Outdoor stereo system

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Old 07-11-15, 01:31 PM
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Outdoor stereo system

I am looking into putting a stereo system in my backyard and I was wondering what the best way to go is. I can go with any type such as wifi based or wired or any other suggestions. I don't have any receivers hook up in my house as of yet so I am open to suggestions.
 
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Old 07-11-15, 02:52 PM
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What is the main source of your music? For example, my sources are hard drives & internet streaming. Yours could be CDs, an iPod.....whatever.
 
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Old 07-11-15, 02:56 PM
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I would say one of the easiest is the wireless speakers (bluetooth?) that can be moved around is a cheap easy solution. Do you want to blanket a large area or do you just want music at the patio table or near the pool?

You need to decide what your source of music is going to be. Will it be your phone, PC, radio?
 
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Old 07-12-15, 08:57 AM
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I want to just blanket the yard. It's not a tremendous yard. It's about 30x30. Mostly where the pool is. My source for music will probably be iPhones or a hard drive. I also plan on pulling a Ethernet cable to the yard for a wifi booster so I can have wifi in the yard also.
 
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Old 07-13-15, 04:27 AM
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Next question: Budget. Wifi speakers like the JBL Charge 2 will run about $125 and can also charge your phone. Wired outdoor speakers that look like garden rocks will run a few hundred plus amplifier. The design also may need to be neighborly, which means using several speakers each playing quieter to fill the space rather than a couple playing loud enough for the neighborhood to hear.

One choice for a wired system is a multi-zone receiver. One zone would do multi-channel surround for your TV room and the other would power stereo speakers in the yard.

(The links are examples.)
 
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Old 07-15-15, 06:26 PM
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I would suggest that you take a look at Sonos. (dot com)

Look at the Connect Amp.


Run wires from inside your home (where the Connect Amp will reside) Four wire runs probably 12 gage would be best to 4 equally spaced locations in the yard. Rock speakers would probably be the best because you can leave them out all the time. It's stereo so don't make one side of your yard the left channel and the other side of the yard the right channel. Put the right and left channel on one side of the yard and the right and left channel on the other side of the year. In other words mix up the channels because stereo becomes meaningless out doors and you actually want mono sound.

Depending on how you are going to run your wires, you might consider using direct burial Romex cable. It's really hardy. But ..... you can also get some of the wire that they sell at Home Depot that they use to wire out door walkway lights. It too is direct burial but lighter duty. but I think it only comes in 16 gage which is the minimum size you should consider. It'll work but 14 or 12 would be better.

The Sonos system is dependent upon your network WiFi signal strength so you really should put a WAP (wireless access point) close to the back yard. Sonos will give you access to music from Pandora, Spotify, Rhapsody, and a dozen other music sources along with hundreds of Internet radio stations. Also, any music that you have stored on your IPhone/pad/pod can be played . You have control of volume on your iPhone and the system can be expanded in the future with other Sonos devices in other rooms in your home even a sound bar for your TV.


Wiring your speakers to a receiver in the house means that you have to either run back and forth from outside to the yard to adjust volume and change music or have a receiver with an app that will allow you to control the receiver from outside. But ..... Since receivers do so many different things the app's are too complicated, every time you just want to stop, start or change the music. The Sonos app is exclusively for your music control and source.


With Blue Tooth you have to leave your IPhone within 30 feet of the Blue Tooth device. With Sonos, as long as you are within the envelope of your WiFi network, the music will continue to play.
Also, as you add other Sonos devices to your system in the future, each area can play it's own music. Say if you had 4 Sonos devices in you home, if you were having a party, all 4 devices could play the same music as outdoors .... or .... if the kids were down in the basement, they could play their music and the adults music would play on the rest of the devices .

The Sonos Connect Amp is about 50 watts wired to 4 ..... four ohm (at least 75 watt) speakers would give you reasonable volume. It's not going to knock the leaves off the trees but be at a good conversation level. If you want more than low to medium volume then you should consider a Sonos Connect (preamp) feeding a 2 to 300 watt amplifier to which your speakers are wired to. Look at the Crown 3000. But you still will have the same music source control. However, I'd get 100 to 125 watt speakers for that system

It makes a nice system and Sonos it real easy to set up too. And their tech support or fabulous!

Good Luck.
 
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Old 07-19-15, 06:00 PM
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The sonos setup sounds like it's a good option. You seem to know what the best bet would be as you see you must have the experience. I want something that sounds good and loud at times and good and clear as well. I don't have a gigantic yard and I am not sure where to place and what type of speakers I should use as well as how many. I am. It sure if it is possible to post or email some picture of my yard for you to view.
 
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Old 07-20-15, 11:07 AM
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Actually, in a 30 by 30 foot yard, (personally) I think that two speakers would be sufficient. One Sonos Connect amp at 50 watts should give you enough for conversation level music. However, as I say, music level is a personal thing. Four speakers isn't going to give you more volume .... it will only spread the music over a larger area so that the sound is not so loud from each speaker. 50 watts .... is ... 50 watts.

And again ....... It all depends on how loud you think "loud" is. For instance, in your car, 20 watts would blow your ears off within the confines of a small space. The same 20 watts in an average size household room would be an acceptable conversation level. Out doors it wouldn't be enough since there are no walls to contain the sound. You have to consider your neighbors too. You should consider speakers with at least 6 inch drivers and 8 inch would be best. Bass sound dissipates very quickly out doors.

If you do want it louder, use the Sonos Connect and Crown amp combination. The Crown amp can even be "bi-amped" up to 700 watts. It's possible that you will need a pre-amp too. (not expensive)

As you can see, the louder you want it, the more expensive and possibly complicated it gets.
 
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Old 07-20-15, 01:18 PM
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Ok. So I will start off by getting the sonos connect amp? This 499 correct. This only handles two speakers? Also what type of speakers would you suggest? Also what size on the crown amp would you suggest? I see a xls1000 and xls1500 on Amazon.
 
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Old 07-22-15, 12:02 PM
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OK, I think you may have mixed things up a bit.

If you think that 50watts will do, you can use the Sonos Connect Amp and either two or four 8 or 4 ohm speakers. Using two speakers allows the 50 watts to be distributed from two locations. Using four speakers allows the 50 watts to be distributed from 4 locations. That is.... 4 speakers delivers less sound from each speaker but the same total amount. 4 speakers means less sound from each speaker so that unlike a two speaker system, the people sitting closer to a speaker can't hear anything else.

I can't give you any gage as to what 50 watts of music is .... so it's a guess on your part. Maybe you can go to an audio store and ask to hear a 50 watt amp play .... but remember .... it's inside which is completely different when there are no walls. As I say, ... 50 watts is good for conversational background music ..... maybe a little more since your yard is only 30 X 30.

If you think you want more than what 50 watts can give you than you have to buy the Sonos Connect. This is NOT an amplifier but a preamp. The output of the Sonos Connect feeds the Crown 1000 amp. The Crown amp can handle down to 4 ohms so you can also connect four..... 8 ohm speakers to the output. Out put is 300 watts or 700 if you want to "bi-amp" it. but you probably wont need it.

As far as speakers go you can spend lots of money on them or you can go less expensive and just replace them every few years. Out door speakers take a beating no matter where you live. I would say an average retail price for some half way decent 8 inch rock speakers would be about $150 to 200 each. They would last you a reasonable amount of time. Look for speakers with approximately a 90 percent efficiency rating because of the distance you will be running the wires.

If you are not running PVC pipe use direct burial landscape lighting wire. 12 gage is best if you can get it.
 
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Old 07-28-15, 12:21 PM
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Ok. Thank you so much. I think I am pretty much set only one last question. I think I will do the sonos amp and four speakers. When connecting the speakers. Do I run all the speaker directly to the amp and join them together there or do I jump them from one to another?
 
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Old 07-29-15, 08:11 PM
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Although .... electrically ..... you could run two speakers on one wire run " in parallel" it is always better to do a home run for each speaker.

Working on the principal that every connection is a potential weak point and when/if trouble shooting .... each speaker on it's own wire run makes things much easier.

Don't forget, 12 gage wire and near 90 or above efficiency on 8 inch or larger speakers and NOT 4 ohm but 8 ohm speakers wired in parallel. This will give you the best potential for the greatest amount of sound. And make sure your WiFi is good in the area you want to control the music.

Let us know how it turns out.

You're gonna love Sonos.

Good luck.
 
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