Any downside in putting a floorstanding speaker behind an in-wall grille?

wschroter

Novice Member
I'm designing a new home theater system and I'd like to set it up so that I can put my Vienna Acoustics floorstanding speakers behind an in-wall grille so they are out of the way from kiddos. It also buys me some future proofing in case I want to swap out the speakers with something else in the future (versus committing a the dimension of an in-wall).

Question - is there any downside (acoustically) to putting floorstanding speakers behind a grill mounted in the wall? I can't imagine any, just wanted to ask in case there's an obvious issue. Many thanks ahead of time!
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Welcome to the Forum.

You will be putting a box within a box and that first box has been designed to work in the open. Floorstanding speakers need room to breath and to perform at their best. Wall speakers are designed to work best within a wall. I would say that there will be a big downside to your proposal.

Having small children around with big speakers is always going to pose a problem especially if they get their fingers into the drivers. You would be better off going for in wall speakers from the outset.
 

wschroter

Novice Member
@gibbsy Are you saying that's the case even if there speakers are placed flush to the new grille wall with their own grilles removed? I'd like to learn more about what you mean when you say they need to "breathe" as my (very) limited understanding of the drivers is that they radiate outward from the face of the speaker. What would cause them to need to have some sort of other clearance elsewhere?
 

Harkon321

Well-known Member
They radiate in all directions. That's why most floor standers require a stated amount of space behind them to work optimally. You'll be getting a lot of reflected sound that bounces around inside the wall cavity, I can't think it will sound acceptable at all.
 

gibbsy

Moderator
The vast majority of floorstanders and to a certain extent many standmounts need to be away from boundary walls to prevent those walls having an impact of the radiated sound emanating from the carcass of the speaker. By design many speakers also have a rear port for bass and in a lot of poor positioning it that bass response from boundary issues that does the ultimate damage.

KEF, as an example with their floorstanding speakers recommend a minimum distance of 1 metre from the side wall. Putting one of these speakers in a hollow in the wall will create multiple audio problems. Wall speakers are a different design and made to work within such constraints.
 

Liammonty123

Well-known Member
Bass radiates in all directions, high frequencies do not. What you are proposing is a type of baffle wall installation, baffle walls offer many benefits, such as combatting SBIR which can cause many response problems at the listening position. However baffle walls also increase the apparent bass spl, as this is also direction forwards, which could potentially lead to boomy sound. The ideal placement for speakers is either in a baffle wall flush to the edges, away from the wall at a distance where the rear wave reflection doesn’t cancel at a frequency above the crossover from mains to subs, or like I do, right against the wall, where SBIR won’t be an issue.

Most speakers however are not designed to be in a baffle wall, and have some BSC built into the crossover, this isn’t to say they can’t work well in this setup when implemented correctly.

The wall must be very sturdy and inert and be filled with insulation of some sort to stop it resonating like a drum, if the wall is hollow, you aren’t likely to get good results.

EQ must also be used if you go this route to tame the added bass this installation provides.
 

Similar threads

The latest video from AVForums

Podcast: Panasonic HX800 TV + Sony HT-G700 Soundbar reviews, movie and TV show news and reviews
Top Bottom