Open vs Closed back In-Wall Speakers

Besides driver and crossover differences one consideration on in-wall and in-ceiling speakers is open-back vs enclosed speakers. Open back in-wall speakers leave the speaker drivers open to the wall cavity. In closed-back in-wall speakers the back is enclosed in either a metal or plastic enclosure. The closed back speaker is usually used in commercial environments but can have benefits in home installations as well.

Speakers off all types are greatly affected by the environment they are installed in. This is even truer with Architectural speakers.

Benefits of an enclosed back in-wall speaker
  1. Helps keeps sound from leaking into the adjacent room.
  2. Acts like a speaker cabinet and give the speaker designer more control over the sound
Disadvantages of enclosed back speakers
  1. Expensive

3 ways to insure good sound from an in-wall or in-ceiling speaker
  1. Place insulation around the edges of the opening of where the speaker will be installed. This helps improve the sound quality by reducing resonance throughout the wall cavity. (do this for enclosed & open back speakers)
  2. Be sure the brackets that hold the speaker in place are tight and secure (but not too tight)
  3. Make sure the grill is installed properly to avoid any rattling sounds.
See this pictorial on how easy it is to install in-wall speakers courtesy of The Speaker Company

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