Center Channel in the Ceiling? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 19 Old 08-04-2018, 06:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Center Channel in the Ceiling?

I am building a new house. The A/V contractor installed the wired for all five (two rear, two front and one center) surround sound speakers in the ceiling, including the Center channel.

Is this really the best location for the center channel?
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post #2 of 19 Old 08-04-2018, 06:34 AM
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Center Channel in the Ceiling?

(facepalm) Really?

Also: suggest that as a new user you only post a question once in the appropriate section. Spamming into multiple sections may annoy the Moderators.
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post #3 of 19 Old 08-04-2018, 06:38 AM
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No

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post #4 of 19 Old 08-04-2018, 07:16 AM
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Fire that A/V contractor and get your money back. He obviously either completely misunderstood what you wanted or doesn’t know what he’s doing. In my opinion, the only speakers that belong in/on the ceiling are top channels in an Atmos setup.

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post #5 of 19 Old 08-04-2018, 07:24 AM
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LCR in the ceiling? If it was above your display, it wouldn't be too bad (provided you angle the speakers downwards). But in the ceiling? You could sue this so called "A/V contractor" you know.

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post #6 of 19 Old 08-04-2018, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected],com View Post
I am building a new house. The A/V contractor installed the wired for all five (two rear, two front and one center) surround sound speakers in the ceiling, including the Center channel.

Is this really the best location for the center channel?
This is what it has come to, here. I predicted it over a year ago.
Stop it.
The invention of the " sound system ceiling speaker" is as bad as the invention of the compressed music format.
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post #7 of 19 Old 08-04-2018, 01:01 PM
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If you install your display on the ceiling and move your surrounds to the floor and lay on your back, you should be okay.
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post #8 of 19 Old 08-05-2018, 06:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected],com View Post
I am building a new house. The A/V contractor installed the wired for all five (two rear, two front and one center) surround sound speakers in the ceiling, including the Center channel.

Is this really the best location for the center channel?
No, but if this is the way you must go for aesthetics or for some other reason, then you will want to really do thorough research on your speaker selection. Not necessarily a total loss, but it's not the way the majority of folks you encounter here would go. Do NOT buy anything that the A/V contractor recommends as far as speakers go.

Can you give more info as to the genesis of the decision made by the contractor? Was this their recommendation, and was this contractor hired by you, or the building contractor?
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post #9 of 19 Old 08-08-2018, 08:24 PM
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My house has this. It's horrible. In ceiling surrounds is one thing but having the lcr up there stinks. Dialog intelligibility is not good. I have to add 3db to the avr trim for the center. Avoid at all costs!
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post #10 of 19 Old 08-12-2018, 06:28 PM
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I have to chime in on this: I also have a 5-speaker in ceiling setup, which was required by an extremely odd room arrangement for a great room home theater setup. I had two different, well-respected home theater dealers look over my room and (in addition to my wife's strong concerns about speaker placement) they both concluded that floor standing speakers would simply not work. I wound up with 5 matched high-end Niles Audio speakers with tweeters able to be aimed at the main listening position, and I have been very pleased with the sound quality -- pleased, mind you, not just settling for "well, it's OK for what I could do." I have run Audyssey XT32 and have all my speakers well matched with my SVS sub output and have never had any issues with dialog intelligibility or bass.

Now, for most people, I would agree that the best floor standing and bookshelf speakers would probably produce the best sound, but sometimes, they are just not feasible. My setup demonstrates (subjectively, I admit) that ceiling speakers can provide a satisfying experience.
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post #11 of 19 Old 08-14-2018, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by [email protected],com View Post
I am building a new house. The A/V contractor installed the wired for all five (two rear, two front and one center) surround sound speakers in the ceiling, including the Center channel.

Is this really the best location for the center channel?
You should tell us what this room is like. Is this a dedicated closed media room? If so your contractor is definitely screwing you over. If he's just doing pre-wire it may not even matter though.


If its something like an open-walled family room then it can be a different story. I have all in-ceiling speakers for my 3rd-tier setup in an upstairs living area. In-wall wasn't an option and this is going to be a kids room so they are never going to get used anyway. They actually don't sound too bad. I'm not a speaker expert but I think they are not direct firing speakers so it doesn't sound like they are coming from a specific point.
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post #12 of 19 Old 02-18-2020, 11:03 PM
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Sorry for the bump - but I'm running into this problem. We have a fireplace and are putting our LG C8 over the mantle tomorrow. My wife doesn't want to use a sound bar for aesthetics and there is pre-wiring for 2 rears, and LCR all in the ceiling.

I found this guy that is an "IN CEILING CENTER CHANNEL" and thought it might be okay.

Keep in mind that I have a home theater with a full 5.1 in my theater room. This is just the living room.

See photo mockup here (you can see the plates where the ceiling stuff goes).

It's basically - can I do ceiling mounts and have it sound better than the tv audio.
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post #13 of 19 Old 02-20-2020, 11:47 AM
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I'd do the sound bar. Certainly better to look at than the wall plate currently showing between the TV and the mantle. Look at getting a three channel passive soundbar instead of a powered soundbar, which has lots of bells and whistles but poor sound quality. Then use a standard receiver to power the sound bar and the rear surrounds in the ceiling.

There are a lot of options from major speaker producers. Try to avoid the two or three inch "woofer" versions, as they will tend towards a tinny sound. See the options from Golden ear, Phase tech, Def tech, PSB, Paradigm, KEF, Monitor Audio, HTD, to name just a few. If you want perfect matching, Triad will make a soundbar specifically for your needs, including length and finish to match the TV. Mounted to the bottom of the TV, it will appear to be all one unit. You will need to have a subwoofer somewhere in the room, as well.

If you absolutely positively must use in-ceiling speakers, be sure you use angled speakers. Measure the angle from the speaker position to your seated ears. Now subtract 30 degrees (where most speakers maintain good off axis frequency response) from that number. The remainder is the minimum angle of the in-ceiling speaker to assure good frequency response at your seat. RSL has fully angled speakers with a 15 degree built-in angle. Paradigm and Golden ear have in-ceiling speakers with a built-in 30 degree angle. Triad, Sonance, and Def tech have options with 45 degrees built in. Do the math, so you do it right the first time. You don't want to be back here again in 6 months complaining about unintelligible dialog and missing frequencies.

In any case, "hidden/pretty" always costs extra. It's the nature of the beast.
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It's a VIRTUAL channel unless stated otherwise.

Last edited by RayGuy; 02-20-2020 at 12:17 PM.
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post #14 of 19 Old 02-20-2020, 07:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ocelittle View Post
Sorry for the bump - but I'm running into this problem. We have a fireplace and are putting our LG C8 over the mantle tomorrow. My wife doesn't want to use a sound bar for aesthetics and there is pre-wiring for 2 rears, and LCR all in the ceiling.
...

It's basically - can I do ceiling mounts and have it sound better than the tv audio.
Well, most likely it may sound better but you will tell it is from the ceiling.
For casual watching, you have no other choice per the mandate from the top.
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post #15 of 19 Old 02-20-2020, 08:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
I'd do the sound bar. Certainly better to look at than the wall plate currently showing between the TV and the mantle. Look at getting a three channel passive soundbar instead of a powered soundbar, which has lots of bells and whistles but poor sound quality. Then use a standard receiver to power the sound bar and the rear surrounds in the ceiling.

There are a lot of options from major speaker producers. Try to avoid the two or three inch "woofer" versions, as they will tend towards a tinny sound. See the options from Golden ear, Phase tech, Def tech, PSB, Paradigm, KEF, Monitor Audio, HTD, to name just a few. If you want perfect matching, Triad will make a soundbar specifically for your needs, including length and finish to match the TV. Mounted to the bottom of the TV, it will appear to be all one unit. You will need to have a subwoofer somewhere in the room, as well.

If you absolutely positively must use in-ceiling speakers, be sure you use angled speakers. Measure the angle from the speaker position to your seated ears. Now subtract 30 degrees (where most speakers maintain good off axis frequency response) from that number. The remainder is the minimum angle of the in-ceiling speaker to assure good frequency response at your seat. RSL has fully angled speakers with a 15 degree built-in angle. Paradigm and Golden ear have in-ceiling speakers with a built-in 30 degree angle. Triad, Sonance, and Def tech have options with 45 degrees built in. Do the math, so you do it right the first time. You don't want to be back here again in 6 months complaining about unintelligible dialog and missing frequencies.

In any case, "hidden/pretty" always costs extra. It's the nature of the beast.
TV is up now, I think we have to do the ceilings.

There are angled speakers I found on Amazon. I haven't looked too far into reviews yet.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0176SKBPM...v_ov_lig_dp_it

Keep in mind, fidelity is not the biggest concern for this. I have a full 5.1 in my home theater with a projector and yada yada.

This review is promising:
https://www.outeraudio.com/5252w-sil...iling-speaker/

Last edited by ocelittle; 02-20-2020 at 08:54 PM.
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post #16 of 19 Old 02-20-2020, 08:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ocelittle View Post
TV is up now, I think we have to do the ceilings.

There are angled speakers I found on Amazon. I haven't looked too far into reviews yet.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0176SKBPM...v_ov_lig_dp_it

Keep in mind, fidelity is not the biggest concern for this. I have a full 5.1 in my home theater with a projector and yada yada.
Wasn't aware those even existed. Seems like a good budget choice, assuming you will not ask them to do much in the way of dBs.

Yada, yaha, right back at ya!

It's a VIRTUAL channel unless stated otherwise.
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post #17 of 19 Old 02-20-2020, 08:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
Wasn't aware those even existed. Seems like a good budget choice, assuming you will not ask them to do much in the way of dBs.

Yada, yaha, right back at ya!


Thanks for making me feel a little more safe about my buy. I'll update here when I have them installed (probably a week or so).
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post #18 of 19 Old 02-20-2020, 09:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ocelittle View Post


Thanks for making me feel a little more safe about my buy. I'll update here when I have them installed (probably a week or so).
Curious how they will perform, at this price level ... they may be a budget champ ...

It's a VIRTUAL channel unless stated otherwise.

Last edited by RayGuy; 02-20-2020 at 09:58 PM.
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post #19 of 19 Old 02-21-2020, 11:31 AM
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Another option:



https://rslspeakers.com/c34e-ceiling-speaker/

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