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Monitor Audio C380-IDC

3-way in-ceiling speaker

1 Review

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Item # 893C380ID

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Our take on the Monitor Audio C380-IDC

Monitor Audio is renowned for its popular lineup of high-quality bookshelf and floor-standing speakers. But the British hi-fi company also makes custom-install speakers that offer equally revealing sound. The C380-IDC is one of Monitor's best in-ceiling models, and uses a three-way design to deliver exceptionally accurate performance.

Elite in-ceiling sound from Monitor Audio

Monitor Audio is renowned for its popular lineup of high-quality bookshelf and floor-standing speakers. But the British hi-fi company also makes custom-install speakers that offer equally revealing sound. The C380-IDC is one of Monitor's best in-ceiling models, and uses a three-way design to deliver exceptionally accurate performance.

This speaker uses some of Monitor's most advanced technology, including the company's pivoting IDC® (Inverted Dual Concentric) midrange/tweeter module to direct sound toward you. I think it's an ideal choice for music- and movie-loving minimalists alike.

Monitor Audio C280-IDC 3-way in-ceiling speaker

Monitor Audio's C380-IDC offers a pivoting midrange/tweeter module to direct sound toward you.

Signature sound from Monitor's gold dome tweeter

The C380-IDC uses Monitor's signature 1" C-CAM® (Ceramic-Coated Aluminum/Magnesium) gold dome tweeter for clear, detailed highs and realistic reproduction of instruments, vocals, and dialogue. It's the same tweeter found in many of Monitor's highly acclaimed bookshelf and floor-standing speakers. 

A tweeter level control switch on the front baffle lets you boost or cut high frequencies to best suit your room's acoustics.

Solid midrange and bass

This speaker uses a 4" C-CAM inverted midrange for textured, accurate midrange. It also uses Monitor's ultra-high performance 8" C-CAM RST® (Rigid Surface Technology) woofer for deep, punchy bass.

An advanced crossover network helps ensure smooth, full-range sound throughout the speaker's frequency range. And a built-in boundary compensation switch adjusts low-frequency output when the speaker is placed near a corner.

DIY installation 

If this is a do-it-yourself install, check out my guide to installing in-ceiling speakers, along with our selection of in-wall speaker wire. You can paint the included magnetic grille to have your speaker blend in with your décor.

Product Highlights:

  • 3-way design
  • ideal for an in-ceiling music system or overhead effects channel in a home theater system
  • ultra-rigid, lightweight C-CAM (Ceramic-Coated Aluminum/Magnesium) driver material used to provide high efficiency and low distortion
  • 8" C-CAM RST (Rigid Surface Technology) woofer for deep, accurate bass
    • boundary compensation switch adjusts low-frequency output when the speaker is placed near a corner
  • 4" C-CAM inverted midrange driver
  • 1" gold dome C-CAM tweeter for detailed sound and extended high-frequency response
    • three-position tweeter level control cuts or boosts high-frequency output to ideally suit your room's acoustics
  • pivoting IDC® (Inverted Dual Concentric) midrange/tweeter module for directing sound toward listening area
  • frequency response: 45-30,000 Hz
  • recommended amplifier power: 40-150 watts
  • sensitivity: 90 dB
  • impedance: 6 ohms
  • patented Tri-Grip® mounting system ensures maximum surface seal for better bass and midrange clarity
  • paintable magnetic grille
  • cutout diameter: 9-3/4"
  • overall diameter: 11-1/4"
  • mounting depth: 6-1/8"
  • weight: 8 lbs.
  • warranty: 5 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • In-ceiling speaker
  • Grille
  • Paint skim
  • Installation Guide
  • Important Safety Instructions
  • Cutout Template

Monitor Audio C380-IDC Reviews

Average Customer Review(s):

(1 Review)

Monitor Audio C380-IDC Speakers

Ted from Southern California on 10/24/2018

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Earlier this year, I purchased two of these speakers, upon the recommendation of a Crutchfield Specialist, to replace Bozak speakers, that I had installed in a drop down ceiling in my living room, fifty years ago. Fifty years ago, Bozak speakers were top of the line stereo speakers. I loved listing to my Bozak speakers, but after fifty years, they started loosing their sound quality. The drop down ceiling is backed by 2 x 6's, and is rock solid. I made frames out of kiln dried clear pine, and mounted the Monitor speakers in the frames, the same way they would have been mounted in the ceiling. I used paint sticks, cut to 1/2 inch width and length of the frames, as shims to compensate for the thickness of the Monitor speakers. I was then able to screw the frames, with the attached Monitor speakers, to the 2 x 6's drop down ceiling. I am driving these speakers, with a McIntosh MC 2002 amplifier ( 300 watts per channel at 6 ohms), and a McIntosh C29 preamplifier, that has recently been recapped and rebuilt, by a McIntosh Authorized Repair Center. I listen to these speakers, sometimes for two or three hours at a time, and could not be more pleased. They sound fantastic, and I was able to install them in my drop down ceiling. I am not one to write reviews, but I could not pass up writing a review for these speakers, since no one else has done so.

Pros: High quality speakers. Excellent sound. Easy to listen to.

Cons: None


Hands-on research

Features and Specs

Quantity in Package Single
Tweeter Dome
Midrange Size 4
Woofer Size 8
Cutout Size 9.75
Woofer Composition C-CAM RST
Woofer Surround Rubber
Power Range (Watts) 40-150
Sensitivity 90 dB
Impedance (Ohms) 6
Frequency Response 45-30kHz
Connector Type Spring post
Bi-Amp Inputs No
Built-in Back-box No
Parts Warranty Lifetime
Labor Warranty Lifetime

Product Research


3-Way Speaker Design: The Monitor Audio C380-IDC in-ceiling loudspeaker features an 8" C-CAM RST bass driver and a pivoting IDC module, housing a 4" C-CAM RST inverted midrange driver and a 1" C-CAM gold dome tweeter. This true 3-way design provide rich midrange detail, higher system output, greater power handling, and superior vocal intelligibility and sound localization.

IDC Module: The Monitor Audio C380-IDC in-ceiling speaker employs a unique pivoting Inverted Dual Concentric (IDC) midrange/tweeter module which allows you to angle the midrange and tweeter up/down or left/right. This allows for the in-ceiling speaker to be discreetly positioned and the sound to be directed toward the listening zone by pivoting the IDC driver module to maximize performance. With the IDC module installed, the in-ceiling speaker becomes a true 3-way design, offering superior performance and flexibility over typical 2-way or fixed angle speakers. Within the proprietary IDC module an inverted 4" midrange driver provides superior dispersion while enabling the midrange cone and tweeter dome assembly to be set as far forward as possible, allowing the clear acoustics of the desired listening zone and reducing undesirable diffraction effects. It's impossible to avoid diffraction effects from conventional two-way designs, which locate the bass driver 3" to 6" behind the speaker grille.

C-CAM Technology: C-CAM drivers are used throughout the C380-IDC in-ceiling loudspeaker, providing coherent tonal balance and sonic signature across the entering audio frequency spectrum.

  • C-CAM Gold-Dome Tweeter: The gold dome tweeter is formed from a ceramic-coated aluminum/magnesium alloy, gold anodized to a specific thickness for ideal stiffness and damping characteristics. Its new profile and surround geometry have been developed using advanced modeling tools, to provide the optimum qualities for accurate sound reproduction. The new design moves the first order of breakup to beyond 35kHz, producing a linear response way beyond audibility, which matches the wide frequency bandwidth available from HD music and cinema sound formats. The gold dome is thinner, lighter, more rigid and therefore more efficient than domes made from other materials which are prone to distortion in the audio band.
  • C-CAM Cone Midrange and Bass Driver: Ceramic-Coated Aluminum/Magnesium is a material originally developed by the aerospace industry for jet engine components. Its properties are ideal for loudspeaker cones being extremely rigid, yet light enough to yield high overall efficiency. In manufacture, aluminum/magnesium alloy undergoes a three-stage stress-relieving process to remove surface deformation and molecular weakness. Once formed, the alloy cone is subjected to a high temperature anodic coating process in which a layer of pure ceramic alumina is depleted onto its surfaces to a depth of 50 microns, producing a completely rigid sandwich of alloy and heat-dissipating ceramic material. Conventional cones are liable to flex or twist in operation, producing a significant level of audible distortion. C-CAM cones have a much higher resistance to bending stress and therefore exhibit much greater fidelity over their entire operating range.

RST (Rigid Surface Technology): The C380-IDC in-ceiling speaker's inverted midrange driver and bass driver combine Rigid Surface Technology (RST) with C-CAM cone woofer design for a stronger, lighter weight cone. The Rigid Surface Technology (RST) cone profile was inspired by the Japanese art of Origami, which demonstrates how a very light material (like paper) can be strengthened and made more rigid by making small and precise folds on it surface. Developed and perfect using sophisticated computer modeling (Finite Element Analysis), these drivers have been strengthened by a pattern of dimples. RST significantly increases cone rigidity, allowing the radiating surfaces to resist mechanical bending forces, which can twist the  shape of conventional driver cones to produce distorted sound. The strengthening effect of RST means that Monitor Audio can use thinner, lighter and more responsive C-CM cones which provide speed and accuracy while offering greatly reduced distortion. The RST patterns also help to displace standing waves that can propagate on the cone's surface.

High Frequency Level Control: A HF (High Frequency) level adjustment also aids in high frequency performance. With the High Frequency Level Control set to "0", the in-ceiling speaker will give you a neutral sound. Switching to the "+3db" setting will give the high frequencies a boost, giving you more clarity and presence in the treble. If you want more prominence in the bass frequencies, switch to the "-3db" setting. The HF level adjustment switch is located on front of the baffle behind the grille.

Boundary Compensation Control: The Boundary Compensation control reduces the speaker's bass output level to compensate for the greater reflection of bass energy when the speaker is placed near a wall. It can be set to "On" or "Off". The Boundary Compensation control is located on the front baffle and hidden behind the grille.

Spring-Post Terminals: The Monitor Audio C380-IDC is outfitted with two gold-plated spring-post terminals to connect your speaker wire. The spring-post terminals which accept bare wire (up to 10AWG), banana plugs (sing/dual), and angled pin-connectors.

"Trimless" Magnetic Grille: The C380-IDC in-ceiling speaker features a steel-mesh grille that is held in place by high strength Neodymium magnets covering the entire speaker for a true "trimless", stealth look. The grille is paintable to blend with the living environment; additional scrim material is provided for trouble free painting.

Tri-Grip Fixing System: Monitor Audio's innovative Tri-Grip fixing system is easier to install than conventional clamping schemes and provides 3x the surface area and a better surface seal, maximizing bass response and midrange clarity. The Tri-Grip fixings are made from a tough re-enforced polymer, giving a secure installation.

  • Cutout Size: 9.75" (diameter)
  • Mounting Depth: 6.25"
  • Ceiling Thickness: 0.25" to 2.5"

Protective Covers: The Monitor Audio C380-IDC features a dust protection cover that is designed to prevent the ingress of dirt or dust into the driver and crossover.

Our Product Research Team

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