Is it worth buying half decent speakers if only option is badly positioning them? (+pic)

JoeSla

Standard Member
I was pretty much set on a pair of Q Acoustics 3020 or 3020i, being wall mounted in our kitchen/dining/living area. Please see attached picture. (note, this wall is the "living area" opposite to the kitchen proper on other side of the room. We will be adding two more of the black seats going right up to the radiator.) Powered by an old Sony Ta-Fe330r amp.

I am aware that wall mounting is not optimal for getting the best sound. But we have two young kids and the speakers need to be put well out of the way.

Then I built a cardboard model to scale of a 3020i, and both me and my wife agreed they looked far too big and imposing to be mounted on the wall. (see red positions on pic.)

So the only other option seems to be taking the description "bookshelf speaker" to its logical conclusion and putting the right speaker on a shelf in the tall unit, and building a similar thin shelf unit next to the radiator on the left for the left speaker (blue boxes in picture).

Will the sound be so awful that I might as well save my £200 and buy any old cheap speakers? Or will only a true audiophile notice the difference in audio quality? (I have no idea if I have audiophile level hearing, I doubt it. I just want the best sound I can get for a couple of hundred quid, within these speaker placement constraints.)

Would front ported speakers be an improvement?

Many thanks.
speakers_kitchen.jpg

P. S. I realise £200 for speakers is pocket change compared to what some people spend! But it is a lot for me.

Edit: Unfortunately it is now too late to install in ceiling speakers or in wall speakers. So they are not an option.
Also before I built these units, I was using my old Mission 702e floorstanders against this wall with great success. But they are too big to fit into this new layout.
 
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Mark.Yudkin

Distinguished Member
I was pretty much set on a pair of Q Acoustics 3020 or 3020i, being wall mounted in our kitchen.
For a kitchen, I would recommend speakers that have been designed to go in such an adverse environment, that is bespoke "kitchen speakers". Also, given the space issues, I'd suggest speakers designed for ceiling or in-wall usage (if such mounting is feasible), else on-wall if not, rather than trying to force the usage of bookshelf speakers.

Seen from this viewpoint, Q Acoustics bookshelf speakers seem to me to be just the wrong choice for the situation.

Take a look at Kitchen Speakers, Buying Ceiling Speakers For The Kitchen - The Ultimate Guide + VIDEO, or any other specialist shop for this application.
 

Orobas

Well-known Member
The only main issue i can see here with ceiling speakers is.. the ceiling itself..
If it is a concrete ceiling then you are out of luck
Ceiling speakers need alot of work to chase the cables in... the cables need to be fire rated.. and ceiling speakers need to have a firehood fitted.. but these are a very good solution in spaces like you have.

Another option is a smart or wireless streaming speaker like a Sonus.. that you can "stream" too..... This has the advantage of being small and compact but delivering a half decent sound and is not as bound by room placement as normal speakers. These can be got in your budget :)
 

JoeSla

Standard Member
Many thanks for your replies. Unfortunately ceiling or in wall speakers arn't an option now. We've just finished building work so there is no way the lovely finished walls and ceiling are being cut into.

The previous owners of the house had some ceiling speakers in another room and they sounded awful and totally gutless, so I just assumed ceiling speakers were crap and never considered them during our renovation.

Ah well I've got to work with the constrictions I'm in.

Just to note for the last 8 months (while this side of the room has been a work in progress) I've had my old mission 702e floorstanders against this wall, giving me a great deal of pleasure. So I'm hoping to replicate something of their sound.
 

Orobas

Well-known Member
Many thanks for your replies. Unfortunately ceiling or in wall speakers arn't an option now. We've just finished building work so there is no way the lovely finished walls and ceiling are being cut into.

The previous owners of the house had some ceiling speakers in another room and they sounded awful and totally gutless, so I just assumed ceiling speakers were crap and never considered them during our renovation.

Ah well I've got to work with the constrictions I'm in.

Just to note for the last 8 months (while this side of the room has been a work in progress) I've had my old mission 702e floorstanders against this wall, giving me a great deal of pleasure. So I'm hoping to replicate something of their sound.
Re the ceiling speakers.. you get what you pay for there.. you buy cheap they sound awful

A wireless streaming speaker like a Sonus always works well in tight confines like a kitchen and can hook up to your iphone or android device :)
You can regularly demo those at most hifi shops like Richer Sounds... and alot of people are quite surprised on their sound.

Trouble with wall mounted speakers is bass boom.. really you need a sealed box or front port and at £200 there is not many speakers that will not give boom...

There are "other" options for wall mounted speakers though depending on if this is staying a kitchen (heat, moisture, fats in the air..... to consider) and that is a pair of "outdoor" speakers like the Polk Audio Atrium .. coming in at around £180... cheap cheerful.. bit like buying a pair of JBL control 1's re the sound quality....
Polk Audio Atrium 4 All Weather 4" Outdoor Speakers (Pair)

polk-audio-atrium-4-all-weather-4-outdoor-speakers-pair-outdoor-speakers-polk-audio-687760_600x.jpg
 

dogfonos

Well-known Member
If you've ruled out in-wall and in-ceiling speakers, how about on-wall, as suggested in post#2? Trouble is the budget - it will likely need to double, at least:





A humid environment may not be a problem if you have decent forced air ventilation though you need to consider where the room's air inlets are as most modern builds are pretty airtight. The measured humidity of air at the dining end of my kitchen/diner doesn't change when cooking if I make use of the cooker hood extractor positioned over the hob. This forced ventilation is just as effective when using other steam generating kitchen appliances such as microwave, kettle and oven.
 

acgingersnaps

Well-known Member
If you can stretch to a Sonos 5, they make a perfect kitchen speaker. Big sound and you'd be able to put it on the right hand bookshelf. No faffing about next to a radiator, no amp to place, no speaker wires. Easy. Also, metal grills. Handy in a kitchen environment. I use a pair os Sonos 3 in my kitchen. A mate uses one Sonos 5 in his kitchen/diner. Big room, which it easily fills.
 

Mark.Yudkin

Distinguished Member
Since in-wall and in-ceiling is out for pragmatic reasons, I suggest that you looking at on-wall kitchen speakers. Kitchen / Living Room Speakers would be a good start.
The previous owners of the house had some ceiling speakers in another room and they sounded awful and totally gutless, so I just assumed ceiling speakers were crap and never considered them during our renovation.
Quality varies over many factors - that applies to in-ceiling speakers as much as anything else. Dirt cheap speakers can sound awful, but you can always spend a bit more and get something decent. Anyway, it's too late now.
 

Onlythesound

Active Member
Since you’re stuck with what you’ve got, you may as well get something you can put them on ……I’m thinking you could mount them either end of your seating area, just below the height of the window sill. So the top of the speakers would be at the level of the bottom of the window sill. Bass port plugs in of course!
 

JoeSla

Standard Member
Many thanks for all your comments. Lots for me to think about and consider. I appreciate your help.
 

FRFT

Active Member
I'm a little late to the thread but I'd get on wall speakers. I've heard the qacoustics and they are overrated in my opinion. On wall speakers are tuned to play bass accurately when on the wall.


Xtz make great speakers at a great price as there is no middle man. Definitely worth your consideration. I've not heard these particular speakers but I have heard an xtz sub (12.17 edge) which beats out competition that's double the price. They definitely know what they're doing
 

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