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Author Topic: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space  (Read 640 times)

Isaac South

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Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« on: July 26, 2021, 10:37:52 AM »

The company I work for wants to get speakers installed in the ceiling throughout the building and they've asked me to do some research.  My experience is in church-audio.  I know nothing about these kinds of speakers.  Your help is appreciated.

Our building is 3 floors.  Drop ceiling throughout.  Running wiring will not be a problem.  I am mostly wanting to get some recommendations on sizes and brands. 

The purpose of the speakers will be simply to play music (radio, XM, etc.) throughout the building.   We are a financial institution and we would like this to assist in our ability to keep someone waiting on side A of the room, from hearing what's being discussed on side B of the room, for example. 

Thank you again. 
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Tim Weaver

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2021, 11:42:58 AM »

The Atlas FAP40T is a good sounding speaker for a reasonable amount of money. It strikes a good quality/price ratio. Don't worry about it being a 4". If you didn't know it was a 4" you wouldn't be able to tell.

If it were my project I'd submit one bid using all FAP40T's and the submit a lower cost option with FAP40T's in the high profile areas and some 15 dollar full range speakers everywhere else to save costs.

How you do the head end and amplification depends on if its strictly for BGM or if anything else is ever needed like announcements, zoning, multiple music stations, etc, etc.
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Bullwinkle: This is the amplifier, which amplifies the sound. This is the Preamplifier which, of course, amplifies the pree's.

Lee Douglas

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2021, 01:51:58 PM »

You will want to determine if you are working with plenum spaces above the drop ceiling and make sure that your wire and speakers are plenum rated.  The above speaker is not plenum rated, but an FAP42T-UL2043 would be.
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Robert Healey

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2021, 04:03:31 PM »

The company I work for wants to get speakers installed in the ceiling throughout the building and they've asked me to do some research.  My experience is in church-audio.  I know nothing about these kinds of speakers.  Your help is appreciated.

Our building is 3 floors.  Drop ceiling throughout.  Running wiring will not be a problem.  I am mostly wanting to get some recommendations on sizes and brands. 

The purpose of the speakers will be simply to play music (radio, XM, etc.) throughout the building.   We are a financial institution and we would like this to assist in our ability to keep someone waiting on side A of the room, from hearing what's being discussed on side B of the room, for example. 

Thank you again.

There are a couple routes you can take - you can do a commercial audio/paging system which is as described above with 70V speakers throughout the building and a central head-end amplifier rack. Atlas, QSC, and JBL all have commercial music systems that would work for this.

The second route would be to use a purpose-built sound masking system that is capable of playing background music. Cambridge, Logison, and several others make systems like that. In my experience the sound masking systems tend to be cheaper.
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Isaac South

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2021, 08:58:19 AM »

Thank you everyone for your reply.  It looks like we are going to go with the FAP42T-UL2043 speakers (plenum rated).  One other issue:  Our building is three floors and we need to be able to independently control volume on each floor or maybe even have different zones.  What's the best way to achieve this capability?
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Brian Jojade

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2021, 11:38:19 AM »

Thank you everyone for your reply.  It looks like we are going to go with the FAP42T-UL2043 speakers (plenum rated).  One other issue:  Our building is three floors and we need to be able to independently control volume on each floor or maybe even have different zones.  What's the best way to achieve this capability?

There are 2 solutions here. If you just want independent volume control, you can add an inline volume control for each zone you want to work with. This would then let you turn down the volume in each group of speakers.

Now, if you need different music playing on each floor or each zone, you'd need separate amplifiers for each zone you want separated.  You can still add separate volume controls to zones on each amplifier if needed.
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Brian Jojade

Isaac South

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2021, 02:30:57 PM »

There are 2 solutions here. If you just want independent volume control, you can add an inline volume control for each zone you want to work with. This would then let you turn down the volume in each group of speakers.

Now, if you need different music playing on each floor or each zone, you'd need separate amplifiers for each zone you want separated.  You can still add separate volume controls to zones on each amplifier if needed.

Perfect.  Thank you.  Do they make a solution where you can use an app on the phone to control the volume or music?
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Brian Jojade

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2021, 03:40:14 PM »

Perfect.  Thank you.  Do they make a solution where you can use an app on the phone to control the volume or music?

I'm sure systems can do that, but I'd likely advise against such a thing.  Unless, of course, you want to be replacing systems every few years.   The problem is fancy stuff like that might work with today's phones, but 5 years from now, the manufacturer may have abandoned the software and now you're stuck because it doesn't work with the latest release of devices.

Honestly, building a 'dumb' system that just takes simple analog inputs would be the most reliable.  Now, beyond that, if you want to add on fancy phone gizmos that can be easily replaced, you can do that, but the base system with amps can simply run for decades.
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Brian Jojade

Mike Caldwell

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2021, 07:39:01 PM »

Would having building wide paging through the system be useful?
Most likely you could get a paging output from your phone system
to feed into the sound system.

With a few pieces of equipment the paging could duck/reduce the level
of the background music that would be playing while someone is making a
paging announcement.

Steven Cohen

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Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2021, 02:36:11 PM »

Thank you everyone for your reply.  It looks like we are going to go with the FAP42T-UL2043 speakers (plenum rated).  One other issue:  Our building is three floors and we need to be able to independently control volume on each floor or maybe even have different zones.  What's the best way to achieve this capability?

Check out the Yamaha MTX/MRX line. It offers sound masking, hardwired and App driven controls, and Dante in the MRX-7D.

https://usa.yamaha.com/products/proaudio/processors/mrx7-d/index.html
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ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Ceiling Speakers for Office Space
« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2021, 02:36:11 PM »


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