This is the first entry in what we hope will become a useful and interesting resource for our clients. We know that most of you are audio hobbyists, music lovers, home entertainment fans, or some combination of the three. We’ll be posting topics concerning all of those areas and more, topics we trust will be of interest to many—if not all—of you here.
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If you’re using smaller two-way loudspeakers, a fascinating experiment to try is one called “near-field listening”. The idea is to place the speakers, toed in and spaced approximately 2-4 feet apart, out away from surrounding walls. The listener should sit about the same distance away, right between the speakers, with the tweeters at ear height. Situating your speakers in such a configuration dramatically reduces the impact that the room and its sonic reflections have on your listening experience. It’s almost like you’re hearing the speakers in an anechoic chamber. You should hear exceptional clarity, precise imaging, superb transient response, and more (assuming the speakers are of sufficient quality).
We’re suggesting this practice for smaller, two-way speakers because larger multi-way speakers typically need the listeners to sit fairly far away for the sound from the various drivers to integrate properly. Still, it may be worth trying near-field listening with larger speakers by increasing the distances between the speakers themselves, and from the speakers to the listener.
Try near field listening and let us know what you think!