New House Audio Distribution Question - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 2 Old 11-08-2012, 06:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi. I am somewhat of a noob on home audio distribution. My new house is almost complete, and it has been wired for in-ceiling speakers in most rooms (along w/ 5.1/7.1 in family and media rooms). I am in the process of selecting equipment, and my question is about distribution of music to a number of rooms (likely 4).

I will have an a/v receiver in the family room distributing 5.1. I want to distribute music to 4 other rooms. I don't care about independent selection of content in each room (they can all hear the same content). I would like volume control knobs in each room (already wired). I want to be able to control the content/distribution using iOS devices.

My a/v guy is likely going to suggest sonos, but I wonder if I can just do this with a new Apple TV -- which would access content off my PC (wired into home network) and which could play streaming content (e.g., Pandora) from iOS devices. Can I use zone 2 of the a/v receiver to distribute the audio to the 4 other rooms? Any particular receiver to keep in mind (also needs HDMI switching for 5.1 system). Each room would have its own volume control (not sure how that is hooked in). Would I need some sort of separate amplifier for the other 4 rooms?

Thanks for any insight.
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post #2 of 2 Old 11-08-2012, 07:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buddha View Post

My a/v guy is likely going to suggest sonos, but I wonder if I can just do this with a new Apple TV -- which would access content off my PC (wired into home network) and which could play streaming content (e.g., Pandora) from iOS devices. Can I use zone 2 of the a/v receiver to distribute the audio to the 4 other rooms? Any particular receiver to keep in mind (also needs HDMI switching for 5.1 system). Each room would have its own volume control (not sure how that is hooked in). Would I need some sort of separate amplifier for the other 4 rooms?

A lot of the good receivers support at least 3 zones...you could connect 2 of the rooms to zone 2 (they'd share a source) and two of the rooms to zone 3 (they'd share a source). That would give you a bit of flexibility. Depending on the receiver, you may or may not need separate amps. An 11.1 capable receiver that is only doing 5.1 in the main room will have 2 stereo channels left over, so you could do stereo to zone 2 and zone 3. However a 7.1 receiver has less and it would have to do mono to both zones (or use its amp to power zone 2 and an external amp for zone 3). However, depending on the speakers and the receiver selection, you may not be able to use the receivers amps in this fashion (driving two sets of speakers hooked up to the same posts) because of power/impedance issues.

As for the Apple TV, as long as you have a version that lets you connect the audio without HDMI, then you could indeed play that source to Zone 2 and Zone 3. Also though, many of the receivers support AirPlay builtin, so you wouldn't even need an AppleTV. You could also use an AppleTV sending to Zone 2 and the built-in AirPlay to Zone 3...that way people with iDevices would pick to which rooms they want to stream.
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