New sockets, Ethernet cables,cat 6 cables and home entertainment

(5 Posts)
goingtobefree Sat 19-Oct-13 07:07:57

We have bought a house which needs building and electrical work.
While it is being gutted , plastered and decorated, now is the time to upgrade your sockets and cables etc.,
The problem is I don't know where to start.
1. As many double sockets as you can in each wall of the rooms
2. Cat6 cables in each room( absolutely no idea how this will be used) but have read about them in various forums.
3. TV on the fireplace with sky connection in future with blu ray player, home entertainment system in the lounge. But I would like music /programme to be listened in the kitchen and snug room. How can this be achieved? Would like to invest in good home entertainment system.

What are your views about ceiling speakers or are there any alternative to this. I know that you can have various control switch when you flick you can change the room you listen.

We are not rewiring as the wires are in good condition but doing everything else.

It has a large lounge, conservatory, dining, snug, study and kitchen downstairs.

studyinghard Sat 19-Oct-13 09:25:33

I would whole-heartedly recommend Sonos www.sonos.com for distributed audio. It's wireless audio streaming round your house. You can have each room playing different music, or create any combination of groups which will play in perfect sync so you can walk from room to room without any audio discrepancy. We investigated hard-wired audio distribution systems and wireless ones but nothing offered the capability and flexibility of Sonos. There are various speaker options available, from the Sonos-1 up. You can buy a Connect Amp that could power your own ceiling speakers if you like.

One of the major considerations that we had when we were choosing the system was the way that we listen to music. We want to listen to radio, any music we want on demand (e.g. from Napster, Spotify), etc. in any room we want. We don't want to listen to the archive of CDs that we have bought over the years - we can get all that from the online streaming if we want to listen to 80s hits anyway.

You may see posts about the cost - £259 for a Play:3. But think about how much it would be if you bought the components to replicate that - reliable, streaming, synchronised audio, built in Amp, good speakers, wireless and can play pretty much anything you want. If you were to go an Apple route, you wouldn't get the sync, you'd have to buy an AirPlay device, speakers, etc. and have a server serving up the music. You very quickly exceed the £259.

With Sonos, you plug the Bridge (£39 - quite often you can get this thrown in) into your broadband router, and plug your Play:X into a power socket for power. A little configuration and you're off. iPhone, Android, PC, IOS devices can control the music.

goingtobefree Sat 19-Oct-13 10:11:45

Thanks, are the speakers good
My friend has Bose and raves about it but it is not throughout the house.
Also, can you link the smart tv if you are I the lounge.
Sorry I really don't have a clue, my current tv is nearly 18 years old and don't have a proper music system.
I have been putting buying anything off as wanted to go for the best when we buy our next house.
Also, do you need speakers in the ceiling, what does the sound bar do

goingtobefree Sat 19-Oct-13 10:12:38

Oh, I am really excited, don't mind the cost.
As long as the infrastructure is there we can add whenever we can afford it.

studyinghard Sat 19-Oct-13 14:28:09

Speakers in the ceiling are an option - I don't have any so can't speak for any drawbacks, e.g. sound through to the floor above, etc. You would wire those through to a Connect Amp. They tend to be streamline and there are quite a few on the market - even wall ones that don't even look like speakers. One place where they would be ideal would be the bathroom/en-suite/etc. If you get ones that are suitable for those rooms, you will be able to play whatever you want through them. You could group it with the bedroom one, or have it on its own, etc.

Regarding the smart tv: the Bar will accept the TV's audio as an input so you can push the TV/blu-ray/dvd/sky/etc. audio out through that speaker, plus the Bar will play the stuff that you can play through any other Sonos speaker. So you get high quality sound from the Bar rather than through the TV's speakers. I don't think that it will push the TV audio out to other rooms though - I could be wrong, though.

Bose are good - probably around the same price, but you get so much more with Sonos.

I think there is a limit of 32 sonos devices that you can have on the network. They create their own WiFi mesh network which is separate from the house's main WiFi network, so your music playing won't affect your computer's download speeds and vice-versa.

You can stream music content from servers on your network, online music services such as Napster, Spotify, Deezer, etc., from your iPod/Phone directly (though you probably want to give your iXXX power as it's streaming from the device and will eat your phone's battery). We use Napster as the music service. It's £9.99 per month for unlimited music with no ads - we got 6 months free + free bridge when we bought the first sonos play:3 at the start of the year.

The controllers for sonos (e.g. on Android, iPhone, iPad, PC, Mac, etc) just issue commands to the sonos devices on your network. They don't stream music to the speaker via the phone. That means that you can tell a lounge speaker to play radio 1, the kitchen to play radio 4 and the bedroom to play some 80's hits, then turn your phone off and they would all continue playing. It also means that your phone's battery isn't being drained.

Have a look at the sonos website and read the reviews. Have a look on YouTube - search for "sonos", then you will see some good reviews. Watch Tom Strong's unboxing video - it's really informative. I would recommend watching at least the first 8 results from that search.

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