cutting a hole in paster board

All, I would like to mount speaker outlets in the bedroom wal (concealed behin something!). I plan to buy fuse-type blanking plates and then drill holes in it for panel-mount RCA-type sockets. Whats the best way to cut a hole in the plaster board for this ?? Suppose it would be the same question if I were mounting new light switches....
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writes:

in
the
I always use a padsaw on site but treated myself to a rotozip for home use - it's noisy, dusty and can be awkward in tight spots but it was a new toy ;-) Regards, Richard.
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The omnisaw is supposed to be good for this sort of job:
http://www.ferm.nl/custom_article_list.afp ?!_10C15ZTC3&intgroep=ZAAOM
Screwfix do these:
http://www.screwfix.com/app/sfd/cat/pro.jsp?id 875&tsP017
PoP
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NC wrote:

Actually the best cut of all is made simply with a stanley knife. Ive tried all sorts of saws, but have gone back to the knife.
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RCA sockets (phonos) aren't really designed as speaker connectors although they will work for low powered stuff. You might consider using Speakons which are speaker connectors and look the business too. ;-)
--
*The modem is the message *

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@argonet.co.uk London SW 12
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Agreed - but I was thinking that by putting RCA (or even 3.5mm jack sockets) in, it would be more flexible. It would allow me to use it for both speakers and low voltage lineout signals if ever I have a hi-fi in the bedroom I want to be able to send the CD output to, for example.
In the end though, I may not even use it for this, and might cable in a TV extension instead - prob more useful !
London SW 12

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richard at olifant d-ot co do-t uk

sockets)
speakers
want
You should be careful if intending to use 3.5mm jacks - ISTR that many of them will short briefly whilst they're being plugged in.
Depending upon your amplifier, this could be hugely damaging....
I'd have thought that at least XLR would have been better, but don't recall whether they can be used for high level as well as low.
What sort of a distance are we talking about between the rooms?
cheers Richard -- Richard Sampson
email me at
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XLR ?? Cable will need to be about 15-20m

TV
recall
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XLR's a balanced connector that was developed for use in professional audio environments. It has a number of advantages, and a quick check to CPC has shown that they're no longer the high prices that they used to be. Professional XLR is also available, which looks nice as well.... Have a look at their website (I got to it through www.cpc.co.uk, but don't know what their official published url is) under the Audio/Visual, Connectors area.
20m for an unbalanced line level connection is a _long_ way - you may encounter all sorts of problems with such a connection - lack of power in the line output stage to drive that length of cable and interference springing to mind immediately. I don't think that it's possible to "fake" a balanced connection from an umbalanced output, so you won't get the noise cancellation advantages of XLR (Mr Plowman will most likely be able to confirm or reject this), but you would get a decent connector that won't have any danger of short-before-make.
I'm also not sure what type of cable you;d use for a connection that could be either line level or high level. 2.5mm t&e is an excellent speaker cable (though I'd be cautions about using it threaded through the house in such a circumstance because of the danger that someone at some time may confuse it with a ring main and connect it to a mains source!) but it'd be a crap line level connection. OTOH, shielded cable suitable for line level would make crap speaker cable.
There'd be nothing to stop you routing two cables from face plate to face plate and connecting them up appropriately as demanded by the application. That wouuld also stop any accidental connection of a speaker output to a CD player!!!
cheers Richard -- Richard Sampson
email me at richard at olifant d-ot co do-t uk
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Thanks for the tips - it seems obvious that there are some things I haven't considered here ! Thinking more about it, I will prob get more use out of a TV extension - whilst the application is different, the purpose of the original question still holds (mounting the plate in the plasterboard)

audio
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cable
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CD
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haven't
a
ah, that;s the easy bit. As others have said, a padsaw's your low-tech friend. I use a jigsaw, but most of the internal walls in my house are lath and plaster, and I have a couple of old jogsaw bits to hand. Just use a pencil to mark aroung the bottom of your dry lining box pressed against the wall in it's intended position.
Then, simply drop in the dry-lining box (should be less than a quid from an electrical wholesalers) and you're ready for screwing the face plate to it.
One thing to watch out for is the position of your framing/studwork - you don't want to make the cutout and then discover that you have either done it right over a stud, or (just as bad) cut right up to the edge of one, because you won't be able to use the retainers on the dry lining box to secure it on one side! The low-tech solution to this is to drill a small hole (8mm or so) at an angle in the middle of the cutout. Then get a coathanger. Snip, straighten and bend this until you have a U-shaped implement where both "legs" of the U are the same length and the bend has about an inch radius. Feed one leg of this through the hole, taking care not to unduly deform the implement, and rotate it fully left and right until you hit the studding. Mark the position of the stud with a pencil on the wall, and you're then sure you know where the woodwork is! If you get the position wrong, try another hole to the left or right as appropriate - holes are easier to fill than a socket-sized cutout in the wrong place...
If I were you, and you manage to sort potential problems with the cable runs out, I'd run all the different cables now and add more surface plates - it's much easier to do it all at the same time.
cheers Richard
-- Richard Sampson
email me at richard at olifant d-ot co do-t uk
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RichardS wrote:

....is to the screw a metal box into the stud instead of a dry lining one.
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"Dave Plowman" wrote | I don't approve of using the same connector for different | purposes - it will always end in tears at some time.
Hmmm. I once had the bright idea of wiring a 9V intercom system using telephone LJUs.
And because I wanted the intercom near the phone, I used a 2 line LJU on the one plate.
And I had the intercom wires on 2 & 5 the same as the phone to be 'standard'
Of course, the day came when the intercom was plugged into the phone line.
Some of you may be jumping ahead of me at this point :-)
Despite some very strange noises coming from both the intercom and all the phones in the house , everything survived.
It is also useful to standardise on Speakons for either low-Z or 100V loudspeaker distribution and not both, unless using the 4-pole ones with 4-core connecting leads, which bumps up the cost.
Owain
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Dave Plowman wrote:

Yup. XLR'#s were more reliable that 6mm jacks, and available at teh sort of places where people who used pro sound equipment went, because of microphones.
Its a lomng time ago, but I THOUGHT there was a 2 pin version that was eventually used for speakers.
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You mean 1/4" ? ;-). These were never really suitable for speakers although they were used.

Of course, XLR isn't the only mic connector - in fact it's relatively recent in the history of such things. The Cannon EP series was use before it for wall outlets, and most makers had their own favourite types for mic to cable.

I've not seen these, although it would have made sense. Most just used the 'standard' 3 pin types.
--
*If a pig loses its voice, is it disgruntled? *

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@argonet.co.uk London SW 12
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They work fine for speaker connectors. Even 4mm "banana" connectors will work better than phonos.
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