Clever Fix for Tricky Speaker Install in Manhattan Apt. with Expansive Views

Where do you put loudspeakers in a Manhattan apartment with floor-to-ceiling windows and a view of the Empire State Building? Home Theater of Long Island (HTOLI) placed Meridian powered speakers in an unusual place.


In Manhattan, where residential space is at a premium and aesthetic demands can run high, it takes some clever thinking to create a multiroom entertainment system that looks good and sounds good, too.

Indeed, Home Theater of Long Island (HTOLI) did a lot of thinking in this Manhattan property with a view of the Empire State Building. Not surprisingly, the owners didn't want technology to detract from the view or disrupt the aesthetics of the space.

“The homeowner wanted to be able to listen to music in a way that would do the beautiful surroundings justice, without taking away from the aesthetics,” says HTOLI managing director Anthony Chrisostomo.

Meridian Complements a Room with a View

One of the first challenges the HTOLI team encountered was the home's living room, where sightlines had to be maintained through floor-to-ceiling windows. Traditional speaker positioning wouldn't work.

So, says Chrisostomo,  “We turned to Meridian to offer elevated sound that also solved specfic design challenges within the property.”

HTOLI installed a 2.1 system featuring a pair of horizontal Meridian DSP5200HC speakers, along with a DSW subwoofer

Placing the speakers in a low mounting position the HTOLI installation team was able to compensate for the DSP5200HC's unusual positioning through Meridian's Centre Elevation Adjustment technology that “lifts” the audio image to produce a realistic, uncompromised soundstage. 

The install team also benefitted from the DSP5200HC's use of active amplification, which minimized the amount of gear required in the homeowner's centralized equipment rack. 

“This [the Meridian active loudspeakers] allows the homeowner to use the office closet for other things in an apartment where space is at a premium,” Chrisostomo points out. 

Working with the homeowner and the interior designer, HTOLI also installed the 2.1 system's DSW subwoofer into a c-shaped wooden pedestal that also included a sculpture to bring a touch of art to the room. 

Meridian, B&W Go into Bedroom and Office  

Prioritizing work as the primary goal for the apartment's office space the homeowner challenged HTOLI to maintain the same high levels of audio quality throughout the installation, including the home office. HTOLI responded with Meridian's stylish M6 small-footprint floorstanding speakers

“The homeowner still wanted good-quality audio, but because this is a work space, nothing too over-the-top,” Chrisostomo says. “We chose the Meridian M6 loudspeakers, which sound incredible for their footprint and fill a space with sound as opposed to directional listening.”

The home's bedroom also placed a premium on style and ergonomics. HTOLI installed two separate systems in the bedroom that shared a single subwoofer. 

Using Meridian's DSP620 in-wall loudspeakers, which mount vertically or horizontally, the  installation company mounted the speakers above some artwork and bedroom TV, and augmented the speakers' frequency extension with a Bowers & Wilkins (B&W) subwoofer.

Feeding the multizone system is Meridian's Sooloos high-resolution whole-house streaming audio platform. HTOLI set up the Sooloos system to allow the homeowner to access their content, as well as the Sooloos system's volume control from the companion app.

About the Author

Robert Archer
Robert Archer:

Bob is an audio enthusiast who has written about consumer electronics for various publications within Massachusetts before joining the staff of CE Pro in 2000. Bob is THX Level I certified, and he's also taken classes from the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) and Home Acoustics Alliance (HAA). Bob also serves as the technology editor for CE Pro's sister publication Commercial Integrator. In addition, he's studied guitar and music theory at Sarrin Music Studios in Wakefield, Mass., and he also studies Kyokushin karate at 5 Dragons and Brazilian jiu-jitsu at Binda Brazilian Jiu Jitsu; both schools are located in Haverhill, Mass.