in ceiling speaker questions

Considering in-ceiling speakers?

If you have questions, we have answers.

Read on to learn the answers to 13 of the most common in-ceiling speaker questions.

Ceiling Speaker Questions

  • How many in-ceiling speakers per room?
  • How to install surround sound speakers in-ceiling?
  • Can in-ceiling speakers be used in-wall?
  • How to connect in-ceiling speakers to TV?
  • How to set up in-ceiling speaker system?
  • Do in-ceiling speakers need a box?
  • How to connect to in-ceiling speakers?
  • Do in-ceiling speakers require power?
  • What size in-ceiling speakers do I need?
  • How to make in-ceiling speakers sound better?
  • What to look for in Atmos ceiling speakers?
  • Are in-ceiling speakers worth it?
  • Should I get in-ceiling speakers?

How many in ceiling speakers per room?

There are two scenarios here.

The first is you’re running ceiling speakers to get multi-room audio in your home, and you want to know how many each room needs. The answer depends on whether you want surround sound in that room or not.

Usually people go with a main room that has home theatre surround, and one or two additional zones with 2 speakers each. This is because the AV receiver is built to handle one surround system and multiple 2-speaker zones.

If you want to learn about the most common multi-room audio system, read The Best Audio System For Your New Home.

The second scenario you may have is you want to put a ton of ceiling speakers in a big room to fill it with music. (Banquet rooms, gyms, etc.)

In this case, you may want to check out our calculator that tells you how many ceiling speakers you need to fill certain room dimensions.

How to install surround sound speakers in ceiling?

If you’re keen to install your own surround sound in-ceiling speakers, you’ll need a little handiness about you.

The tasks include cutting plasterboard, hooking up speakers from a ladder, and using a screwdriver to lock them in place. If you go with Jensen in-ceiling speakers, you’ll get a a template to help you define the holes.

Make sure you place the speakers in the right locations.

You’ll also need to run the speaker cables, which can be a little harder.

If you’re installing a drop ceiling you can remove tiles to help you get speaker cables from one area to another in the room.

If you’re installing into a new construction, it’s even easier because you can run the cables along the framing before you install the plasterboard. Just make sure you know how long the cables need to be and have them within arms reach of each speaker location.

If you’re installing into a two storey house — i.e. you can access above the ceiling easily — you may have to cut a few small holes and patch them later. Then you’ll fish the cables using a rigid wire to each hole until you get where you need to go.

Learn more about installing in-ceiling speakers from these helpful articles:

Can in ceiling speakers be used in wall?

In theory you could do this, yes… but it’s not recommended.

If the in-ceiling speakers aren’t directional, you’re not going to get a great sound image. If they are directional, like the Jensen in-ceiling range, they still aren’t great for the wall because of the way they’re tilted.

You want drivers pointed out and tweeters pointed slightly in. This is hard to get right when you install ceiling speakers in the wall.

It also won’t look very good. There’s something about round speakers that doesn’t suit a wall… like you’re in a submarine or something. You’d be so much happier using Jensen in-wall speakers which will have more attractive edges and a better sound.

Alternatively people ask, “can you use in wall speakers in the ceiling?” This a similar answer — because they’re not designed to work in the ceiling, the direction of the sound is harder to get right.

How to connect in ceiling speakers to TV?

home theatre lounge with big screen

To play speakers through the TV you need to go TV Audio Output >> Amplification >> Ceiling Speakers.

So you need the TV connected to an AV receiver, preferably via HDMI, and that receiver will be connected to the speakers to supply power.

If you have in-ceiling speakers in your home and want advice on getting them going, check this out.

How to set up in ceiling speaker system?

If you’re looking at setting up a new in-ceiling speakers system, I recommend starting by learning about AV receivers. You’re going to need one to power the system.

Then you can focus on choosing the best in-ceiling speakers for your system, and getting them installed.

If you want to start using existing speakers that aren’t active yet… you can learn everything you need in this article.

Do in ceiling speakers need a box?

Yes! But the trick is… the “box” will be the ceiling of your home.

If you didn’t have a “box” of any kind, you’d get no bass. The bass audio from the back side of the driver would cancel the front.

With in-ceiling speakers, the plasterboard ceiling will baffle the speaker driver so you get a good bass response!

in ceiling speakers

How to connect to in ceiling speakers?

Connecting to existing in-ceiling speakers — which may mean you moved into a place and you see speakers already installed — is simple.

There’s a complete guide to doing this right here.

That will also tell you how to control in ceiling speakers.

Do in ceiling speakers require power?

amplifier power is needed for ceiling speakers

Absolutely. There are almost zero in-ceiling speakers on the market with amplifiers built into them… so you need to connect them via speaker cables to a receiver of some kind.

If you have ceiling speakers in your new home and want to get them going, check out this post.

What size in-ceiling speakers do I need?

Most ceiling speakers come in 6-inch and 8-inch.

8-inch modelsare designed more for performance. If you want ceiling speakers to enjoy music that you love, and occasionally play at moderate-to-loud volumes, then go with this.

6-inch make a compromise on bass response for size and budget. If you only want gentle background music and you’re budget sensitive, these will do the trick.

How to make in-ceiling speakers sound better?

You’ll be limited by which speakers you have, which is why it’s good to get in-ceiling speakers designed for audio performance.

But if you get MORE out of a particular set, the number one way to do this is by getting a better AV receiver.

People are shocked to find out just how important this is to the sound. The audio signal that’s being fed to the speakers was generated by the amps inside the receiver. There are always errors to this signal, but a high-quality receiver will deliver fewer errors. This is especially important at higher volumes!

Additional methods for making them sound better include adjusting the acoustics of your room, and making sure you’re not using thin speaker cables (learn the right thickness here).

What to look for in Atmos ceiling speakers?

dolby atmos ceiling speakers

Dolby Atmos and DTS:X both deliver an awesome boost to the home cinema experience. This is why 5.1 with Atmos is much more popular than 7.1.

If you’re considering ceiling speakers for Atmos, you’re making the right choice. Up-firing reflective Atmos speakers don’t do nearly as well as actually placing speakers above your head.

But a little-known fact is, Dolby’s Atmos tracks are actually designed to go slightly in front of the seating position as well as above. Which means the best in-ceiling speakers for Atmos will be direction ceiling speakers with a tilt. That way you can point them towards your listening position.

The other thing to do is not be tricked into skimping on quality. You still need good ceiling speakers for Atmos — largely because poor speakers will sound rough at high volume. And that could spoil your next cinema night.

Are in-ceiling speakers worth it?

If you care about the look of your home… or you’re not a big fan of visible wires and black boxes in the middle of the lounge… then in-ceiling speakers are definitely worth considering.

The question is, do they sound good enough to be worth it?

Absolutely. High-quality sound is largely dependent on the quality of the materials used in the speaker driver and housing, as well at the electronics behind them. These are independent of the box itself.

While the box does matter for sound, it doesn’t make or break it. In fact, in-ceiling speakers are designed to use plasterboard as a box. So being in the ceiling isn’t compromising you on sound. You just need to pick out a set of in-ceiling speakers that are built for amazing sound quality.

Should I get in-ceiling speakers?

The ultimate blend of performance home theatre audio and attractive home design comes from quality in-wall and in-ceiling speakers.

If you want to keep both of those things in good order in your home, then getting in-ceiling speakers is a good idea. But you might also consider in-wall speakers, which are still tidy and out-of-the-way, but they also feature more drivers and a better sound.

no visible wires with Jensen speakers

Thanks for reading! If you have any other questions, contact us here.

To learn more, check out these related articles…

In-wall Vs Bookshelf Speakers

Should I Get Black Or White Coloured In-wall Speakers?

4 Reasons To Add Atmos To Your Home Theatre