Dante Lobby (ceiling) speakers

MRW Lights

Well-Known Member
Typical post looking for recommendations for Dante enabled ceiling speakers for a lobby PA installation. The ideal use is background lobby music and announcements. I do not need broadcast/overflow space quality. I've been looking into SoundTube and several of the other Audinate listed partner products, but am looking to hear if anyone has particular experience with something they like. Budget is a non issue, as much as budget is ever not an issue, but this will fall under a capital request at which point I can ask for as much as I need... within reason.

 

Craig Hauber

Active Member
Typical post looking for recommendations for Dante enabled ceiling speakers for a lobby PA installation. The ideal use is background lobby music and announcements. I do not need broadcast/overflow space quality. I've been looking into SoundTube and several of the other Audinate listed partner products, but am looking to hear if anyone has particular experience with something they like. Budget is a non issue, as much as budget is ever not an issue, but this will fall under a capital request at which point I can ask for as much as I need... within reason.

My life has devolved to an endless chore of designing and spec'ing mostly commercial ceiling-speaker systems so I may be able to offer some assistance.
Are you looking for self amplified units that run of POE?
Or a bunch of conventional speakers running 70v off an amp that's Dante capable?
-your link is to a conventional style 70v speaker but SoundTube do make the POE ones also.

I've found that the POE ones just don't get loud enough to cut through a busy large restaurant with substantial BGM, but for a smaller theater lobby just carrying vocals and announcements they might do OK. Unlike the conventional 70v setups, you have to home-run a line from every speaker back to the POE switch or PSU. This could be a considerable amount of work if you have a lot of speakers. Conventional style systems have just one line that jumps from speaker-to-speaker -and very little service access required in the future.
I personally hate active electronics in permanently installed hard-to-reach spaces so I recommend a Dante amplifier with DSP driving a conventional 70.7v line to all the speakers. Powersoft Mezzo series is a good place to start, but most commercial audio companies are now offering similar products.
For speakers I've found that so many are intended for BGM and just don't have good clean vocal projection -so audition your speakers thoroughly before committing. I use a lot of the Community D-series (now Biamp), the EV EVID series and QSC's ceiling products, but there are so many out there to choose from in that 70v type (but not so many to choose from in the self-powered type.)
 

MRW Lights

Well-Known Member
and here I thought this thread was going to disappear into the depths of the archives... I did a demo of the SoundTube speakers and honestly they would be fine for our purposes. I was surprised by their coverage and "clarity" given their design and purpose. The Dante POE version allows for up to 4 speakers chained together, but of course you have to have a switch capable of driving that which we would spec into the system fine enough.

70v would be typical and we have an entire structure of DSP solutions available, but at this point we don't put non redundant single source systems in our facility so standard 70v systems are not an option for us at this point.
 

AlexDonkle

Active Member
70v would be typical and we have an entire structure of DSP solutions available, but at this point we don't put non redundant single source systems in our facility so standard 70v systems are not an option for us at this point.

If you want redundant options, you can also look at PAVA life-safety loudspeaker system designs. A/B circuiting is 1 strategy (2x 70V loudspeaker circuits where every other loudspeaker is on an alternative amplifier circuit), and this generally works well so if you loose an amplifier circuit there's typically still enough loudspeaker coverage to hear. Add an end-of-line (EOL) monitoring box at the end of each circuit, and you'll get an alert if a loudspeaker circuit fails in the future.

A more failproof strategy is class A loops. This is a 70V loudspeaker circuit that's driven from both ends, and you'll bring the 70V loudspeaker wire back to the AV rack and connect to the amplifier, although note that this requires a special kind of amplifier that specifically supports Class A loops. If a loudspeaker circuit wire is cut anywhere along the path, all loudspeakers still function as they're powered from the other side of the loop. Atlas IED and Bosch Praesensa can both do this although they're targeted at airport PA systems. (https://www.boschsecurity.com/xl/en...ve system,adapt to the acoustical environment.)
 

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