Whole House Audio A-BUS.


Wondering if anyone has any experience with any A-BUS systems for whole house audio.. I really like the Russound system as it is expandable and affordable..

It uses Cat 5 to each keypad (about $100/ea) and then you run speaker wire to from each keypad to the speaker.. Each keypad has IR as well..

Anyways, I think this is the route I am going to go, but had a few questions regarding it..

o Speakers - the ABUS Keypads are like 8 watts each, I need a bunch 20 plus ceiling speakers and can't afford to spend like $100/ea .. Since the wattage is so low, can I get away with cheaper speakers?

o Speakers Part 2, plan on having a keypad and speakers in my bathroom; do you think I need to get indoor/outdoor speakers due to the humidity from showers, etc..?

o Can I control the A-BUS system via serial or any other way to automate things?

Anyways, any feedback would be great or a better solution would be appreciated.. I wanted to have 3 sources (the russound offers 4) and only 4 rooms to start, but the ability to grow to 10-12 rooms..

I don't have any of experience with these systems, but saw them at CES (read more about that HERE).

I thought the Russound rep said that they offered 30 watts for their keypads, maybe he wasn't talking RMS, not sure.

You have a lot of speakers! I am not sure if you could gang a lot of speakers on one keypad output.

You might want to post your questions on Cinemar's Forums as well. They have a section just on the Russound Cav 6 (their Main Lobby Software has a plugin for it). Also, chances are someone there will have direct experience with A-Bus.

thanks for the info, I read the notes from CES. As for the number of speakers, that is just usually two per room and having 10 rooms full of speakers..

it looks like the abus stuff has been around for awhile, just not that much out there on the web about it..

can I get away with cheaper speakers?
You get what you pay for. ;)

get indoor/outdoor speakers due to the humidity
Unless the speaker is gong to be physically inside the shower enclosure, no. Even with teenagers, the actual amount of time the speaker is exposed to high humidity is very small.

Can I control the A-BUS system via serial or any other way to automate things?
Depends on the system you buy. Russound has serial control on it's larger systems, but I'm not sure about the A-Bus stuff. At minimum, you should be able to do a limited amount via IR.
can I get away with cheaper speakers?

You get what you pay for.

While I believe that to be true in a lot of cases; does background ceiling speakers really matter that much?

I have read a few people liked Dayton Audio and AudioSource. They are around 40-50 a pair which is in my price range.. Just can't see spending 200+ on a set of 6.5" speakers for the ceiling.. Doesn't fit well on the WAF... :)
They are around 40-50 a pair ......... 6.5" speakers for the ceiling
If you are talking about the C6S units, you should be okay. When I installed my system, I put a mixture of Niles 5.25", 6.5", and 8" speakers in. The difference was noticable, so after a few weeks, I ripped out the 5.25" and replaced them with the 6.5" units. Of course I'm a teenager when it comes to my listening tastes. What I consider to be "background music", most people my age would consider to be "TOO DAMN LOUD". :)
I've been using the russound abus system for just over two years now and have been very happy with it. i'm using he H484 4source 4 zone 4subzone controller with it, it's all worked very very well and i'm quite happy with it.

you can use any speakers you like, however like someone suggested you get what you pay for. Bathroom speaker are not a proble at all, just don't put iti in the shower:) i find the dual voice coil speakers work better in the bath, not a place you need stereo anyway, unless you spend a lot of time in there.

it doesn't have a serial control like the cav6 but it's built in IR works very well. Using the H484 i have 4 seperate zones of IR plus a common. i set up macros on a handheld remote to automate the zone quipment so the waf is high, one button to get it all going.
Thanks for the info; i was talking about the AuioSource ICS6 -- as for the ability to control it like the cav6, i emailed russound about this and they said they don't have any plans to do this; so I emailed the makers of the a-bus standard, and have yet to hear a reply..

we will see.. regardless looks like i am going to go with the H484 and the AudioSource ICS6 speakers...

nightwalker; i have found that the key for me to be able to "buy" these toys is the WAF, so that is good news...
So I did email the orginator of abus and didn't get a definitive answer but got this none the less.. So i'll keep my fingers crossed and go with the abus stuff and hope something happens... not I just gotta figure out microphones for all the rooms.. hmm...

anyways here some snips of the email..

Hi Jeremy,

At this point in time I can’t release I can’t release those details but we are working on expanding the system.




From: Jeremy Kurtz [mailto:]
Sent: Tuesday, 1 February 2005 8:26 AM
To: James Goldfinch
Subject: RE: [TC] A-bus A-H484


Is this something that is planned; a few other people have been asking and I am trying to see if that is the a future idea for your product..


We also stock the Channel Vision A-Bus stuff. I think you'll find the pricing much lower. I need to do some work to get that stuff on the website. Please just contact me if you would like additional information.


one quick question, are all Abus systems compatible with one aother?

meaning can you mix and match different systems and equipment together? or have they mde just enought of a change to make that not feasible?

to my knowledge (based only upon what I have read, not real world) all A-Bus systems are compatible so you can mix and match items..