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A novice who needs help...I'm going to describe my perfect system (created by limitations of my room) and we'll see what the feedback is...I can only say please recognize I will not be expecting audiophile sound, but would certainly like something that will not sound horrendous.

I would like a HT system with two front in-ceiling speakers, a center speaker mounted under a 52" Panasonic plasma TV, and two wireless rear speakers. My other limitations are that I would like a separate set of speakers (or whatever mechanism it takes) on the receiver to be able to send audio to two additional exterior speakers, without it being played inside. And price...as cheap as possible?

Is it do-able? Is it even worth trying? Thanks for any help someone can offer, I appreciate this resource very much.
 

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First of all Welcome to the Shack!

In my opinion in ceiling speakers is the last resort. if you must have them hidden could you not use in wall speakers instead? In ceiling speakers wont direct the sound to where you are sitting and will sound poor.
 

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I agree with Tony, in-ceiling are about the last choice as far as sound. Putting the center under the TV and L and R in the ceiling will give you a wonky front sound stage.

If you're doing an in-wall for the center, you'd be better off IMO to put the L and R in wall as well. If you're really cramped for space, you could put them all cheek-by-jowl under the TV, or right next to the sides of the TV, but if you can swing it, spread the L and R out a bit.
 
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Understood that it's not optimal...my TV is on a freestanding fireplace wall at one end of the room. I have wiring for in-ceiling speakers installed, but no other attic access...wall speakers are not an option. Since the fireplace is tiled, my thoughts on center channel were to try and mount it to the OmniMount flexible arm mount that holds my TV to the wall. Are in-ceiling products that aim the tweeter even an option for fronts, or is that a pipe dream? Also, with regard to the receiver how do I make sure it can power both a HT and have separate outs to an outside set of speakers (in my heyday there was a speaker A and speaker B button)...thanks again.
 

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In ceiling is a viable option and can be very well done,... unfortunately it clashes with your second requirement of being as cheap as possible. I think you could do a fair 5 speaker in-ceiling system for about $1200 and a decent one for about $2000. A really nice one is going to be,...:cha-ching::spend::cha-ching::spend::cha-ching: lots more. I know you were only asking about two speakers but, I'd suggest that if going with in-ceiling mains, that you put the rest of 'em up there as well. It will really sound odd if you have your mains in the ceiling and the center way down below the TV. Course this is all just my opinion, others may have better news and/or suggestions for you.
 

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Understood that it's not optimal...my TV is on a freestanding fireplace wall at one end of the room. I have wiring for in-ceiling speakers installed, but no other attic access...wall speakers are not an option. Since the fireplace is tiled, my thoughts on center channel were to try and mount it to the OmniMount flexible arm mount that holds my TV to the wall. Are in-ceiling products that aim the tweeter even an option for fronts, or is that a pipe dream? Also, with regard to the receiver how do I make sure it can power both a HT and have separate outs to an outside set of speakers (in my heyday there was a speaker A and speaker B button)...thanks again.
I have little direct experience of in-ceiling installations, I went to a show house that had a pre-installed HT room, and the sound was, to me, quite inferior. This was a very large, very expensive house, but that doesn't mean they used quality speakers. Good in-ceiling speakers will probably do a good job, but as nova said, they'll be expensive.

How is the wiring for the TV and center channel run/going to be run? In wall or external? Is it already in place? Can you run more wire in the same hole/channel/conduit?

Many AVRs have a "Zone 2" that can be used to run a pair of speakers in another area. Some (most?) can run one source to the main speakers and another source to zone 2, so you can be watching a movie in one room while your wife listens to her music from the CD player in the other room.
 

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I would like a HT system with two front in-ceiling speakers, a center speaker mounted under a 52" Panasonic plasma TV, and two wireless rear speakers.
I don't have experience with wireless ... but instead of the in-ceiling/in-walls (that you see is not the best option) ... Why don't you go wireless everywhere???

...My other limitations are that I would like a separate set of speakers (or whatever mechanism it takes) on the receiver to be able to send audio to two additional exterior speakers, without it being played inside.
Do you want to play them at the same time??? ... if you say yes, then you need an AVR with two zones, and if the answer is no ... I suggest this or any other speaker selector :yes:
 
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