I am new to the Triad speaker forum and I would like to ask for some advice about choosing Triad in-ceiling speakers for a finished basement that includes a basic home theatre (HT).
First here are the basement construction details: perimeter walls are poured concrete foundation and faced with 2x4 wood studs covered with 5/8” drywall attached with screws; interior walls are 2x4 wood studs covered with 5/8” drywall on both sides, attached with screws; the ceiling is a dropped (suspended) metal grid with 2’ x 2’ Armstrong 1” acoustical tiles, 8.5’ above the floor; the floor is 12mm Bruce laminate installed over an acoustic pad over a concrete sub-floor; the home theatre entertainment center was a DIY project using ¾” cabinet-grade plywood for shelves and backboard (all joints made with carpenter’s glue and screwed). The basement layout is shown in the attached PDF file.
Triad In-Ceiling Speakers.pdf 14k .pdf file
I now have a very basic (2.1) home theatre setup using a Pioneer 60” monitor (KRP-600M), a FIOS HD set-top box and a Panasonic Blu-ray player (DMP-BDT 210), both connected to the monitor via HDMI cables. I am using the Pioneer’s built-in amplifier (9W per channel) to drive a pair(L/R) of Energy Take Classic satellite speakers mounted on either side of the Pioneer monitor and I have an Energy S10.3 subwoofer using the high level inputs. I also have an Energy Take Classic center speak which is not currently in use. Seating in the HT is about 12’ from the monitor and there is an area rug on the floor between the seating and monitor.
My family is very pleased with our current HT setup, but we now want to expand our HT to a 5.1 or maybe a 7.1 setup. I was planning to keep my current Energy speakers and subwoofer and add additional Triad speakers to expand our HT.
I know that an upgrade to a 5.1 or 7.1 HT will involve the purchase of an A/V receiver (maybe an Onkyo TX-NR515) and installation of side and rear satellite speakers. Because the HT is part of an “open” basement floor plan, I would like to install in-ceiling (rather than in-wall or on-wall) speakers for the side and rear satellites. I understand that I will have to add additional support in the ceiling tile and metal ceiling grid to handle the weight of any type of in-ceiling speaker that I install. Triad offers many types of in-ceiling speakers from simple rounds (with and without back-box enclosures) to a wide variety of cabinet-type models (omni/satellite, surrounds, mini-monitor and monitor). Which Triad in-ceiling speakers are best for a drop-ceiling installation? Are some of these in-ceiling speakers better for side or rear satellites? I am also concerned with transmitting sound to the upper floor, so I am wondering if an enclosed speaker rather than an open speaker is a better choice? Are there any issues with “blending” the sound of the Energy L/R/C front speakers and the Triad in-ceiling side/rear satellite speakers? From an installation viewpoint, some of the Triad in-ceiling speakers may not fit because of their depth (there is a 5” clearance between the drop-ceiling grid and the bottom of the upper level floor joist, but if the speaker enclosure can be aligned between the floor joists the opening becomes much larger (the floor joists are 12” deep and spaced 16” apart)). Is there some flexibility in placing the Triad in-ceiling side/rear speakers to fit between floor joists without seriously compromising sound quality?
I also want to distribute stereo sound (music) through the rest of the basement area using Triad in-ceiling speakers in the drop-ceiling. I was thinking of using either two Triad bronze or silver rounds (either open or sealed) or a single silver DT (either open or sealed) for every 300 ft2 of coverage area (floor area). The sealed versions of these speakers have almost an 8” mounting depth so I would have to locate these speakers between two floor joists. Is the sound from the sealed round version much better than the open round version? Should I also consider the Triad mini-monitor or monitor speakers for this application? If I used two speakers (L and R) per coverage area, I would try to space them 6-10’ apart and at least 5’ from any wall. If I used the DT speaker I would try to center it in the coverage area. Based on the coverage area, I will probably have 4-5 right channel speakers and 4-5 left channel speakers. I was planning to connect each set of 4-5 speakers in parallel wire connections to an Onkyo M-282 amplifier that is capable of 125 watts (RMS) per channel.
I would appreciate any advice about the selection and placement of the Triad in-ceiling speakers. Thanks.