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As i'm sure you have all read numerous times before, I don't know much about home audio, and I would appreciate being able to bounce some ideas of some poeple in the know.


I recently moved into a house that has home audio throughout. There are 2 speakers (1 pair) in the study, 2 in the dining room, 2 in the master bed, 1 in kitchen 1 in the breakfast room, and 2 outdoor. The pre-wiring has already been done and there is a volume control switch in EACH of these 5 rooms for the pair of speakers. I also see where the previous equipment was used, but currently its nothing more than a rats nest of wires (although they are labeled for the appropriate location).


So this is what I'm thinking, and want some opinions from the others

1) I could get a 2 channel receiver, and a niles (or equivalent speaker switch)

a)would there be enough power to drive the speakers If I have 10 speakers coming from niles into a 100w receiver?

b)If i go this route do I need an amplifier?

c)how would I wire it? Wiring out from receiver, then to amp, then to switch and speakers? I would plan on having all speakers linked and just control the volume from each individual switch in the rooms.


2)would it make more sense to go with a 5 channel and put 2 speakers in each of the jacks getting 100w apiece? Is there anything else to consider going this route that I may be overlooking? Would I need a speaker switch in this setup?


3)Will the wall controls in each room work with either or both systems?


4)Any equipment recommendations? I initially dont want to spend more 500, but 300 would be preferred if that is even possible. But down the road, I can see myself putting 2k into this system, if I use it as much as I think I will.


Futher complicating this is that I don't know what ohm the speakers are. How important is that? and Is there any way to find out. I don't see any markings on the speakers, and only a cursive "R" on the individual room volume controls.


The previous owner was clueless and wasn't able to be of much help at all.


Any help would be greatly appreciated, and thanks for reading.
 

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Originally Posted by doctide /forum/post/20763516


As i'm sure you have all read numerous times before, I don't know much about home audio, and I would appreciate being able to bounce some ideas of some poeple in the know.


I recently moved into a house that has home audio throughout. There are 2 speakers (1 pair) in the study, 2 in the dining room, 2 in the master bed, 1 in kitchen 1 in the breakfast room, and 2 outdoor. The pre-wiring has already been done and there is a volume control switch in EACH of these 5 rooms for the pair of speakers. I also see where the previous equipment was used, but currently its nothing more than a rats nest of wires (although they are labeled for the appropriate location).

You're doing better than probably half of the questions/threads I see about "abandoned" structured wiring - at least things are labeled!


What I would suggest is getting a distribution amplifier, if possible, and driving each pair individually - you'll still feed a stereo signal from your pre-amplifier/receiver into the system, but will have a dedicated amplifier for each region. If that isn't possible, you can gang a pair of regions together on an amplifier with a pair of output terminals (AudioSource AMP100 is my first suggestion). You'll need pre-amp to provide the signal, and then you'll rely on the per-zone volume controls to adjust output level. The advantage of using multiple amplifiers (or a distribution amplifier with multiple inputs) is that you could (in theory) go with a receiver/pre-amp that features two auxiliary zones, and have separate audio signals in a few regions (for example, the kitchen/breakfast/outdoor area could be A and the bedroom could be B - they could of course monitor the same signal, but you could set B to monitor something different than A if desired).


Look at the Onkyo TX-NR808, Yamaha RX-A2000, or similar as examples of receivers that will support three zone output. The Onkyo TX-NR709 and Yamaha RX-A1000 will support two zones (I'm fairly sure the next model or two down will support that as well, to be quite honest), just as a point of reference. Depending on your main area's configuration, you may be able to use the receiver's amplifiers for some of the speakers (a single pair, most likely), and provide external amplifiers for the others (it won't save you a fortune, but it will save you some, and will simplify the overall wiring).


You can measure rough nominal impedance of the speakers with a multi-meter, just hook it up +/- to +/- on the wires and see what it says; no it isn't perfect, but it will give you an idea.
 
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