Multi-Zone Audio for Upscale LifeStyle Store in Santacruz
Pre-Installation and Setup
As with most commercial installations one of our key goals was to precise clarity and sonic accuracy but still not upset the interior elements of the commercial space. To have our speakers blend and not obstruct the commercial elements of the many floors of the showroom, we strategically placed our BIC America MSR-PRO6 In-Ceiling Speakers in the corners of each of the interior floors of this six storey establishment. The corners helped accentuate the low frequencies but still provide the stereo imaging and clarity while customers navigated the establishment. In-Ceiling speakers helped overcome major acoustical issues which would have been faced with surface mounted speakers, especially considering that acoustical treatment would have not been possible inside the interior showroom spaces.
A special requirement was proposed by the owner of this establishment. They wanted outdoor speakers to be installed for an open sky coffee shop which would be located on the third floor of their showroom. They also requested that music greet their customers when they enter the main entrance of the store. We wanted our speakers to be discreet, but still powerful enough to provide sufficient entertainment for the outdoor areas. We chose to wall mount the NHT O2-ARC Outdoor speakers and use their swivel bracket installation to angle them towards our primary listening area.
The main requirement for this installation was to provide consistent audio throughout the establishment but not affect customer interaction or dialogue. Keeping this in mind, we would need to maintain the interior floors at a single consistent volume while being able to adjust the volume of the outdoor areas independently from the interior floors. Our suggestion for the client was to put a 2-Zone Amplifier which has the latest features included such as Bluetooth, Airplay and DLNA for easy accessibility and streaming throughout the network. We installed the Pioneer VSX-930-K with the Main Zone connected to the BIC America In-Ceiling Speakers on the Indoor Levels and the 2nd Zone connected to the NHT Outdoor Speakers.
We also the high range Engenius ECB350 Access Points on every floor to ensure there was a consistent WiFi network on every floor. That made it easy to stream music from a phone or tablet directly to the amplifier through the network and also control the amplifier with Pioneer’s iControlAV5 app.
Components and Cables
In-Ceiling Indoor Speakers: BIC America MSR-PRO6 In-Ceiling Speakers 125-watt 2-way in-ceiling speakers with pivoting titanium tweeters.
Outdoor Speakers: NHT O2-ARC Outdoor Bookshelf Speakers 125 Watt 2-Way Acoustic
Suspension Design Mountable Speakers
WiFi Access Point: Engenius ECB350
The In-Ceiling BIC America MSR-PRO6 provided a great blend of mids and highs in the interior spaces and did not create too much resonance or reverberation. Buddha Bar and Jazz Instrumental are the most played at this establishment and the clarity and imaging play wonderfully on all floors. Being at the center of the floor gave a great stereo imaging when listening to any of the two corner speakers. The sales team could easily converse with their customers and they did not find the music to be overpowering or distract them from interaction with the customers.
The Outdoor NHT 02-ARC really stood out in the open space and provide the low frequency range which was missing inside. Music could be played at much louder volumes outdoors and clarity was unaffected from the exterior noise outside. Placement was crucial and we found the sound stage to be broad and almost all positions could enjoy the performances being projected through the speakers.
The Final Verdict
The 2-Zone Pioneer Amp well served its purpose allowing the customer to stream music wirelessly and be controlled through the Pioneer app. Volume could be controlled independently for the interior zones and outdoor zones very easily through the app. Musically the NHT Outdoor speakers stood out and delivered a great impact. The BIC America MSR-PRO6 did their job thoroughly and effectively providing a soothing background music which made the listener’s shopping experience more soothing, rather than proving to be a distraction for them.