Mar 18, 2014 10:06 AM, By Bennett Liles
The market for ceiling speakers has never been stronger and the scope of designs continues to expand. Nothing beats these devices for easy concealment and the custom tailored sound coverage they provide. Some of the more creative aspects involve simple mechanical innovations that have allowed installation options to power the growing range of applications. The models included in this survey demonstrate all of the features of current ceiling speaker technology and they provide a glimpse into what is likely to come along in the near future as present capabilities are further developed.
Atlas Sound offers the FAP62T 6in. coaxial speaker system with its wide dispersion as a solution particularly applicable to low-ceiling situations. The 1in. voice coil driver includes a polypropylene cone with a butyl rubber surround. It is paired with a 19mm coaxially mounted tweeter and the front-mounted transformer tap switch allows easy power settings during installation. A detachable Phoenix-style, locking four-pole connector allows easy daisychain wiring to other full-range loudspeakers or Atlas Sound FAPSUB subwoofers. Strategy Series II style dog-leg tabs aid with installation into drop tile or drywall ceilings with the provided tile bridge assembly.
The FreeSpace DF 100F extended range, flush-mount ceiling speaker from Bose includes a single 2.25in. Twiddler driver and a 5.25in. woofer in a ported enclosure. The unit can be used in flush-mount or pendant installations in ceilings up to 32ft. high with its 160-degree conical coverage pattern. The power tap settings can be changed with a front-mounted thumb wheel to best deliver its 75Hz-18kHz (±3dB) frequency response and 160-degree conical dispersion. The enclosure has a polypropylene front baffle backed with a powder-coated steel rear housing. The connector is a three-conductor terminal strip for 18-14 AWG wire.
The LCR 8in. copolymer woofer and pivoting 1in. Kortec tweeter combine to produce a 45Hz-20kHz (±3dB) frequency response in an 8Ω enclosure capable of handling amplifier power from 10W to 125W in the HSi480 ceiling speaker from Boston Acoustics. The grille is magnetic to speed up and simplify installation. The surface can be painted to match any wall or ceiling. Any imperfections in the paint or hole shape are hidden by the speaker’s wide mounting flange. The unit’s pivoting dog-leg mounting arms are durable and easy to install.
Capable of operating as an 8Ω or 70V unit, the Community Professional C8 two-way, full-range coaxial 8in. ceiling speaker system can handle 60W continuous and 150W program power. Each unit has a wide dispersion angle up to 16kHz using a 1x8in. LF cone and a 1x3/4in. exit compression driver. The spring-loaded Drop Stop installation assistant tabs supporting the backcan simplify the installation, while the Euroblock connectors provide an external loop-through connection. The power tap selection switch is face mounted, and there is an integrated cable clamp along with an optional conduit knockout on the rear cover.
The Saros IC8T from Crestron is a two-way system with an 8in. polypropylene woofer and 1in. wide-dispersion, horn-loaded titanium dome tweeter. The enclosure includes a zero-bezel frameless grille and an aluminum backcan with top and side knockouts. The unit can handle 150W at 8Ω, and it features a built-in 60W 70/100V multi-tap transformer. Its two-step toggle clamps allow installation in either standard or extra thick surfaces up to 2.4in. The Saros line includes the 6in. IC6T and the 4in. IC4T as well as a number of other ceiling- and surface-mount models.
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