Direct speaker sound/room reflections


Hi bruce-in-philly,
When looking on the net - and some pictures on this forum - and the PSaudio room - I noticed that it is quite common to have the speakers not that far apart but rather close next to each other, whereas my speakers are now maybe 4-5mtrs apart. No gap in the middle, but maybe not as deep a 3D image I come to expect - due to the relative short distance from the front wall. If I only had a roadie to haul the stuff around.


What works is what works. WHen I was younger, I was always highly influenced by what I read and saw. Now, I only use that stuff as reference… I’v learned to trust my own ears … and tastes.

Back when I had Magnepans and an awuful room, I built little platforms with wheels… then the I used dental floss (doesn’t stretch) to measure distances quickly… crazy, but it worked. With dipoles, you get what I call “false positives”… but anyhow, the moral is do the work, learn, and accept what you hear.

Bruce in Philly


No one can tell you what works best in your room for your tastes. When you finally hit the sweet spot for your individual listening preference… the light will shine brightly. It usually takes me a few weeks or longer to finally dial in the final resting place with an end location. Put the time in and the rewards will be great. :grin:



I am just curious to hear what the effect is when from listening to speakers wide apart to speakers more close together and sitting more close by. Sort of a headphone experience? Plan is to move stuff at least to try.


4 - 5 meters apart? Wow that must be a big room. And yes, most setups are far-field with speakers 2 - 3 meters apart. Many manufacturers of monitor style speakers recommend an equilateral setup (equal distances between speakers and listener). I’ve noticed that how far wide the setup is before the ‘hole in the middle’ of the sound stage effect occurs is recording dependent.

As the setup gets smaller so does the sound stage. As Bruce indicated my last setup with large single driver speakers had them very wide (almost 9ft in a 13ft wide room, roughly 110 degrees apart, pointing 1.5ft in front of me). Felt like a cross between in-room listening and headphone use. Compared to near/mid-field setups, more traditional far-field setups sound like the performance is coming from “over there” at the opposite end of the room versus being more immediate with very ‘locked in’ imaging as you sit down in the ‘sweet spot’. I’ve had 8 year olds get ‘big eyed’ when they sit down and hear the stereo effect for the first time.


@jlm … Well actually the room where they are in now is a normal open plan family room approx 5 x 9 mtrs. After having the speakers placed on one of the short wall/exit to the garden, I had the best SQ, and kept on dreaming about a power amp which became the BHK250. However in the mean time the wife re-planned matters and the speakers went along the long wall. This a much better from a floor plan/outside view perspective. However this is not really great, because of an open flight of stairs that situated inbetween the speakers. Sound wise coming from an Aragon 8008 and now the BHK250 proved to be a huge improvement. but the potential gain with a better placement got me thinking… Best would be to replace the speakers in their previous spot, then blocking the exit more or less or leave it as it is now - suffering a bit in the 3D imaging or go upstairs in a smaller room -approx 4 x 5 mtrs with probably other challenges…


You’ll just have to try it (suggest the smaller setup in family room before carrying it all upstairs). But be warned, once the system leaves the family room you’ll have a hard time convincing wife to allow it back.

Open stairs should provide a slight sonic advantage (allows deeper soundstage and causes less undesired bass reinforcement - for most speakers).


@jlm: apart from the space inbetween the distance from speakers to wall is not enough even with too-in.
Good point about the wife :wink: - safe’s my back too…



“As always YMMV… you just have to try it out. I will say, because I am typing away here… that I never got good imaging by putting speakers close together. Now what is close? Here things break down. But a general rule of thumb that works well for most speakers is keep moving them out until you get a hole in the middle, them move back in some. That is usually 90% correct. Usually.”

^This is a good place to start. FWIW.


@jlm - I didn’t move upstairs to a smaller room; instead I leave things as it is now for a while, your remark: ‘…you’ll have a hard time convincing wife to allow it back…’ made me (re-)think ;-). And after measuring the available space in the upstairs room again, I concluded that it maybe too small for me, but certainly too small to get the best out of my system, I decide to wait until the next re-shuffeling of furniture which usually takes place during spring. Still I am thinking how to improve the situation for the better… When looking at the ‘System Photo’s’ in this forum, I couldn’t help noticing that the distance between almost every speaker set appears to be relatively small…