In-ceiling speaker placement for ambient whole house music - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 11 Old 02-02-2019, 12:34 PM - Thread Starter
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In-ceiling speaker placement for ambient whole house music

Hoping to get some advice on placement of 6.5” in-ceiling speakers. Our use case is just ambient whole house music. We’re not audiophiles but we’d like “ok”-or-better sound.

I’m not sure how many speakers we’d want or where to place them. We’re still in the framing phase so I have clear access everywhere.

The 2nd floor laundry room will have a rack for my networking equipment and will be the central location for all wiring.

We’re going to run 4x cat6 to all tv locations. If you have suggestions on where to run additional cat6 or other cabling, definitely would love to hear it.

And if you happen to know about security cameras, we’re trying to figure out optimal placement now. We’re thinking of using these: Hikvision Ds-2cd1341-i 4mp 2.8mm Lens Wide Angle Poe

Anyone willing to give advice?
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post #2 of 11 Old 02-03-2019, 10:42 AM
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Hi wooz,

Nice floorplan. It looks like a great building.

Designing a distributed audio system can take time and vary on what you want to achieve. Choosing the right speaker for function is important.

As an example, you may just want 6.5” in ceiling speakers in the kitchen, bedrooms, powder rooms etc.
Perhaps a single stereo moisture resistant speaker in powder rooms or en-suite?

Maybe you would like a 5.1 audio system for the family room or master bed? What about the deck or garden around the pool?

The best way to start is think about how many ‘zones’ of audio you may want, and what you’d like to do with them.
From there you can select the best suited kind or speaker, whether it be in-ceiling, in-wall, freestanding etc.


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post #3 of 11 Old 02-03-2019, 01:02 PM
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Just a thought in addition to this, if you’re looking for ideas for a wiring structure, you could have a look at my main thread where I’ve posted a wiring schedule of what was running for the property I was doing.


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post #4 of 11 Old 02-03-2019, 01:06 PM
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Nice floorplan from what I quickly saw.
I would prewire for speakers in every room.
staple the wire to a joist. Measure and video each wire end relative to two walls to triangulate.
Run all the wires to the central wiring closet.

Once drywall is done, make your speaker cutouts where you want to put Phase 1 speakers and wire them up and enjoy.
Then, when you want more, put more in.

The wiring is trivial price and effort when you are just after Plumbing / HVAC / high voltage electric. But before insulation.

Would take a day to do the whole deal.

Run 14/4 wiring. One run per pair of speakers. Daisy chain Left and Right for a given zone.

You run all the wires as a bundle at once for a logic run to minimize labor. Mark each wire end.
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post #5 of 11 Old 02-03-2019, 09:27 PM
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Mr Wooz,


Saving your floor plans if I ever win the lottery.... or strike oil... <Staircase reminds me of the "Clampett's">



House that size you'll wanna add wifi access points too.



Your garage would be my favorite place. Thinking mini bar, flat screen.... separate sound system? Would also add Tesla charging plugs.


Your choice of POE cameras are fine, would however add a firewall to better control bandwidth and secondary family access.



Speaking of access? Hows your cell coverage (CDMA & GSM). This stage, adding a booster antenna should be simple.


Fun project either way...Enjoy!
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post #6 of 11 Old 02-03-2019, 11:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobr8ks View Post
Mr Wooz,


Saving your floor plans if I ever win the lottery.... or strike oil... <Staircase reminds me of the "Clampett's">



House that size you'll wanna add wifi access points too.



Your garage would be my favorite place. Thinking mini bar, flat screen.... separate sound system? Would also add Tesla charging plugs.


Your choice of POE cameras are fine, would however add a firewall to better control bandwidth and secondary family access.



Speaking of access? Hows your cell coverage (CDMA & GSM). This stage, adding a booster antenna should be simple.


Fun project either way...Enjoy!

Funny you mention it - cell service is terrible. Do you mean something like this? https://www.amazon.com/zBoost-Antenn.../dp/B00LZX65T6
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post #7 of 11 Old 02-04-2019, 12:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Do you think this is overkill?
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post #8 of 11 Old 02-04-2019, 08:31 AM
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I'm keeping a close eye on this as I am getting ready to break ground on our house. What are you planning on using for your WHA system?

Beautiful plans as well!
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post #9 of 11 Old 02-04-2019, 09:51 AM
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Not sure I'd put 4 in ceiling speakers in many of those locations.
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post #10 of 11 Old 02-04-2019, 10:31 AM
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It's not overkill, you just may need to consider the placement of each speaker, within each room. If the in-ceiling speakers will double as TV and distributed audio speakers, they should be placed closer to the TV, equidistant to the main viewing/listening area.

I wouldn't put TVs above fireplaces, but some people love that.

Will a TV be installed in every marked location, immediately? If not, then bring the cables to outlet height, with plenty of slack. Power can be extended to TV height at a later time as well.

Speakers in balcony ceilings, if they're covered.

Remember DVC/single speakers are supplied by 14/4, as mentioned above. Each regular speaker would be supplied by 2 conductors each.

Might want to consider an alarm system. Phone system can double as a paging system. Any exterior gates will need cabling to 1 or more locations in the house.

Is laundry room large enough to accommodate the equipment? Laundry room may need a fan, for the additional heat from amps. You'll need a good deal of space for the amps and other control equipment.

Some areas may benefit from 8" in-ceiling speakers - sound is a little better. I would put a stereo pair of speakers in the garage, rather than 3 DVC speakers. Single stereo pair above the island may also sound better than the 4. Same with the breakfast area.

Trellis area may benefit from a speaker, or 2, if you plan of using that area to entertain.

Yard, pool, and outdoor kitchen will need sound. Conduit will be used to extend low voltage to the outdoor kitchen (from somewhere), plan accordingly.

Wire for automated/electric shades/drapes, especially for tall windows. I love my electric shade in front of the kitchen sink.

Family room may need a couple subwoofer locations cabled (coax cable). Or, position one or more subwoofers in the ceiling. Where else would you want a subwoofer?

Vacusweep/Cansweep are much, much better than Vacpan. You need one in the kitchen. Very easy to sweep, hard to get out the vac hose.



Our vac hose hangs on a wall of the laundry room closet, off the kitchen. Consider the 40 foot hose (standard is 30').

Water sensors may be useful, to turn off a water main valve in the event of a flood (2nd floor laundry room).

Consider control for the exterior lighting. Banks of switches at the front and back doors (and kitchen sink)? Or a better solution?

Natural gas to the grill? App control or automation of the gas fireplaces?

Considered lighting control?

HDMI isn't a good option to run to each TV, because of distance limitations. Try to keep the sources local (small cable client box and/or Roku hanging behind each wall-mount TV).

If you don't have a lot of experience, you should hire someone for guidance. Most builders are great at building, but hit or miss for AV details. They can't be good at everything.

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Last edited by Neurorad; 02-04-2019 at 10:36 AM.
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post #11 of 11 Old 02-07-2019, 04:57 AM
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Consider hotspotting of audio. For example, the speaker above the kitchen sink will hotspot like crazy for whoever is doing dishes or cooking on the stovetop. Avoid putting speakers directly above where people will be sitting/standing - looks like you might have that problem in the dining room or living room. Also by the pool, maybe push the speakers out towards where people's feet are, rather than centered close to their heads.

Speakers in the non-master closets seems like overkill to me - with smaller closets, people don't stand in there with the door closed, so the audio will flow in anyway. Same with the pantry - seems overkill.

You'll want to wire outdoor/rock/etc. speakers around the pool area and kitchen area, you probably want balanced coverage across the backyard, not just hot spots near the house.

Those are just a few things I saw. A professional will probably see a few more issues with your audio plan and make suggestions. Looking at the size of your house, and the amenities (i.e. total budget), it probably makes sense to bring one in.
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