Having a sound system in your home is ideal for keeping yourself and your guests entertained. However, the kind of sound system you’ll install will determine your overall sound experience. For the best sound experience, you need to set up your speakers in such a way that they distribute sound evenly throughout the room. One of the best ways of setting up speakers for a whole house sound system is using in-wall speakers.
In-wall speakers are a special type of speakers that are designed for installation in the wall. One of the key benefits that come with these speakers is that they’re less visually intrusive. You can actually camouflage them by painting their grilles with a color that matches the wall. These speakers are also space-saving as they won’t take any space on the floor. They also make the floor look less cluttered.
While in-wall speakers are advantageous in many ways, it’s not easy to set them up. Luckily, our guide will assist you to learn more about the dos and don’ts of installing and using in-wall speakers. Let’s look at these dos and don’ts in detail.
The Dos of In-Wall Speakers
1. Choose the Right Speakers
The very first thing you should do before installing in-wall speakers is choosing the right in-wall speakers. You need to be aware that upgrading in-wall speakers after installation is quite challenging. Thus, you should make the right choice before installation. Choose speakers that can deliver the kind of sound you want. Also, choose high-quality speakers to reduce the chances of demanding repairs or replacement sooner. Ensure the speakers you choose are powerful enough for the size of the room you want to install them.
2. Choose the Right Location
Changing the location of in-wall speakers can be extremely challenging. Installing them demands tearing up a section of the wall. If you choose the wrong location, you’ll end up doing more work than necessary and spend money on wall repairs you hadn’t included in your budget. Thus, you should choose the right location the very first time. Take all the necessary measurements before installing the speakers.
When choosing the location of the speakers, ensure the right and left speakers located are at the same distance from the listening position. This should apply to both the front and back speakers. Doing so will give you balanced sound.
3. Install the center channel speaker at your ear level
If you’re installing a surround sound system using in-wall speakers, you should install the center channel speaker at your ear level. Your ear level is the height at which your ears will be when seated in your listening position. Measure this height and install the center channel speaker at that height.
The center channel speaker is responsible for reproducing dialog and vocals in a surround sound home theater setup. Thus, you’d want to install them at a level where you can hear dialog and vocals right into your ears.
4. Aim the side Speakers toward each other
If you want a perfect surround sound effect, face the side speakers towards each other at the same level. Also, aim the front right channel speaker to the back right channel speaker. Do the same for the left channel speakers.
The Don’ts of In-Wall Speakers
1. Don’t install the front and back Speakers too close to each other
You should avoid placing the right channel and left channel speakers too close to each other or too far away from each other. Try to spread them out uniformly for the best surround sound experience.
2. Don’t install the Speakers too high or too low
You should avoid installing in-wall speakers either too high or too low. If you place them either too high or too low, you won’t hear all the music details clearly. You should install them towards the middle height of the walls such that you’ll clearly hear all the music details while seated and even when standing.
3. Don’t leave the Speaker wires hanging
Installing in-wall speakers demands neat wiring. Don’t leave wires hanging across the room or walls. You can use cable covers and raceways to keep the cable installation neat. You can paint the cable covers or raceways in a color similar to that of the wall to keep them less visible.
4. Don’t install them in a Rented Property before seeking Permission
If you live in a rented property, you should first seek permission from your property management agent or landlord before installing in-wall speakers. This is because they require ripping apart some sections of the wall. You wouldn’t want to do that without seeking permission.
In-wall speakers sound as good as standing speakers and other speaker styles. They come with multiple benefits including saving on space, maintaining the existing room décor, and are great for a minimalist interior design. By keeping the aforementioned dos and don’ts of in-wall speakers in mind, you’ll stand better chances of installing them the right way for a perfect surround sound experience.
You may read our guide if you are interested in Mounting Speakers on Wall without Drilling Holes
Michael Evanchuk is a San Francisco-based sound engineer with 20 years’ experience installing, troubleshooting, and repairing commercial, automotive, and household sound equipment. Evanchuk owns an auto stereo center, where he offers highly competitive car audio installation and repair services. He has written dozens of articles on different sound engineering topics, all of which have been published in leading journals, blogs, and websites.