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Tiki Central Forums Home Tiki Bars The home bar sound system
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The home bar sound system
uncle trav
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 27, 2005
Posts: 1764
From: Kalamazoo
Posted: 2010-03-13 06:05 am   Permalink

I have read in many posts about home bars the mention of installing a sound system. I was wondering if we could start a thread here with tips or " how to's " or suggestions on doing a sound system. Many home bars have recessed or hidden speakers, wireless and outdoor speakers and other elaborate equipment. Many home bars like mine use the boom box method, not the best but gets the job done. Since the right music can set the mood maybe some ideas of setting up and installing the right equipment can help take that mood to the next level. So any suggestions on types of speakers, wiring, speaker placement and such would be great. I thought this thread should go here as it pertains to getting the bar setup first so you can enjoy the music after. Thanks.
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Unga Bunga
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 06, 2003
Posts: 5808
From: CaliTikifornia
Posted: 2010-03-13 1:13 pm   Permalink

I made a sound system (and CD)that has exotic birds, music and thunder weaving in and out.
I bought a Halloween lightning strobe that is connected to the speakers, that goes on when it is sound activated.
The volume of the thunder on the CD is louder than the other effects, so it only triggers the strobe at that time and with a water pump for simulating rain.
I had to have that effect after my first Tonga Room experience.


 
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Tipsy McStagger
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Joined: Nov 21, 2004
Posts: 3511
From: HELL
Posted: 2010-03-13 3:54 pm   Permalink

i use my mac airport.....place speaker units around the room and pipe in music from my computer located in another room of the house....just mix up a bunch of compilations and let er' rip.....it's all wireless and hassle free.......and the speakers are small enough to hide behind foliage and decor....

[ This Message was edited by: Tipsy McStagger 2010-03-13 15:56 ]


 
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JackLord
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 18, 2006
Posts: 159
From: Washington, DC
Posted: 2010-03-13 4:28 pm   Permalink

IMHO vintage gear is the way to go. Most of it features dark walnut which fits in well with the Tiki milieu. 1960s KLH and Acoustic Research gear is very Mid Century looking. 1970s gear, particularly Marantz, had the colored lights which add to the ambience. Pioneer made a series of excellent speakers with walnut veneer and a lattice pattern.

50s tube gear would take it a step further.

Depending on your dedication to period authenticity, CD players may pose a problem. Kyocera made some highly regarded models that featured walnut and had a quasi-Asian look to them. Presently, Tivoli makes some players with wood cabinets.

And the non-luddites can rest easily knowing that you can plug your iPods into any of this stuff.


 
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Swanky
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Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 5012
From: Hapa Haole Hideaway, TN
Posted: 2010-03-13 4:46 pm   Permalink

I spent a lot of time researching home theater systems with good music playing quality. I finally decide on a Panasonic 5 disk changer. I have the evil TV in the bar, so, it makes life easier.

5 speakers is great. Real surround sound so that I can turn it on low and everyone hear it well. I burned 5 CDs of music I play on random.

For the install, I mounted the speakers up high in the black area of my ceiling to hide them and then used split 1/2" bamboo to conceal the white wires. I mounted a shelf to the underside of the bar to put the unit on so it is out of the way and at my fingertips. It also has an iPod dock so we can change gears and listen to some Ludacris when the mood hits. Put the subwoofer under the couch. The ladies like that rumble seat....

It is all pretty well hidden, which is the ideal. And the small speaker really make the whole room full of music.


This is with a flash. You really cannot see these speakers at normal light levels. I also painted the wire you can see black.


You can just see the shelf with the unit in the upper right.
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uncle trav
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 27, 2005
Posts: 1764
From: Kalamazoo
Posted: 2010-03-13 5:32 pm   Permalink

Swanky, that is a great setup you have there. Thanks everyone for the input.
I may go the vintage route but am not sure yet. This is my Panasonic console in all of it's vintage glory. I have it in the living room now but am not sure if I could make it fit in in the bar. Looks, works and sounds perfect.






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[ This Message was edited by: uncle trav 2010-03-13 17:33 ]


 
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JackLord
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 18, 2006
Posts: 159
From: Washington, DC
Posted: 2010-03-14 07:50 am   Permalink

Nice console Uncle Trav! I forgot to mention those in my post. I think that would be perfect for a Tiki Bar.

 
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Thortiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2006
Posts: 257
From: Maryland (Land of Pleasant Tiki Living)
Posted: 2010-03-14 08:38 am   Permalink

[quote]
On 2010-03-13 17:32, uncle trav wrote:



Your mid-century stereo cabinet is WAY COOL! Unfortunately my Tiki room still uses the boom box method! Thortiki



 
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GatorRob
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Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1770
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2010-03-14 7:04 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2010-03-13 15:54, Tipsy McStagger wrote:
i use my mac airport.....place speaker units around the room and pipe in music from my computer located in another room of the house....just mix up a bunch of compilations and let er' rip.....it's all wireless and hassle free.......and the speakers are small enough to hide behind foliage and decor....


Ditto. Exactly my setup. The speakers are discreetly mounted on the ceiling and painted to match the ceiling. Music is controlled by me behind the bar with itunes remote app on my iphone. I do spend a lot of time compiling play lists to match various moods. That helps when you have people over and you're trying to gauge their mood and musical tastes and put on music to match. As much as I love looking at vintage hi-fi setups, I just couldn't deal with flipping records when I've got thirsty guests.

Quote:

On 2010-03-13 13:13, Unga Bunga wrote:
I made a sound system (and CD)that has exotic birds, music and thunder weaving in and out.
I bought a Halloween lightning strobe that is connected to the speakers, that goes on when it is sound activated.
The volume of the thunder on the CD is louder than the other effects, so it only triggers the strobe at that time and with a water pump for simulating rain.


Unga, are you serious? That's great!


 
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Monkeyman
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 04, 2003
Posts: 2365
From: Vista, CA
Posted: 2010-03-15 3:58 pm   Permalink

Interesting topic since Im mid stream on this for my new room.

I purchased two in wall speakers for one of my walls and two corner mount speakers for the side where Ive got a bunch of windows. (I will post pics soon).

The whole room was gutted during remodeling so I was able to run Cat5 Network Cable, Coax (for the satellite), and phone line for the simple fact that the walls were open and it was easy.

All the speaker wire is inside the walls and starts in the same corner where the bar will eventually be.

Im using an Apple TV to control the the whole thing. That way I can use it as a music relay (if my main computer is on) or it can play music on its own (like an Ipod) OR I can store digitized movies on it like Old Elvis flicks and such.

Ive got an old Denon receiver that will supply power to the whole setup. Im probably going to get a self powered sub so that I can round out the highs with some warm lows.

Unfortunately with all this planning you never know what its going to sound like until you actually turn it on for the first time.



 
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GatorRob
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Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1770
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2010-03-16 10:04 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2010-03-15 15:58, Monkeyman wrote:
Unfortunately with all this planning you never know what its going to sound like until you actually turn it on for the first time.


True, but the fidelity on all those old exotica and hapa haole records is fairly low, so I don't think it matters too terribly much except with newer recordings. But with the volume low, fidelity is lost anyway. My biggest issue has been keeping the volume of each track relatively consistent so that one song isn't soft and the next one jumps out at you. Itunes is good for that with its ability to set individual track levels and save them. And, for me anyway, getting the volume just right is so important. I want it low enough that people can talk without having to shout, but high enough that they can actually listen to the music if they want to.


 
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Monkeyman
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 04, 2003
Posts: 2365
From: Vista, CA
Posted: 2010-03-16 10:10 am   Permalink

I agree with you Gatorob regarding lower volume for conversing but my home tiki environment will be a room for many purposes and I might want to rock out every once in a while....

to be ready for all purposes.


 
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Swanky
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 5012
From: Hapa Haole Hideaway, TN
Posted: 2010-03-16 11:38 am   Permalink

I used Nero to burn all my CDs and there is an option to level out the whole thing. Not sure I trust that to make it sound great, but, it works. My home theater also has a really big volume knob on it that is right at my right hand. I didn't think of it when I bought it, but it has been VERY helpful. I don't have to look to manage the volume. The down side to a changer is the lull between songs. If it only played data DVDs of music, it would make things easier... But it does have an iPod dock which has been good.

Also when my back speakers wires were not long enough, I ended up having to splice in more wire. Since the wire is hard connected at the speaker and has this special Panasonic plug, that's the only choice. then the wires are impossible to tell one from the other and I worried about flipping then and the sound. I either got them right or it didn't matter. Have done 4 now and all sound fine.

[ This Message was edited by: Swanky 2010-03-16 11:40 ]


 
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Atomic Tiki Punk
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 19, 2009
Posts: 5882
From: Costa Misery
Posted: 2010-03-16 2:44 pm   Permalink

I like all the Vintage players you guys have, but I just use my iPod and mini speaker dock, sits behind a couple of tikis.

 
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TikiHardBop
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 21, 2009
Posts: 409
From: Rockledge, FL
Posted: 2010-03-17 10:31 am   Permalink

I have a Logitech Squeezebox. It's a wireless media player that essentially streams everything accessible from my computer. It accesses all the music residing locally on the computer via the iTunes database, which includes playlists. I can also access Rhapsody, Pandora, Slacker and any internet radio station. All in a box about 6" x 4". Very sweet.

I tried to get the latest edition of the Squeezebox for the upstairs, but Logitech seems to be having supply issues with all of their media streaming products. Aaargh!


 
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