Outdoor Speaker System Design Tips
Updated: Sep 6, 2020
Here Are Our 4 Tips to Enjoy Great Sound Outdoors This Summer
If you do the right things indoors, it’s not too difficult to get excellent sound quality from your home audio system. Getting good quality speakers, a high-quality source component, and matching up your amplification with the speakers well are all part of getting there. There are some best practices for setting up your room as well. When it comes to the outdoors, there are other factors. All of them are quite manageable with planning and design, but it's essential to understand the differences. The first one is the lack of walls to reflect sound. Sound bounces off walls, floors, and ceilings indoors, and that adds to the volume and the emphasis of frequencies like bass notes. Outside, walls and ceilings are generally missing. You may have a patio area that approximates a room, and wide-open spaces with hardscape like a pool, and gardens and landscaping. Things will sound different in those diverse areas and surfaces. You also have to balance the volume you may want with not upsetting the neighbors. So how do you get the sound quality you crave in your outdoor speaker system at your home in the Mendham area? As one of New Jersey’s premier audio and video integrators, Bravo AV has learned a few things about how to do outdoor audio right, and we’d like to share some of that with you. Read on to learn more.
Even Sound Coverage
With indoor audio, one stereo pair of speakers might give you all the sound you can handle within a specific area of your house. Outside, what you want to achieve ideally is even sound coverage. People are not always going to be in a stereo "sweet spot" outdoors, so you want the sound to travel evenly throughout your entire outdoor living space. You don't want one area to be very loud and another to be too faint to hear sound detail. From experience, we have found that the best way to do this is with the use of many smaller speakers evenly distributed throughout your backyard rather than a few large ones playing at a loud volume.
Keep the Neighbors Happy An excellent way to develop an enveloping sound field around your outdoor areas is to position the speakers to fire back at your house. It makes for better sound quality and will keep your neighbors from getting upset when the volume is turned up for your party. Also, when the speakers are placed away from the house pointed inward, you avoid having speakers upsetting the design and appearance immediately around your house.
Use the Right Speakers for the Job There is a great variety of speakers available to fill almost every need. Traditional box-type speakers in weatherproof enclosures can be mounted on walls and under eaves to provide excellent sound in patio areas. In-ceiling speakers in covered patios work well too, much as they do indoors with a sleek built-in look. Many speakers that resemble rocks are available for pool and garden areas, including areas that get wet often. Models even can serve as architectural additions to your landscape, such as Archittetura Sonora’s speakers or Origin Acoustics’ new bollard designs. Other models can be mounted on stakes or hidden among plants in the ground; a network of these speakers can work to extend the even sound coverage you want across large areas.
Feel the Bass Many of today’s best outdoor speaker systems feature matching subwoofers that can be buried in your garden beds and other areas. You can get the full-range sound you covet without seeing any bulky subwoofers in your carefully designed landscape. Based on your area of coverage, multiple subwoofers can be matched to the above ground speakers to enhance the low-end notes. We can’t tell you all our outdoor speaker installation secrets in this blog, but we can design and build the right system tailored to your specific needs. Contact us here or hit the chat button below to quickly connect with one of our specialists. We look forward to working with you!
For additional resources, please visit our page on outdoor speakers or outdoor TV's with articles like this on everything you need to know. Additionally, you can check out our photo gallery on the same page to explore our previous work.
Bravo AV is proud to be an HTA (Home Technology Association) Certified Installation Firm and professional A/V experts. Tom Curnin, the owner of Bravo AV, is a CEDIA Professional Designer, a certified THX Level 1 home theater professional and a member of the Home Acoustic Alliance trained to Level II. You can contact Tom directly at (908) 953-0555 or through email at Tom@BravoAV.com.