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Office PA Tutorial

Getting the right equipment for your Office PA/Background Music System might seem to be a bit confusing but we're here to help. Let's go through the steps we would take designing a medium-sized dentist office.

In our example, our dentist wants to have nice foreground music playing throughout the office in both the common areas, waiting room, and patient rooms. She wants to be able to pick up their office phone and do a page when key personnel are away from their desk rather than walk around the whole office looking for them. She also wants to play the music through the music-on-hold circuit of her telephone system so calls know they are still connected while waiting on hold.

Speaker locations:

  • 1 Waiting room
  • 2 Hallways
  • 6 patient rooms
  • 1 Dentist's office
  • 2 Restrooms

She wants to play CD's and/or Muzak through the system with paging that will cut the music down a bit during the page and go back automatically when the page is completed. That is called Ducking the music. Some rooms will require volume controls.

First get the right number of speakers in mind. This will help you know how big the amp must be. 11 speakers in our example and since she wants really good sound, we would suggest JBL Control 14C/T speakers that include all the necessary hardware for mounting in the ceiling. These speakers like about 3 to 6 watts each, so our amp will need to be at least 80 watts. 6 watts x 11 speakers = 66 watts load plus the wire load and some left over for headroom. 80-120 watts is very common.

Now we must consider the inputs she will be feeding to the amp. One for CD, one for Muzak, and one for telephone paging. We want to select a reliable amp because this will probably run 24 hours a day. (We have amps in our office that never been turned off.) The JBL CSMA180 Mixer Amp is a great choice for this application. These amps are the latest thing in "green" audio technology. With it's Class-D "DriveCore" amplifier, it is lightweight, and uses very little energy.

Equipment List:

Speakers: JBL Control 14C/T

Amp Selection: JBL CSMA180 80W Mixer-Amp

Wire: 500' of 151001 (18 ga 1 pair twisted, stranded)

Volume Controls: AAVC35SS

Denon DN-500C CD player

Simple! No, not really but again, we're here to help. Depend on us for a design and layout that will include everything you need. Feel free to call our office or send an email asking for help. We'll want to discuss the situation with you for just a few minutes. We'll send you a written quote with everything you'll need to add the professional touch to your office environment.