recommend on the lower end of
the spectrum. By that I mean as far below $100/pair as you say that I can
safely go. Understand that these are not being used for home theater.
Rather they are just so that the music - pop, classical, Christian
contemporary can follow one throughout a rather large house. I don't have a
critical ear and so don't want to pay more for something that I or most
people wouldn't hear.

I was planning on going with the 6.5 inch side since that worked well for me
before. Could you please advise what are the minimal critical specs that
you recommend that I don't go below? I'm also confused on crossover
circuitry for in-ceiling speakers. Do most such speakers have them or not?
Is there a problem with mixing speaker sizes in the arrangement that I
describe?

Would you find any of the speakers linked below acceptable for what I've
described.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=...
(if I went 8")

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=...
(8" again)

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=...

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B00005OP3...

http://www.fcsurplus.ca/shopping/shopexd.asp?id=1859

http://store.yahoo.com/jlhwholesalers/dblatc-5m.html (dual voice coil)

http://www.x10.com/electronics/allcategories/electronic...

http://www.etronics.com/product.asp?icatid=4184&stk_cod...

If anyone can point to a particular website that has great deals (value
wise) on speakers, I would be very grateful if you could post a link.

Thanks.

David Jensen
Note: replace the "xx" in my email with mj for my real email address.
Thanks.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 10:29:40 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Funny, I was tempted to ping you and Hank to see if either of you had
any experience with mulit-room home systems. I'm about to move into a
new place and I'm sad to say, but my wife has put her foot down on my
big Yamaha NS1000M boxes. The home is already wired for small
ceiling/wall bracket speakers in the main den, bedroom, outside and
possibly one other room.
I'm a two channel guy, not a HT type of person. I'm just looking for
something decent in the way of speakers, but can't seem to find much
info on this anywhere. Most of the sub/satellite stuff seems to be
junk. The only possible exceptions I can find are the Gallo Micros and
the Orb speaker systems. Neither of which I can listen to before I
purchase.
I'm going to power this with my old but familiar Mc 2205 amp/ C26 pre.
I'm going to run the signal out to a Niles selector box and then to the
rooms. I believe each room has a volume pot wired in for individual
control. Again, I haven't moved in yet, so I don't know too many
details....just trying to plan for the new system.
I hate to hijack this thread, but it sort of ties in.....
Any ideas or experiences with any decent sat/sub systems?
later,
m
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 12:44:07 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Scott Dorsey wrote:
> David Jensen <DJNews1@xxAssociates.net> wrote:
>
>> I am setting up a whole house audio system consisting of in ceiling speakers
>> linked to Phoenix Gold Transformerless volume controls which are connected
>> to an impedance adjusting Phoenix Gold SAM Panel. I am planning on using my
>> PC to feed line level audio signals to an amplifier that will power the SAM
>> Panel.
>
>
> Why? This sounds like a really silly way of getting around using a 70V
> system. The 70V distribution stuff is a lot simpler, probably more
> reliable, and if you use good transformers it can sound good.

Add some 70V Mortronics attenuators and you're there.



>> I need some advice on what brands you would recommend on the lower end of
>> the spectrum. By that I mean as far below $100/pair as you say that I can
>> safely go. Understand that these are not being used for home theater.
>> Rather they are just so that the music - pop, classical, Christian
>> contemporary can follow one throughout a rather large house. I don't have a
>> critical ear and so don't want to pay more for something that I or most
>> people wouldn't hear.
>
>
> I don't know of anything down there. The Tannoy in-ceiling stuff is not
> bad at all but it's around $100 per speaker. Even going with something
> like the 8" full-range Atlas drivers that you see used in supermarket
> paging systems, you'll be paying around $60/pair, and I wouldn't want that
> stuff in my home.

Quam has some coax drivers that sound okay if their backs are properly enclosed. Haven't bought anything like that in about ten years, but they can be had at a very attractive price if you can get contractor pricing from the right distributor.
Related resources
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 12:46:15 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

mwood5nospam@yahoo.com wrote:
> Funny, I was tempted to ping you and Hank to see if either of you had
> any experience with mulit-room home systems.

I used to sell & install them for a living.






> I'm a two channel guy, not a HT type of person. I'm just looking for
> something decent in the way of speakers, but can't seem to find much
> info on this anywhere.

LOTS of info out there, it's a bloodbath now with all the manufacturers in that space.

Check Sonance, Boston Acoustics, Polk, and just about any other manufacturer you can think. Go listen to them, and if the dealer doesn't have them setup in a wall to demo, go find another dealer.
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 1:35:08 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

thanks kurt...i'll give some of them a listen.
later,
m
Anonymous
January 18, 2005 4:35:24 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Kurt Albershardt <kurt@nv.net> wrote:
>
>Quam has some coax drivers that sound okay if their backs are properly enclosed. Haven't bought anything like that in about ten years, but they can be had at a very attractive price if you can get contractor pricing from the right distributor.

I was looking at the 12' Quam coaxial drivers as replacement for Altec 600Bs
in cinema speaker surrounds at one point, and they are a lot less beamy than
a 12" driver, but the high end response is really sharp and brittle because
of the piezo tweeter they are using. Didn't try the 8" one, though, which
may cross over a little bit higher.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."
Anonymous
January 20, 2005 11:31:11 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.pro (More info?)

David Jensen wrote:


> Please post some links to the good "70V distribution stuff". I want to
> learn more.




http://www.rane.com/note136.html
Anonymous
January 20, 2005 2:27:57 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

I did a search for Mortronics in Google and found nothing helpful. Could
you be more specific or give me a link to a site that sells the products
that you are talking about? Thanks.

David Jensen

"Kurt Albershardt" <kurt@nv.net> wrote in message
news:355071F4i28qfU3@individual.net...
> Scott Dorsey wrote:
> > David Jensen <DJNews1@xxAssociates.net> wrote:
> >
> >> I am setting up a whole house audio system consisting of in ceiling
speakers
> >> linked to Phoenix Gold Transformerless volume controls which are
connected
> >> to an impedance adjusting Phoenix Gold SAM Panel. I am planning on
using my
> >> PC to feed line level audio signals to an amplifier that will power the
SAM
> >> Panel.
> >
> >
> > Why? This sounds like a really silly way of getting around using a 70V
> > system. The 70V distribution stuff is a lot simpler, probably more
> > reliable, and if you use good transformers it can sound good.
>
> Add some 70V Mortronics attenuators and you're there.
>
>
>
> >> I need some advice on what brands you would recommend on the lower end
of
> >> the spectrum. By that I mean as far below $100/pair as you say that I
can
> >> safely go. Understand that these are not being used for home theater.
> >> Rather they are just so that the music - pop, classical, Christian
> >> contemporary can follow one throughout a rather large house. I don't
have a
> >> critical ear and so don't want to pay more for something that I or most
> >> people wouldn't hear.
> >
> >
> > I don't know of anything down there. The Tannoy in-ceiling stuff is not
> > bad at all but it's around $100 per speaker. Even going with something
> > like the 8" full-range Atlas drivers that you see used in supermarket
> > paging systems, you'll be paying around $60/pair, and I wouldn't want
that
> > stuff in my home.
>
> Quam has some coax drivers that sound okay if their backs are properly
enclosed. Haven't bought anything like that in about ten years, but they
can be had at a very attractive price if you can get contractor pricing from
the right distributor.
>
>
Anonymous
January 20, 2005 4:31:52 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

David Jensen wrote:
> I did a search for Mortronics in Google and found nothing helpful. Could
> you be more specific or give me a link to a site that sells the products
> that you are talking about? Thanks.

Mortronics made (and pretty much originated IIRC) stepped autoformer wall mount volume controls. Instead of a resistive pad (crunching noises, heat, etc.) they used a rotary switch with tapped autoformer(s) behind it. Sonance, Niles, and others now sell nicer packaged variants of the design but Mortronics used to be the only source for 25V and 70V flavors.

I still have a bunch in the garage, not sure how many are 70V models.
January 20, 2005 5:44:13 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

I have the following speakers from Parts Express and I couldn't be
happier with them.

http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/pshowdetl.cfm?&PartNumbe...

Don't let anyone tell you that you need expensive in-ceiling speakers.
They are by their very nature not for critical listening, so there is
no need to get anything fancy. The speakers I mentioned above sound
great at either high or low volumes, and I have gotten numerous
compliments on them from guests in my home.
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 4:33:56 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

On 20 Jan 2005 14:44:13 -0800, "Chuck" <JGScott987@gmail.com> wrote:

>I have the following speakers from Parts Express and I couldn't be
>happier with them.
>
>http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/pshowdetl.cfm?&PartNumbe...
>
>Don't let anyone tell you that you need expensive in-ceiling speakers.
>They are by their very nature not for critical listening, so there is
>no need to get anything fancy. The speakers I mentioned above sound
>great at either high or low volumes, and I have gotten numerous
>compliments on them from guests in my home.

Well, that just about says it all, doesn't it?
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 11:48:33 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

> Don't let anyone tell you that you need expensive in-ceiling speakers.
> They are by their very nature not for critical listening, so there is
> no need to get anything fancy. The speakers I mentioned above sound
> great at either high or low volumes, and I have gotten numerous
> compliments on them from guests in my home.

I'll agree. Just 'having' sound in an area is an improvement. That it's
not 'audiophile' quality is a lot less of an issue when we're talking about
hearing the morning news while in the shower. I'd want 'better' speakers in
places that might have most focused listening; the living room with a
fireplace might be a place you'd want to be able to hear really good quality
sound. But plenty of places don't 'need' it.

Likewise consider the wattage involved. Driving more than 25W into a
bathroom or other small area might be a complete waste. Or pushing only 35W
into a really big space might be woefully underpowered. It's good to make
sure you that if you need to mix-and-match things that you have the right
equipment AND the right wiring in place to accomodate it.

As in, when pulling wire don't overlook the possibility that installing
centralized speaker wire NOW (into larger spaces) might be alot cheaper than
trying to add it on later. Wire is usually a lot cheaper than the labor and
hassles of pulling it again later (and breaking the stuff pulled before...)

-Bill Kearney
Anonymous
January 21, 2005 11:51:22 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

dave weil said:

> >Don't let anyone tell you that you need expensive in-ceiling speakers.
[snip]

> Well, that just about says it all, doesn't it?

Except for the moral of the story, which is "Cheaper is better!"
Anonymous
January 22, 2005 2:10:31 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

> > >Don't let anyone tell you that you need expensive in-ceiling speakers.
> > Well, that just about says it all, doesn't it?
> Except for the moral of the story, which is "Cheaper is better!"

Well, if you're talking about background music or news radio in the bathroom
or kitchen then it's really a waste of money to bother putting a pair of
Polk, Niles or name-your-audiophile-brand speakers in there. The quality
they might offer is just wasted for spaces like that.
Anonymous
January 22, 2005 5:47:57 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Chuck (and anyone else willing to respond),

Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I am encouraged. From the same
website that you listed, I see that Dayton also has the rectangular two way
in-wall speakers for $50/pair at
http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?&DID=7&Part....
Would it be fair to say that these should be even better than the round ones
since they have crossover circuitry in them?

Also, for speakers that end up in the attic, can things be improved by
building an enclosure behind them? If so, is one material better than
another?

Thanks again.

David Jensen

"Chuck" <JGScott987@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1106261053.643980.322660@f14g2000cwb.googlegroups.com...
> I have the following speakers from Parts Express and I couldn't be
> happier with them.
>
> http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/pshowdetl.cfm?&PartNumbe...
>
> Don't let anyone tell you that you need expensive in-ceiling speakers.
> They are by their very nature not for critical listening, so there is
> no need to get anything fancy. The speakers I mentioned above sound
> great at either high or low volumes, and I have gotten numerous
> compliments on them from guests in my home.
>
Anonymous
January 22, 2005 12:55:04 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

While what you say regarding quality is true, you can get quality
without buying audiophile-brand speakers. I think that was Bill
Kearney's point, not that bargain-basement "scratchy and tinny"
speakers are all you need.

For example, I have been pleased with TruAudio in-wall/ceiling
speakers. I've compared them to Polk and Niles and they sound every bit
as good. Above a certain quality level, speaker placement becomes more
of an issue than the subtle nuances of frequency-response differences.
And the ceiling is simply not a place where you can expect to get
audiophile sound.
Anonymous
January 22, 2005 1:04:43 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

> Also, for speakers that end up in the attic, can things be improved
by
> building an enclosure behind them?

Or you can use a speaker with a ported and tuned enclosure. Dayton
makes those too:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0002KRADI/markt...
Has a larger 9-1/2" cutout, but would be good for attic-above areas.
January 22, 2005 5:57:30 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

Adding an enclosure behind the speaker, assuming it is sized properly,
may improve the sound quality. Most of these speakers are designed to
perform fine without any enclosure, however.
Anonymous
January 22, 2005 8:47:44 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

On 1/22/05 14:10, in article bdqdna8EQ-tcT2zcRVn-jQ@speakeasy.net,
"wkearney99" <wkearney99@hotmail.com> wrote:

> Well, if you're talking about background music or news radio in the bathroom
> or kitchen then it's really a waste of money to bother putting a pair of
> Polk, Niles or name-your-audiophile-brand speakers in there. The quality
> they might offer is just wasted for spaces like that.


I would say this statement is absolute rubbish. Quality is always noticed
and appreciated by all, even those not "audiophiles". I have owned several
service-type businesses over the years, and always replaced existing
background music systems with high quality Bose systems when I took them
over. And the results were always noticed and commented on by the
customers, who in many cases spent time waiting for their services to be
performed.

Scratchy and tinny sound is NEVER appreciated, and psychologically is just
annoying and tension creating.

The continued growth in ultra-high-quality clock radios is proof of point;
even in what isn't necessary, the Bose and other expensive solutions
continue to rule the market despite the high cost relative to other brands.
Anonymous
January 23, 2005 11:11:20 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

David Jensen wrote:

> Chuck (and anyone else willing to respond),
>
> Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I am encouraged. From the same
> website that you listed, I see that Dayton also has the rectangular two way
> in-wall speakers for $50/pair at
> http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?&DID=7&Part....
> Would it be fair to say that these should be even better than the round ones
> since they have crossover circuitry in them?
>
> Also, for speakers that end up in the attic, can things be improved by
> building an enclosure behind them? If so, is one material better than
> another?

IME, these sound a lot like Kenwood car speakers. Not bad, but
not real hi-fi either. Tannoy, OTOH, makes a really good design.

Second place on a real budget? Mirage. They make excellent
in-wall speakers that are affordable.
January 23, 2005 11:11:21 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

I've used the iw65ICTR in many installations and have never failed be amazed
by the room filling sound of such a modest device. They are a little tough
to find in the US however. They are mostly handled by custom installers.


"Joseph Oberlander" <josephoberlander@earthlink.net> wrote in message
news:I_IId.3365$YD5.2206@newsread3.news.pas.earthlink.net...
>
>
> David Jensen wrote:
>
>> Chuck (and anyone else willing to respond),
>>
>> Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I am encouraged. From the
>> same
>> website that you listed, I see that Dayton also has the rectangular two
>> way
>> in-wall speakers for $50/pair at
>> http://www.partsexpress.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?&DID=7&Part....
>> Would it be fair to say that these should be even better than the round
>> ones
>> since they have crossover circuitry in them?
>>
>> Also, for speakers that end up in the attic, can things be improved by
>> building an enclosure behind them? If so, is one material better than
>> another?
>
> IME, these sound a lot like Kenwood car speakers. Not bad, but
> not real hi-fi either. Tannoy, OTOH, makes a really good design.
>
> Second place on a real budget? Mirage. They make excellent
> in-wall speakers that are affordable.
>
Anonymous
January 23, 2005 11:11:22 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

> I've used the iw65ICTR in many installations and
> have never failed be amazed by the room filling
> sound of such a modest device...

You may also want to consider Proficient Audio. They make some very fine
sounding wall and ceiling speakers and prices are quite reasonable.

Note: Since I'm a dealer I'm not entirely without bias on this.

--

Regards,
Robert L Bass

=============================>
Bass Home Electronics
2291 Pine View Circle
Sarasota · Florida · 34231
877-722-8900 Sales & Tech Support
http://www.bassburglaralarms.com
=============================>
Anonymous
January 23, 2005 2:47:06 PM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

> Robert L. Bass wrote
>
>
>
>> I've used the iw65ICTR in many installations and
>> have never failed be amazed by the room filling
>> sound of such a modest device...
>
> You may also want to consider Proficient Audio. They make some very fine
> sounding wall and ceiling speakers and prices are quite reasonable.
>
>
> Note: Since I'm a dealer I'm not entirely without bias on this.





It is unfortunate that, as a dealer, you're entirely unable to make comment
about this without being bias .

How is your devotion to Jesus coming along?



> Regards,
> Robert L Bass
Anonymous
January 27, 2005 6:52:29 AM

Archived from groups: comp.home.automation,rec.audio.opinion,rec.audio.pro,rec.audio.tech (More info?)

In article <10v6om0dtlt5d8c@corp.supernews.com>, deltad2@yahoo.com says...
> I've used the iw65ICTR in many installations and have never failed be amazed
> by the room filling sound of such a modest device.

For the state of the art in custom enclosure, in-wall and in-ceiling speakers,
go here:


http://www.calaudiotech.com/
!