Written by Admin in Sound, Whole Home Audio
Aug 30 th, 2013
In this article we are going to share our findings as it relates to the CAA66K from Russound compared against a competitive brand. We won’t mention the other brand other than to say, the price of the Russound CAA66K versus the competitive system were very close.
The CAA66 is the part number for just the Russound Controller amplifier. The Kit part number is CAA66K and also contains 6 keypads.
We’ve installed a number of Russound products over the years and generally have been pleased, this product comparison however was unplanned. Yet, it was the stark difference in performance of the two products which lead to this review.
The comparison came about as a result of moving from one home to another, a friend had recently completed his new home and in the process of helping him relocate it was discovered the whole home stereo in the new home just didn’t sound as good as in the old home, we set out to determine why.
In the new home was the new whole home stereo system from the competing brand, each of the six rooms (areas) had their own pair of high quality 8″ graphite speakers built into the ceiling. The guts of the competitive whole house stereo was comprised of a standalone high powered amp and a separate controller which was connected from the 6 in room keypad controllers allowing the homeowner to control things like power, volume and the audio source he wanted to listen to in a given room.
The old house had the Russound CAA66 installed in 6 rooms (areas). The Russound system was comprised of the all in one controller amp and each room had a single keypad and a pair of speakers. The speakers in the old house were 6.5″ in ceiling, later in the article we’ll talk about why this wasn’t a critical factor in our comparison.
Each home has nine foot ceilings and tile floors. Even the tile was the same make and model in both homes. How was that possible you might wonder? Well, the friend is a builder and built both homes, he liked the tile so much he ordered more for the new home.
During the process of driving back and forth between the two homes it was quickly noticed one system clearly sounded better than the other, the Russound sounded better. We set out to discover why or how we could make the new system sound comparable. So at this point you might be asking, if the old house system from Russound sounded so good then why did you switch to a competiting system? Good question! Let’s just say, “it happened”
We decided to contact the manufacturer of the competing system to try to determine what could be done to improve the sound quality of the new system. We tried a handful of things to improve the sound and none of our efforts came even close to the Russound system.
The new system, simply put, had a sub par sound when compared to the Russound CAA66. The decision then came down to swapping the competitive system out for another Russound CAA66. We contacted Russound and had a couple conversations regarding our questions and our friend made a decision it was time to remove the competing system and go back to the Russound CAA66K.
The result was immediate ! The Russound CAA66K system immediately and conclusively out performed the other brand. The Russound sound quality was noticeably more rich and had warmer tones. The Russound is just one component whereas the competitive product was two so the Russound was easier to install.
Our opinion, if you’re considering Russound versus some other product and the prices are similar be sure to listen to both systems before deciding. You’re ears will be happy you did. We might also recommend using a 6’5″ speaker with the CAA66 because they are more efficient than the larger 8″.
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