Speaker bases - why don't these exist?

Most manufacturers have sounder bases in standard and (more recently) low-frequency versions. Typically you see these used in sleeping areas or really anywhere you want to have detection and notification all in one place - one backbox, and (usually) one pair of wires, since most addressable systems support intelligent sounder bases that are SLC-controlled.

However, on systems where voice evac is used, sounder bases can’t be used to play a voice message. In this case, separate speakers have to be installed.

I think speaker bases would be a great idea. Most manufacturers could use their LF sounder bases as a design basis for speaker bases, since most LF devices use a speaker with a tone generator anyway. You could have conventional speaker bases, where you would run the speaker circuit to the base, or addressable speaker bases that would work similar to TrueAlert ES. This seems like the perfect solution for high rise dorms, apartments, and hotel rooms.


You know, not a bad idea. Perhaps we’ll see manufacturers come out with such devices in the near future (though the reason they haven’t already might be because a speaker takes up a lot more room than a piezo does, & thus it’d be difficult to fit one into a sounder base (though they could always try putting the speaker underneath the detector & providing grilles on the sides of the base to let the sound out). I’m also going to assume that standard sounder bases work well enough for the applications they’re used in, thus there hasn’t been a need for speaker bases).

putting the speaker underneath the detector

I believe this is actually what EST does with their LF sounder bases. I think System Sensor does something similar with their LF base and puts the sounder off to the side, but still “underneath” in a sense.

It’s an interesting idea! Speakers present a bit of a design challenge because they require a much larger footprint than a piezo horn, but I believe the main reason we don’t see this yet is because the use case would be relatively niche.
The vast majority of sounder bases are currently used in apartment/dormitory style buildings. Normally, in setups like this, the initiation devices in public areas (hallways, waterflow switches, building ducts, stairwells) will trip a general alarm throughout the building, including a signal in the common room of each “suite,” but the smoke detectors in each “suite” will only sound a local alarm. This way, when the neighbor upstairs burns their bacon, the whole complex is not outside in their pajamas every Saturday morning. The sounder bases are installed in each suite, each base acts as a local alarm, and it sounds when the attached detector activates. Some system configurations will also turn on local sounder bases during general alarm. Once the science (and codes) switched to supporting low-frequency signals in sleeping areas, the manufacturers started offering LF sounder bases.
At this time I don’t see a huge market for speaker bases in the same way we do sounder bases, it is an interesting idea though.

Yes, most of this I said as well.