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How Much Does It Cost To Install A Surround Sound System?

Typical Range: $233 - $1,018

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To boost enjoyment of music, television shows and movies, a surround sound system can be a fantastic investment. This allows buyers to get sound from numerous angles, creating a fuller, richer, deeper and increasingly more realistic sound. A surround sound system can include two small speakers plugged into a wall outlet, or it can include a dozen mounted speakers located throughout the home for cohesive sound. Due to this incredible range of surround sound system, it can be hard to determine an exact price. The following factors are ways that the price of a surround sound system can be driven up or down.

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National Average
Typical Range
$233 - $1,018
Low End - High End
$95 - $2,900

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Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 1,080 HomeAdvisor members in .

Number of Rooms

It should not come as a surprise to learn that the more rooms are included in a surround sound system, the more expensive both the installation and individual components will be. When multiple rooms are connected via the same surround sound system, the electrical wiring may need to connect between the various components and speakers, all of which requires a repairperson or even a certified electrician. The exception to this rule is wireless surround sound systems, which can operate independently of one another. However, these are considerably more expensive, so there are cost trade-offs involved. Expanding the sound system to the exterior of the home, which is popular for those who have gardens, patios or pools, will further increase the total costs of the system. Before deciding to install a surround sound system in several rooms, it is important to evaluate the space properly. Larger rooms require more speakers in order to sound best, empty rooms could create strange echoes and the placement of a sub-woofer can have dramatic effects on the sound.

Wired vs. Wireless Surround Sound Systems

When choosing a surround sound system, one of the biggest decisions will be whether to invest in a wired system or a wireless system. In recent years, wireless surround sound systems have increased significantly in popularity. Wireless systems can often be less expensive, they can access user's music and movies over the home's wireless network, installation is minimal and they often don't require any professional assistance. However, wireless surround sound systems often deliver slightly sub-par musical quality. For the average homeowner, it may be more than sufficient, but it may fall short when trying to create a true home theater experience. Wired surround sound systems are more challenging to install, and most homeowners will need to bring in a professional to do the job, but the audio quality is typically much better.

Mounted vs. Integrated Speakers

Another factor that can significantly influence the cost of a surround sound system is whether the speakers will be mounted or integrated. A mounted speaker, as the name implies, can be mounted onto the wall or simply placed on a bookshelf or television stand. An integrated speaker, on the other hand, is a built-in device that can't simply be picked up and moved somewhere else. An integrated speaker is often best for those that want serious, booming sound, especially if the sound system is focused primarily in one major room. Integrated speakers have the potential to be more expensive, as well, because they are so big and may come attached to things like stands and speaker cabinets. Mounted speakers may include clips or hooks so that they can be attached in the rooms where sound is desired, but modern mounted speakers can also be placed by hand in the best location for sound. A great option for mounted speakers is those versions with a suction cup, which mounts them instantly to the ceiling or the wall but still allows them to be removed and relocated in just seconds flat.

Surround Sound System Brands

Surround sound systems are available from a variety of different brands, each of which has a unique style, quality and appearance. Generally, it is best not to mix and match speakers from different brands, but some homeowners do so with great results. While the best brand for any particular surround sound system depends on the budget and expectations of the buyer, some of the leading brands in the industry include the following:

  • Bose: One of the leading brands in sound. Offers a range of speaker systems, all of which are generally at the top end of the price range.
  • LG Electronics: Also marketed under the name Zenith, this average-priced company is best known for sound bars and bundled wireless surround sound systems.
  • Sharp: Popular for home theater systems as most products are designed to complement the brand's televisions.
  • RCA: Offers a range of speakers, both individual and in packaged systems, for budget prices.
  • JVC: Although known primarily for video products, this brand delivers speaker systems and bars for affordable and medium-range prices.

Planning and Calibration of the Surround Sound System

Buyers who purchase a surround sound system, take it out of the box and plug it in right away can expect minimal installation costs, if any. However, upscale and properly calibrated speaker systems can cost more due to the time that planning and installation takes. Hiring a professional to analyze the layout of the room and determine the best system results in high-quality sound but obviously costs more. Calibration is also extra, but ensures that the sub-woofer delivers bass, there are no tinny echoes and sound is as strong as it can be given the equipment.

Extra and Additional Features That Influence Costs

A surround sound system with six components typically starts at $100 and goes up from there, with the price dependent on the extras included in the system. Some of the best additional features, both installation-wise and system-wise, can include the following:

  • Concealed wires through molding or trim
  • Inclusion of a Blu-ray or progressive-scan DVD player
  • Stands and mounts for speakers
  • Cases for built-in and integrated speakers
  • Remotes to control speakers from throughout the house
  • Wireless Internet connectivity
  • Tablet or laptop connection capability
  • Wall dock or charger for iPods or MP3 players
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