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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone, I am new here and have been reading posts for the last couple of days.


The reason being, is I plan to change up my Mans Cave this winter.


Right now I have a rear projection 55" Samsung.

5 Mission speakers and 2 bose for center back.

7.1 AMP (No HDMI)


I plan to buy either Pioneer VSX-1120-K or the Onkyo TX-NR708. From what I have read here and other sites, both are pretty good,(I am leaning towards the Pioneer)


Plasma or LCD between 55" to 60" depending what goes on sale.

Set-up is in a basement so I have no problem going with Plasma.


Now here is the part I need some advice with.


My TV will be set-up on a wall where behind it is a unfinished closet and crawl space.


I plan to build a in-wall cabinet for all AV equipment.


Now my dilemma comes with the speakers, I love my Mission speakers, but the fronts are bookshelf speakers about 12" deep and pretty heavy.


I thought about selling them and getting some HTD HD-W65 in wall speakers, problem is that behind the wall is empty space.


Then I thought, maybe I could make cut-outs for my Mission speakers, and recess them in the wall?


Any advice on the front speakers? I want a very clean look with nothing on the floor.


Thanks
 

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If you can live with the inherent performance limitations of in-walls, go for it.


Everyone must determine what is most important to them, aesthetic concerns, or suspension of dis-belief. There certainly are some good in-walls, but the limitations imposed on the enthusiast are un-acceptable to me.


Good luck
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FOH /forum/post/19546019


If you can live with the inherent performance limitations of in-walls, go for it.
Good in-wall speakers are not limited by any means. In fact, I challenge that they could be a better solution in many environments due to their designs.


Before everyone or anyone gets excited, let me explain. Speakers placed near boundaries will always suffer from Speaker Boundary Interference Response (SBIR). This is a type of comb filtering, but the jist is there will be a cancellation at a certain frequency (or frequencies depending on the number of boundaries and their proximity to the speaker). This results from the wave emitted from the speaker bouncing back in a destructive manner with the bounced wave 180 degrees out of phase with the emitted wave. The end result is a cancellation, or notch, around a specific frequency which is a function of the distance of the speaker from the boundary. The closer the speaker, the higher in the frequency spectrum the cancellation occurs. This is the reason why 3.5 feet is recommended for the placement of speakers from any boundary because 3.5 feet times 4 is 14 feet. 14 feet happens to be the wavelength of 80Hz which just happens to be the recommended crossover point from speakers to subs for exactly this reason. Since the cancellation occurs at 80Hz and this is the crossover point, it doesn't matter. The closer your speakers get to the boundary, the higher your crossover should be, but this runs into other problems since most subwoofers are designed to be crossed over at this point with a gradual rolloff after this point. So, if we place the speaker closer and closer to the boundary, the higher the notch occurs in the frequency spectrum. Eventually, we reach a point of 0 distance. If we have 0 distance, then we no longer have a notch to worry about. For this reason, and others, inwalls are perfectly fine to use provided they meet other required specifications. Hope this helped! Best wishes!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FOH /forum/post/19546019


If you can live with the inherent performance limitations of in-walls, go for it.

Good flush mounted speakers will exceed the performance of free standing ones in all areas except sound-stage depth.


You get freedom from diffraction plus 3-5dB more headroom/efficiency/sensitivity for the same driver sizes.


Most "in-wall" speakers are bad, just like most free standing ones but the problems aren't inherent to the format.
 

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Not to mention less baffle step headache and more uniform directivity and power response.


Despite these many technical advantages, however, I've never been especially fond of in wall or baffled designs. All working theories to explain why that might be have been full of technical or logical holes so for now I try to keep an open mind that I just haven't heard the best possible implementation of this.


More direct to the thread topic.... If you recess your missions it changes the way the speaker interacts with the boundary and the crossover was not designed to work that way. You will create a step in the frequency response that shouldn't be there and is undesirable. It can be corrected with crossover mod but isn't trivial. It can be corrected with active eq but your chosen receivers probably won't handle it.


Perhaps getting suggestions for well designed in wall options is the better path to explore.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigus /forum/post/19547281



More direct to the thread topic.... If you recess your missions it changes the way the speaker interacts with the boundary and the crossover was not designed to work that way. You will create a step in the frequency response that shouldn't be there and is undesirable. It can be corrected with crossover mod but isn't trivial. It can be corrected with active eq but your chosen receivers probably won't handle it.


Perhaps getting suggestions for well designed in wall options is the better path to explore.

Thanks


Now what about the problem of the backside of the wall, where I will be installing in-wall speakers is open cavity (closet).


Most people who install in-wall speakers are inside a closed space. I will have all three front speakers sharing the same space.


I will try to take some pictures later tonight to better explain what I want to do.


As far as good in-wall speakers go, can anyone comment on JBL LS326W 2-Way 6.5" & HTD's HD-W80 8" aluminum woofer 1" aluminum/ceramic swivel tweeter.
 

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Yes, if you go with inwalls, the space you utilize for the back wave must be tended to. A discrete, damped(fiberglass), sub enclosure would be ideal. Additionally your concerns wrt the 3 units sharing the same space is certainly less than ideal.


Plan extensively for placement. Symmetry across the front is ideal. I'd use identical LCR, not a L&R with an horizontal center. If possible, each tweeter should be dead on axis with the LP. Foam for back wave treatment is much less effective than fiberglass (OC703 or equiv., or compressed fluffy fiberglass as well), the density is key. Thin weatherstripping type gasketing or similar is important between the speaker surface and the mounting surface.


Attention to detail and as much dampening as possible would be very high on my list of priorities.


As far as specific products I'm not much help. However, the basic tenets of HT do not change. A robust, high sensitivity/output capability in as linear fashion as possible. Axial optimization wrt the listening position. Some measure of directivity control would also be a plus. Ample displacement in the lowest passband above the sub crossover.


Good luck
 

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Any decent in wall speaker will include an enclosing box. It doesn't matter if they are in an open or closed wall. If it does matter, you could always enclose that part of the wall. Never looked at in wall speakers - you might have the ideal set up for them - and they can sound very good. You could try setting your speakers back into the wall - might be fine - if not all you've done is made a hole in the wall - which you could later fill with an inwall speaker.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo /forum/post/19546229

Good in-wall speakers are not limited by any means. In fact, I challenge that they could be a better solution in many environments due to their designs........

You bring up some good points and I agree.


I've spent time with highly optimized in-walls, or more accurately soffit mounted studio mains
In-walls, when properly designed and installed, they can achieve an acoustic coupling that launches the wavefront in a manner that has a transient accuracy, top to bottom, that's exciting. However, as you stated, the frequency dependent destructive interference occurring from adjacent boundaries can be addressed by adequate spacing. In my 2 channel, free standing speaker systems, the "rule of thirds" has served me well in proper reproduction of the recorded event. Imaging, both lateral, and wrt depth, are significantly affected by the proximity of the adjacent surfaces. Now I've enjoyed in-walls in my own listening room (25 years ago) for some of the reasons you touched upon, and the cool factor as well.


The in-walls discussed here, are highly comprimised. Whether or not the approx $100-$200 in-wall in question w/the OP, has the proper design characteristics, wrt baffle step and FR, I don't know. However the inherent limitations I'm referring to, aside from placement optimization, are directivity control, structural excitation (affecting both room components, and potential vibrational inter-mod driver to driver), variable polar response aberrations (ami-able tweeter, captive mid).


Years ago, I experimented somewhat with addressing some of these issues, and in my experience, one can mitigate some of the problems with these mainstream pieces, but extensive effort must be put forth to passably implement in-walls for mains usage in HT. The ideal placement for HT requires multi-faceted, angular front walls, that need to be relatively inert. To hit one LP on axis requires angling the L & R appropriately. To hit more than one row requires additional height and subsequent downward aiming. To merely achieve the proper on axis optimization, requires so much extensive design, construction or retro-fitting from the install. To do in-walls properly, much is required by the owner. That is taking for granted that the product is worthy of the effort. IOW, the in-wall is of sufficient capability to provide an in room presentation of frequency and phase linearity, adequate displacement and subsequent output/octave as to prevent appreciable large signal compression, a suitable level of controlled directivity and uniformity of polar response as to present a nice, even, room response.


So, considering the effort involved, one either chooses stealth and aesthetic concerns, or a more performance first approach. To me, the two seem mutually exclusive in the realm of enthusiast HT. We're not talking about soffit mounted studio mains.




Back to the OPs situation and others similarly faced, when I'm contributing information, I feel that using mainstream in-walls for LCR use, are just too compromised in many aspects. Either one must be pursue performance or stealth/aesthetics. If one needs both, the price and complexity escalates quickly. It's my opinion, of course, but it is consistant with my experience.



Good Luck
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drew Eckhardt /forum/post/19546720


Good flush mounted speakers will exceed the performance of free standing ones in all areas except sound-stage depth.


You get freedom from diffraction plus 3-5dB more headroom/efficiency/sensitivity for the same driver sizes.


Most "in-wall" speakers are bad, just like most free standing ones but the problems aren't inherent to the format.

They do have some problems that are inherent to the format. Placement optimization, wrt proper, on axis listening, requires substantial effort via multiple facets, or angles of the respective wall in which they're mounted.


As you pointed out, the half space environment achieves output advantages in the critical rock-n-roll octaves, but it also exhibits additional modal room excitation unlike free-standing speakers off the walls would do. However, as you said, the chief advantage is potential freedom from diffraction problems.


But you and I are discussing the theoretical, and soffit mounted mains. And yes, most in-walls are highly comprimised. And when the HT owner installs them, they become even more comprimised. Stealth and aesthetics, or performance.
 

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One additional item, consider the HF diffraction associated with this surface! Check out the area around the swivel tweeter, and the surface irregularities.




This was the OPs prospective in-wall. I like the nice big 8" driver, and for the msrp, quite a nice apparent value.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo /forum/post/19549375


FOH,



OP, if you are seriously considering inwalls, my personal preference is Triad. This addresses your cavity problem. Although, I would still fill the cavities with standard insulation anyway. Best wishes!

Triad? That's my point. Excellent products however when one chases performance in-walls, the costs escalate quickly. Those nice Triad in-walls still need purpose built, angular walls, to achieve Audio 101 (on axis aiming).


So, if you're going to build the L&R walls to specific angles, and the center section needs to be addressed as well (angled downward toward the primary LP). While you're doing this, you may as well construct them in a way that approaches being as inert as possible.


This illustrates to me, that to optimize in wall use, you've really got a great deal of work to do. Then, no tweaking, no movement...period. As I said, wrt decent performance at realistic high value to mid level products, it's just not happening.


To the OP, Netsrac1967, I'm just trying to lay everything before you for inspection. Perhaps on axis listening isn't as big a priority to you. More HT performance can be had, with properly optimized, non-inwalls. By properly optimized, I mean one can with a little effort extract 100% of the capability out of a given product.


Example;

To achieve good response and coverage to a multi-position seating area (typical), I like 3 identical mains across the front. Positioned so that they are all at the same height, say 6'6" feet high to the HF center.

Left aimed down and in, center aimed down, right aimed down and in.


Achieving this ideal with non inwalls, very easy. To achieve this with inwalls, major effort at substantial baffle wall cost. That is audio 101, on axis listening to the mid and hf components. I've walked Cedia and seen the various inwalls available. A few minutes ago I perused the web for more. There is some nice products, many that have some aim-able HF. But each had obvious compromises, and as I stated, in my opinion, to optimize these products for proper in room use, huge effort on the part of the owner must be put forth.


Good luck
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FOH
Triad? That's my point. Excellent products however when one chases performance in-walls, the costs escalate quickly. Those nice Triad in-walls still need purpose built, angular walls, to achieve Audio 101 (on axis aiming).


So, if you're going to build the L&R walls to specific angles, and the center section needs to be addressed as well (angled downward toward the primary LP). While you're doing this, you may as well construct them in a way that approaches being as inert as possible.


This illustrates to me, that to optimize in wall use, you've really got a great deal of work to do. Then, no tweaking, no movement...period. As I said, wrt decent performance at realistic high value to mid level products, it's just not happening.


To the OP, Netsrac1967, I'm just trying to lay everything before you for inspection. Perhaps on axis listening isn't as big a priority to you. More HT performance can be had, with properly optimized, non-inwalls. By properly optimized, I mean one can with a little effort extract 100% of the capability out of a given product.


Example;

To achieve good response and coverage to a multi-position seating area (typical), I like 3 identical mains across the front. Positioned so that they are all at the same height, say 6'6" feet high to the HF center.

Left aimed down and in, center aimed down, right aimed down and in.


Achieving this ideal with non inwalls, very easy. To achieve this with inwalls, major effort at substantial baffle wall cost. That is audio 101, on axis listening to the mid and hf components. I've walked Cedia and seen the various inwalls available. A few minutes ago I perused the web for more. There is some nice products, many that have some aim-able HF. But each had obvious compromises, and as I stated, in my opinion, to optimize these products for proper in room use, huge effort on the part of the owner must be put forth.


Good luck
Hmmm. Didn't need a whole lot of on axis aiming for the numerous Triad's I have setup. I find that Triad's do well with a "toe in" of 10-15 degrees, and you can give it a little toe-in in the wall and still keep the grill flush. This is all completely dependent on the tweeters. Some tweeters, such as Emotiva for example, require a very specific toe in for the best sound. Triad's aren't quite as constrained. It also completely depends on the seperation of the L/R speakers. If I am not against the side walls with the speakers, I generally don't toe them. No dedicated baffle wall is needed...your installed wall IS the baffle wall. Dedicated baffle walls are primarily constructed for free standing speakers...and I say generally. "Baffle walls" are constructed in dedicated theaters for in-wall use, but generally serve other puposes. IMHO, and experience, installation can generally be done in a day. Don't see the huge effort required.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow, really impressed with all the great responces.


Here are some pics of what I have now




This is a quick mock-up of what I want to do.


I will only have 2 speakers in the rear and take the center rear speakers and use them as High Fronts


In the left hand corner will be all AV equipment recessed in the wall.
 

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Netsrac,

I have no experience with high fronts. However I do see that your environment isn't perfectly suited for 7.1, so forgoing the 7.1 to and experimenting with front highs would be interesting. Inwalls, by design, don't allow too much experimentation, so proceed carefully.


Right away, by looking at your current setup, you could easily benefit by some very simple tweaks. For each of your front 3 speakers, aim them down directly at ear height by propping them up with some towels or something. The L and R should angle slightly in and down, and the center just aim downward. This should produce a very noticeable clarity change with vocals and dialog, and add a some very nice HF air (8k-16k) to everything up that high. Most speakers have quite a roll off off axis and it appears as if those high frequencies are aimed way above the seated listener's ears.


One of the side benefits of doing this is to de-couple the speaker from the cabinet it's sitting on as well. So a bit more clarity from reduced spurious vibrational garbage too. Additionally, you keep a little of the sound off the adjacent surfaces, and more toward the primary listening position.


I do like that all three of your fronts a in the same vertical plane. In my experience, even in the most modest of systems, that's quite beneficial. Now ideally they should be identical, but everything in time.


Good luck, and I do hope you're not put off by the theoretical sidebar discussions on inwalls, vs. non-inwalls.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
From what I am reading, it is better to go with this set-up



FOH, when I re-did my basement I wired for 5.1 as 7.1 did not exist yet (hense you can see the wires for the rear surround), so yeah you are right, it is not great for 7.1.


Now with amps allowing for front highs, I will be moving those 2 to the front, and will be able to hide the wires.


You are 100% right on the speakers, to bad I will only enjoy it until I redo everything



I am the audiophile within my family and friends, and love tech (can't always afford what I want though). Mind you, a lot of you guys and gals are way ahead of me.


My 55" rear projection cost $4K 6 years ago, now I can pick-up a 60" plasma for under $2k. (Which I plan to do
)


Funny this all started when I picked up a Xbox360 and found that the pic was not great on the rear projection.


So now need tv with HDMI and 1080P Cha-Ching (can't go smaller Min 55")

Also will now need an amp with HDMI switching Cha-Ching

Will need some new In-Wall Speakers Cha-Ching

Having the best Home thearter in my Family - Priceless
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraMikeBravo /forum/post/19551092


Hmmm. Didn't need a whole lot of on axis aiming for the numerous Triad's I have setup. I find that Triad's do well with a "toe in" of 10-15 degrees, and you can give it a little toe-in in the wall and still keep the grill flush. This is all completely dependent on the tweeters. Some tweeters, such as Emotiva for example, require a very specific toe in for the best sound. Triad's aren't quite as constrained. It also completely depends on the seperation of the L/R speakers. If I am not against the side walls with the speakers, I generally don't toe them. No dedicated baffle wall is needed...your installed wall IS the baffle wall. Dedicated baffle walls are primarily constructed for free standing speakers...and I say generally. "Baffle walls" are constructed in dedicated theaters for in-wall use, but generally serve other puposes. IMHO, and experience, installation can generally be done in a day. Don't see the huge effort required.


I still want to get the OP some good info, as well as discuss the theoretical merits of inwalls vs. non-inwalls.


I know a dedicated baffle wall isn't needed, if on axis orientation isn't going to be pursued. But, regardless of the level of system complexity, one of the first and most important basic tweaks one can perform, is on axis listening. Not only does it illicit the proper octave to octave spectral balance, it brings a wonderful secondary benefit of a reduction reflected to direct sound energy in room. In other words, directing more of the sound off the walls and into the primary LP. In many rooms, a reduction of reflected to direct sound oftentimes results in higher clarity, more sound stage detail and image specificity. So, the two primary benefits of proper on axis listening are the proper octave to octave spectral balance, and the reduction of the amount of reflected/direct energy at the LP.


Everyone may not view this in as simple terms as I do. In my opinion to use a speaker properly, regardless of type, complexity or cost, you aim the speaker away from the side walls and toward the primary listening position. Yes, there are tweeter swiveling products, and products that are static but achieve a "toed in" HF element. These product designers recognize the problem and attempt to mitigate what they can. However, 3k and above is aimed at you but 2900 and below isn't. Still problematic. To do it properly, the entire assembly should be gimbal mounted and rotated appropriately. Or, as studios approach it, the baffle wall wall is faceted to achieve the correct on axis listening environment.


From the products I find available, when I read;
Quote:
"Good in-wall speakers are not limited by any means.",

I certainly don't see it that way. Good inwalls are limited in a variety of ways.


If there are techniques or products out-there that are available that would show me that I shouldn't concern myself with these limitations, I'd appreciate some links. I'd love to be shown to be wrong, because so many people want good perfoming inwalls.
 
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