Home Theater with AT Screen and In-Wall Speakers? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 05-05-2014, 01:59 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm finishing off my basement and putting in a simple home theater setup. I already have an Epson 8350 Home Cinema from my previous house. It has been sitting in a box for almost a year but still runs fine and I have a spare bulb still.

My plan is to have a fixed frame Audio Transparent screen with 3 matching in-wall speakers located behind the screen. So far I am interested in the following in-wall speakers...

NHT iW4-ARC - link
Boston Acoustics VSi-5835 link
and
PSB CW28 link

I have a cheaper home theater setup right now using monoprice 7604 in-wall speakers. They are OK for the price, but are lacking in clarity compared to some of the other speakers I've heard. I've never been that big of a fan of Definitive Technology or Klipsch speakers which I know are very popular for in-wall speakers.

Does anyone have any other recommendations? I'd like to find something that is voice matched some bookshelf speakers as I would like to use bookshelf speakers for the surround or presence speakers. I only want to use in-walls behind the screen. Which is why I'm leaning towards NHT iw4-ARC speakers and then using Absolute Zero's for surrounds.
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post #2 of 16 Old 05-05-2014, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Here is a quick drawing of my plans so far.



Since it is a new construction. I can build MDF enclosures in the wall for whichever speakers I choose.
NHT provided the ideal enclusure size for their in-wall speakers.

Another speaker I'm considering is the Axiom Audio M22 In-Wall.
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post #3 of 16 Old 05-05-2014, 06:14 PM
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The backer box would be the decision maker for me, so that narrows it to NHT or Axiom.

The Axiom is more efficient, and claims to handle more power, which seems relevant as your space is rather large.
My father-in-law has the Axiom in-walls which he is happy with, but I have little experience.
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post #4 of 16 Old 05-05-2014, 07:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Smith View Post

I'm finishing off my basement and putting in a simple home theater setup. I already have an Epson 8350 Home Cinema from my previous house. It has been sitting in a box for almost a year but still runs fine and I have a spare bulb still.

My plan is to have a fixed frame Audio Transparent screen with 3 matching in-wall speakers located behind the screen. So far I am interested in the following in-wall speakers...

NHT iW4-ARC - link
Boston Acoustics VSi-5835 link
and
PSB CW28 link

I have a cheaper home theater setup right now using monoprice 7604 in-wall speakers. They are OK for the price, but are lacking in clarity compared to some of the other speakers I've heard. I've never been that big of a fan of Definitive Technology or Klipsch speakers which I know are very popular for in-wall speakers.

Does anyone have any other recommendations? I'd like to find something that is voice matched some bookshelf speakers as I would like to use bookshelf speakers for the surround or presence speakers. I only want to use in-walls behind the screen. Which is why I'm leaning towards NHT iw4-ARC speakers and then using Absolute Zero's for surrounds.

Martin Logan EM. High sensitivity, high power handling in walls and box speakers using air motion transformers.

They don't have back boxes. There is some debate on back boxes vs no back boxes. All I can say is both can work. No back boxes has some advantages. Let's not turn this thread into another debate about it, and I realize most AVS accepted wisdom is any speaker without a back box is a non starter.

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post #5 of 16 Old 05-05-2014, 07:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Nyal Mellor View Post

Martin Logan EM. High sensitivity, high power handling in walls and box speakers using air motion transformers.

They don't have back boxes. There is some debate on back boxes vs no back boxes. All I can say is both can work. No back boxes has some advantages. Let's not turn this thread into another debate about it, and I realize most AVS accepted wisdom is any speaker without a back box is a non starter.
My understanding is there is three types of in-wall designs infinite baffle where an enclosure can make the response worse, those optimized for the enclosure volume of a standard stud bay, or those with built in enclosures.

My understanding is the NHTs work well with a standard stud bay volume but will work even better with a slightly smaller volume.

I'm not opposed to any design so long as I understand it and can use it appropriately.
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post #6 of 16 Old 05-06-2014, 03:46 PM
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This might turn into a debate on enclosures. tongue.gif

A wall/stud cavity does not have a standard size, is not sealed, and can be filled with different materials. I don't consider open back designs appropriate unless designed for an infinite baffle, and installed in one. (Open to attic space) Even then you are compromising, especially on sound bleeding into other areas. (And less sound in the intended space)

I don't see why it would be surprising either; you wouldn't take a random speaker and set it out in the middle of the room, or install in any random sized box made of very low grade material. It doesn't cost too much extra for a speaker with a proper enclosure, especially pre-construction phase.
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post #7 of 16 Old 05-06-2014, 04:04 PM
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This might turn into a debate on enclosures. tongue.gif

A wall/stud cavity does not have a standard size, is not sealed, and can be filled with different materials. I don't consider open back designs appropriate unless designed for an infinite baffle, and installed in one. (Open to attic space) Even then you are compromising, especially on sound bleeding into other areas. (And less sound in the intended space)

I don't see why it would be surprising either; you wouldn't take a random speaker and set it out in the middle of the room, or install in any random sized box made of very low grade material. It doesn't cost too much extra for a speaker with a proper enclosure, especially pre-construction phase.

Don't disagree. Most in walls are I guess designed around a wall with an 8' ceiling, 2"x4" construction and 16" on center spacing. You can build a backer box for them in wall, or some companies that make in walls actually sell engineered back boxes, or you can buy an inwall speaker with an enclosure already attached. Enclosure size I understand mostly affects bass response, and for HT speakers are bass managed so I think this is less of an issue than it would be otherwise.

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post #8 of 16 Old 05-07-2014, 11:13 AM
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Take a look at Triads

Here is my build thread:

---->Like a Boss Theater Build<----
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post #9 of 16 Old 05-07-2014, 11:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Take a look at Triads
Thanks I took a quick look at Triad. The Bronze/4 LCR seems like it is about the only thing in my price range. I've also been intrigued by the Monitor Audio in Wall's.

There are a few things I'm noticing with my search for in-walls.

1) Enclosures are often focused on keeping sound from leaking into other rooms. Which is not applicable to me as the wall these will mount in is an exterior basement wall. You'll notice most in-wall speakers with enclosures that have corresponding bookshelf versions use a much smaller enclosure volume and have a limited bass response.

2) Most in-wall designs seem to be nearly a decade behind their bookshelf counterparts. The Axiom M22's for example, the in-wall is the v2, but the bookshelf is now the v4. So Axiom has not been incorporating improvements (mainly tweeter changes) into their in-wall products that are less popular. (Correction: After posting this I decided to send a message to Axiom asking if this were true. Turns out the product page on their website wasn't fully updated the in-wall uses v4)

I did here from PSB about making optimal enclosures for the CW383's in the same manner as the NHTs and there are some very good deals for those around. I've found some used one's that I may be able to pick up 3 of them for about $200 a piece. Which seams like a really good deal for a speaker that was retailing for $900 a piece. I'm not sure how I feel about used though.


There are also good deals for the Def Tech UIW RLS II they seam to be so common that you can find good deals.
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post #10 of 16 Old 05-07-2014, 01:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Smith View Post

Thanks I took a quick look at Triad. The Bronze/4 LCR seems like it is about the only thing in my price range. I've also been intrigued by the Monitor Audio in Wall's.

There are a few things I'm noticing with my search for in-walls.

1) Enclosures are often focused on keeping sound from leaking into other rooms. Which is not applicable to me as the wall these will mount in is an exterior basement wall. You'll notice most in-wall speakers with enclosures that have corresponding bookshelf versions use a much smaller enclosure volume and have a limited bass response.

2) Most in-wall designs seem to be nearly a decade behind their bookshelf counterparts. The Axiom M22's for example, the in-wall is the v2, but the bookshelf is now the v4. So Axiom has not been incorporating improvements (mainly tweeter changes) into their in-wall products that are less popular. (Correction: After posting this I decided to send a message to Axiom asking if this were true. Turns out the product page on their website wasn't fully updated the in-wall uses v4)

I did here from PSB about making optimal enclosures for the CW383's in the same manner as the NHTs and there are some very good deals for those around. I've found some used one's that I may be able to pick up 3 of them for about $200 a piece. Which seams like a really good deal for a speaker that was retailing for $900 a piece. I'm not sure how I feel about used though.


There are also good deals for the Def Tech UIW RLS II they seam to be so common that you can find good deals.

The MAs with the sealed enclosures have very little bass extension. I evaluated some of their in walls and was not impressed. I'm going to shut up about Martin Logan since I've given you that option already. Not my cup of tea but the B&W inwalls are very well put together, some of them actually have a separate clip on enclosure that slides into the wall below or above the speaker that basically doubles the enclosure volume..very smart.

One thing for sure, most in walls with dome tweeters will not do it for high SPL home theater use. They just don't have the power handling.

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post #11 of 16 Old 05-07-2014, 02:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks I'll look closer at the Martin Logan IW. It looks like there is really only one model you are referring too correct?

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_839EMIW/MartinLogan-ElectroMotion-IW.html?tp=192

My wife complains if I set the volume too high, and we have 4 young kids in our home. I'll send off some questions that way as well.
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post #12 of 16 Old 05-07-2014, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
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I was reading the specs/manual for the Electro Motion IW-R. I'm surprised they don't have anything documenting the actual angle of the woofer and transducer. Do you happen to know what it is?

I'm thinking 5 of these could make a nice 5.1 setup. With the IW-R placed on the vertical center line of the screen and angled down to the seating.

Not sure if I'd be willing to spend that much though.
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post #13 of 16 Old 06-05-2014, 03:21 PM - Thread Starter
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I was able to listen to some Martin Logan EM speakers. They didn't have the in-wall versions on display but did have the floor standing and bookshelf Motion 40, 20 and 15s. I was really impressed by the sound of the tweeters on these speakers but the mid-range left a lot to be desired. The B&Ws I was compariing them to at similar price points sounded better overall because of the midrange clarity in my opinion.

I took the time to listen to some EM-ESL electrostatic floorstanding speakers as well. The highs sounded even better on those, but midrange was lacking.

At this point I'm leaning towards either the NHT speakers or spending much more money and getting a single B&W 7.3 in wall for the center channel behind the screen with two 683 towers flanking it to each side.
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post #14 of 16 Old 06-06-2014, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Smith View Post

I was able to listen to some Martin Logan EM speakers. They didn't have the in-wall versions on display but did have the floor standing and bookshelf Motion 40, 20 and 15s. I was really impressed by the sound of the tweeters on these speakers but the mid-range left a lot to be desired. The B&Ws I was compariing them to at similar price points sounded better overall because of the midrange clarity in my opinion.

I took the time to listen to some EM-ESL electrostatic floorstanding speakers as well. The highs sounded even better on those, but midrange was lacking.

At this point I'm leaning towards either the NHT speakers or spending much more money and getting a single B&W 7.3 in wall for the center channel behind the screen with two 683 towers flanking it to each side.

Interesting, and good feedback!

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post #15 of 16 Old 06-06-2014, 04:57 PM
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^ makes sense, I would suspect that the AMT used has a high crossover point (due to its size) and the mid looks like rubbish - plus the polar response around the crossover of the two drivers is probably quite different

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post #16 of 16 Old 06-06-2014, 07:32 PM
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If you don't mind building your speakers you could check out http://www.diysoundgroup.com/forum/index.php?topic=127.0
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