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Sound system for a 4000 sq ft gym

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
My friend and I are opening a fitness/training studio in a 4000 sq ft space (it's a big rectangle). We obviously need music but are unsure about kind/quantity of speakers and receiver needed. Most likely, we will be providing music via a PC playing iTunes, Pandora, or one of the cable box channels.

Location - Do we place one big boy in each corner? Four down medium size units down each wall? Etc.
Wattage - Per speaker? Receiver - how much per channel?
Speaker - Size??

It won't need to be thumping like a club but obviously loud enough for people to hear.

We are going in completely as virgins on audio so any simple recommendations on where to begin would be appreciated. Thanks!
post #2 of 21
I'd be looking in to some of the cheaper pro audio stuff for speakers. Their high efficiency gives them the ability to play loudly without a robust, powerful amplifier, and you can get something decent fairly cheap. What is your budget?
post #3 of 21
Ask on a pro-sound forum, your application is way beyond the capacity of consumer level gear. Here's one:
http://www.djforums.com/forums/forum...-Amps-Speakers
post #4 of 21
I'm a member on djforums also. Not a bad place to ask, but be careful on there, there's a lot of trolls. Any questions you have, I can try and answer for you as well.
post #5 of 21
I do consulting and technical support for the Gym I go to (including member management and billing/check in software).

They are a 12K Sq Ft facility and do fine with basically 1 speaker for every 750 Sq Feet.

You could do 6 in ceiling speakers and a 70v amp with source and be fine.
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by curlyroger View Post

My friend and I are opening a fitness/training studio in a 4000 sq ft space (it's a big rectangle).

Tell us more about the space. We talking weights or spin/P90X/MMA style gym???? Pics would be nice.
Warehouse setup?
Drop ceilings?
What are your goals?
Budget?

Quote:
Originally Posted by curlyroger View Post

Location - Do we place one big boy in each corner? Four down medium size units down each wall? Etc.
Wattage - Per speaker? Receiver - how much per channel?
Speaker - Size??

Depends in your ceiling ect... I personally don't like being blasted when working my calves so the people in the middle of the gym on the bench can hear the music. If the speakers are high enough it wouldn't be all that bad.

Quote:
Originally Posted by curlyroger View Post

It won't need to be thumping like a club but obviously loud enough for people to hear.

Honestly man, the music really doesn't have to be that much at all!!! I'm a gym rat and barely notice my gym doesn't even play music. I'm sure you, like me and most other people bring their own tunes regardless... Low background music for some nice ambiance would probably suit your application best.

Quote:
Originally Posted by curlyroger View Post

We are going in completely as virgins on audio so any simple recommendations on where to begin would be appreciated. Thanks!

Good luck with your gym man... Tough business for sure.
post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinjuku View Post


You could do 6 in ceiling speakers and a 70v amp with source and be fine.

Yes, if all you want is background elevator music. For Zumba etc., not really.
post #8 of 21
Who knows without knowing a little more, but perhaps a pair of quality active DSP contoured, JBL, QSC, etc, 15" two ways (whichever box actually possesses bass into the 30's), mount them safely high along a wall and aim them down whereby they're covering the intended area.

What's available these days active, dsp etc, is superb. If you're doing this yourself, go to a local pro audio sales joint, which may be a small shop, explain what you want. Many such small operators are very knowledgeable and install as well. Also, there's likely a big pro audio outfit in your area as well, get their take on your needs.

My take

Good luck
post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks in advance everyone. Lots of good advice.

Our budget is $1500 for the audio system. I was figuring I could buy a receiver with enough wattage to power four speakers @ 100-200 watts per channel. Obviously not a home theater system but a $400+ receiver with the rest going towards speakers. I guess six channels would need an amp or maybe there are receivers that do that? I'm guessing just PA speakers that a wedding DJ would use. It seems they are "industrial" looking enough and would fit the need. I was looking at all consumer grade equipment, but I will take a look at djforums regarding pro-grade.

The space is 40x100 with open warehouse style ceilings with lights and ceiling fans up high. The speakers would go up in that ceiling space somewhere. Hung by chains or using some kind of commercial mount I suppose.

The facility will be for athletic-based training with a heavy focus on boot camp fitness classes (ala CrossFit, P90X) but still function as a regular member-based gym. The music will function mostly as background ambiance but still need to be loud enough to be part of the boot camp experience. It won't need to be a Zumba-level experience though.

@popaluck - The gym business is tough indeed... but we have a huge client base ready to join us, so we are confident we'll succeed. I'm still terrified nonetheless.
post #10 of 21
With a facility that large, I'm thinking you may want to go this route:

post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post

Yes, if all you want is background elevator music. For Zumba etc., not really.

Ya, I don't know if they are doing group fitness etc. My gym has a separate class room where they can jam it out and it doesn't bleed into the rest of the gym.

More needs assessment need be done.
post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by curlyroger View Post

Thanks in advance everyone. Lots of good advice.

Our budget is $1500 for the audio system. I was figuring I could buy a receiver with enough wattage to power four speakers @ 100-200 watts per channel. Obviously not a home theater system but a $400+ receiver with the rest going towards speakers. I guess six channels would need an amp or maybe there are receivers that do that? I'm guessing just PA speakers that a wedding DJ would use. It seems they are "industrial" looking enough and would fit the need. I was looking at all consumer grade equipment, but I will take a look at djforums regarding pro-grade.

The space is 40x100 with open warehouse style ceilings with lights and ceiling fans up high. The speakers would go up in that ceiling space somewhere. Hung by chains or using some kind of commercial mount I suppose.

The facility will be for athletic-based training with a heavy focus on boot camp fitness classes (ala CrossFit, P90X) but still function as a regular member-based gym. The music will function mostly as background ambiance but still need to be loud enough to be part of the boot camp experience. It won't need to be a Zumba-level experience though.

@popaluck - The gym business is tough indeed... but we have a huge client base ready to join us, so we are confident we'll succeed. I'm still terrified nonetheless.

So the trick is finding something that can be a little unobtrusive.

You could do some smaller 8/10" passive monitors and a mixing console. This will let you set it for background music and also notch it up a bit for classes/boot camps.

You could start out with four EUROLIVE B212XL-WH. Add on if needed. Get a 6 or 8 channel pro-audio device like the Tascam TASUS1800 and four channels of amplification like the Carvin DCM 2004l.

My only reasoning behind the Tascam/Amp combo vs a powered mixer is that you connect via USB and can simply stream to it. Others with current product knowledge may have a better solution.

This will fit your budget and cable runs seem like they will be short enough in a 4000 Sq Ft space.

Good luck with the Gym Business. After 700 plus gyms of all sizes that I have worked with it is indeed a labor intensive endeavor.
post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by curlyroger View Post

My friend and I are opening a fitness/training studio in a 4000 sq ft space (it's a big rectangle). We obviously need music but are unsure about kind/quantity of speakers and receiver needed. Most likely, we will be providing music via a PC playing iTunes, Pandora, or one of the cable box channels.

Location - Do we place one big boy in each corner? Four down medium size units down each wall? Etc.
Wattage - Per speaker? Receiver - how much per channel?
Speaker - Size??

It won't need to be thumping like a club but obviously loud enough for people to hear.

We are going in completely as virgins on audio so any simple recommendations on where to begin would be appreciated. Thanks!

What ceiling height are we talking about here? Also do you have ceiling access? If you have ceiling access, I think you would be better off with multiple in-ceiling speakers, one for every 700 to 800SF. A speaker in the corner will be too loud for the people in that area.
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post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by curlyroger View Post

@popaluck - The gym business is tough indeed... but we have a huge client base ready to join us, so we are confident we'll succeed. I'm still terrified nonetheless.

Off topic, but there are two things I have learned from my business dealings.

1. Never go too big too soon.
2. Make sure you have enough funding stashed away to weather the ups and downs for at least a year...

Back on topic. If you are doing a boot camp you could probably just get a few high efficiency Pro speakers and have them on stands right in front of your mats or bootcamp area. You could crank it during bootcamp and have it low during normal business.

Get a small reciever with like 90 watts per channel and your set. You could hook up your reciever to the headphone jack on your ipod or PC.

There is probably some decent equipment in Craigslist. Evenso, I recommend you head into guitar center and tell them your scenario. That should at least give you an idea of whats available, and more importantly, let you audition speakers for some good first hand listening experience.

As a small business owner, you should focus on surviving by being as conservative as possible with your funds. Your customers could give two cents about 30hz extension when your blasting their glutes...lol
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by popalock View Post

As a small business owner, you should focus on surviving by being as conservative as possible with your funds. Your customers could give two cents about 30hz extension when your blasting their glutes...lol

As an owner myself and a consultant (and software dev) the thing I always ask my clients to consider: Is the money spent an investment or trying to do something as cheaply as possible? Is everything is a cost center and never a profit center or is it a return on investment.

Too many owners want to cheap out on everything and that mindset quickly gets them to the ex-owner status. I have seen it countless times. You can do it right without breaking the bank.

Now back to the regularly scheduled thread discussion
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by BllDo View Post

With a facility that large, I'm thinking you may want to go this route:

What are you doing in my house?
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by popalock View Post

2. Make sure you have enough funding stashed away to weather the ups and downs for at least a year...

Aha,...In the world of advantage card playing, of which I've been a party to over a considerable length of time, the axiom is "You've got to have the bucks, to sustain the flux".

Good advice for sure....
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinjuku View Post

As an owner myself and a consultant (and software dev) the thing I always ask my clients to consider: Is the money spent an investment or trying to do something as cheaply as possible? Is everything is a cost center and never a profit center or is it a return on investment.

Too many owners want to cheap out on everything and that mindset quickly gets them to the ex-owner status. I have seen it countless times. You can do it right without breaking the bank.

Now back to the regularly scheduled thread discussion

I agree with your stance and given you own a gym and are a consultant, who am I to argue. With that said, given a strict budget are you saying that they shouldn't do anything at all vs. trying to save budget on their sound setup? We know they have $1,500 to spend and if you think they can get what they need out of that budget then cool. Pro audio is not my forte, so I am not as attuned to all of the product offerings as some are.

I actually used to own a night club in Texas. It was a large space and we ended up dropping about $25K on the sound equipment alone. While it definitely rocked the house, half of that budget would have been better utilized breaking up the space a bit more and with smaller spaces we would have needed less power to fill the dance floor.

As you mentioned in your previous post Jinjuku, your gym has a seperate class room which allows group fitness (boot camp, spinning, etc...) to jam out during their sessions.

In my opinion it might be a worthwhile investment to ensure the layout is condusive to what they are trying to accomplish even at the expense of getting exactly what they want from an audio perspective. Again, I'm not in the business, and given the few scant details we have been provided it's really hard to get a feel of the actual layout and what would be best for their scenario.

Nothing but good intentions here...
post #19 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by popalock View Post

I agree with your stance and given you own a gym and are a consultant,

Oh no, I don't own a gym. My gym is simply the one I go to. And they were doing a lot of things wrong:

1. Paying a receivables management company (they bill your customers) a whopping 8.64% GROSS to do what is 15 minutes worth of batch billing every month.

2. Paying a R.M. Company to do billing and at the first sign of a problem (like card expired) sent out a strongly worded letter or phone call. This would cause a member of long standing (some 12 years or better) to come in and ask WTH? Paying 8.64% to NOT be able to manage your image.

3. 8.64 % GROSS roughly translates to 25% NET. Like having a partner that shows up for 15 minutes a month.

4. They couldn't even do email blasts (marketing) with their prior product. We sorted that out first thing. If the #'s are correct I saved them $7000 from Oct 2011 to the upcoming Oct. That's just on the billing side. Now we have the marketing side going

Quote:
Originally Posted by popalock View Post

With that said, given a strict budget are you saying that they shouldn't do anything at all vs. trying to save budget on their sound setup? We know they have $1,500 to spend and if you think they can get what they need out of that budget then cool. Pro audio is not my forte, so I am not as attuned to all of the product offerings as some are.

No disagreement with you on that count. I think if Tunes are an important value add then consider it an investment. Look to do it right at a budget. $1500 does sound about right (and may be a hundred or two less).

Quote:
Originally Posted by popalock View Post

I actually used to own a night club in Texas. It was a large space and we ended up dropping about $25K on the sound equipment alone. While it definitely rocked the house, half of that budget would have been better utilized breaking up the space a bit more and with smaller spaces we would have needed less power to fill the dance floor.

Hind sight is that dog that bit you in the keister after it is all said and done
The last mantra that I have: Be a business owner first and a gym owner second.

I have worked with too many that want to cheap out: They just want one cash drawer that three people have access to at the same time and then come to me and ask why their cash totals are off! Uh, Helloooo.

I point out that there are multiple check out lanes and the grocery, multiple pumps at the gas station, multiple clerks at the bank (plus an ATM) and you can see the drool slipping down from the corner of their mouth while the gears in their head smoke at the concept.
post #20 of 21
Curly,

Everything turn out ok? Send us some pics of your gym bro...
post #21 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks again everyone for all the input... I've neglected this part of our plan and am finally circling back around to it. We have spent the past month dealing with lawyers, leases, brokers, city, etc. -- opening a business is definitely not easy and has taken way longer than we've wanted. We've finally got the keys, are doing our demo/rebuilding as needed, have equipment on the way, etc. It is actually happening!!

Now that we are in the building, we are able to take a closer look, and there are 4 speakers of unknown kind in way up in the ceiling. The ceilings are about 20' (open rafter style), so we don't know exactly what is going on with them. If we are lucky, we can get up and connect wires and see what happens. If we can't recycle them, we're going to go with 4 x monitor/PA speakers similar to what Jinjuku suggested -- something in the $150-200 range. Whatever we have leftover will go towards the receiver...

Which leads me into 2 additional questions:
  1. We are going to have music powered via an Internet kiosk (46" touchscreen!) that will run all our software, control the user experience, and stream music. We also want to have an iPod hookup as well. To accomplish this, we need a very, very simple 2 channel mixer of some kind. It needs to be a cross between something like this which can be rack/flush mounted and this which is simple but an obvious POS. We are going to have audio cable from computer streaming music into the mixer and then out to the receiver. Users can then use the mixers to pick music or iPod and volume. This keeps receiver out of harms way and locked up. Any suggestions on a mixer?
  2. This leads to question 2.... the kiosk/computer/mixer/ipod will be 100' or more away from the receiver. Do I have to worry about sending audio that far? I intend for everything to be done via RCA cable (blasphemy I'm sure) -- iPod/computer/mixer are all RCA I guess -- so I need to get that back to the receiver. I see optical is an option but I don't know if a cable exists of that length or if I can convert it? I've also seen RCA injector/baluns that will allow me to send it over Ethernet which is much easier for cabling. Any suggestions on the ideal cable and audio connection to send the music?

@popalock - I agree with not going too big and surviving. Until we get cash flowing, we are cash bleeding. We're getting almost all brand new equipment ($$$$) and paying cash up front. This leaves us with no expensive monthly lease and leaves a shoestring budget for everything else. The equipment is what makes a facility though. Audio is one of the last items.

@Jinjuku - Your points about your gym doing everything wrong is correct -- this is why we are opening our own gym. I am a programmer and have written all the membership software with integrated access control door system, kiosk control center, workout software, etc... We handle all our clients with personal care and only have to pay ourselves, not anyone else. We are going to do this right!

@popalock again -- Pictures will come soon! RIght now, I just have pictures of the keys and of a big empty room.

Thanks again everyone.
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