The Best Place to Install Ceiling Speakers

Written by danielle hill
  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share
  • Pin
  • Email
The Best Place to Install Ceiling Speakers
Where you place your in-ceiling speakers will dramatically affect their overall performance. (speaker 001 image by TheThirdMan from

Where you install speakers can affect your listening experience as much as the quality of the speakers can. For sound systems with in-ceiling speakers, you will use similar rules of thumb as for inwall speakers. The only difference is that, in addition to the speakers' location around the room, you'll need to calculate the way the sound travels on a vertical axis, between the ceiling and your ears.

Other People Are Reading

Front LCR Speakers

Once you determine the optimum or average listening point in the room, try to position the three front LCR, or left, centre and right speakers, equidistant from this point. While your general speaker system may be installed in the ceiling to excellent acoustical effect, it's advisable not to mount the front LCR speakers too far overhead. Doing so will negatively impact the high-end frequencies of music and can be disorienting for dialogue, as human hearing is largely oriented toward the front of the head. Whether you mount the front LCR speakers from the ceiling or the wall, place them no further apart than they are far from your listening position. For example, if your sofa is 10 feet back from the speaker system, place the left and right speakers no more than 10 feet, and no less that five feet, apart.

Surrounds and Subwoofers

Surround speakers should typically go slightly behind the listening area. It's important that the speakers are placed at an equal height, which is much simpler to achieve with in-ceiling speakers than for inwall units. Ideally, the distance between the two surround speakers should be about 80 per cent of the distance from the central listening point. This distance is measured along a level horizontal plane; it doesn't represent the diagonal distance from the listener's ear upward toward the ceiling-mounted speaker. The subwoofer or subwoofers can also mount from the ceiling without any distortion or disorientation. Using two subwoofers will distribute even bass over a larger area; as with any other paired speakers, it's important to keep their placement symmetrical with respect to the room and the optimal listening area.

Distance from Walls

When placing all of the speakers, if they feature aimable tweeters, carefully angle them toward your central listening spot. However, bear in mind that the sound will not only travel in a straight line from the tweeters; it will also extend from the speaker toward the wall and then reflect around the room. Some in-ceiling speakers can be configured to optimise both directly received sounds and reflected sounds. To do so, make a small mark on the ceiling wherever you wish to hang the speakers. Then, sitting at the ideal listening location, have someone hold a mirror against the wall direclty below the speaker. They need to move the mirror up and down until you can see the mark on the ceiling. This is the point on the wall where the sound will reflect. Adjust the tweeters to aim directly for this point.

Don't Miss

  • All types
  • Articles
  • Slideshows
  • Videos
  • Most relevant
  • Most popular
  • Most recent

No articles available

No slideshows available

No videos available

By using the site, you consent to the use of cookies. For more information, please see our Cookie policy.