Whether you’re building a high-end home theater or want to add crystal-clear music, the right speakers make all the difference. The four main types of home speakers are traditional loudspeakers, in-wall/in-ceiling speakers, soundbars, and subwoofers.
Tower or floor-standing speakers have two cones — a woofer and a tweeter — that produce different frequencies to create exceptional sound.
You can have the best record player on the market, a top-rated AV receiver, and even a great-sounding set of headphones, but with good speakers, your audio setup will only do a little for your ears. Traditional loudspeakers use electrodynamic drivers, typically a cone-shaped diaphragm or an electrostatic transducer, to convert electrical audio signals into mechanical vibrations that move air and produce audible sound waves. They come in various shapes, sizes, and styles and can be arranged in various configurations to suit room size and acoustic conditions.
If you’re looking for quality speakers, consider purchasing ones with discounts like Bose coupons. These speakers are engineered to produce a broad range of frequencies, typically accomplished by utilizing multiple drivers, such as a tweeter and mid-range driver or a woofer. An audio amplifier drives the drivers, and the quality of a speaker’s performance is largely determined by its sensitivity, which is measured in decibels (dB) per 2.83 V. A higher sensitivity rating indicates that the speaker is capable of producing higher volumes with less distortion than lower-rated models.
Another important factor is the longevity of a speaker’s drivers, which can be helped by regular maintenance and careful placement. For example, avoiding exposing them to extreme heat and humidity, not driving them to excessively high volumes, and not leaving them lying on an uneven surface can all prolong their life.
In-wall and in-ceiling speakers are great options for a minimal, clean appearance. They are often used in multi-room distributed audio systems, home theaters, and even for surround sound applications. They are compact, and they can be painted to match your décor.
Ceiling speakers are downward-firing, meaning they can only deliver sound at a relatively low level, usually around the ear level. Their enclosures are typically 6.5 inches, allowing them to fit in recessed light fixtures and other ceiling elements. This can make them very affordable, but they also have a narrower sound field than larger in-wall models.
Some listeners may experience a drop in sound quality when using in-ceiling speakers. However, new advancements have made these speakers better than ever before. Many manufacturers now offer in-ceiling speakers paired with in-wall models to provide the best of both worlds.
In-wall/in-ceiling speakers can be positioned in pairs to create a surround effect or as front and rear speakers for an acoustic home cinema system. Generally, these speakers can be mounted in various locations, but they are most popular for home theaters and distributed audio. They can be matched to various interior design styles and are easy to install. If you are outfitting a new home, they can be pre-wired before the drywall goes up, saving time and money.
For many people, their TV’s built-in speakers must be stronger to create a rich and engaging experience. Fortunately, there are some great external options to make your television more immersive, with soundbars and sound bases leading the way in this category.
A soundbar is a long bar-shaped speaker filled with speakers and other technical wizardry that can sit right in front of a flatscreen TV or mounted directly on a wall. They often come with a subwoofer for added sonic power. Smart soundbars can connect to popular streaming services or even your smart home system and devices for easy listening.
Some models feature a center channel that improves dialogue clarity, while others can replicate surround sound through technologies.
Depending on the model you choose, a soundbar can deliver a fuller sound than a traditional surround set of speakers, and they can be much easier to install or move around a room than a standard speaker set (especially those that require a wire for every single speaker). However, there needs to be a getting around the fact that a soundbar can’t fully recreate the effect of true surround sound. They’re great for a big living room but not necessarily a small bedroom or office setting where a more focused audio experience is needed.
A subwoofer is a speaker reproducing the lowest music or movie soundtrack frequencies. They add depth and fullness to your home theater audio system, making your listening experience more immersive and exciting.
The acoustic performance of a subwoofer is influenced by its enclosure type, power amplifier, and the way it is connected to the rest of your home speakers. In most cases, subwoofers supplement a speaker setup rather than replace them. Experiment with subwoofer placement in your room to get the best sound from your system.
Like other types of speakers, many different subwoofers are available in various sizes and price ranges. Typically, the bigger a subwoofer is, the higher the sonic output it can deliver. Those larger models also tend to have more prominent voice coils capable of handling more current without overheating.
Adding a subwoofer to your home speaker setup relieves your main speakers of the strain of reproducing demanding low frequencies. This allows your speakers to focus on their specialty of producing mid and high frequencies, which results in more focused and clearer sound.
Subwoofers can enhance the overall quality of your music and movie sound experience, helping you to hear and feel how the composer and director intended their work to be experienced. They can also give your speakers the extra boost they need to keep up with demanding bass sounds that bookshelf speakers might be unable to handle.