[HELP] New Speakers - In-Wall 7.x - $1000 Budget - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 31 Old 06-08-2012, 05:08 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm trying to put together a good yet inexpensive in-wall speaker system for my loft and I am looking for some advice.
The house came pre-wired with everything on the ceiling but the angled section may actually help the sound as the speakers should point directly towards the couch.

The room is loft style with angled ceilings. It is 14' x 18'.
The front and rear walls go 8' before they angle in. The top is at 13'.
It is prewired with 7.x although the side speakers were not installed slightly behind the seating area. They were centered. As the builder had the security system guys do the prewire, you get what you pay for.
Also, this room is only for HT. Music will most likely be limited to Rock Band with the kids.

I just bought the Onkyo 818 (it should arrive next week) so now I need the speakers to go with it.

As I said, I am not looking to spend a lot on the main speakers.
I am in the military and will not live here forever BUT, as the house was already prewired, I though it would be a great selling point (in the future) to include the in-walls.
I obviously will be taking the AVR and subwoofer with me so I did want those items to be the best possible on my budget.
That budget, by the way, is $1000 on the speakers (including sub).

I have been looking at the Polk RC85i for all 7 plus the BIC PL-200 for a sub.
The Polks are fairly inexpensive at $150/pr and the PL-200 can be found at ~$250.

I am attaching a few pics of the room.
400

400
Notice that the center outlet cover is not centered. This should be corrected with the in-wall hole that I make.
400
The light will be disappearing as I install a large ceiling fan. It gets warm in the loft!
400

Any help would be greatly appreciated. I'd like to make my purchase ASAP.
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post #2 of 31 Old 06-08-2012, 07:28 PM
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Hi Joshua,

And welcome to AVS.
In ceiling speakers are going to be a compromise, no matter what. Very few here would recommend them, as it is a compromise. That said, this entire hobby entails compromise, so if you have to work with what you have, so be it. Just realize that you will be making tough choices to make it work, regardless of budget.

I'd look at HSU's in wall speakers. I havn't heard them personally, but they have the same specs as their bookshelf speakers, which I do have experience with. I have a full HSU 5.2 system, just not the in-walls, and they are fantastic.

One thing I would strongly recommend, and you've said you want to go in-wall with the center speaker, is to go ahead and do in-walls for the front L and R also. Putting them in the front wall, approx ear height, would be vastly better than what is there now.

Also, based on your pictures, I would utilize the spaces in your rear wall for the 'sides", even though they aren't optimally placed, to round out a 5.1 speaker system. Behind you from above is better than in front of your seating position from above. Only about 20% of the sound will be coming from there anyway... more important to get your front 3 as close to ear level as possible. This helps 'anchor' the sound to your screen, versus a 'sound from Above' front stage.

High sensitivity (relatively) means easy to drive to high volumes with just your receiver, and your really don't have a huge space to fill. They have a very good frequency response at 60- 120hz +/- 2 db ( 2 !! ) Thats very flat. And they are very capable below 60 hz as well. That is just their -2db rating. You will still get very usable output below that. Couple that with one of their subs, and you will have a very capable sound system.

Of course, this is IMO, YMMV. (almost a necessity here, anymore)

hope it helps,
Joseph

ps. I have posted in the 'I'll Demo my speakers...' and the 'I'll Demo my subwoofer...' threads. Probably the most under-utilized threads here.

What a long, strange trip its been....
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post #3 of 31 Old 06-08-2012, 07:42 PM
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As had been stated this hobby is one of compromises, and we make decisions based on what we want most. I wanted to not have a lot of speakers around a small room, but still have 7.1 capability. I got what I wanted. I put my speakers in wall, and avoided the speakers standing on the floor. Sound, well I still think things sound pretty good. I have seen in wall speakers used a lot. I do satellite installs for a living so I get to see a lot of theater rooms. I will tell you in walls are VERY popular even for the front sound stage. Do your research, install, then enjoy.

Alan in Boise

103 inch AT screen with 9.x playback. IB sub woofer system. Two manifolds with 2 15s and 2 12s. Line array with 2 15s. Running main channels with Minimus 7s. Have front wide and front hight and rear surrounds. Room is perfect size for smaller speakers like the Minimus speakers. Approx. 17x13x8. Tower speakers were taking up to much room.
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post #4 of 31 Old 06-08-2012, 08:25 PM
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Hi Alan,

Nice to meet you. May I ask what in-wall speakers you are using? I'm thinking of installing in-walls upstairs... WAF... it's her room... sigh...

Josh,

What is the size or those 'cut-outs'? You may be ilmited to a certain size, without changing / enlarging what's already there. I'd get happy with a 'keyhole drywall saw' long before I'd sacrifice the best sound possible for my $$

What a long, strange trip its been....
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post #5 of 31 Old 06-08-2012, 10:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Currently, the holes are just single gang outlets.
They are covered with outlet covers for the time being.
They do have the speaker wire already ran to them though.
I do plan on opening the wall up for the installs.
I just need some advice on what to fill them with.
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post #6 of 31 Old 06-10-2012, 06:17 AM - Thread Starter
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I climbed up in the attic last night to check the placement of the outlets and to see what I had to work with.
Based on the rafters, I don't have a whole lot of options. There may not be a way to "balance" the in-wall speaker placement.

My wife has given me the option of using mounts so that I would not have to leave the speakers behind but my budget is still limited and the outlets are still quite high (2 feet above the TV).
Is there anything I can do?
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post #7 of 31 Old 06-10-2012, 10:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Does anyone have any suggestions?
Like I said, I may go with on-wall mounting but I'm still leaning of going with in-wall.
After I cut the holes, I would be boxing off the speaker area within the wall for better fidelity.
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post #8 of 31 Old 06-10-2012, 10:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

Does anyone have any suggestions?
Like I said, I may go with on-wall mounting but I'm still leaning of going with in-wall.
After I cut the holes, I would be boxing off the speaker area within the wall for better fidelity.

Look at HTD
http://www.htd.com/Products/high-definition
http://www.htd.com/Products/Single-HD-In-Wall-Ceiling-Speakers
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Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
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post #9 of 31 Old 06-10-2012, 12:38 PM - Thread Starter
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I had never heard of this company but... Not bad at all.
I like the power rating and the swivel. They don't have as wide of a freq. response compared to the RC85i but I'm sure the sub will take care of the lows anyway.
Power handling: 110 watts RMS; 165 watts program
Frequency response: 40 Hz - 22 kHz

I also like that I can buy a single as a center channel instead of buying a pair.
I'll keep them in mind for this project and the one downstairs that has EVERYTHING in the ceiling (HD-R85AIM).

Thanks.
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post #10 of 31 Old 06-10-2012, 03:18 PM - Thread Starter
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These are the options so far:
Polk RC85i http://www.amazon.com/Polk-Audio-RC85i-In-Wall-Speakers/dp/B00006I5O6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1339366380&sr=8-1

HTD HD-W80 http://www.htd.com/Products/high-definition/HD-W80-in-wall-speakers

Monoprice HSQ-8425 http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=108&cp_id=10837&cs_id=1083703&p_id=6816&seq=1&format=3#specification

Are there any others I should be considering?
Should I not consider the Polks due to their low wattage rating?
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post #11 of 31 Old 06-10-2012, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

Should I not consider the Polks due to their low wattage rating?

You can drive the Polk with a 100 watt receiver.

Recommended Amplifier Power
20 - 100 w/channel

The speaker choice is up to you.

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Who and Where - is the Way, the Truth and the Life?

Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
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post #12 of 31 Old 06-10-2012, 03:56 PM
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In your price range, I would get a Epik Legend Subwoofer and 7 of those Monoprice 8" Kevlar inwalls.
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post #13 of 31 Old 06-11-2012, 05:11 AM - Thread Starter
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In your price range, I would get a Epik Legend Subwoofer and 7 of those Monoprice 8" Kevlar inwalls.
Is there a cheaper place to find the Epik Legend?
The Epik site sells it for $500. Do they only sell direct?
I do appreciate the advice on the Monoprice speakers though.
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post #14 of 31 Old 06-11-2012, 02:34 PM
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I currently own the Onkyo 818. I run an Energy VSW 10. Go to Vanns.com. The reviews speak for themselves. I have seven Energy LCR speakers. All are on wall speakers. Try wwstereo.com. You can put this together on your budget. The results are astounding. I am amazed.
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post #15 of 31 Old 06-11-2012, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UNICRON-WMD View Post

In your price range, I would get a Epik Legend Subwoofer and 7 of those Monoprice 8" Kevlar inwalls.
After searching all day for a better plan, I'm seriously thinking of pulling the trigger on this combo.
Does anyone know if I can run 2 of the speakers as the center?
Sort of an 8.1 system.
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post #16 of 31 Old 06-11-2012, 07:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

After searching all day for a better plan, I'm seriously thinking of pulling the trigger on this combo.
Does anyone know if I can run 2 of the speakers as the center?
Sort of an 8.1 system.

I would only wire one speaker as a center. Did you make your in-wall speaker
decision, mainly based on cost?

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Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
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post #17 of 31 Old 06-11-2012, 07:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zieglj01 View Post

I would only wire one speaker as a center. Did you make your in-wall speaker
decision, mainly based on cost?
After doing more research on the 2 center-thing, I have definitely decided against going that route.
I just figured that, since I was buying a pair, I might as well use it.

In terms of costs, yes.
The speakers seem to have a pretty good following with good stats but, as I stated above, I will not be removing these speakers later.
As I am in the military, I am destined to leave this home eventually. The built-in speakers would be a great selling/renting point.
I'm going with the 3-way speakers to leave behind a little more bass as the sub will not be staying... it's going with me.
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post #18 of 31 Old 06-12-2012, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

Is there a cheaper place to find the Epik Legend?
The Epik site sells it for $500. Do they only sell direct?
I do appreciate the advice on the Monoprice speakers though.

Honestly, $500 is really a great price for what you get. The next best thing is build your own sub/s.

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post #19 of 31 Old 06-13-2012, 08:32 PM - Thread Starter
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I did a more thorough look around in the attic space tonight and found that, if I want to have the in-wall speakers on the sides, I would need to raise them to about 10' in order to avoid cutting through a support rafter.

I now need a new plan of attack and I need it quick. My Onkyo 818 showed up today and I hear it screaming to be used.

Still have the budget but I am still leaning towards the Epik Legend.
Is it possible to get a decent 7.0 on-wall system in the $400-$500 range?
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post #20 of 31 Old 06-13-2012, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

I now need a new plan of attack and I need it quick. My Onkyo 818 showed up today and I hear it screaming to be used.
I am changing the title of this thread to reflect the new direction.
Still have the budget but I am still leaning towards the Epik Legend.
Is it possible to get a decent 7.0 on-wall system in the $400-$500 range?

5.0 system > Atlantic Technology
http://www.amazon.com/Atlantic-Technology-System-2200-Theater/dp/B006C4G7SW/ref=sr_1_2?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1339645820&sr=1-2&keywords=atlantic+technology

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Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
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post #21 of 31 Old 06-13-2012, 09:08 PM
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The Atlantic Tech's are an excellent choice in that budget as well as Energy's.

http://www.amazon.com/Energy-Take-Classic-Pack-Theater/dp/B0021L9BME/ref=sr_1_2?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1339646824&sr=1-2&keywords=energy

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post #22 of 31 Old 06-13-2012, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

I did a more thorough look around in the attic space tonight and found that, if I want to have the in-wall speakers on the sides, I would need to raise them to about 10' in order to avoid cutting through a support rafter.
As this would be unacceptable due to the ceiling fan I am installing and I would like to keep the speakers at a reasonable height, I have gotten final permission to wall-mount all of the speakers.
I now need a new plan of attack and I need it quick. My Onkyo 818 showed up today and I hear it screaming to be used.
I am changing the title of this thread to reflect the new direction.
Still have the budget but I am still leaning towards the Epik Legend.
Is it possible to get a decent 7.0 on-wall system in the $400-$500 range?


I have two sets of the Energy Take Classics for sale.

One is 5.0 and one is 5.1.

If you buy both you would have 7.1 with some extra speakers as well. Check out CNET's review.

I am in Pennsylvania. Shipping would probably be around $30 for the 5.1.

I was looking for $250 for the 5.1, originally new at $399.

$150 for the 5.0., originally new at $299.

Both sets are in original box with owner's manual.

Let me know if you are interested in either.
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post #23 of 31 Old 06-13-2012, 11:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

I did a more thorough look around in the attic space tonight and found that, if I want to have the in-wall speakers on the sides, I would need to raise them to about 10' in order to avoid cutting through a support rafter.
As this would be unacceptable due to the ceiling fan I am installing and I would like to keep the speakers at a reasonable height, I have gotten final permission to wall-mount all of the speakers.
I now need a new plan of attack and I need it quick. My Onkyo 818 showed up today and I hear it screaming to be used.
I am changing the title of this thread to reflect the new direction.
Still have the budget but I am still leaning towards the Epik Legend.
Is it possible to get a decent 7.0 on-wall system in the $400-$500 range?

I currently own the Onkyo 818. I currently run an Energy VSW 10 subwoofer with seven Energy LCR speakers. Go to Vanns.com for the subwoofer and wwstereo.com for the speakers. The reviews speak for themselves. All are on wall speakers. You can put this together on your budget. The results are astounding. I am amazed.
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post #24 of 31 Old 06-14-2012, 06:20 AM - Thread Starter
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I have $1000 to spend. I should be able to upgrade piece by piece over the years.
Should I concentrate on Sub? LCR? Surround?
I currently have Panasonic SC-BT300 1250W 7.1 Channel Blu-ray Disc Home Theater Sound System.
I also have an older Sony DAV-S500 from years ago.
Can I just reutilize some of its speakers and get me a great section of my sound system to hold me over?
Still have the same budget for this year.
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post #25 of 31 Old 06-14-2012, 07:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joshua.jones View Post

I have $1000 to spend. I should be able to upgrade piece by piece over the years.
Should I concentrate on Sub? LCR? Surround?
I currently have Panasonic SC-BT300 1250W 7.1 Channel Blu-ray Disc Home Theater Sound System.
I also have an older Sony DAV-S500 from years ago.
Can I just reutilize some of its speakers and get me a great section of my sound system to hold me over?
Still have the same budget for this year.

The final decision is yours to make, a lot of people build sections at a time.
I would not use the old and weak speakers, from the Panasonic and Sony.
Their speakers were made to work with their receivers.

The choice is yours to make and all that I will say is > the Atlantic Tech
system with this Energy sub, is way above your old systems.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16882269026

You can also buy the Energy sub, and wall-mount speakers from NHT,
or Emptek.
3 each, from one of them
http://www.nhthifi.com/Home-Theater-Absolute-On-Wall-Speaker-Black?sc=12&category=7166
http://www.emptek.com/ew30.php

And buy some NXG for surrounds
http://www.amazon.com/Nxg-Pro-4-1-Satellite-Speaker/dp/B0044UHVOK/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8

Another option and can be used with the Epik sub, is to buy 3 HTD Flat Panel speakers
http://www.htd.com/Products/flat-panel-speakers/flat-panel-speaker

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Who and Where - is the Way, the Truth and the Life?

Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
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post #26 of 31 Old 06-14-2012, 07:59 AM
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Mr Jones,
Although I have not heard them folks have been praising the Behringer B2030P greatly for efficient (dynamic), accurate, affordable speakers. I'm considering them for surrounds in my 5.1 (replacing rears and going 7.1). They look pro gear ish but is reported as great bang for the buck. I have not personally heard them but have seen them pop up in discussion in several threads. Not sure how they perform as LCR duty.

I have a new rythmik and it is sooo much more musical than my velodyne was, falling in love with this thing more every day, their entry sub is 549.

Have you considered starting with 3.1 with nicer speakers and going to 5.1/7.1 with upgrades down the line? The speakers and room are the number one factors to good sound. given u spent 900+ on the receiver many folks would say you should be 2k+ on the speakers or should have gone with a lesser receiver. I'd even consider holding off on the sub and getting good LCR, then 500-1000 on a sub, then those monitors for the surrounds even if it take 1 - 1.5 years to pull together. If you get the 300 sub now, won't you just be replacing it in a year or two? It's taken me 12 years to get my system where it is today, and I have big plans about where it is going in the future :-) Don't save the penny on the speakers.
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post #27 of 31 Old 06-15-2012, 01:26 AM - Thread Starter
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Monoprice 6816
If I could still use the MP in-walls in 5 (L/C/R/rears) of the 7 locations, would there be a speaker capable of being attached to the walls as the side surrounds and match the other 5 in timbre.
Would they need to be 8" Kevlar, as well?

If I go this route, does my reasoning behind the 3-way vs 2-way work out?
Should I stick with 8" rears or go down to 6.5"s?

I have read somewhere in all this reading that the Onkyo 818 will put out about 120W over all 7 speakers.
If that is true, and assuming that my ears would bleed at that level, does the 100W RMS even come into play with these speakers.
Should I not be so critical of this stat on the speaker?
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post #28 of 31 Old 06-16-2012, 04:08 AM - Thread Starter
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I can either use the same height L/C/R or drop the Center down to the other position.
This would move it down to the flat wall. Would this affect the front stage?
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The rear in-wall would match the front in-wall. I'm still looking for a mountable side surround.
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post #29 of 31 Old 06-16-2012, 01:32 PM
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what is underneath the Tv?? at 14" below the Ceiling line seem kinda high.. I would put the Center and Mount it Horizontal under the Tv.. Look into the Axiom Speakers.. for that rear center you can install a "Stereo" speaker for your 5th-7th Channels.. I would personally go with small wall mount bookshelf's or satellites and mount them on the Walls with movable /pivot-able Brackets.. Those on Wall From HTD look good too.. Dont be in a Rush.. I would put all the $$ into a Good Sub , Then (all from Same Mfg/series) A Center Left/ Right Mains. The center is the Most Important Speaker..
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post #30 of 31 Old 06-16-2012, 02:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Here is a larger view of the TV wall.
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Once the A/V Rack goes in, I'd have 20".
Also, note the placement of the speaker junction box.
The builders idea was to get the A/V stuff hidden away in a corner but I'll be placing my sub over there.
I'm also installing a PowerBridge to hide the cords to the TV.
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