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Anyone using hanging wall speakers?

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Anyone using hanging wall speakers?

Old 11-20-03, 10:40 PM
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Anyone using hanging wall speakers?

Starting to research for a new home theater system as we bought a house in which our current system will go in the game/den/media room.

Is anyone using speakers (front/main) speakers that are on the wall? Now, I'm not talking about Bose (no offense) or small box speakers on brackets. But flat panel type speakers specifically designed to go on walls (I don't think I want to go "in-wall").

I know NHT makes some flat panels (L5's I think). And I notice that Magnapan makes some of their ribbon speakers to go on walls.

Anyone using anything like these or have any other suggestions? Reviews, recommendations?

I don't mind spending a little money, but I don't want to get silly either. More interesting in quality then volume.
Old 11-21-03, 06:33 AM
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I went with in-wall B&W's for my theater. You can see them in my signature link below.

The on-wall speakers I have seen (not heard) generally are either very inexpensive (B&W for example) or very expensive. As always budget and placement are the starting points with listening being the most important. I own a pair of Magnepan's. The on-walls were intirguing to me but I soon learned that they are mounted on the side walls so they can open up and fold flat. Placement became a major issue. Also the Magnepan center channel was very expensive if I recall.
Old 11-21-03, 09:20 AM
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Originally posted by Brian Shannon
I went with in-wall B&W's for my theater. You can see them in my signature link below.

The on-wall speakers I have seen (not heard) generally are either very inexpensive (B&W for example) or very expensive. As always budget and placement are the starting points with listening being the most important. I own a pair of Magnepan's. The on-walls were intirguing to me but I soon learned that they are mounted on the side walls so they can open up and fold flat. Placement became a major issue. Also the Magnepan center channel was very expensive if I recall.
I'm glad you mentioned the Maggies. I'm a big fan (if you got the right equipment to drive them). But yea, I thought you mounted them on the wall in front of you (for mains) but I guess they actually swing out like a door (so you could mount them on the sides of a large entertainment center typically). Not what I was looking for. While the speakers are $750 a pair (which I think is a good deal for maggies - tho I haven't heard them) the center is $1,000, which is about double what I was looking for.

And the NHT's are not shielded. I know that won't make a difference if I go Plasma, but I'm actually leaning away from Plasma.

I may have to re-visit the in wall speakers. I realize they are easy to mount, but I was worried I might want to move them or change the layout of the system. Tho I guess drywall and paint are cheap

So you went B&W. My current main speakers are some classic (read old) KEF's. Will go over and take a look at the B&W's web site.

--edit-- FYI...I like your setup...

Last edited by Sdallnct; 11-21-03 at 09:29 AM.
Old 11-21-03, 11:23 AM
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Thanks for the compliment and good luck.

I chose not to give up floor space or worry about hanging anything from my walls and you can see why. I acknowledge that in-wall speakers are not as good as their floor standing counterparts but I am very pleased with the overall sound of my theater.
Old 11-21-03, 09:29 PM
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Check out the Paradigm On-wall Monitor Series. I've never actually seen them in person, but I own all "standard" Monitor Series myself. I fell in love with Paradigm the first time I heard them...

I'm not sure of the price difference for these versions, but the "standard" Mini-Monitors are only about $350/pr, and I was amazed when I listened to them - couldn't believe the sound those small bookshelf speakers put out.
Old 11-21-03, 09:41 PM
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I've been happy with my in-wall Speakercraft speakers! I want to purchase the in-wall sub from them too.

Sonicflood
Old 11-30-03, 04:38 PM
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Originally posted by Brian Shannon
Thanks for the compliment and good luck.

I chose not to give up floor space or worry about hanging anything from my walls and you can see why. I acknowledge that in-wall speakers are not as good as their floor standing counterparts but I am very pleased with the overall sound of my theater.
Yea, that is what I'm trying to do avoid taking up floor space. I'd like to be able to change the room as needed for parties, Christmas, sleep overs for the kids, etc.

How big is your room? I liked your "2 - layer seating effect". It looks like the room I will be turning in to our media room will be 16 X 14 and will have to go long ways (built in shelves on one wall and windows/patio doors on the other)

shelland, Sonicflood: thanks for the info. I added those speakers to my bookmarks to try to listen to or go check out.
Old 11-30-03, 05:01 PM
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Originally posted by Brian Shannon
Thanks for the compliment and good luck.

I chose not to give up floor space or worry about hanging anything from my walls and you can see why.
Actually, I don't see why. (Maybe I'm slow?) You have a projector and tracklights hanging from the ceiling. I don't see anything wrong (functionally or aesthetically) with having surround speakers either surface-mounted or on wall/ceiling brackets in back. In fact, if you did you could use better speakers and have better positioning.

Anyway, back to topic. The Paradigm technically are wall-mount but they aren't exactly slim, being 6" deep. They seem very similar to just mounting small bookshelf speakers to the wall, and aren't really 'flat' at all.

Gekko does make flat speakers for hanging on a wall. Haven't heard them though, but they even have changeable speaker-grill art prints so they look just like paintings. Add in-wall wiring or surface wiring tape and it will be very subtle indeed.
Old 11-30-03, 05:56 PM
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Originally posted by drmoze

Gekko does make flat speakers for hanging on a wall. Haven't heard them though, but they even have changeable speaker-grill art prints so they look just like paintings. Add in-wall wiring or surface wiring tape and it will be very subtle indeed.
Those are cool. There is a dealer not to far from where I'm working. Will go check them out. I like the art work available (some of the Art Deco/movie posters could be fun). Wonder if they can print your own photos on the grill material? Those should have excellent WAF! Price is good as well.
Old 12-01-03, 06:33 AM
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How big is your room? I liked your "2 - layer seating effect". It looks like the room I will be turning in to our media room will be 16 X 14 and will have to go long ways (built in shelves on one wall and windows/patio doors on the other)
My overall room dimensions are 19' long by 15' wide.

Actually, I don't see why. (Maybe I'm slow?) You have a projector and tracklights hanging from the ceiling. I don't see anything wrong (functionally or aesthetically) with having surround speakers either surface-mounted or on wall/ceiling brackets in back. In fact, if you did you could use better speakers and have better positioning.
Several reasons.

To get a good front soundstage all three speakers need to be several feet off the front wall. I only sit 11' from the screen. The rear speakers would actually be hanging OVER the rear seating position (couch). As far as the quality I have found the B&W inwalls to be quite good and I would have had to spend considerably more (IMHO) to improve on their performance.
Old 12-01-03, 10:08 AM
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Originally posted by Brian Shannon
Several reasons.

To get a good front soundstage all three speakers need to be several feet off the front wall. I only sit 11' from the screen. The rear speakers would actually be hanging OVER the rear seating position (couch). As far as the quality I have found the B&W inwalls to be quite good and I would have had to spend considerably more (IMHO) to improve on their performance.
Actually, you can get a fine front soundstage with speakers only a foot or so off the front wall (not 'several feet'), in general. From your pix, you essentially buried your rear speakers in the upper corners of the rear wall, and are seated back against the rear wall. And you're concerned about soundstage????

Your front speakers are also in-wall. Yet you point out that speakers away from the wall give a better soundstage. (And what are those speakers near the ceiling? A second pair of front L/R's?) As you noted, you'd be *much* better off putting 3 front speakers on stands about a foot from the wall. You have a decent sub, and you can surely find decent fronts to match well (maybe something like NHT SuperOnes). That would improve the soundstage significantly, and there's nothing near the front but open space anyway, so you're not 'sacrificing' usable floor space. My HT is in the middle of a loft (no side walls) and we're about 8-9' from the screen (65"), yet the front speakers are on the tv and on tall shelves to either side, away from the wall, and the imaging is great. You're giving up a lot by using those in-walls IMO.

That is a *horrible* rear speaker config. As I stated earlier, you'd be much better off putting speakers either on the side walls facing each other, or even on brackets angled downward from the upper wall or ceiling. The way your rear speakers are now, you have *no* upper frequencies ghetting anywhere close to the listeners' ears--they're all projecting straight towards the front screen from high up.

Just a suggestion, but I would consider changing this and either moving the in-walls to the side walls, or replacing them with surface- or bracket-mount speakers. Heck, the Cambridge Soundworks Newtons aren't that pricey (as one example) and they are switchable bipole/dipole with angled drivers. Something like this wuld improve the surround performance of your room enormously.

Seriously, I'd lose the inwalls all around to get much better sound presence. But that's me. You can always play it at decent volume and fill the room with sound, but you're losing a lot of spatial detail with your in-wall setup...

Last edited by drmoze; 12-01-03 at 10:19 AM.
Old 12-01-03, 11:48 AM
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We are going to have to agree to disagree

Actually, you can get a fine front soundstage with speakers only a foot or so off the front wall (not 'several feet'),
I disagree

From your pix, you essentially buried your rear speakers in the upper corners of the rear wall, and are seated back against the rear wall. And you're concerned about soundstage????
No, I sit in the chairs which are roughly 2/3 from the front screen and 1/3 from the rear wall. My room equalizer has been adjusted to compensate. As for the placement, the room dimensions and placements are modeled after the dolby spec. From this seating position the soundstage and effects sounds are excellent.

(And what are those speakers near the ceiling? A second pair of front L/R's?)
I use a Yamaha RX-V1 and Yamaha uses a "front effects" channel to enhance the sound stage. That is what those speakers are for.

you can surely find decent fronts to match well
I find the B&W CWM 800's more than decent

That is a *horrible* rear speaker config
Again, as per Dolby, Yamaha and the room as I designed it. When the time comes to upgrade to 7.1 the cable exists inwall to add side surrounds. Yamaha recommends rear placement for front firing speakers.

http://www.yamaha.com/yec/products/P..._Catalog_U.pdf

Is my design perfect? No, not at all. Given the space I had to work with and the placement of everything from lights to carpet, I feel I did ok.

Generally, placing surround speakers on the wall directly behind the listeners is not preferred. But when there's no alternative, there are several mounting techniques you can try, as shown in Figure 11. Mount them well above ear level, and try aiming them at each other (A), towards the front (B),
http://www.dolby.com/ht/Guide.HomeTh...0110.html#s3.2

Just a suggestion, but I would consider changing this and either moving the in-walls to the side walls, or replacing them with surface- or bracket-mount speakers.
Thanks. Since I designed the room with alot of input from the folks over at avs forums as well as sites like the Dolby site and the THX site, I am quite happy to enjoy my room as it is. I am very pleased not only with the dvd movie performance but the dvd audio, sacd, hdtv and dss programs I can enjoy down there. Also if I choose to just have music I connect my Magnepans and move them into the room for some traditional 2 channel listening. I take the many compliments I get from friends, family and other interested persons as validation of my design.

Back to the original post and the original question. If a person wants to go with on-wall speakers, there is nothing wrong with that.

Last edited by Brian Shannon; 12-01-03 at 12:26 PM.
Old 12-01-03, 12:53 PM
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Originally posted by Brian Shannon
I take the many compliments I get from friends, family and other interested persons as validation of my design.

Back to the original post and the original question. If a person wants to go with on-wall speakers, there is nothing wrong with that.
It was not my intent to start a "which is better" debate. There is no "perfect" system. And IMHO, you have it exactly correct, if you enjoy it, it is good.

We don't move into our house till July. But one of the 1st things I do will be to set up the HT in the media and use that as our only system until we decide what to do in our "real" family room. I'm glad you noted that you enjoy you projection (and entire HT system) for regular TV as well. With the price drops and in particular the price of that X1 unit at Dell (with coupons and such), I've been thinking of going that route. Tho, obviously, I'm waiting to actually buy something as a lot in this area can change in 6 months.

Anyway, thanks for the input on the speakers. For in wall I'm going to check out the B&W and KEF (I'm a KEF guy). For wall speakers I'm going to try to at least listen to the NHT's and the Gekko's. I e-mailed my wife the link on the Gekko's and she is already picking out art work grills for them! But I have no idea what they sound like.
Old 12-01-03, 12:59 PM
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It was not my intent to start a "which is better" debate. There is no "perfect" system. And IMHO, you have it exactly correct, if you enjoy it, it is good.
No problem, you didn't

I understand what you are going through as I did the very same thing while trying to design my room. I evaluated many different on-wall, in-wall and floor standing speakers. I listened to B&W, PSB, Paradigm, NHT, Canton and Definitive Technology. In the end it came down to placement, price, looks as well as sound. I have owned several pairs of B&W's and even thought about using my CM4's from another room for my fronts.

Best of luck to you!
Old 12-01-03, 11:45 PM
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Well, your credentials are impeccable. Enjoy your system.


I'd also be interested in reports on how the Gekkos sound. If anyone gives them a listen, please post your impressions!
Old 12-02-03, 01:40 PM
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Originally posted by drmoze

I'd also be interested in reports on how the Gekkos sound. If anyone gives them a listen, please post your impressions!
I went to a store that is supposed to be an authorized dealer, but they didn't have any

Sent an e-mail off to Gekko, awaiting reply.

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