Jun 17, 2011 12:24 PM, By Bob McCarthy
Our next contender is a different approach to a ceiling mounted speaker. The CH1-1000 ("Ceiling Hugger") by OAP Audio is placed on the ceiling, rather than the typical in the ceiling. The three-way speaker features a 12in., 6.5in., and 1in. dome tweeter. The LF unit faces downward, but the coaxial mid-hi drivers face forward. The speaker is designed specifically for use in low ceiling applications with the need for point source directivity. The result is a directional pattern of 170 degree (H) x 45 degree (V). If you have trouble visualizing that you can look at the polar plots and EASE files supplied on the company's website. The unit functions as a hybrid between the typical ceiling speaker and an under-balcony delay speaker. Its directional pattern resembles the under-balcony delay and yet its low profile looks more like a ceiling speaker. The CH1-1000 seems well-suited for applications where ceiling speaker locations are offset from the area where coverage is required. This is a low-impedance (8Ω) speaker and therefore must be driven directly rather the typical 70V systems, but on the flip side the 500W speaker has much more power than typical ceiling speakers.
We will start simple with a duo from Peavey Electronics The PHR 860 and its companion subwoofer the PHR 860S. The full-range speaker covers a range from 80Hz to 20kHz and can extend down to 55Hz with the subwoofer. Both have 8in. drivers for the low end with the two-way speaker also using a 3/4in. dome tweeter crossed over at 4kHz. The UL-compliant can-shaped enclosure is made of high-impact polystyrene with removable locking installation arms with a back can of formed steel, and a perforated metal grille with an inner fabric liner for blackout. This is a 90W maximum 70V/100V multi-tap system but can also be driven directly as an 8Ω load.
There are times and places where it is critical to maintain the flexibility to customize the exact location of every speaker. There are other times when we just need to get 'er done! The Penton Audio LIS series full-range, lay-in speaker packages are built for speed. They are economical one-piece assemblies designed for fast installation in traditional 2'x4' and 2'x2' suspended tile ceilings. Each unit combines a speaker, 70.7/25V transformer and enclosure, all attached to a grid assembly that also serves as a tile bridge. When mounting in a traditional 2'x2' or 2'x4' dropped ceiling, only one perpendicular cut to the acoustical tile is needed. The LIS series is ideal for voice transmission, music, and signal reproduction. Use these in commercial locations including offices, banks, educational institutions, restaurants, hotel/motels, and other industrial/institutional/governmental applications where precise transmission of audio is required. All of the speakers in the series use an 8in. LF driver, but the models use different assemblies; LIS8T and LIS8+T employing twin-cones and a 5W transformer. (The LIS8+T has a 15W speaker with a 10-ounce magnet.) An 8W transformer is stock on the coaxial LIS8XT, which has a treated cone with rubber surround and a post-mounted, 3in. paper-cone tweeter having a 1/2in. moving coil.
The Soundsphere Q-CS Power1 self-powered speaker can take a line-level audio feed direct from an audio projector or playback device. An external 24V DC power supply satisfies the 15W amplifier’s needs, with nothing more than direct runs of the line level feeds required. Two stereo pairs can be sent to the speaker where they are electronically summed and gain trimmed as needed. The speaker itself is a two-way coaxial with an 8in. woofer.
Speco Technologies Multi-Application (MA) Series SP6MAT was designed to make the contractor's work as easy and time-efficient as possible. Its all-in-one unit is pre-assembled with a plastic backcan and mounted transformer. It features a quick flip 70V or 25V selector switch and an easy-select transformer dial with the choice of eight or nine individual wattage tap settings. This flame-retardant, ABS unit also comes with insulated wires, has an attached metal safety loop, and has easy mount tabs for securing the unit. The MA series is the ideal all-purpose, value sound solution covering a wide range of applications in commercial sound. With a furnished 8Ω tap selector, the speaker can be used residentially as well and meet a variety of sound installation needs.
Let's keep going with the hung ceiling speaker theme, this time with some significantly larger models from Tannoy—the OCV series. While these won't masquerade as lights, they will deliver the power and sonic quality of Tannoy's OCV series coaxial speakers in a completely self-contained, lightweight cylindrical enclosure. The pendant mount option opens up a huge field of possibilities for placing speakers in the best location for sound quality without compromising the architectural aesthetic. Rooms with over-height ceilings such as airports, railway stations, malls, or commercial floors can enjoy far better speaker placement with the OCV series than traditional flush-mount models, with the same level of ease of installation. Available in black or white as standard and comprising of two models, the OCV 6 and OCV 8, OCV series is by design a full-bandwidth open-ceiling speaker system. Each model is built around a mid-bass driver (150mm (6in.) or 200mm (8in.) respectively) with a coaxially mounted 19mm (0.75in.) high-frequency section, all mounted in the cylindrical steel enclosure with mild steel powder coated grille.
There is more than one way in which we can make our speakers resemble lighting fixtures. In the case of the Yorkville Sound C160W, we can fit the speaker into the standard can light fixture that is commonly found in home, office, and retail environments. The C160W is a 10W, 4in. diameter flush-mount ceiling speaker well-suited for paging and background music applications. Designed specifically for quick and simple installation, the C160W has a built in 70V transformer and three taps that operate up to 10W. Rugged ABS plastic construction in a pot light format with an all metal grille make the C160W ideal for any drywall or tile drop-ceiling-mount application.
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