Speaker positioning.

FMIB

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2021
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Been doing a bit of reading on placement of speakers to a wall and found differences in how this is presented.
Some videos say that its always measured from the front of the speaker, others from the back of the rear port.
Worse, in some USA videos, they call the back wall the front wall. All very confusing

If I look at a manual for a rear ported floor standing speakers it states that the speaker should be 30-45cm from the rear wall, so, is that measured from the front or back of the speaker?
 
Been doing a bit of reading on placement of speakers to a wall and found differences in how this is presented.
Some videos say that its always measured from the front of the speaker, others from the back of the rear port.
Worse, in some USA videos, they call the back wall the front wall. All very confusing

If I look at a manual for a rear ported floor standing speakers it states that the speaker should be 30-45cm from the rear wall, so, is that measured from the front or back of the speaker?
I would measure it from the back of the speaker
i.e. the rear port, some speakers are over 30cm deep so you know it makes sense..... :)
And remember these are suggestions only not absolute.
 
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leemccann1

Well-known member
Sep 2, 2020
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I would just move them to where it sounds best within the constraints of your room. They may sound better in the middle of the room but realistically can that be accomodated? Ive actually done quite a bit of testing with positioning/stands as I was sceptical about the benefits but it doesmake a massive difference, however you have to be able to live with them so it has to be a compromise most of the time.
 

Markmaguire

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Mar 8, 2012
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I’ve also wondered why some speakers - such as the KEF Q350 I have - say to place 225mm from the wall, then they sell a wall bracket that mounts them flush to the wall.
 

bigfish786

Moderator
Jan 29, 2013
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To be fair, I think speaker positioning is probably the most likely reason for people being unhappy with the sound of their speakers.
if they aren’t placed optimally, then you are just listening to the speakers making sounds.
placed in the right location and you are listening to the soundstage created by the speakers.
There’s a massive difference.
 

Samd

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Mar 6, 2013
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Yes but, wow, were there some software that could calculate where that optimal position is rather than the current clutch, good as they are, which optimize from where you have parked the beasts!
 

Tinman1952

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May 19, 2021
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Yes but, wow, were there some software that could calculate where that optimal position is rather than the current clutch, good as they are, which optimize from where you have parked the beasts!
That would require all rooms to have similar relative dimensions, construction and furnishings....not practical.
I don't think many people realise how tiny speaker adjustments can affect the sound...
If I move one speaker back a quarter of an inch...it moves the soundstage two feet left or right!
If I change the toe in by a quarter of an inch it changes the imaging AND soundstage....
 
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Gray

Well-known member
I’ve also wondered why some speakers - such as the KEF Q350 I have - say to place 225mm from the wall, then they sell a wall bracket that mounts them flush to the wall.
That's just a case of them quoting (what they think is) the optimum distance from the wall and allowing for real-world practicalities / preferences.

For most people, positioning is necessarily going to be less than ideal - but from what I've seen, large areas of hard, reflective surfaces are at least as much of a problem for many.
Combine the two and you've got a recipe for a massive, partially avoidable, waste of money.
 

Samd

Well-known member
Mar 6, 2013
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18,870
That would require all rooms to have similar relative dimensions, construction and furnishings....not practical.
I don't think many people realise how tiny speaker adjustments can affect the sound...
If I move one speaker back a quarter of an inch...it moves the soundstage two feet left or right!
If I change the toe in by a quarter of an inch it changes the imaging AND soundstage....
Indeed so - 'tis why I used the word 'wow' in my introduction.
 

Pedro2

Well-known member
Nov 29, 2010
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Yes but, wow, were there some software that could calculate where that optimal position is rather than the current clutch, good as they are, which optimize from where you have parked the beasts!
Linn use their own room correction software called ‘Space’ - you input several measurements including room dimensions and positioning of speakers. Interestingly, it allows for ‘ideal’ speaker placement as well as ‘practical’ positioning. It also allows for other variables such as room construction materials, humidity levels and personal preferences (how ‘flat’ you like the sound).

Most users agree that it’s not perfect but can be used to improve and tweak the sound to your liking. I always have it switched on as without it, my sub becomes too unruly! With it on, most of the room nasties are tamed and the sound quality greatly improves. I must add that unlike with many other systems, there are no microphone room measurements involved .
 

AJM1981

Well-known member
Mar 26, 2021
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Unless you have a dedicated listening room, most rooms and their projected function kind of dictate speaker placement.

Back ported speakers ask for an optional preferred distance to kind of have a bare minimum control over extra bass.

Bottom ported ones can probably ask for a little more attention in stands. Works well on bigger sized speakers that need to be controlled rather than to search for ways to swipe up some extra aid from the walls. A bottom ported one might still need a little distance, but doesn't depend on it as much as a back ported one.

Front ported are most likely ideal for keeping things within control in larger model speakers to which the wall behind it is not directly in play, but it affects the aesthetics in design.
 

twinkletoes

Well-known member
Nov 16, 2021
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This is an unanswerable question its completely dictated by the room, and where your reflection points are.

Your room is a tough room as it has a staircase and has led you to place the speakers off centre, on either side of a patio door (guessing that's your room). This will lead to very uneven loading of the room and i don't need measurement software to see that.

It's a very simple experiment to do for yourself. Pull up a small chair playing a familiar track, gradually move closer to the speakers and keep doing so until you reach a point where all the bass disappears, once it does this move back a couple of CM at a time till it comes back, that is your rooms sweet spot the point that every thing is just so and the right amount of everything. Edit you can also do this the other way round, but seeing as you probably still want to walk up the stairs this is the better option

You will never achieve a hologram effect by virtue of how you have laid the speakers out. For that everything has to be symmetrical. Even if they were the stair case will lead to a large reflection difference undermining the effect. Ive only had one room that would allow me to do that.
 

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