Big, ugly speakers can ruin the look of a nice, clean home theater. Unsightly wires never look good no matter how well you organize them. A pair of the best in-ceiling speakers will minimize bulk and clean up the look of your home theater. With some measuring, cutting, and simple installation, they’ll blend right into your ceiling. Your guests won’t even notice them.
If you’re upgrading your home audio for the first time, you’ll be amazed at the improved sound quality that’ll come along with a pair or two of these speakers. Some of the highly preferred home theater speakers on the market are ceiling or wall-mounted. If you’ve wanted to upgrade from your sub-par built-in television speakers, but don’t want the look of big traditional speakers, these speakers are perfect for you.
Think about all of the movies you watch, all of the TV shows you enjoy, and all of the games you play. Even if you have the best possible resolution on your screen, you’re not getting the full experience if you settle for bad audio. Try some of the best ceiling speakers and take your home theater experience to the next level. Without the ugly equipment and wires.
Here is a list of 2018’s top rated and reviewed in-ceiling speakers to help you choose the best products for your home theater.
Best In-Ceiling Speakers | Top 8
|Our Rank||In-Ceiling Speaker||Power Handling (RMS)||Speaker Type||Frequency Response||Price|
|1.||Atlantic Technology IC-6HT-S||125 Watts||2-Way||45 - 22k Hz||$$$|
|2.||Bose Virtually Invisible 191||50 Watts||2-Way||10 - 200k Hz||$$$$|
|3.||Polk RC80i||20 Watts||2-Way||25 - 20k Hz||$$$|
|4.||Klipsch R-1800-C||40 watts||2-Way||56 - 20k Hz||$$|
|5.||Yamaha NS-IW480CHW||35 Watts||3-Way||50 - 28k Hz||$$$|
|6.||JBL SP8CII||100 Watts||2-Way||32 - 20k Hz||$$$|
|7.||Definitive Technology DT8R||N/A||2-Way||26 - 30k Hz||$$$|
|8.||Pyle PDIC60||250 Watts||2-Way||65 - 22k Hz||$|
Our Top Picks
1. Best Overall: Atlantic Technology IC-6HT-S
Atlantic Technology IC-6HT-S Quick Review
The Atlantic Technology IC-6HT-S is a professional grade surround sound ceiling speaker. If you’re looking to build the ultimate home theater and want an in-ceiling speaker, this is an excellent choice. Used by professionals, this speaker is designed with a 15 degree angle that allows you to tilt it towards the listening area. This is a great choice for those who are trying to achieve that 5.1 stereo setup, since many of the ceiling speakers aren’t angled and project downwards. It’s made with a heavy-duty 6.5″ woofer with a low resonance tweeter that offers great sound coverage. It also features a magnetically attached grill to make it simple to add or remove.
The IC-6HT-S also features a feature called Boundary Compensation control. This limits the build-up of mid bass frequencies if it’s placed too close to a wall.
Some of the product specs:
- Outer Diameter 9 5⁄8″ (244mm)
- Cutout Diameter 8″ (202mm)
- Mounting Depth 5 1⁄16″ (128mm)
- Frequency Response 45 – 22kHz
- Woofer 6 ½” (165mm) Polypropylene
- Tweeter 1″ (25mm) LRT™ silk dome
- Nominal Impedance 6 ohms
- Crossover Frequency 2.3kHz
- Sensitivity (1 watt/1 meter) 88dB
- Recommended Power 10 – 125 Watts RMS
- Weight 5 lbs
2. Best Full Range & Bass: Bose Virtually Invisible 191
Bose Virtually Invisible 191 Quick Review
Bose is one of the biggest names in audio for a reason. They make some of the best in wall and ceiling speakers on the market. Bose has employed their proprietary technologies to make unique speakers that blend right into the room. And they sound amazing. They have angled full-range speakers on the inside aiming sound in different directions to truly fill the room. That means it sounds good at any volume in any part of the room. One of the unique features of the Bose is that they have both round and rectangular removable grills. You can customize the look and swap them out if you change your mind.
- Stereo Everywhere® speaker performance produces balanced stereo sound over a wide area. Unlike conventional home audio speakers, that radiate sound mostly in a single direction.
- Articulated Array® speaker design with two precisely positioned full-range drivers (2.5″) provides consistent, lifelike sound over a large listening area.
- Proprietary ported enclosure technology ensures consistent performance regardless of space behind wall. This produces cleaner and deeper low-frequency performance. It also ensures that lower frequencies are mainly directed into the intended listening area, and not into adjoining rooms.
- Rectangular and round speaker grilles are included in every box. So you can choose to install the shape that best blends into your décor.
- Paintable grille frames and grilles make it easy to match your décor. Install flush to your wall for a finished, hidden-speaker look.
- Ease of installation with enclosure that balances easily in your wall during placement. This allows convenient use of both hands to connect the speaker wire and complete the installation.
3. Best Value: Polk Audio RC80i
Polk Audio RC80i Quick Review
These Polk Audio RC80i don’t only sound great, but they have a few special features that make them worth a look. They’re made of durable, water resistant material. This makes them useable in bathrooms, saunas, and even outdoors. They shouldn’t be directly where they can be affected by weather, but put them under outdoor eaves and they’ll be just fine. They also have an aimed tweeter on a swivel mount you can customize where the sound is aimed.
Some of the key features of the Polk include:
- Pair of 2-way in-ceiling speakers timbre-matched to the Polk Audio RTi Series for seamless imaging.
- Equipped with one 8-inch dynamic-balance, mineral filled polymer-composite cone.
- Frequency response: 35Hz – 20kHz
- Equipped with one 1-inch dynamic-balance, metalized soft dome tweeter with 15-degree-swivel mount.
- Constructed of durable, moisture-resistant materials for use in bathrooms, saunas, or under outdoor eaves.
4. Runner Up, Best Value: Klipsch R-1800-C
Klipsch R-1800-C Quick Review
Klipsch delivers great products at good prices. The R-1800-C is a perfect example of that. These are nice, well-rounded speakers that won’t break the bank. They offer the quality of more expensive speakers at a more reasonable price. The R-1800-C doesn’t have a lot of the flare or proprietary tech of some higher end speakers. But, if you’re not looking for anything incredibly fancy, these are another great choice. When it comes to value, these are some of the best wall mount speakers.
Some of the key features of the R-1800-C include:
- Good sensitivity and power handling
- Paintable to match ceiling
- Packaged individually
- Dynamic acoustic performance for both home and commercial environments
5. Best 3-Way: Yamaha NS-IW480CWH
Yamaha NS-IW480CWH Quick Review
These Yamahas are the only 3-way speakers in our best in ceiling speakers list. They’re also some of the best looking. Yamaha did a good job designing a speaker that looks great with or without the included aluminum grille. It has dual tweeters which makes it sound excellent for high frequencies and crisp treble. You’ll never get that tinny sound that comes with a high pitch coming through a single, low-quality tweeter. These 3 way speakers give you a full, clear sound at any volume.
- New Natural Sound in-ceiling speaker system
- Easy installation design
- 8″ PP mica cone woofers
- Dual 3/4″ dome tweeter with “SoundMax”
- Swivel tweeter for wide dispersion
- 120W maximum input capability
- Paintable aluminum grille with protective cover included
6. Best Installation: JBL SP8CII
JBL SP8CII Quick Review
In terms of construction, JBL makes some of the best home theater speakers on the market. That high-end construction is on full display in the SP8CII in-ceiling speakers. These have a titanium-laminate woofer and tweeter. The high-quality materials translate into high-quality sound. Aside from fantastic build quality, JBL has a few other tricks up their sleeve. The tweeter is on a swivel mount so you can aim it wherever you want. And these speakers have what JBL calls Elliptical Oblate Spheroidal (EOS) waveguide. It’s a technology designed for studio speakers that carry the sound to fill the whole room rather than having “sweet spots.” It all comes together in a great sounding package.
- Titanium laminate tweeter for excellent high frequency sound
- Rubber surrounds reduce distortion
- Dog-ear brackets make it possible to retrofit
- Speaker faceplates and grilles can be painted to match room decor
- Optional rough-in frames are available for new construction
- High-quality audio
- Plenty of innovative features such as touchscreen interface, hands-free calling and audio streaming
- Detachable faceplate for security
- Easy to install and setup
- No remote control
- No printed owner manuals
- A bit pricey
7. Best Volume: Definitive Technology DT8R
Definitive Technology DT8R Quick Review
This is another speaker that’s big on construction and material quality. The DT8R speakers use annealed aluminum which is has a high strength-to-weight ratio. That means its very rigid without being too heavy. The result is excellent performance with long durability. High-frequency sound is pure and accurate thanks to the Mylar capacitors too. If you’re looking for great set of wall or ceiling speakers with strong construction and clear sound, these are worth a look.
Key features include:
- Exclusive 8″ composite mineral-filled polypropylene driver cones offer superior transparency
- Annealed aluminum tweeter dome provides great transients and smooth response
- High definition crossover network with Mylar capacitors delivers the purest high frequencies
- Improved sound dispersion and off-axis response casts incredible sound throughout the room
8. Best Budget: Pyle PDIC60
Pyle PDIC60 Quick Review
You may have never heard of Pyle, but they’re on our list because they are an outstanding value. The people who have them love them, just check some of the customer reviews. They’re right up there with the top rated speakers out there, but for a very affordable price. They even use titanium in the aimed tweeter like JBL. Easy installation, hassle-free connection, and full sound make these a tempting offering. It’s hard to argue these are the best budget ceiling speakers you can buy.
Key features of the PDIC60:
- 2-Way Stereo Sound Speakers
- 6.5” Midbass Speaker
- 1” High Temperature Voice Coil
- Directable 1” Titanium Dome Tweeter
- 250 Watts Rated Peak Power
- Mounts Flush on Walls or Ceilings
- Perfect for Custom Installations & Applications
- Includes Cut-Out Template for Easy Installation