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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Are there physical differences in these two types of speakers. I am looking into some new construction, and the home is wired for in ceiling speakers in all rooms. My question is can in wall speakers be used in the ceiling?


Secondly, I am not a big fan of the round 2 way speakers that are set up like 2 way car speakers. It seems that better sound would come from dedicated 2 way speakers (rectangular shaped rather than round). Is this true? For example, both 6.5 inch woofers with the exact same tweeters, just one has the tweeter placed over the woofer (round), and the other are seperate (rectangular).
 

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Well yes, there are physical differences, as mentioned in your second paragraph. Ceiling speakers tend to be round with the tweeter inside, while in-walls tend to be rectangular with tweeter above or below the woofer. I went with HTI-6C for my surrounds and zone 2 for Wife Approval Factor, since the rounds can blend in nicely with ceiling fixtures.


I am curious too if there are *acoustic* differences caused by the physical differences, or if they are only cosmetic. My neighbor has rectangular speakers in the ceiling, so that might be an option for you. The woofers of course on all these are not large, so you will not much bass.


And are you talking about using them for mains, or surrounds? My guess was that for surrounds it was less critical, but if you are using them for mains, then there could easily be localization issues. But let's get an expert opinion (or two, or several) please.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I will just be using them for stereo in different rooms all through the house. So, in my case none will be used for surround sound. I may look into setting up a surround sound system with inwall/inceiling speakers in the future.


And you are right, the round ones will blend better with the round in ceiling lights. However, I may be willing to sacrafice the look for better sound, if there is any difference, since these will be used strictly for music and I would like them to sound good at low to moderate volume levels.
 

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You can certainly install an in-wall in a ceiling and vice versa.


I tend to think that installation in the walls (regardless of speaker type) sounds better than in the ceiling. Most of this is because I'm used to music coming from in front of me (instead of above me), some of it is due to the direction/reflection (ie reflections are at/around ear-level instead of being captured in the floor) and I'd guess that part of it is due to the different construction/cavity of ceiling v wall.


I had one sales rep suggest that the separated drivers perform better due to interference and/or vibration with the concentric drivers. I don't know that I heard the difference or believed the rep.
 

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I doubt you would hear much difference between the round/ceiling or rectangle/wall speakers If you think the round will look better that is what I'd use. If you really like good sound maybe try to go up to a 8" driver for better bass response.


Scott
 

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Just my $0.02


I have my house wired for in ceiling speakers (all channels, except for ths sub) and ended up going back to a traditional front LCR setup for the front three speakers. The in ceilings I installed where the Sonance Virtuoso line with the privoting mid/tweeter for LCR and the RS2 for the surrounds. The surrounds sound just fine...I'll even say great, but I just couldn't get use to the center channel dialog being so high (10' ceilings), even with the pivoting feature of the speaker. Additionally, the L/R were wired too far apart IMHO (bonus of that is that they make great presence speakers when used with my Yamaha receiver).


I knew I was "really" right when my wife even said that the "TV" sounds a lot better once I moved the LCR from the ceiling to the "floor".


There are many variables to consider and it's not like I couldn't live with an all in ceiling sound solution, but since I had the resources, and more importantly, the wife's permission to get new LCRs and just had to do it (she didn't like the unnaturalness of the in ceiling center channel either).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Tucker
If you really like good sound maybe try to go up to a 8" driver for better bass response.
YMMV on this one, but the speakers with smaller bass drivers that I've heard gave consistently tighter bass with less chance of rattling the drywall. Of course, the extension isn't really there (it's not necessarily present with an 8" model, either), so a subwoofer would be required to fill in the bottom 1.5-2 octaves.


And I'm definitely with Frottage on the in-walls for LCR.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by frottage
Just my $0.02


I have my house wired for in ceiling speakers (all channels, except for ths sub) and ended up going back to a traditional front LCR setup for the front three speakers. The in ceilings I installed where the Sonance Virtuoso line with the privoting mid/tweeter for LCR and the RS2 for the surrounds. The surrounds sound just fine...I'll even say great, but I just couldn't get use to the center channel dialog being so high (10' ceilings), even with the pivoting feature of the speaker. Additionally, the L/R were wired too far apart IMHO (bonus of that is that they make great presence speakers when used with my Yamaha receiver).


I knew I was "really" right when my wife even said that the "TV" sounds a lot better once I moved the LCR from the ceiling to the "floor".


There are many variables to consider and it's not like I couldn't live with an all in ceiling sound solution, but since I had the resources, and more importantly, the wife's permission to get new LCRs and just had to do it (she didn't like the unnaturalness of the in ceiling center channel either).
Excellent points and I agree, but the OP is not using these for a surround system.


Scott
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Tucker
Excellent points and I agree, but the OP is not using these for a surround system.


Scott


Quite right, guess I should have read it more carefully then just babble on...BUT since I have distributed audio that uses in ceiling, I can say that they serve their intended purpose. That is general music for the dining area, and master bedroom. I haven't compared in wall vs in ceiling since the WAF was more important in these areas than the overall sound quality and the round speakers were a better match. The being said, the sound is not as bad as I thought it would it and the speakers seem quite capability, but then again, I'm not usually playing NIN while dining with guests in the formal dining area (classical, jazz all sound quite nice, but obviously are lacking at the low end).


Also depending on the size of the room, you may not need "large" speakers. You may be able to get by with 6-1/2 inch speakers. It's always easier to make the hole larger should you feel you need to upgrade.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks everyone, it looks like I have some decisions to make. From what I have read, I will most likely go with the round speakers, as they will blend better with the lighting.


Anyone have preferences as far as brands? I am not looking to break the bank, as these will not be used as my main source of music. I have a dedicated surround setup and one other stereo that will serve my "hi-end" music listening. I noticed that JBL makes some inwall/inceiling speakers, and the 6 1/2" run around 150 a pair. So I would like to stay around that price per pair, and of course the lower the better. Thanks all.
 

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I actually have not installed the JBL HTI-6Cs yet. Should note another WAF point: the baffles can be painted the ceiling color, if it is carefully sprayed. (Even Pink?) The instructions said you could in theory use a cardboard template as a paint shield, but I decided instead to take the baffle off, which unfortunately meant generally dis-assembling the whole speakers. Hope I can get them all back together again!


The HTI-6Cs are "made in China" from what looks like the same parts in the "Northridge" series, but what do you expect for that price? The quality looks decent. You can always get larger speakers in the future if you need more bass - just cut the hole larger, and leave some clearance from the rafters.


We also got the "rough in kit" which turned out to be just a cheap plastic ring. I suppose it might have helped make sure the drywallers cut the hole exactly in the right place the first time (where the wires were!). But you could also just use the cardboard template that comes with the speakers. Of course they will probably not play loud nor low. You can probably get much more expensive speakers, but B & H has free shipping. Also Best Buy carries JBL and one or two other brands.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by greguva
I own a pair of 10" NXGs as rear surrounds that I really like.
I'm curious what other in-wall speakers you've compared them to. I'm wondering if you could draw any parallels to other speakers since the NXGs aren't easy to audition.
 
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