In-Ceiling Speaker -- To box or not?

Discussion in 'Loudspeakers' started by FNG212, Apr 29, 2009.

  1. FNG212 Audioholic

    FNG212
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    I just ordered 2 pairs of In-Ceiling 6.5in ( http://www.thespeakercompany.com/IC-6-Pair-65-In-Ceiling-Speakers-P16C12.aspx ) speakers from The Speaker Company and will be installing them in the next few days.

    I have the fluffy loose kind of insulation in the attic (not the solid roll stuff) and I am worried the stuff will get into the vents on the side of the speaker. Should I just use a fine mess to protect the speaker or build some sort of solid enclosure?

    The second part of this question should be moved to DIY but whatev: Is the volume of the enclosure relevant to the output of the speaker? Is this why floor-standing speakers have huge boxes when there is only 1-3 drivers (mid/tweeter)? Then it becomes, what should I make it out of? MDF?

    Thanks in advance
  2. ParadigmDawg Audioholic Overlord

    ParadigmDawg
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    If you do a back box, the enclosure and design must be modeled after the driver. It is likely that TSC makes a box for this and that would be the best way to go. All that being said, I would put a hair net over them and call it a day.
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  3. lsiberian Audioholic Overlord

    lsiberian
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    Use a mesh. Don't even try to build a box.

    You statements on enclosure are far too general. And would take a bit more explanation.
  4. griffinconst Senior Audioholic

    griffinconst
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    If you do check with the speaker company about a prebuilt box, let us know the details. Thanks
  5. GO-NAD! Audioholic Ninja

    GO-NAD!
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    I recently installed a pair of in-ceilling speakers in my kitchen and faced a similar dilemma. I have fibreglass batt insulation in my attic, so I stapled pieces of window insect screen to the sides of the joists, just above the speakers. If you have loose fill insulation, I would take the added precaution of laying pieces of cheese cloth on top of the insect screen before putting the insulation back in place. Previous posters know much more than I do about what affects the sound quality of speakers. But, I do know a little bit about houses.

    I don't know how much you understand about home construction. But if you don't know much about it, there is another thing to consider - vapour barrier. Do you have a relatively new home? If so, there should be a plastic vapour barrier between the ceilling joists and the drywall strapping. My house is old, so I don't have a proper vapour barrier to address. When you cut holes in your ceilling, you'll be cutting that vapour barrier as well. That will have to be resealed after you install those speakers. You could tape new pieces back in place above your mesh, before putting the insulation back. However, I don't think the vapour barrier will be acoustically transparent. Which means your speakers will be confined in a tiny, thin, plastic enclosure. I suspect that any influence on the SQ of your speakers will not be good.

    That is where backer boxes come in. You have been advised by several people to avoid installing backer boxes and from a sound quality perspective, they may be right. However, the vapour barrier is there for a reason - to keep warm air, that you pay to heat, inside your home. Plus, that warm air will carry moisture into your attic and depending on how well ventilated the attic is, may condense on the underside of your roof. That can cause mold and/or rot.

    If you install a backer box around each speaker, with no porting, i.e. a sealed enclosure, then tape plastic vapour barrier around the enclosure, joined to the existing vapour barrier - problem solved. If TSC doesn't manufacture a backer box for your particular speakers, contact them and ask what the appropriate dimensions would be, so that you can build them.

    If anyone who knows what they are talking about can tell you definitively, that vapour barrier won't affect the SQ of your speakers - great! You won't need backer boxes; go with the vapour barrier on top of the mesh. In fact, you could try that method first and have a listen. If it sounds good, you're done! If not, I suggest you go with the backer boxes.

    When it comes to audio systems, there are compromises to be made. They simply cannot be avoided! You just have to make the best of the particular situation you're in. If you know all about house construction, I apologise for wasting your time with this post. If not, I hope it helps
  6. nexus99 Audiophyte

    nexus99
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    I am using TSC in ceiling speakers too. I also have "blown in" insulation in my attic. The step up series from TSC are acutally closed back speakers which I think would be much better for your application.
  7. nexus99 Audiophyte

    nexus99
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    Post number 5...
  8. nexus99 Audiophyte

    nexus99
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