What is the best speaker for lower volume level listening?

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. Read 3265 times.

John Casler

Low level Listening;

Many often ask the question "What is the best speaker for LOW LEVEL listening".

Where do I start on this one?

In today's world many live in apts, condos, multi-resident building as well as homes with family members (especially babies) where we might want to listen to our speakers, but must be respectful and careful of the SPL's.

The question of "What Speaker" will sound good and still be enjoyable at low levels is then important and relevant.

But the problem is there are factors in speaker design that require the speaker designer design the speaker to perform "best" at a SPL of their choosing, or within the limitations of the design and drivers used.

How often have you heard the question "Why do I have to turn my system up so loud, to hear all the music?" "or "to sound its best"?

All drivers have a relative "range" of SPL where they sound their best.  Below that power level, it is a bit anemic, and above that level it is shouty and even distorted.

Compounding this issue is something called the "Fletcher/Munson Effect" where YOUR personal hearing becomes less sensitive to certain frequencies as the volume goes down.  These frequencies are located more in the highs and the lows.  On top of that, EACH of US are affected differently (that is relative to specific frequencies and volume levels) by our listening comprehension at low levels, so how could ANY speaker fit all listeners?  Thing is a fixed speaker system cannot address these issues.  They are FIXED in the original design.  So aside from wearing the speakers as headphones when listening at low levels (and even that wouldn't work well) you are stuck with what the designer had to work with during creation.

So then how can one answer the question "what is the best speaker for systems, or situations where you listen at lower levels"?

Well obviously my answer in this post is VMPS.  Why?

VMPS as I have posted earlier are adjustable.  You can boost or reduce the MidRange, and the Treble, relative to each other, and relative to the Woofers.  This can be done via the L-Pads on the analog XO models, and via the D-OXO on the digital XO models.

So if you want to listen after hours while the neighbors or baby is asleep, you can adjust your speakers to sound full, dynamic, revealing of detail, and have most of the qualities you would enjoy at higher volume levels when you don't need to be concerned about SPLs.

I have spend many highly enjoyable hours listening to my system after hours or early in the morning without disturbing my family members, housemates, or neighbors.

So, if you are looking for that "perfect" speaker that may need to be used much/some of the time at lower levels, or if you really don't like to listen at LOUD LEVELS anymore, these are the speakers to consider.