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Yes, the way you set things up makes a huge difference, especially if you value 3 dimensional holographic imaging where every musician occupies their own place on the stage relative to all the other musicians. If you haven’t experienced this, try a near field arrangement and listen with your eyes closed. By closing your eyes you cut off all visual input to the brain allowing it to focus more on the auditory aspect. A good system will isolate the exact location of each instrument. When everything comes together, an illusion unfolds that can be very surreal. The better the system and set up, the better the illusion.
Now the curious thing is some people put a fair bit of effort into positioning their speakers because they know how much of a difference even half an inch can make between good and very good! Like a subtle adjustment to the focus ring on the barrel of a high quality camera lens, a subtle adjustment to the position of your speakers can make a huge difference. Yet many of audiophiles do not even consider adjusting the height of their speakers!
Vinnie and others - how far from speakers do you sit?
Vinnie,If I recall correctly, you liked the Spatial Speakers in the near field and pulled way into the room when you were over.The only drawback was that felt we lost a little heft and weight to the bass. Otherwise, mama, many positives.George
Hi George,Yes, I preferred them this way. They way you had it set up (where the speakers were relative to where the chair was) gave better bass response in your dedicated room, but I think the loss of bass weight when I tried near field could be due to room acoustics and where we had your chair located. I don't recall use moving the chair that much. You would need to play with *both* the location of your chair and the speakers in your room and find the best response. It might be a little trickier getting optimal bass response with OB spekaers in the near field, but I'm sure it could be done well in most rooms where you have the flexibility (and time / patience). When I get some Spatials from Clayton, I'll be trying it!Vinnie
Even in well-treated rooms, if the speakers are further way, the sound interacts with the room boundaries *before* it reaches your ears. And the louder you play it, the more interaction with the room. With near field listening, this is significantly reduced.
If you are into the near field, sweet-spot listening experience like I am, then getting the distances from speaker to ear, toe-in, height, etc. all makes a significant difference and these are free tweaks!
Agree on near field listening when you can. I wonder if tilting the baffles back would help with the perceived height issues? I used to angle my OB's back some.
Here is a link posted by Vinnie a while back on near field listening:http://www.whatsbestforum.com/showthread.php?886-Near-Field-Listening-Acquired-Taste-or-Proper-Paradigm
I have one question on near field listening - do we get the full depth on the soundstage by sitting so close to the speaker ?
Also from reading different places, some believe distance between the speaker to the listener to be equilateral triangle and some believe the ratio between 1:1.1 to 1:1.2. For example, Jim Smith says he always have much satisfactory results following the later ratio. Vinnie's placement seems to contradict this. What are other folks using as the ratio between the speaker and listener distance ?
I answered this with what works for me in reply 12 of this thread. The equilateral triangle is a good starting point; from there experiment. I find myself moving in a little closer than that to attain a wider stage.
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