New house: need some speaker advice

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kjaem24
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New house: need some speaker advice

Post by kjaem24 » Sat Apr 16, 2011 11:35 am

Hi guys,

I figured I would put the wealth of knowledge in this forum to some good use. I just bought a new house and am contemplating the most price effective way to achieve music throughout the house. The house has an upstairs with a small social space/entryway where I would like to set the music up for gatherings. I would also like to have the music available downstairs in the finished basement but with the option to turn it off downstairs in case someone is watching tv. I currently run MM through klipsch computer speakers and a 750 mb external hard drive but definitely need to upgrade speakerwise. Understanding that computer speakers are going to probably be less practical due to sound quality, are there any suggestions out there? What about wireless systems? Keep in mind that the upstairs is small so I really only need two good quality speakers in the entryway likely with a subwoofer as well as downstairs. Thanks in advance for your help.

rovingcowboy
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by rovingcowboy » Sun Apr 17, 2011 1:53 am

you need three sections.

upstairs
downstairs
basement.

simplest fastest cheapest way i can do that is as i do my own jukebox

have good stereo units on each floor.

go to the radio shack buy one of those fm transmitters you can put in your mp3 player and send the sound
to your car's radio through the fm channel. then look in their power adaptor section and find the one you
can buy to plug in to the house outlet and put your cigarette lighter power plug for the transmitter in to it.
then plug the audio cord in to the headphone jack on the powered speakers. turn the volume down on them
to about half way so as not to over power the transmitter and get bad sound.
then just use that to send the music to your house where you are at. it should go atleast 250 feet in the house
they seem to get that far for some reason but in the car they only get 30 feet of transmission? must be the ac power.?

that way you don't need wires in the walls. but if you got money the best way is sound system put in the walls of the house
by a sound system company. if you want that for a mansion size house.

there are also better fm transmitters then those cheap ones but the cheap one has been working for me the last 8 years.

there are others here that do the same thing just in different ways so you should get lots of ideas. :)
roving cowboy / keith hall. My skins http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewto ... =9&t=16724 for some help check on Monkey's helpful messages at http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewto ... 4008#44008 MY SYSTEMS.1.Jukebox WinXp pro sp 3 version 3.5 gigabyte mb. 281 GHz amd athlon x2 240 built by me.) 2.WinXP pro sp3, vers 2.5.5 and vers 3.5 backup storage, shuttle 32a mb,734 MHz amd athlon put together by me.) 3.Dell demension, winxp pro sp3, mm3.5 spare jukebox.) 4.WinXp pro sp3, vers 3.5, dad's computer bought from computer store. )5. Samsung Galaxy 5 Android 5) 6. amd a8-5600 apu 3.60ghz mm version 4 windows 7 pro bought from computer store.

kjaem24
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by kjaem24 » Sun Apr 17, 2011 8:36 pm

Thanks rovingcowboy. I have to admit that sending the signal through my cars radio never occured to me. Was curious if there are any decent wireless systems out there where you can plug a USB transmitter or something into your computer to transmit sound to wireless speakers throughout the house. Have done a bit of digging online but have not seen much to catch my eye.

Peke
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by Peke » Sun Apr 17, 2011 8:58 pm

like RC pointed lets narrow the problem buy estimate number of $ you wanna spend on the project (excluding main Stereo unit that will be beside PC with MM).
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kjaem24
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by kjaem24 » Sun Apr 17, 2011 9:19 pm

i would be willing to shell out somewhere between $500-1000 bucks.

rovingcowboy
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by rovingcowboy » Mon Apr 18, 2011 1:58 am

wow you can get a lot with that money.

i had the stereo for 20 years so it did not cost me anything.

the setup i said was not to use your car stereo unit but to use the automobile personel fm transmitter for your cd player
that you use with batterie's and plug in to the cd player to transmitte the song to the car's radio.

you can get a special wall adapter at radio shack that will allow you to plug the cigerette lighter plug of your transmitter in to it and plug it in to your house ac power outlet. whole thing cost less then 50 dollars when i bought the transmitter and the power adapter, make sure you get a transmitter with the optional plug for the lighter power and not one with just the batterie power as the batteries won't last more then 4 hours.

but mine is the cheap way, i know peke and others here can have you spend that money on good products that work on digital stereo units better then what i use. but i have that old analog stereo which sounds great with my way :)


8)
roving cowboy / keith hall. My skins http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewto ... =9&t=16724 for some help check on Monkey's helpful messages at http://www.mediamonkey.com/forum/viewto ... 4008#44008 MY SYSTEMS.1.Jukebox WinXp pro sp 3 version 3.5 gigabyte mb. 281 GHz amd athlon x2 240 built by me.) 2.WinXP pro sp3, vers 2.5.5 and vers 3.5 backup storage, shuttle 32a mb,734 MHz amd athlon put together by me.) 3.Dell demension, winxp pro sp3, mm3.5 spare jukebox.) 4.WinXp pro sp3, vers 3.5, dad's computer bought from computer store. )5. Samsung Galaxy 5 Android 5) 6. amd a8-5600 apu 3.60ghz mm version 4 windows 7 pro bought from computer store.

Peke
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by Peke » Mon Apr 18, 2011 5:31 pm

Not as much I would suspect, but it can be more than enough for sort of decent settings.

kjaem24, try to search for Receivers that support multiple Zones (some without additional features like iPod, USB, DLNA,...) can be found really cheap. Downside is that you would need to make Cabling but depends.

Personally I'm planning to spend 3-5k € on house AV system but I'm planning to use Centralized MediaServer (NAS + MM) and HTPCs in Each Zone + Stereo. Note that I already have 2/3 of house cabling in Double CAT6 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category_6_cable)
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kjaem24
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by kjaem24 » Mon Apr 18, 2011 6:37 pm

Thanks Peke. I will have to invest in a good receiver that allows you to control the zones. Already checking into it. Any good quality wireless speaker systems out there to avoid having to wire the house?

Lowlander
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by Lowlander » Tue Apr 19, 2011 10:44 am

You can also look at Sonos (expensive) and Logitech as both have multi-room systems using WiFi/LAN over DLNA.
Lowlander (MediaMonkey user since 2003)

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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by gband@comcast.net » Thu Apr 21, 2011 4:07 pm

As for speakers look into Audioengine, particulalry the A5. They also sell the wireless transmitters, however the logitech squeezebox is a better choice. That way it can give you not only multiple zones but syncing, independent play, and touch screen. This way you only need the server which holds all the music, no central "stereo" needed. For smaller spaces the Audioengine A2 might work as well. I did my house with Logitech and love it. I use the Audioengines A2 for my computer at work, and am going to get the A5 for my house office, connected to a squeezebox.

kjaem24
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by kjaem24 » Fri Apr 22, 2011 1:18 pm

I checked out that logitech and it looks intriguing. I was skeptical though at that price if the wireless capability of it would be strong enough to reach my basement. Any opinions? Haven't seen the audioengine speakers before but I will definitely check those out. One thing I do want to emphasize is that I love the versatility of the wireless systems but do not want to sacrifice too much audio quality. I have not tried any of these wireless systems yet but have heard some of the cheaper ones and they sound horrible.

Lowlander
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by Lowlander » Fri Apr 22, 2011 1:27 pm

The benefit of using Wifi like the Logitech is that it doesn't affect the sound quality (it's digital). You'll need to do some testing to see if Wifi works in your environment (every house is different). If you have your wireless router in the middle/center of the house you probably will have few issues, otherwise higher tends to be better for wireless routers. I also believe that Logitech supports LAN so where possible use LAN instead of Wifi for best performance.

The one big drawback for me for the Squeezebox is that it uses it's own software and not standard DLNA which is why I haven't gone for it. With MediaMonkey 4 being a DLNA capable server I'd like everything to run of that, but also would love to have the ability to listen to the same in multiple zones. Sonos is way overpriced in my opinion.
Lowlander (MediaMonkey user since 2003)

windcrest77
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by windcrest77 » Fri Apr 22, 2011 1:40 pm

I would stay away from wireless as I have not heard a good one yet and why send the music through all those extra D/D conversions to degrade the sound. Rather get a multi-zone receiver and home run wires from the speakers to a cenral location where the receiver is located. Then get three universal RF remotes to leave in diferent places in the house to control the receiver remotely. To do this put the RF repeater module next to the multi zone receiver. The RF repeater picks up RF commands from the different remotes (over RF) then converts that to IR (infrared) that points at the receiver remote control sensor. You can get a 3 or 4 zone receiver, three remote controls, the RF repeater, and the wire for 500 to 1000 dollars. Then put the most money into good speakers (Paradigm has a great price/performance value for speakers). Good speakers are the heart of any system as most receivers these days use standard class D amp modules in this price range.

kjaem24
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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by kjaem24 » Fri Apr 22, 2011 5:01 pm

Excellent information guys. I really appreciate the input. I think what you said windcrest77 is probably what I will be doing. I was trying to avoid all the wires but I suppose it is the best option when you take into account all the factors. It is also much more price effective. Seems like anything wireless is overpriced and I have yet to see anything that really impressed me.

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Re: New house: need some speaker advice

Post by Peke » Sat Apr 23, 2011 4:12 pm

@windcrest77
If I got you right price range should not be over 4-5K for decent setup and 2 Zones in Stereo and Main in Surround ?
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