Speakers for a shop


Distinguished Member
Morning all, hopefully somebody can help.

A friend is opening a shop and wants a speaker setup in there. 4-6 speakers where he can just come in and plug his laptop in and away he goes.

I guess there would need to be some kind of splitter?

Anybody got any ideas (looking to do this as cheap as possible).

Thanks for taking the time to read.


Distinguished Member
We need far more information that you have given us.

What kind of shop?

If this is wood or metal working, that's one thing. If this is a clothing store, that is completely different.

How big is the room, and is it only one room?

Again, we don't know the nature of this alleged 'shop'. We don't know how clean it is, or how noisy it is. If a dirty work shop, then it would be nice to have an office for the computer, and speakers in the work space.

What is the purpose? Background music for customers, or if not a retail but an industrial shop, then music for employees.

What is the ambient noise level? Again, a quiet retail shop is much different than an industrial work shop.

Does it need PA capabilities?

Lastly, 'Cheap' means nothing, a $10,000 stereo was on display at a recent audio show, and it was referred to as an entry level system. $10,000 = Entry Level ... at least to some people.

We need to know the working budget in real money.

The more details the better. The devil is always in the details.



Distinguished Member
Thanks Steve, it is a clothing store, one large room. Probably 10m by 5m, no PA needed.

Budget is as cheap as possible.


Distinguished Member
It this a clothing store geared primarily to younger people, or general clothing. What I'm really asking is how loud does the music have to be. If this is just at a pleasant level for shopping that is one thing. But if this is loud music for kids, that is another.

For general applications, I would suggest two speakers on each side.

The following speakers are 8 ohms, so you can safely use two pair (4 speakers) on any reasonable standard stereo amp. The response is only down to 80hz, which is not exceptionally low, but they are fine for casual listening.


The nice thing about these speakers is that they are relatively small and somewhat easy to mount on the wall. I would suggest high up near the ceiling/wall seam, and if possible angled downward slightly. This should be sufficient for background music. And four speakers should give you reasonable coverage in a 33 foot space.

These would be wired in parallel for a total impedance seen by the amp of 4 ohms per amp channel.

As to an amp, depending on budget, the Yamaha AS300 with 60w/ch is probably sufficient -


If you want a little more serious power, consider the Yamaha AS500 with 85w/ch. I've not worked specifically with these amps, but I have a Yamaha Receiver, and it seems to tolerate 4 ohm loads very nicely.

If you need a CD Player, consider this Yamaha CDS300 -


Connecting any computer (or iPod, iPhone, MP3 player) should be the simply matter of a very low cost cable connection. Something like this -


As an alternative, at an exceptional price, with high power, and AM/FM radio, consider the deep discount Harman kardon -


This has 80w/ch. The Harmans are generally high current amps and should have no problem with an 4 ohm total load.

Now there are many other speakers to consider. But, they tend to get larger, and not being able to see the store, I don't know what the logistical problems are.

Also, I used SuperFi as a reference because I new they had the JBL speakers, but the JBL and all the other equipment mentioned here is very common and available from multiple sources. A simple search of Google-UK Shopping will lead you to stores near you and to stores with the best prices.

I know you said minimal budget, but that really tells us nothing. We need an actual number. The systems I've laid out are very basic priced system, and it is difficult to go much lower than that, and still stay with equipment able to drive two pair of speakers.

How does that fit with what you envisioned for this system, and how do those prices look relative to your budget?

Also, do keep in mind that to legally play music, you will have to contact ...???... whoever collects money for music licensing. I actually do know the name of the group that handles this but I'm drawing a blank at the moment. They can be very strict, and I don't imagine the cost to a small shop will be too high.

Again, this is more to give you some idea of the possibilities, and give you some sense of budget. Where we go from here depends on how you feel about this equipment and its cost.

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Standard Member
Depending on the size of the shop, could you get away with just 4 speakers? If so you can pick up 2nd hand stereo integrated amplifiers reasonably cheap, and you can hook the laptop directly to the AUX input at the back and away you go (once you've got speakers of course lol). Stereo integrated amplifiers commonly come with inputs for 2 pairs of speaker that you can run simultaneously. Then all you need to do is buy some bookshelf speakers to either mount on the wall via wall mounts, or as the name suggests, bookshelves. I'd say that's cheaper than buying say six flush mount speakers for the ceiling and a more complicated and technical amplifier etc to run them.

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