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Author Topic: Whole-house audio  (Read 2315 times)

Sangram Rakshit

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Whole-house audio
« on: November 04, 2010, 01:58:50 am »

Hi

I have a unique situation of designing a system in a house which is an existing dwelling. This means the walls are plastered and stuccoed, there is no spare ducting for audio wiring, and so on.

In addition, the owners store all their music on iPods, and are keen to explore using those as audio sources, within whatever limitations they impose on the system design. The main HT room and a gym area already have speakers and amplifiers, and the media room does not need a new stream as the existing setup will suffice. However it would make sense to house the source and control equipment here as there is abundance of audio furniture and wiring.

Apart from these two, there is a patio, dining and kitchen area, and a pool-facing deck. If possible, we could look at something in the master bathroom as well, on the upper level. So there are four or five additional areas, with some scope for expanding to one or two more areas. We are currently at initial brief stage.

I have the following options for the distribution system:

1. Opus-based system (www.opus.eu) using a simple iPod dock (or two or three) as source, and wall plates for source and volume in each music area. Obviously Opus being a wired system means we will have to tear down a bunch of walls in a home that is being lived in. This has its own issues, which we're not keen to deal with but will have to if required.

2. Sonos-based system which enables wireless distribution and has amplifiers inbuilt (and even speakers if required), largely simplifying installation. The problem is that Sonos is not distributed in the country and imports are expensive, as are warranty and support issues.

3. Crestron Adagio system - we distribute these in the country but this seems to be a very expensive solution prima facie, and does not eliminate wiring.

Any thoughts would be appreciated. I am trying to hunt for a non-intrusive solution that transmits audio over wireless and possibly is able to control sources, also wireless. Amplification would be a bonus but not mandatory.

Thanks in advance,

Sangram
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Daniel Cash

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Re: Whole-house audio
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2010, 02:17:05 am »

I have used a sonos system and found their interface and features to be very very well implemented. Also their support is fantastic; when we had a remote break on us we had a replacement quickly. Yes it will be expensive, but probably worth it.

Another wireless audio product to look at is control4. However, i have no experience with their products.

Dave Sturzenbecher

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Re: Whole-house audio
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2010, 09:40:22 am »

Have you checked out Apples "Airplay" system.  I really do not know much about it, but have heard of people using it for whole home audio.
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Lee Douglas

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Re: Whole-house audio
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2010, 05:30:35 pm »

+1 for the Sonos.

I've also used Yamaha:

http://usa.yamaha.com/products/audio-visual/home-music-netwo rk/
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Sangram Rakshit

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Re: Whole-house audio
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2010, 12:32:45 am »

Thanks for the replies. I have a slight problem with the Sonos not being available (and hence supported) in the country. The Apple system seems feasible and would be an easy sell given that the source can be integrated. Hunting down certified devices may be an issue though.

One other issue is that of remote control, client is pretty clear that a separate commander would be a liability as there are multiple users and either local keypads in each room or a iPhone based solution (such as is standard with Sonos systems) would be preferred. The Yamaha system is nice but the ability to control using the iPhone or keypads would really make it work out much better.

I think I have some more stuff to chew on, thanks so much Smile
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