Replacing in ceiling speakers - Home Theater Forum and Systems -

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post #1 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 12:42 AM Thread Starter
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Replacing in ceiling speakers

I had my system installed when we built our home. I had to stay within a small budget and I really did not apply enough time to research.

They installed seven Speakercraft Aim5 ones and a 100w sub. The ceilings are 10ft and the room is about 24' long and 19' wide. The tv is on the length of the room. So sitting furthest from the tv puts you about 20' from that 5in center channel speaker which gets me to my biggest complaint, It is hard to get good sound from the center. I have to turn up that channel to the max.

With all of that being said, would you try to replace the center in the ceiling by itself, which I assume would require cutting out a bigger hole in the ceiling?

My equipment is all in a closet and we do like the clean look of the in ceiling but that seems to have made it more difficult with replacing anything.

I have played and tweaked all the avr settings thinking it would help to no avail.

The avr is an Integra dtr 30.1.

I would like to start trying to improve the sound but I just don't know where to begin. In a smaller town with one installer, it's difficult to get good comparisons. The more I read, it seems like most people would not have the same size speaker in every slot.

Thanks in advance for any advice you have. I do appreciate it.
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post #2 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 04:16 AM
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Re: Replacing in ceiling speakers

Part of your problem may be that the center speaker (or actually all of them) is not facing the listeners. High frequencies (treble) is directional, so unless someone is sitting directly under one of the ceiling speakers there will be a treble roll off. I have seen ceiling mounted speaker brands that have the tweeter "aimable" that would help this, but I don't remember the brands. Canton may be one of them.

A better solution would be in-wall speakers if your decor and room layout permit. I assume tradional box speakers are not desired, correct?

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post #3 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 04:44 AM
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These do have "aimable" tweeters but they don't have great output. I would try to direct the tweeters and consider upgrading. That is a lot of room for those speakers.

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post #4 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 05:57 AM Thread Starter
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Yes supposedly they are able to be pointed. I tried to open the grill on them but that did not work. I did email speakercraft and they did not respond. Their manual does not tell you how to access the tweeter after it has been installed. I will call them today. You can tell a difference when you are standing directly under them.

Yeah, I wanted to avoid the box speakers after having them in the placed in the ceiling.

I think it's not enough sound for the size of the room.
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post #5 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 06:08 AM Thread Starter
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I said I would not want to go with box speakers but I would be okay with buying a nice center and placing it on the stand below the tv. That would be easier to do.
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post #6 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 01:17 PM
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Re: Replacing in ceiling speakers

Look at your speakers as being a team. The ulitmate goal of a surround sound speaker system is that all the speakers work together to create a sound field, it should be very difficult to identify which speaker is creating which sound. By replacing just your center speaker with a box speaker, while it will improve your perceived volume, ultimately this change will be a downgrade in the cohesion of your existing speaker system. It is greatly preferred that all speakers have the same tonal balance (same line and same manufacture) and even, yes, having the same speaker in every slot is also preferred.

The first option I see in your situation is having a more realistic budget for a room of that size. In ceiling speakers will always create a performance challenge as creating the sound field for surround sound depends greatly on the ability to point your speakers in specific and exacting locations, a ceiling install does not lend itself to that end. So, in the interest of making the best out of a bad situation, buy yourself some good in ceiling speakers....

I would get either the EM-IC or EM-R

I would then get a Motion 8 for my center channel...

Second, and the less preferred method, is installing your front three speakercraft speakers down in the vertical wall so they can point directly at the listing area. This will help but I think youll still be pretty limited in performance considering your existing speakers are of modest performance and your room is pretty big.

You would benefit from a better subwoofer also....Hsu, SVS, manufactures like these make excellent subs.
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post #7 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 01:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you!
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post #8 of 10 Old 08-20-12, 07:54 PM
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Re: Replacing in ceiling speakers

For low end excellent in ceilings go with Monoprice. They sound great. For medium priced, go with Jamo.
They are fabulous. I am not sure about the very high end, but I doubt if it is worth paying more than what Monoprice and Jamo have to offer. Oh, also Yamaha makes some pretty good speakers as well but I have not heard their in wall stuff. Yamaha outdoor speakers are fantastic.
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post #9 of 10 Old 08-21-12, 07:30 AM Thread Starter
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I appreciate it.

I have been reading about the Martin Logan company and products. The thought of what a $430 8in speaker would sound like has almost kept me up at night. I cannot imagine it.
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post #10 of 10 Old 08-21-12, 01:01 PM
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Re: Replacing in ceiling speakers

As well it should

I own a pair of the Martin Logan LX-16, a bookshelf version of the EM-IW but with a slightly smaller woofer. Theyre incredible and a serious value for their performance and build quality.
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