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Whole house audio - ceiling speakers for kitchen

RC231

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We are moving into a new house soon and I am working on some audio options. I want HT/Music in the family room, good music in the living/dining room and background music in the kitchen that is open to the living/dining room

I have a 5.1 setup that will be going in the basement family room with NHT Classic 2/zeros, PSA s1500 and a Denon x3700h. This is a big room ~14x20x10 so I don't know if the single seal 15" sub will be enough and might try to move to a bigger ported one to bump the PSA upstairs.

I have an extra set of NHTs Absolute Zeros and an old B&K amp that I will run off an airport express for the upstairs living room for now, and am scoping expansion here. Thinking I will buy another x3600/3700 for room correction with a sub and running the kitchen off zone 2. This room is similar footprint to the family room but with a lower ceiling, no HT use and generally lower volumes so I think I could get away with a smaller sub here. Upgrading the absolute zeros is also a potential but the sound quality with them and a sub is rather acceptable. Open to alternates to the Denon but having the same unit up and downstairs keeps usability easy.

The kitchen will be used for music/podcasts when cooking etc, no critical listening. I will be able to hear the living room system but don't want to have to blast it over a vent hood. I am thinking in ceiling speakers with a back box will be adequate here. We will remodel the kitchen cabinets at some point but I don't really want to lose storage to squeeze in speakers. Any suggestions on what to use speaker wise here? Quality level should be noticable better than a portable Bluetooth speaker but would like to keep the price down in the $200-300/pair range. I am open to building backer boxes if needed and want to get these in soon so I can have insulation blown into the attic.
 

dasdoing

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noticable better than a portable Bluetooth speaker

I have a Anker Soundcore Motion+. it has a build-in EQ. I meassured and corrected it using REW. it sounds very good in the kitchen, and everywhere else I take it. much better then those JBLs we are used to. you can even join 2 of them and they wil play L and R seperatly. But one of them allready creates a nice stereo ilusion with it's outwards angled drivers.
there might exist even better options now, haven't researched the option for some time.
 
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RC231

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I have a bluetooth speaker, a tribit maxsound plus. It sounds fine right in front of it but bluetooth means I can only listen in one location and have to have it sitting on the counter. Looking for something that can fill the room more evenly and also allow playback in conjunction with the living room system. I am currently leaning towards the monoprice alpha 8" and they sell steel backer boxes, total would be ~$180 for the pair with decent reviews.
 

tknx

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We used Beale audio speakers for our ceilings all over and they are pretty great - no idea how they measure. They are absolutely better subjectively than the RSL CE34 speakers we used for our home theater.
 
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RC231

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The beales with integrated ported boxes look really interesting. Do you have the 6 or 8" ones? Looks like there are some on ebay but they are not sold by any standard retailers.
 

tknx

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I did IC8-MBs and bought them from a company called URC. The constructions brackets I did find kind of crappy so not worth it.
 

jhaider

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The kitchen will be used for music/podcasts when cooking etc, no critical listening. I will be able to hear the living room system but don't want to have to blast it over a vent hood. I am thinking in ceiling speakers with a back box will be adequate here. We will remodel the kitchen cabinets at some point but I don't really want to lose storage to squeeze in speakers. Any suggestions on what to use speaker wise here? Quality level should be noticable better than a portable Bluetooth speaker but would like to keep the price down in the $200-300/pair range. I am open to building backer boxes if needed and want to get these in soon so I can have insulation blown into the attic.

We had similar requirements for kitchen and dining room zone audio. The speakers we ended up with were Tannoy CMS403DC powered by lab.gruppen Lucia 240/2m amps with “tuning profiles” for those speakers. They work well in that role. Being coaxial and somewhat aimable are benefits. They have enclosures.
 

Tom C

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After having built or remodeled, sold and moved more than once, it is now my perspective that built in solutions are less preferable. A table top model may get you what you’re looking for, and you can take it with you (at least in this life). There are lots of choices, many of which are very good.
 
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RC231

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I have a tabletop and have had speakers in a past kitchen (bookshelves placed on the top of cabinets and much prefer not having anything on the counters. I ordered some used Beales off ebay and will test them out. I like to have music or podcasts on while I cook and clean but this is very much background music so filling the room is more important than absolute quality.
I will have a 2.1 system in the living room for music and a 5/7.2 in the playroom for HT.
I have not finalized the streamer/dac/amp to power the living room and kitchen systems but am leaning towards another denon x3xxx with the kitchen as zone 2 because that seems like the cheapest path to decent performance with room correction.
 
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