Kitchen speakers recommendations please - flat wall mounts, small bookshelf, ceiling, soundbar, 2.1, etc

danobo

Active member
Oct 17, 2021
10
1
25
Hi,

I’m looking for some white* wall mounted/mountable speakers to go in a kitchen (c. 6.1mx4.8m). (*At a pinch, I could spray speakers that aren’t the right colour.)

I’m not really looking to spend more than £500, £600 tops, including any mounting hardware, preferably (a lot) less. Second hand preferable, to help keep costs down (not time critical, so I can wait for the right things to come up).

The options seem to be:
(A) Flat wall speakers, e.g.

  1. Kef T101 £299
  2. Dali Oberon On-Wall Speakers 499
  3. Dali Opticon LCR MK2 On-Wall Speaker £599
  4. Bose 891 £499
  5. Polk Audio 265-RT £229
  6. Polk Audio Vanishing Series
  7. Monitor Audio IV140 Invisible Speaker £550

(B) Some small speakers (e.g. bookshelves like the PMC DB1 or even smaller) that could be mounted with brackets off the ceiling

(C) A 2.1 satellite/sub system (provided the sub is pretty small - ideally something which could be wall mounted. E.g.

  1. Monitor Audio MASS 5.1 (Mist) £659
  2. APART AMBIENT SET W | 2X SATELLITE SPEAKERS + SUBWOOFER £509
(D) Something else - e.g. a soundbar such as the Dynaudio Music 7.

Since this is going in a kitchen, they’ll be exposed to some steam / smoke / aerosolized fat etc, so ideally something that can cope with that.

Acoustically, the setup will be suboptimal - a very reflective room; unable to position the speakers correctly, etc. But this is to entertainment / listening whilst cooking, etc, rather than serious hi fi (I have a different space and setup for that. So it may well make sense to spend less ...

Sources will be: Amazon Echo Dot; bluetooth (probably via the Dot, unless the system has inbuild bluetooth), and phone audio (LG G6 and Sony Xperia II)

I am currently using PMC TB2 (or TB2+) powered by Flying Mole DAD M100 monoblocks, via a Cambridge Audio C500 preamp. Sadly the PMCs are too big have to go (well, get moved into another room). I can keep the amps, or I have a Marantz PM66 KI Sig I can use instead or - considerably less good - a Cambridge Audio A1 (the latter two options would take up less space and probably be more than fine for the job). I could always buy another (s/h) amp.


Ideas most welcome - many thanks in advance!

37898_DUL200299_IMG_03_0000.jpg
 
Monitor Audio have several options but you may be limited by your budget. Have you thought about in-wall and in-ceiling speakers?

Or consider wireless freestanding speakers which you can place anywhere.
 

danobo

Active member
Oct 17, 2021
10
1
25
Monitor Audio have several options but you may be limited by your budget. Have you thought about in-wall and in-ceiling speakers?

Or consider wireless freestanding speakers which you can place anywhere.
Happy to consider all of those options!

My guess is the space doesn't warranty spending much more than the budget - a better system would be wasted, given room acoustics improper speaker positioning. I'd happily use the PMC system - but it's too much of a space and aesthetic compromise. Unfortunately whatever replaces it is almost bound to sound worse! Some canny second hand purchasing, perhaps, might be the answer...
 
I've got an open plan kitchen / family room. I've got Sonos soundbar with the 65-inch TV in the family area. I used to have Sonos One in the kitchen but recently, I moved it to my apartment for an Arc based 5.1 system. The Echo and Nest hub now serve the kitchen for casual listening. The added advantage of Nest hub of course is the clock and timer.
 

danobo

Active member
Oct 17, 2021
10
1
25
In ceiling might be a good option (despite the compromises...), since it's proving quite hard to work out where to put "normal" speakers!

I've marked up a few possible options. E.g. one to the left of the hob, with another on the wall opposite; on the support pillars (between hob and over, and another opposite); but probably best - if not ceiling speakers - to have small white bookshelf speakers or sattelietes on brackets above each of the windows - that way they're firing into the garden (plan is to have a bi-fold that opens that whole side of the kitchen out).


Kitchen only with speakers.jpg


37898_DUL200299_IMG_14_0000.jpg

37898_DUL200299_IMG_15_0000.jpg
 

danobo

Active member
Oct 17, 2021
10
1
25
Wow man, that's alot space to fill. Wish I was you dude.:eek:
Yes, spoiled for space - we'll be very fortunate if the move comes off!

I think the real problem will be the doubtless dreadful acoustics, so I'm tempted to do something like buy an inexpensive s/h pair of white bookshelf speakers (e.g. Monitor Audio Bronze 1, Q Acoustics 3010 or 3020s), and mount them above the windows. Amazon Echo Dot plugged into a cheapish amp (or possibly get one of the integrated bluetooth/streaming/Alexa compatible amps). Done!
 

danobo

Active member
Oct 17, 2021
10
1
25
Thanks all.
I think the real problem will be the doubtless dreadful acoustics, so anything hi-fi will be wasted.

I'm tempted to do something like buy an inexpensive s/h pair of white bookshelf speakers (e.g. Monitor Audio Bronze 1, Q Acoustics 3010 or 3020s), and mount them above the windows. Amazon Echo Dot plugged into a cheapish amp (or possibly get one of the integrated bluetooth/streaming/Alexa compatible amps). Done!

Were I to go with something more discrete, something like the
Monitor Audio Soundframe 3's seems like a good option:

They're small but attractive and provide a good sound.




yorkshireav.co.uk





The Oberon On-Wall are also supposed to be good.

However, paying quite a premium for these flatter options (which would probably sound a fair bit worse than the much cheaper s/h bookshelf or standmounts I've suggested putting above the windows on brackets) ... so I'll need to weigh up the relative benefits of the costs / aesthetics / sonics.
 
MA soundframes are fantastic to sound (given the limitations of design), but obviously you pay a premium for the design.

I wouldn't be so hung up. Listening to music in a work area will mainly be for background listening instead of critical listening. I have seen and heard ceiling speakers blend in very well in terms of aesthetics and sound.
 

Romulus

Well-known member
Nov 21, 2014
130
61
18,670
I have the Cocktail Audio X10 connected to Monitor Audio Bronze BX1 speakers in the kitchen. The whole system lies on the kitchen work surface and I think its been there for over 6 years. I was very lucky that the kitchen acoustics seem to agree with my system. As to the speakers I use bungs to the port holes which seem to control the bass nicely, without bungs the speaker did sound a little bloomy in the bass. With the features of the Cocktail Audio X10 with nice interface I can travel world's genres of music (its a CD ripper/amp/internet radio and streamer) and the system although small in stature it does serve the music very well whether its classical, jazz, heavy rock, metal, country, acoustics, music from other countries, electronica and speech. With op's lovely kitchen maybe he should seek a more up to date Cocktail Audio/ Nova Fidelity and match it with nice speakers suitable to his spending limits. An all in one system as in mine has the advantage of instant control of music without having to approach it to change music.
 

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