Setting a Whole House Audio System
Sound and music, both of them are an important part of our life. Music helps us to relax. It has many positive effects on our mind and body. Music enhances our happiness, decreases our stress and depression, improves sleep and overall health. It elevates our mood of work, aids our memory, and many more.
But no matter what kind of music you listen to, it won’t help you if your speakers don’t have good quality. It is an undeniable fact.
Now imagine some good music playing in great quality speakers harmoniously throughout your house. It will bring a relaxing vibe to your house. This can be done with the help of a well-planned whole-house audio system.
Most of the modern houses designed by engineers and designers include built-in sound systems, which allows you to install speakers in ceilings or walls. But the old houses do not have such facilities. For those houses, you can either install a built-in audio system while renovating or use other types of portable audio systems. Whichever you choose, you must consider some important factors before doing so.
You must consider the speaker types, your budget, audio quality, usability, and their lifetime.
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Types of Full House Audio System
There are different types of audio systems in the market alongside many helpful gadgets to enhance their performance. Basically, a full house audio system can be classified using two criteria—their medium of transmission and their source zone.
Classification based on the transmission medium
There are basically three types of full house audio system based on their medium of transmission, wired, wireless, and hybrid.
Wired Full House Audio System
The basic structure of a wired audio system consists of amplifiers and speakers. The amplifier is connected with the in-wall speakers using wires. These speakers are controlled with in-wall circuit boards.
The number of amplifiers may increase if you are designing a multiple source full house audio system.
Some people may prefer wired audio systems over wireless. The main reasons are that they can be easily controlled, and there is no fear of misplacing a speaker.
It is true that wired systems are easier to operate but installing them is a great deal of trouble. The biggest problem is that it becomes very expensive to change the layout of the system after installing it.
On the bright side, you do not need any kind of complex wiring circuit, and you can use less expensive wires for their installation. You can add more speakers into the system by connecting them with one of the existing chains. But while adding more devices, you should keep an eye on the amplifier’s capacity. Be sure not to go over its capacity.
Wired audio systems are basically found in coffee shops, restaurants, and sometimes in a doctor or dentists’ clinic. It is a great choice for commercial establishments. They usually install a 70-volt system which uses a single amplifier to control the full system. Now, engineers design a built-in wired audio system for new houses and renovations.
Wireless Full House Audio System
Wireless audio systems are very popular for their portability. They have many other benefits.
The basic structure of a wireless system consists of a central unit and wireless speakers. The central unit is linked with all of the speakers using wireless mediums. So to operate, you only have to link your device with the central unit and play your desired music.
You will not need any help from electricians to install this system. It takes just a few minutes. Just install the central unit and put the speakers in their suitable places. Pair the speakers with the central unit, and then pair your device. You can easily change the location of the speakers or carry them to another room. It is the idle choice for establishments that do not have any existing audio system. The entire audio system can be taken away and installed in your new residence if you shift. These qualities make wireless audio systems the best choice.
Hybrid Audio System
A hybrid audio system is a combination of wired and wireless mediums. Basically, it is done with the help of a wireless amplifier. This amplifier is connected to the ceiling and in-wall speakers with wires. You can link your device with the amplifier using a wireless medium. It is a great way of modernizing your existing wired home audio system.
Classification based on the number of source and zone
There are three classifications of a whole-house audio system based on their number of sources and zones. Single source-single zone, multiple source-multiple zones a d single source-multiple zones.
Single source-Single zone
It is the simplest audio system. The structure consists of one amplifier connected with its source and the speakers. Because of one source, all rooms have to listen to the same music. The 70 volts wired audio system is a single source- single-zone audio system. It is most suitable for commercial places rather than residence.
Single source-Multiple zone
The properties of this audio system are almost the same as the single source- single-zone configuration. However, there is one difference. The single source-multiple zone allows you to control the volume of each individual room separately. This function is helpful to adjust the audio volume to match the size of the room. The audio can be turned off for selected rooms if necessary. It is a good choice for residences and apartments.
Multiple source-Multiple zones
It is one of the most expensive and advanced full house audio systems. It features multiple amplifiers, which creates multiple zones. Each zone has its own source. As a result, different zones can listen to and control their music from different sources. Basically, it is like many single-source- multiple zone audio systems merged together to create one.
Despite which configuration you choose, you must also pick a source for the system. Using a computer as a source of music is a great choice, but it requires the computer to be turned on the whole time, which is not a good thing. You can use NAS drives as a source. It will hold all of your songs, and you can leave it on for the whole day.
Also check out: USB Digital Audio Adapters
Budget of a Whole House Audio System
Your budget for setting up an audio system should include the cost of the system and the cost of its installation.
The price of a whole-house audio system varies with the number of amplifiers, speakers, and their types. The price range is from $700 to $1500 or even more. The maximum cost can reach up to $10000.
For an entry-level experience, you should purchase 4 speakers at $500, an amplifier worth $350, and a center speaker worth $350. These will give you a good quality home audio experience. You can cut out the cost of the center speaker by choosing not to purchase it. But if you want clear dialogue from your music, we would recommend you to purchase one.
So if we sum up these numbers, we get a cost of $2700 for an entry-level audio system.
And if you are prepared to pay a bulk amount of money for a great quality audio system, then we would suggest you purchase the Moon audio’s dark star opulence at $1,100,000. Or you can pay less and get the Dynamikks Ultima at the cost of $350,000.
It all depends on your budget and preference. You can go as high as $6 million, or you can go low at $750.
And the cost of installing these systems depends on the design and number of speaker installations. The average range of installation is from $250 to $1200.
No matter how expensive your equipment is and which configuration you are using, it will all go in vain if they don’t sound good.
Sound quality is an important factor for any audio system. Some people may emphasize specifications for sound quality. But in reality, specifications have a small effect on audio quality. It is their audio output that matters the most.
Sound quality has no standard class. It varies from person to person. Some may prefer high bass, and others may prefer high vocal. So their preferred sound quality will not match. That is why it is better to test the audio by playing different types of songs on it before buying. After that, choose the one that matches your expected quality.
It is better to buy speakers separately because companies that are specialized in amplifiers may lack in the quality of speakers. So buy them separately. And do not buy from discount stores. They internationally sell low-quality products. Buy from a local electronics store that has a good reputation.
Usability of a Whole House Audio System
The usability of a home audio system is many. They can bring a nice flow of music in your house and completely lighten up the environment in it.
Feeling tired? Then play some relaxing and calm music through your house audio system and see the results by yourself. Both your mind and body will recover quickly. It is not a myth. It has scientific proof.
In fact, science has discovered many applications of music on the human body and mind. It can boost your performance and speed up your work. The audio system installed in your house can help you achieve these things by delivering music non-stop all day. It can also be used to cheer up everyone in the house on a gloomy day.
What else can you not use this system for? Having a dance session? Or yoga training? House party? Literally, every occasion in your house can be assisted with the audio system. You can even play Christmas carols beautifully with it.
Average Lifetime of a Whole House Audio System
The lifetime of a full house audio system is hard to determine. It completely depends on the rate of their use and design. According to experts, the average lifetime range of such audio systems can be from 10 years to 25 years. It is not necessary to replace the old ones after 10 years of use. They just start to wear out and give slightly inferior performance than its original performance. The performance starts to deteriorate after 15 years. Then it’s up to your decision to replace them or not. But after 20 to 25 years, they must be replaced. Because the coil, diaphragm, and wirings of the speakers are severely damaged due to this long term of house.
Again, it is not possible to determine the lifetime of speakers. It depends on their quality. If you are worried about the trouble of replacing in-wall speakers, then we suggest you purchase a wireless home audio system.
Which Brand Should You Choose?
It is difficult to suggest a particular brand for your whole house audio system because each brand is specialized in each component. For example, Sonos is well specialized for its medium-size home amplifiers. You should have a look at them at the local store. They also provide wireless amplifiers for hybrid house audio systems. And for speaker units, you can try Definitive Technology BP9080x, KEF LS50 Wireless II, and Bose speakers.
You can also check out other brands to maintain your budget. Just be sure of their quality and warranty. Don’t buy from discount stores, and they provide low-quality equipment.
Is it worth the investment?
It definitely is. It also adds value to your house’s selling price. As you can use it on different occasions, you don’t need to bear any additional cost of setting up an audio facility.
Imagine all the benefits of having a sound system in your house. It will enhance your experience of watching movies, playing games. It can help to change the environment and theme of the house on different occasions throughout all the years. If you weigh these benefits against the investment of setting up a whole-house audio system, then it’s definitely worth it.
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If you think about it, it is kind of mandatory to install a full house audio system in modern houses. When purchasing one, observe their outputs rather than specifications. Try to maintain your budget and use the configuration that best suits your requirements.