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#204834 - 01/15/12 12:06 AM Home speaker system  
schenimann  Offline
Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 193
Western North Carolina
Home Audio question.
I installed speakers in a home during a remodel I am working on. There are 8 speakers total. All the leads come to one place where she wants to install her audio equipment. She doesn't know what to buy and I am not qualified to spend her money for her, only to help with a little advice. She wants to control each room or area independently. What is the best set-up for her. She doesn't want anything complicated and doesn't care about a am/fm receiver, she wants to use internet radio, pandora, Ipod, etc.

2 speakers in sunroom
2 speakers in lliving room
1 speaker in dinning room
2 speakers in kitchen
1 speaker in basement

Does she need a 6 channel switch?(don't think they offer a 5)
Thanks for the help

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#204835 - 01/15/12 02:21 AM Re: Home speaker system [Re: schenimann]  
gfretwell  Offline

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,135
I have a similar thing at my house, several locations that use the audio from the entertainment center in the living room. I distributed line level signals and have separate amps at the user locations. Then they have independent control. Your immediate problem is the combined speaker impedance. If you merely switch them in and out of a common drive, the volume will change as will the load on the amp. I am not sure how you will do this without a pretty special amp.

Greg Fretwell

#204836 - 01/15/12 02:56 AM Re: Home speaker system [Re: gfretwell]  
LarryC  Offline
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 783
Winchester, NH, US
1) Does she want to have different rooms to be able to play different music at the same time?

2) Do all of the audio sources come from the same PHYSICAL location? If she wants to put the ipod the living room but listen to it in the kitchen, that becomes more complicated.

I would suggest several audio distribution amplifiers (DA) to provide an isolated line level audio signal to each room. In each room, have a small wall box that contains a selector switch and volume control. The output of the volume control would then run back to the central location that has a dedicated amplifier for each speaker or room. This way, any room can select a music source without affecting anybody's elses music.

This is the same sort of idea you see on airplanes. Everybody can select what they want to listen to, the volume for each room can be limited to a maximum level at the amplifier, and if you want to provide some sort of overide for alarms or PA applications, that can be implemented at a later date.

#204854 - 01/16/12 11:16 AM Re: Home speaker system [Re: schenimann]  
renosteinke  Offline
Cat Servant
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Blue Collar Country
I'm doing the same thing in my house.

Tell her to visit Best Buy. Go wireless. Hang a 'dongle' from a USB port on the computer and use 'Bluetooth' wireless technology to send the signal to each independently powered speaker.

#204855 - 01/16/12 01:58 PM Re: Home speaker system [Re: schenimann]  
dougwells  Offline

Joined: May 2003
Posts: 1,141
kamloops BC Canada
I still cant understand this wireless speaker thing when the speakers need power outlet close by

#204856 - 01/16/12 02:17 PM Re: Home speaker system [Re: schenimann]  
gfretwell  Offline

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,135
Wireless avoids all of this ground loop stuff and you are not running audio wires everywhere. I do question how well blue tooth will work if you have a fairly big house. I have a blue tooth pointing device on my TV PC and the range through walls is quite a bit less than the advertised "8 meters". I am using an 800 mz solution (the RCA system) for wireless audio and my head set works fairly well anywhere in the house and around the yard. I have the transmitter in the front window so it also works about 100 yards away when I am walking the dog. You can use multiple transmitters but they usually end up on different frequencies. That might be handy if you have different sources.
I have a set of wireless speakers we set by the spa if we want "living room" music out there (or just about anywhere else). I have a wired set of speakers for "tiki bar" music at the spa.

Greg Fretwell

#204886 - 01/18/12 09:33 PM Re: Home speaker system [Re: gfretwell]  
sparky  Offline
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 5,311
I've all the rooms wired independently back to a relay box

if you've ever wanted to dub around with ice cube relays , home speaker systems are a good excuse

just get a leviton home network box, and all the din rail goodies anywhere you want

have fun


#204933 - 01/22/12 02:16 PM Re: Home speaker system [Re: schenimann]  
renosteinke  Offline
Cat Servant
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,316
Blue Collar Country
I visited Best Buy yesterday, and I have to say that the idea of running speaker wires all over the house, then getting a big amp with a complex control arrangement are long gone.

WHat ever the source of your music - be it TV, cable, Ipod, computer, stereo, etc. - thera are a variety of approaches to getting music where you look.

Most of these wireless systems claim a range of 150ft, and great protection against interference or 'cross talk.'

The system I got had the brand name of "RocketJet" or somesuch. $130 bought a transmitter that plugs into the computer and a single speaker. At the other end of the scale, Bose has a $300 gizmo that communicates with your computer- aparrently nearly all computers have some sort of wireless capability these days- and has a rechargable battery for greater portability.

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