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Niles ZR-4 MultiZone Audio Kit

Hideaway 4-source/4-room system with in-wall keypads and remote

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Item# 190ZR4
 
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Our take on the Niles ZR-4 MultiZone Audio Kit

by Tara W.
Niles

Your favorite tunes in every room

This all-in-one Niles system lets you enjoy music in four rooms of your home. This system's receiver features a built-in AM/FM tuner and allows you to connect up to three audio components, like two multi-disc changers and a satellite radio tuner. Enjoy your favorite satellite radio station in one room while your spouse listens to his or her favorite CD in another part of the house.

Niles ZR-4


Custom-tailored advice — before and after you buy

Norm

Installing this system requires you to run wires in your walls, unless your home is already wired with CAT-5 and speaker cables. Our Audio/Video Designers can help you put together the ideal system — from planning the wire run to picking out speakers. Plus, our tech support specialists can help you through your installation step-by-step.


Hide your components for a clutter-free look

You can stow your audio components away in a cabinet or closet for a multi-room system that's heard and not seen. In-wall keypads in each listening room allow you to control playback, volume, and more.

ZR-4 keypad

In-wall keypads provide control in each room

Four source buttons on each in-wall keypad let you select and turn on your audio components. You also get intuitive controls for muting and volume. Each keypad allows you to turn the entire system on or off with the press of a button.

The keypads also feature built-in IR (infrared) sensors, so you can use the wireless remote that comes with the system to control playback from across the room. Extra remotes are available through Niles for additional listening rooms.


Expansion possibilities

This system's capable receiver features eight channels of clean amplification and can drive stereo speakers in four different rooms. Add another Niles ZR-4 audio kit to distribute music to 8 different rooms.

Standard "single-gang" junction box recommended for installation of keypads (available at most home improvement stores).

Highlights:

  • system features 1 Niles ZR-4 audio receiver, 4 Niles Solo™-4 IR weather-resistant keypads, 3 infrared MicroFlashers®, and 1 R-6L learning remote
  • control and play music from multiple sources in different rooms simultaneously
  • recommended accessories for installation: IR flashers; in-wall speaker wire and CAT-5 cables
Niles ZR-4 audio receiver:
  • distributes audio to 4 zones in your home
  • 8-channel power amplifier (rated at 20-20,000 Hz, any two channels driven): 20 watts RMS per channel at 8 ohms, 0.2% THD
  • 4-source capability:
    • built-in AM/FM tuner with 40 station presets
    • connections for up to 3 external audio components
  • IR flasher outputs for controlling external components
  • RJ-45 connections for keypads
  • fixed/variable line output for 4th zone allows connection to separate amplifier
  • redistributes 4th zone's amplification to zones 1-3 when using 4th zone line output
  • expandable to 8 zones with additional ZR-4 MultiZone kit
  • universal learning remote control operates connected audio components through IR sensor on system keypads
  • removable AC power cord
  • 17-1/4"W x 1-3/4"H x 13"D
  • warranty: 2 years
Solo-4 IR weather-resistant keypad:
  • in-wall master keypad for a single playback zone
  • weather-resistant design for use in spas, showers, patios, or decks
  • IR sensor for use with Niles remote
  • connects to MultiZone receiver via CAT-5 cable
  • installs in wall with a standard J-Box
  • standard Decora-style cover-plate recommended (not included)
  • warranty: 2 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
 

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Multi-zone receiver
  • 6.5' Power cord
  • R-6L IR wireless remote control
  • 2 "AA" batteries
  • FM wire antenna
  • AM loop antenna
  • 3 IR Microflashers with attached 10' cords terminated by a male 3.5mm minijack connector
  • Self-adhesive IR repeater covers
  • 2 Rack mount brackets
  • 4 Solo-4IR remote keypads with 2 mountings screws each
  • 4 White decorative wall-plates
  • 4 Sets of keypad button labels
  • User Guide
  • Code Guide
  • "Important" note
  • Important Safety Instructions
  • Limited Warranty Card

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features
Inputs and Outputs

Features

Overview: The Niles ZR-4 MultiZone Receiver Kit includes a multi-zone receiver, four IR weather-resistant keypads, a hand-held learning IR wireless remote control, three infrared microflashers and a set of rack-mount ears for installing the ZR-4 into an equipment rack. The ZR-4 MultiZone Receiver Kit allows distribution and control of up to four audio sources in up to four listening zones. The ZR-4 is designed to intelligently manage source sharing with your independent home theater system. You can expand this 4-zone system to eight zones by linking a second ZR-4 MultiZone Receiver Kit via the unit's expansion port.

MultiZone Receiver: The ZR-4 Multi-Zone Receiver features an advanced, low-heat, 4-ohm stable digital power amplifier design which delivers eight channels of robust power (40 watts per zone/20 watts per channel) with the ability to comfortably drive two pairs of 8 ohm speakers or one pair of 4-ohm speakers per zone. The ZR-4 multi-zone receiver has a digital AM/FM tuner built in, so it plays music right out of the box without the need for additional equipment. The ZR-4's tuner can store 20 AM/FM preset stations of any combination. The ZR-4 receiver features a bright, backlit,16-character LCD display for configuring the ZR-4 and also displays the current AM/FM preset station, band and station tuning information. The unit also features four front-panel Zone LEDs which illuminate whenever a zone is on and active. In addition, the ZR-4 features front panel controls to operated the AM/FM tuner, set favorite preset stations into memory and perform system configurations. The unit's man power switch glows white to indicate the unit in standby mode and ready to operate.

IR Weather-Resistant Keypads: The four supplied IR keypads provides control for the ZR-4's built-in tuner and up to three additional sources. The IR keypads will control source selection and local zone volume, muting and turn off. You can also turn the entire system on or off with a single press of a button from one of the keypads. The four IR weather-resistant keypads can be installed most anywhere you want them, even in areas that get wet like bathrooms, spas or out on the patio by the pool. Each keypad has a built-in IR sensor that resists interference from flat-panel plasma or LCD TVs. The IR sensor is defeatable for areas with direct sunlight. Each IR keypad includes assorted laser-etched buttons for custom labeling of the keypads. Each keypad can be installed ins a standard version single gang electrical box and comes supplied with a white decorative snap-on wall plate. Each keypad features an RJ-45 connector and requires CAT-5 cable for connection. Each keypad also features a 12V trigger connection. The ZR-4 supports additional keypads in each zone (additional keypads sold separately; requires ZR-KE Keypad Expander).

Note: Only the front panel of the keypad is weather resistant.

Learning Remote Control: The supplied IR wireless remote control provides advanced control for the system's audio sources as well as the local TV and a second local source such as a cable or satellite receiver. The remote control comes preloaded with the commands for the ZR-4 and many popular brands of equipment. Unique commands can be learned by the remote from various home audio/video components. The remote also has the ability to create IR sequences (macros). Additional hand-held learning remotes are available through the manufacture.

Infrared MicroFlashers: The included Niles MicroFlashers connect to the numbered flasher outputs on the rear panel of the Niles ZR-4 MultiZone Receiver. Niles MicroFlashers send IR commands to the individual source components for control. Each MicroFlasher features an attached 10' cord terminated by a male 3.5mm minijack connector. In addition, each MicroFlasher features a adhesive backing to secure it into place. An optional Niles IRB-1 High-Output IR Flasher (FG01023) can be connected to the flasher port labeled High Output Flasher to control more than one source component at a time.

Independent Audio Controls: Independent bass, treble, and variable loudness controls enable you to custom tune each zone of the ZR-4 for the best sound quality and match room acoustics from zone to zone.

Zone Linking: You can program up to four zones so that turn-on, source selection, and turn-off work in unison. Each zone retains independent volume, bass, treble and variable loudness control, which is a great feature for a restaurant/ bar or for adjacent rooms such as a master bedroom and master bath.

Party Mode: With a single press and hold from a keypad or remote control, you can turn on your entire house (or a preset number of zones) to listen to the same source, which is ideal for entertaining or setting the mood.

Virtual Home Theater Zone: The ZR-4's virtual home theater zone function enables source sharing with an independent home theater system using the ZR-4's global IR input and home theater sync port.

Default Turn-On Volume: The turn-on volume level for the system is adjustable. Since the turn-on volume level will be the same for all zones, Niles suggests setting a comfortable listening level in the room that will be used most frequently, or in the smallest room.

Rack Mountable:  The receiver's rugged, 1U aluminum front panel and included mounting ears and hardware provide for secure rack mounting while taking up minimal space.

Inputs and Outputs

Expansion Port: This RJ-45 port allows you to expand the system to eight zones by linking a second ZR-4 MultiZone Receiver Kit using CAT-5 cable.

Keypad Zones: The ZR-4 multi-zone receiver's four RJ-45 keypad connections use T-568A CAT-5 termination. Connect each zone's master keypad via a CAT-5 cable.

Flasher Outputs: Three 3.5mm ports used to connect the included IR MicroFlashers and control up to three source components.

HP Flasher Outputs: 3.5mm port used to connect an optional Niles IRB-1 High Output IR Flasher (controls a stack of components with just one flasher)

HT Sync: This 3.5mm port enables sharing of components with an independent home theater. When the home theater receiver is on, the ZR-4 will stay active (even if all zones are off) and execute the appropriate 12V and IR functions.

12V Trigger: When any zone is activated, the ZR-4's Global 12V Control Output will send out a constant 12V DC trigger signal. This can be used to automatically switch on an amplifier equipped with a 12V trigger turn-on, such as a Niles System Integration Amplifier. Alternatively, the 12V trigger from the keypad can be used to turn-on the amplifier only when zone 4 is active.

AM/FM Connectors: The multi-zone receiver features a 75 ohm FM antenna connection and a 300 ohm AM antenna connection (this kit
includes both AM and FM antennas).

RS-232 Port: The ZR-4 MultiZone Receiver can be controlled by secondary control systems via RS-232 devices and/or discrete infrared commands using the system's 3.5mm RS-232 port.

IR In Global: This 3.5mm port allows you to control the ZR-4 and its connected sources using a secondary control system.

Audio Inputs: Three pair of gold-plated RCA jacks are used to connect up to the three stereo audio sources to the ZR-4 multi-zone receiver.

Voice Paging and Doorbell Chimes: The ZR-4 is equipped with a standard RCA connector for Voice Paging and Doorbell Chimes. The ZR-4's paging input enables you to connect a telephone system's paging output and/or an optional Niles DBI-1 Doorbell Interface so that it automatically pauses the music and plays through the system.

Zone 1/2/3/4: The ZR-4 is equipped with four stereo speaker connections (one for each zone) that feature removable connectors that accommodate speaker wire up to 16 AWG in size. The receiver's high-quality digital amplification can accommodate one pair of 4 ohm speakers per zone or two pairs of 8 ohm speakers per zone without going into protection or shutting down.

Preamp Output: The ZR-4's pair of preamplifier outputs make it easy to add additional power to the system. Assigned to Zone 4, the preamp outputs can be switched between fixed or variable levels.

IEC Power Receptacle: The ZR-4 features a removable 6.5' power cord for added flexibility when working in tight spaces.

 
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