Top 8 Best In-Ceiling Speakers 2020 (With Buying Guide)

Are you trying to pick in-ceiling speakers for your house interior? If the answer is yes, you might find that this is a harder task than what you initially thought. In-ceiling speakers have quite a lot of different features that might not make sense to you, and what is even more disorienting is the prices: some of them are really low-budget while others are extremely expensive.

But why is this happening? In recent years, in-ceiling speakers are gradually becoming popular at houses as more and more people are looking for high quality audio equipment that will allow them to keep their interior decoration intact. In addition to that, in-ceiling speakers save a lot of space compared to big, bookshelf speakers, and they optimize sound direction that comes from above. All these advantages have led to the production of a variety of different models by many well-known speaker brands.

To make it easier for you to choose in-ceiling speakers , I present you with a range of options: you can find below the 8 best in-ceiling speakers on the market right now. Whether you have a lot of money or a low budget to spend, there is an option for you.

Top 8 Best In-Ceiling Speakers 2020 Reviews

1. Micca M-8C

Micca M-8CThe first choice of this list is a pretty obvious one: the Micca M-8C is a high-quality in-ceiling speaker that is a real bang for the buck. Despite its low price, it delivers crystal clear and smooth sound performance thanks to its large 8-inch poly woofer and 1-inch silk dome twitter. It is exceptionally good at the low frequencies, something not very common for this type of speaker and that can also save you from buying a subwoofer. The integrated crossover network allows for balanced audio performance and makes it suitable for all occasions: whether you want to use it to listen to music or for a home theater system, it won’t disappoint you. The carefully selected components create a high-quality overall design with great build quality. The Micca M-8C is sold in single units, allowing you to decide how many speakers you need for your space. It is quite easy to install using a screwdriver, thanks to its tab system. On the whole, this speaker is quite amazing for its price range and it is definitely recommended to audiophiles who don’t want to spend a fortune on in-ceiling speakers.

Pros
  • Value for money
  • Great low end performance
  • Sold in single units
  • Easy installation
Cons
  • Grilles might come off as they are not screwed

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2. Klipsch CDT-5650-C II

Klipsch CDT-5650-C IIThe Klipsch CDT-5650-C II is a premium-quality in-ceiling speaker that comes from a well-known brand of this type of audio equipment. This two-way speaker comes with an 6.5” cerametallic woofer and a 1” titanium tweeter that can both pivot to the direction you want. Their Controlled Dispersion Technology mechanism allows them to emit sound to different directions despite their fixed position. Extra features include attenuation switches for treble and mid-bass and horn-loaded technology for better audio quality. The advanced technology and choice of materials of this speaker allow for crystal clear and detailed sound performance with a great dynamic range and a wide soundstage. Its design makes it versatile for different applications ranging from stereo designs to surround sound systems. Its low-profile design allows it to be almost invisible once you install it. The high-tech design of the Klipsch CDT-5650-C II is reflected on its steep price. It is true that this speaker’s sound performance is worth every penny, but many potential buyers might find it too pricey.

Pros
  • Top-of-the-line technology with useful features
  • Great sound performance
  • Adjustable position of the woofer and the tweeter
  • Nice blending with the interior of the room
Cons
  • Expensive

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3. Polk Audio RC80i

Polk Audio RC80iPolk Audio is a brand that has invested a lot in in-ceiling speakers with some fantastic results. One of their most popular models is the Polk Audio RC80i, a pair of two-way speakers that come with a large 8-inch woofer and a 1” metallic, soft-dome tweeter that allow them to have a wide frequency response of 50 to 20,000 Hz. They deliver excellent sound performance with emphasis on detail. The twitter comes with 15-degree swiveling capability, so that you can point it to your listening position. Their design is low-profile and the white finish allows them to disappear once installed. There is also the possibility to paint their metallic grills to match  the color of your ceiling. A big plus of this speaker is the robust build quality: all the materials are water-resistant and rust-resistant, a feature that ensures durability and makes them suitable for different interior environments. All in all, the Polk Audio RC80i comes in a reasonable price for what it offers, making it a choice to consider for most buyers.

Pros
  • Sturdy build quality
  • Moisture-resistant and rust-resistant materials
  • Low-profile design
  • Decent audio performance
Cons
  • The back is exposed

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4. Yamaha NS-IW280CWH

Yamaha NS-IW280CWHHere comes a pretty affordable option from a top brand: the Yamaha NS-IW280CWH is a pair of three-way speakers that deliver exceptional sound quality.  It comes with a 6.5-inch polypropylene mica cone woofer and dual ¾ inch dome tweeters, and it allows you to tilt everything in order to get the sound in the right direction. The speakers are capable of delivering 100 watts of power and the tweeters come with the SoundMax system for better quality in the high frequencies. These speakers come with a template that allows you to replace them with other Yamaha speakers without the need to drill new holes. The Yamaha NS-IW280CWH have pretty modern design, and they come with aluminum grilles that you can paint to fit the ceiling. On the whole, these speakers are optimal for those on a budget as they combine moveable parts with sound that can easily fill a room, but some people might find that they lack in sound quality compared to other speakers on the list. However, they are still good value for money.

Pros
  • Value for money
  • Three-way design and advanced twitter technology
  • Swiveling tweeters and tilted woofer
Cons
  • Sound performance won’t please everyone

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5. Bose Virtually Invisible 791 II

Bose Virtually Invisible 791 IIThe Bose Virtually Invisible 791 II is a high-quality pair of in-ceiling speakers from another well-known brand. Τhis model claims to disappear into the surroundings once installed. It is true that their strongest point is the design: they come in white colour to fit the ceiling and feature an almost bezel-less construction to blend in easily. Their grilles are paintable and magnetically attached for easy removal, while the included templates make the speakers easy to install. In terms of sound performance, the Bose Virtually Invisible 791 II come with a 7-inch woofer and 2, 1-inch tweeters that deliver crystal clear audio with emphasis in the mid-range. On the other side, if you are a bass enthusiast you might find that these need a subwoofer to really shine. They are sold in pairs and their price is pretty high compared to the other models. Overall, the Bose Virtually Invisible 791 II speakers are perfect for those who want their in-ceiling speakers to be low-profile and virtually disappear into their surroundings.

Pros
  • Beautiful design that makes them invisible
  • Paintable and magnetically attached grilles
  • Decent sound performance
  • Easy to install
Cons
  • Pricey
  • Lacking in bass performance

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6. Acoustic Audio R191 

Acoustic Audio R191Here comes a perfect choice for your home theater: the Acoustic Audio R191 are affordable in-ceiling speakers that are sold in a set of five, the perfect number for a surround system. They come with a 2-way design with 5.25-inch woofers and 12 mm soft dome tweeters that deliver a frequency response of 45 Hz to 22 kHz and 95dB of efficiency. Those characteristics allow them to deliver crisp and clear sound performance that is suitable for most uses, while their volume output is more than adequate for every interior. They have robust build quality and their materials ensure durability. They are quite easy to install without the need of an expert by using your tools Their low-profile design comes in white color with paintable grilles to fit your ceiling. Overall, the Acoustic Audio R191 are an incredible value for their price, and they are certainly recommended to those who want to build a home theater system with in-ceiling speakers on a tight budget.

Pros
  • Value for the price
  • Low profile design
  • Sturdy build quality and durability
  • Crisp and clear sound performance
Cons
  • They come only in a set of 5 speakers

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7. Pyle PDIC60

Pyle PDIC60Pyle Audio is an American company that manufactures different models of in-ceiling speakers. The reason we chose the Pyle PDIC60 is the combination of low price and really good sound performance. This pair of speakers comes with 6.5-inch polypropylene woofers and 1-inch moveable titanium tweeters to direct the sound wherever you want. The choice of materials ensures that they will last for a long time. Having 150 watts of power as a pair, they produce enough volume output to fill any room. The sound performance they deliver is crisp and clear, with the only problem being that they produce a little too quiet bass. They come in white colour to fit your ceiling and feature minimalistic design. Their grilles can be removed and come with built-in terminals that make them quite easy to install on your own. The price of Pyle PDIC60 makes them the best choice for those who don’t want to spend a fortune on in-ceiling speakers but still want to purchase speakers with decent sound performance.

Pros
  • Inexpensive
  • Decent sound performance
  • Moveable tweeters
  • Easy to install
Cons
  • Low-end performance is not optimal

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8. Polk Audio 255C-RT

Polk Audio 255C-RTThe Polk Audio 255C-RT is another choice from the Polk Audio brand which is part of their acclaimed Vanishing Series. This speaker comes both as an in-ceiling speaker and as an in-wall speaker, as it features a wall bracket to mount it. It is essentially a central channel speaker with a 3-way design that features two 5.25-inch polypropylene cones and a 1-inch soft dome tweeter. Its components allow it to deliver rich bass performance as well as crisp and clear middle and high frequencies. The twitter is able to swivel 15° so that you can direct the sound to your listening position, forgiving you if you haven’t placed it perfectly in the room. The rubber surround of the  Polk Audio 255C-RT ensures durability. The overall design is pretty beautiful and comes in white finish. The speaker is square-shaped with curved edges. The grilles are very thin, and they are attached to the body of the speaker with a magnetic clasp, while their white colour helps the speakers disappear into the ceiling.

Pros
  • Easy to install
  • Design that makes it disappear into the surroundings
  • Excellent sound performance with strong bass
  • Robust build quality and durability
Cons
  • It doesn’t come in a circular shape

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In-Ceiling Speakers Buying Guide

In-ceiling speakers have risen in popularity as they have been recognized as a nice alternative to bulky audio systems and bookshelf speakers for interior spaces. However, most potential buyers feel lost when trying to choose the right speakers, as they feature many specifications that are not always clear and they come in very different prices, something that makes the task even more difficult. To help with this confusion, I have created for you the following buying guide that will explain to you everything you need to know before you buy brand-new in-ceiling speakers.

Sound performance

Sound performance is always the top priority when looking for speakers. Depending on the materials that have been used for the woofer and the tweeter, the various models achieve different levels of clarity and crispness in sound performance. Most of the brands are very competitive about the materials they use, so it is certain that you will find a model that will suit you. Some of the speakers come with built-in controls for different frequency ranges such as mids and highs, that let you fine-tune the system according to your room and preference. One thing that you should be aware of before getting your speakers is the low end performance: not all of the models are good at reproducing bass, and that might determine your choice if you are a bass enthusiast.

Installation

In-ceiling speakers can prove quite hard to install by yourself on your ceiling. To make this procedure a bit easier, some models come with specialized systems such as tab systems or included templates that let you install them using simple tools. Note that if the speakers don’t include built-in terminals, you might need the help of an expert to get them in place as well as make them work properly. Certain models let you also replace in-ceiling speakers of the same brand without the need to drill new holes.

Adjustable positioning

One of the most useful features that certain in-ceiling speakers incorporate is the ability of certain parts to swivel. That lets you position them in places that might not be ideal, but later turn them in the right direction. Some speakers come with moveable tweeters while others also feature moveable woofers. If you are capable of placing the speakers exactly in the right place in the ceiling where they will be perfectly aligned to your listening position, you don’t need this extra feature. If that is not the case, it is worth to spend some extra bucks for tweeters that are able to swivel.

Budget

The price can be crucial when deciding on equipment such as in-ceiling speakers, and as we mentioned earlier, they come in a great variety of price tags. Fortunately, there are many options out there for those of you on a tight budget. Although most of them will satisfy even demanding audiophiles, don’t let the low price fool you: if you need speakers with adjustable positioning or vanishing design, you might need to pay some more money. Finally, always pay attention to whether the price refers to a single unit or a set of more speakers.

Build quality

Most people are not willing to buy in-ceiling speakers too many times, so the sturdy build quality is an important characteristic that a lot of potential buyers should pay attention to. Build quality is ensured by the materials that have been used both for the speaker and the exterior. Some speakers feature specialized technology such as water-resistant and rust-resistant design that allows them to be installed in bathrooms and kitchens, so if you plan to do so you should definitely take a look at that. Finally, don’t forget that robust build quality means that the speaker will last longer, so even if you need to pay a bit more, it is a good long-term investment.

Design

In-ceiling speakers are usually supposed to completely vanish into the ceiling. In order to achieve blending into the surroundings, most of the models feature low-profile design that comes in white colour. Many speakers also incorporate paintable grilles that help them blend in even more.  This is a feature that is not equally important to everyone, but if it is crucial to you, you can surely find a model that will completely disappear into your ceiling.

Sets or single units

There are two ways in which in-ceiling speakers are sold: some of them are sold in single units, while others are sold in sets of two or more speakers. This is a choice that you have to make with the shape and size of your room in mind, which determines the number of speakers that you will need to fill the space with sound. Sometimes sets are more inexpensive, but they might not fit your needs, so you need to pay a lot of attention to this feature.

Other features

Depending on your taste and needs, you might also want to take a look at some other specifications. For example, the grilles of the speakers can be screwed or magnetically attached, depending on the model. The shape of the speakers is usually round, but there are certain speakers that only come in square shape. Last but not least, don’t forget to check whether the volume output is adequate for your space: that means that you might need to purchase more or fewer speakers if you haven’t measured everything well.

As you have probably realized by now, the market is full of in-ceiling speakers that come with different features. It is certain that you can find speakers that are suitable for you as long as you know what you are going to use them for. Determining your needs is crucial: that means that you have to keep in mind the shape and size of your room, where you want to place them as well as whether you need an extra feature (for example water-resistant design or square shape). I hope that this guide has helped you understand all the different specifications of in-ceiling speakers.

Final Words:

While having a list of the 8 best speakers surely helps to narrow down your options from this huge amount of speakers on the market, how do you decide which one to get? Well, the best in-ceiling speaker is the one that fits your needs, and the most important thing to note is the shape and size of your room. Not only that determines the number and position of your speakers, but it will also be useful to know in order to choose pivoting or stable-position speakers. If you consider important for your speakers to disappear into the ceiling, you should start looking at the ones with low-profile design and paintable grilles.

Another factor that certainly weighs heavily on your choice is the money you are willing to spend on these speakers. I have presented you with choices for every budget, but you should definitely check whether the speakers you plan to buy come in pairs, in single units or in sets of five, as that is an important aspect of the price.

In-ceiling speakers are a really nice addition to any interior space. I hope that this list will help you to choose the ones that are right for you!

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