Polk Audio 80F/X-RT
In-ceiling surround speakers
Our take on the Polk Audio 80F/X-RT by Crutchfield's Marshall Chase
Hear your movies come alive
Your favorite film soundtracks materialize with the crack of gunfire from behind, or the patter of footsteps across the room. While the Polk 80F/X-RT surround speakers fill your home theater with vibrant sound effects, they virtually vanish into the ceiling.
These stealthy speakers are designed specifically to produce an enveloping rear soundstage, each one equipped with dual 3/4" silk/polymer tweeters and an 8" woofer. High-quality construction keeps the drivers in rigid alignment, and practically eliminates muddying resonance.
Build a full Polk Audio system
- frequency response 50-25,000 Hz (-3dB)
- dual 3/4" silk/polymer dome tweeters
- 8" Dynamic Balance® woofer
- handles up to 100 watts
- sensitivity 87 dB
- 8-ohm impedance
- wall distance switch for flexible mounting
- paintable Sheer-Grille for stealth installation
- cutout: 9-3/8" diameter
- mounting depth: 4-3/4"
- warranty: lifetime
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
What's in the Box:
- 2 Round in-ceiling surround speakers (separate left and right speakers)
- 2 White metal grilles
- Mounting template
- Owner's Manual
- Sheer-Grille Painting instructions
- Online Registration Card
- Polk Audio product brochure
Packaging was delivered discreetly which was a plus. I haven't had a chance to install them in my new construction home, but I will review again after install is complete. Crutchfield help picking these out was fantastic for my application.
James, Round Rock, TX
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Features and Specs
|Quantity in Package||Pair|
|Woofer Composition||Mineral composite poly|
|Power Range (Watts)||10-100|
|Connector Type||Spring post|
Vanishing Series In-Ceiling Surround Speakers: The Polk Audio Vanishing Series 80F/X-RT in-ceiling surround speakers feature a precision-engineered, minimally flanged design. Polk's exclusive Sheer-Grille protrudes only 7mm from its surroundings, and installs virtually flush in your ceiling. Mounting the speakers is simple with a one-cut, drop-in installation and the rotating cam stabilizing system. The speakers provide superior high-performance sound from their 8" woofers and dual 0.75" tweeters. There are two speakers, one left and one right, included in the box.
Dynamic Balance Technology: Laser-imaging technology allows Polk Audio engineers to see the entire vibrating surface of a driver and tweeter. This allows the engineers to actually see performance-robbing distortion develop on the speaker cone. Using this data, they can determine the Dynamic Balance of their high-tech materials, and alter the geometry and construction of the speaker to effectively tune out the offending resonance. Exclusive Dynamic Balance Composite Material Technology delivers sound that is effortlessly clean and clear, even at lifelike volume levels.
Klippel Optimized Motor Structures: The Klippel Distortion Analyzer allows Polk engineers to optimize each driver's motor structure, voice coil alignment and suspension to insure smooth, unimpeded movement even at extreme listening levels. This is especially important in the shallow depth area afforded an in-wall loudspeaker.
Woofer: The 80F/X-RT in-ceiling surround speakers employ an 8" Dynamic Balance mineral composite polypropylene cone woofer with a rubber surround for a smooth, consistent frequency response. The driver features a lightweight, strong composite basket that works in conjunction with Klippel Optimization to keep moving parts in rigid alignment while further damping performance-robbing resonances.
Silk Dome Tweeter: The speakers employ two 0.75" Dynamic Balance silk polymer composite dome tweeters for crisp, clear imaging. The tweeters are angled so that they are firing away from each other for a more diffuse soundfield.
Wall Distance Switch: These in-ceiling speakers perform better when placed more than 2' away from side walls. If mounting limitations prevent mounting at 2' feet or more from the side wall, the close proximity of the wall can cause increased response between 50 and 200 Hz. This can make the speakers sound "boomy." To prevent this, the speakers have a "Wall Distance" switch that allows you to indicate the distance from the wall at less than 2' (< 2') or more than 2' (> 2'). The switch flattens the response to eliminate "boominess" without sacrificing deep bass response.
Timbre-Matched: The Polk Audio Vanishing Series in-ceiling surround speakers are timbre-matched to Polk Audio's high-performance RTi bookshelf and floor-standing loudspeakers. This allows you to match them to an existing Polk Audio home theater speaker system and enjoy seamless blending from speaker to speaker. Timbre-matched speaker components will insure the same true response throughout your system.
Frequency Response: The overall frequency response of the in-ceiling speakers is 35Hz to 27kHz, and the -3dB frequency response is 50 to 25kHz.
Infinite Baffle Tuning: Infinite Baffle Tuning uses the virtual enclosure of the in-wall space for deep bass response and superior overall sound.
Wafer-Thin Sheer-Grille: The Polk Audio Vanishing Series in-ceiling speakers feature Polk's exclusive wafer-thin Sheer-Grille, a magnetically-secured grille that protrudes only 7mm from its surroundings. The Sheer-Grille can be painted to match your décor, making it virtually indistinguishable from its surroundings. The Sheer-Grille has nearly transparent, ultra-small perfs, and are acoustically inert, for dynamic, unimpeded sound and more uniform coverage, even in larger rooms.
Note: When painting the grille, it is highly recommend that you use a can of spray paint matched to the color of the surrounding ceiling or wall. Brushes or rollers should not be used to paint the grille, as this will clog the perf holes.
Gold-Plated Spring-Loaded Posts: Each 80F/X-RT has a gold-plated pair of spring-loaded binding posts that can accept up to 12-gauge wire, single banana plugs, or pin connectors.
Applications: You can use the Polk Audio Vanishing Series in-ceiling surround speakers for the rear channels in a 5.1- or 7.1-channel surround configuration. In a 5.1-channel system, the speakers should be mounted to the sides of the seating positions. When two additional in-ceiling speakers are installed, they should be mounted at the back of the room.
Note: Because of how the tweeters are angled and configured, the 80F/X-RT is not well suited as an in-ceiling Dolby Atmos or DTS:X speaker
Left/Right Orientation: The 80F/X-RT speakers have a left/right orientation, and each is clearly marked on the serial number label.
Rotating Cam System: The speaker utilizes a rotating cam system to ensure a secure, vibration-free installation. There are four rotating cams to hold the speaker securely to the ceiling.
Installation: The 80F/X-RT can be installed in new or existing construction:
- Existing Construction: In existing ceilings, use the included cardboard template for one-cut, drop-in simplicity.
- New Construction: Pre-construction brackets (sold separately) are available for new-build or open-wall retro-fitting.
|In-Ceiling Dimensions||Model # 80F/X-RT|
|Overall Dimensions (with grille)||Diameter = 11.125"|
|Cutout Dimensions||Diameter = 9.375"|
|Product Depth||Depth = 5.25"|
|Mounting Depth (using 1/2" drywall)||Depth = 4.75"|
Our Product Research Team
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Why did you buy this?
These are highly rated and specific as rear surround speakers for cieling installation. Most cieling speakers are just for distributed audio and not specific to rear surround. They are directional as well which is rare at this price point. [ Don Aug 20, 2018 ]
I'm converting my home theater system from an older plasma 65 TV to a new OLED 65" TV. I am also updating my old Dennon receiver and 5.1 surround sound speaker system to a new Onkeo Atmos 7.2 receiver and needed some ceiling speakers. One of your reps recommended these Polk Audio ceiling speakers to go with my older Bose Acoustimas 15 5.1 speaker system. She actually recommended less expensive Polk Audio ceiling speakers, but I thought I'd go with these models as they produce a better sound. [ Mark Jul 12, 2018 ]
Putting 5.1 surround-sound in a relatively small media room, the rear speakers will be fairly close to walls. Having a wall-distance switch makes the 80F/X-RT a good choice. And being voice-matched to the RTi series gives me some great options for front and center speakers. [ Charles Jun 22, 2018 ]
prior experience with Polk Audio products [ THOMAS E Jun 14, 2018 ]
Very good price for a very good speaker. [ William Jan 27, 2018 ]
I spoke with Karl and he was very helpful helping with choosing these as an option for filing speakers. [ Randy Jan 01, 2018 ]
Reputable brand that has been reliable for me over the years [ A Dec 01, 2017 ]
good ratings and competitive price [ M Jul 14, 2017 ]
Installed these outside ceiling of patio as well as family room sound is tremendous [ Chris Jun 13, 2017 ]
Best overall price for good product with good reviews. Will be used as height speakers for Dolby Atmos. [ Michael May 22, 2017 ]
Good reviews, description is what I needed. Good experience with Polk speakers in the past. [ Jeff Apr 24, 2017 ]
Customer Reviews and price. [ John Feb 10, 2017 ]
match my 265rt & 255c-rt's [ jason Oct 23, 2016 ]
seems perfect for rear sound effects, along with 3 front 90rt [ EDGAR Jul 18, 2016 ]
good value and matched with the other RT series in ceiling speakers I chose. [ Francesco Del Apr 25, 2016 ]
I chose these for a couple reasons. The first being I am a Polk Audio fan. I have had a few different speaker systems and soundbars and have always been impressed with the sound quality. Secondly the fact that the speakers are angled. Rather than emitting the sound straight down, it can be deflected towards the prime seating/viewing area. [ Ian Apr 13, 2016 ]
Great speakers for mounting in the ceiling [ Elizabeth Dec 29, 2015 ]
8 questions already asked
Hi Adam, the small angled speakers are the high and midrange, and the large speaker is for the bass, but to your question. I angled mine toward the listener, and have them configured as rear in height, or you can have them as rear surround. BTW, they work and sound great, good pick. Jim [ James Nov 13, 2018 ]
I had the same question and the only answer I could find was that it was a preference. I faced my woofers toward the center of the room and let the tweeters bounce off the walls. [ Chris Nov 12, 2018 ]
Good question. I mounted mine flush with ceiling. In retrospect, I would have mounted them toward the listening area. If your speakers are in a corner or close to a wall, the may be able to pointed toward the wall to get reflected sound, but I'm not sure that would be optimal. [ Jeff Nov 12, 2018 ]
We mounted ours toward the wall, reflecting the sound. They sound great [ Patti Nov 12, 2018 ]
Sure, however, these are good speakers for surround, or in height audio. If you are using them as additional speakers for another zone from your main receiver, there might be regular ceiling speakers that would do an excellent job, including the Polk brand. These have been great speakers for my surround speakers, and if you are using them in a covered porch, make sure the tweeters are pointing toward the listeners. Hope this helps. Jim [ James Sep 17, 2018 ]
I have all Klipsch, with the exception of the Polk Audio 80f/x as rear surrounds, that I'll be using as rear in-height speakers. If you are using them as a front surround they would be great, but these fine speakers are specifically designed for surround, in-height or ambient theater sounds, not as main speakers. I have had a 5.1 setup for the last year, and these are installed in my ceiling behind my listening area. My new setup is bigger, but these are still being used behind the listening area and work great! Hope this helps. Jim [ James Sep 17, 2018 ]
I would not use them for fronts I would only use the for surround or overhead [ Christopher Oct 20, 2017 ]
I am using two sets of these for my 7.1 system. Surround and surround back. (By the way, the sound great!) I paired them with in-wall speakers for my front and center. I think the more direct in-wall is better for the front channels that you want to have the sound appear to be coming from the TV. If I were to use ceiling speakers for my front channels, I would pick another Polk speaker. [ Homeaudioguy Oct 19, 2017 ]
Wall cavity is "box". Amazing speakers [ Christopher Mar 24, 2017 ]
I did not use a backbox - only the Polk ceiling mount brackets. [ j Mar 23, 2017 ]
You can use it as is. Its a great speakers [ yochai Mar 23, 2017 ]
Tibor, I bought a pair of Polk 80F/X-RT to serve as my rear speakers and set op a 5.1 system. The Polk speakers were a great pair and they really compliment my audio system. The highs are crystal clear, midrange is good and the lows are great. Overall I'd have to say I'm most impressed by the highs. I was watching Saving Private Ryan the other night. All I can say I felt like I was with those guys during the opening scene with bullets hitting the tank traps. You can't go wrong with Polk. These are great speakers at a good price. w/r, Robert [ Robert Mar 23, 2017 ]
Hello Peter, All I can tell you is the pair of 80fx/rt speakers work VERY well with my Polk Mains (RTiA9's). The 80's balance out the mains very well and I don't think you would be disappointed at all. By the way, what make/Model are your mains? Robert [ Robert Jan 26, 2017 ]
Dude those polks rock !!! I have it on a denon receiver and I can crank it all the way up without a single distortion !!! My breaker trips before it gets to loud :( I had one mess up and crutchfield replaced it no questions asked. It depends on what ohm load th Bose pushes out and wattage . Compare it to the Polk . All I know is I really love those speakers as they sound grea [ MICHEAL Nov 22, 2016 ]
I have a pair of 80 f/x that are used specifically for ceiling surrounds, or as in-height rears on my new setup. They work great! I don't have the other polks, and can't comment. Jim [ James Sep 17, 2018 ]
the rt should be fine with your set up i have the a 7's same center better frequency responds using the 80 f/x [ ALVIN May 03, 2015 ]
They are still speakers, but were designed to best serve as surround speakers. For regular audio, there are less expensive ceiling speakers from all brands including Polk that would work better for less money. Jim [ James Sep 17, 2018 ]
Thanks guys for the reply. That was really helpful. [ Sridhar Nov 05, 2014 ]
Yes. They are good speakers and they can be used in stereo too. [ JEFF Nov 05, 2014 ]
Suggest you direct your question to Polk Audio directly. They are very responsive to direct customer inquiries. These are nice speakers. They are great for music as well as surround sound. [ DAVID Nov 03, 2014 ]
I have the 80R/X-RT set up as rear surrounds in my living room that opens to the kitchen. I have the MC-80's in the kitchen. However, we do also listen to music in 7 channel stereo, where these act as normal speakers. In my opinion, the 80R/X-RT speakers sound better. Of course they are more expensive. [ ALLEN Nov 03, 2014 ]
We have our Polk Audion 80F/X-RT Speakers installed in very close to our kitchen. Our house layout is open, so the living, dining, kitchen, den areas are one contiguous space with no walls. These particular speakers are engineered to play crystal clear acoustics, for example with the 80F/X-RT you can hear a pin drop. They would work well in the kitchen, where you would not want overwhelming "bass booming" or a focus on low frequency sound. When installing the speaker you can control the direction where the sound is "aimed" (similar to most Polk speakers). After making your connections to the speakers and lightly fastening the compression connectors to hold them in your ceiling, turn on your audio and rotate the speakers until the sound is to your liking and then securely tighten the compression fittings to hold the speaker firmly in place. The bottom line is Polk Audio is a superior product and extremely durable. The entire speaker is corrosion proof, including the cone. These speakers will last forever and we would never again purchase any other brand speaker except Polk Audio. [ KEMPS M Nov 02, 2014 ]
These speakers can be used where there is no surround sound wiring, basically they would just be used for audio sound such as from a radio. These are really exceptional speakers and will make any audio signal sound better. [ DOUGLAS Nov 02, 2014 ]
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