The Fine Art of Entertainment

How to set up speakers correctly

by | Jul 24, 2018 | The Pro’s Knowledge

Did you know that the sound characteristics of loudspeakers change significantly depending on how they are set up?
Especially the reproduction of bass and the three-dimensionality can be clearly influenced by the way the speakers are set up. In this blog post I would like to show you what is important and how you can achieve a better sound at home.

A loudspeaker can be considered as a kind of acoustic instrument – and as such the room plays an important role. You might  know this from your own experience: In a church your own voice sounds completely different than in the open field. The same applies to loudspeakers – so here are some tips about positioning your speakers.

How to avoid the empty-room rattling

Especially large and high rooms with sparse furnishings are very popular in modern architecture. For a good music reproduction, however, they cause some problems.

Professional tip: Create remedy using heavy poster furniture, curtains and carpets. The installation of an acoustic ceiling is somewhat more complex. Even walls that do not run parallel to each other, as can be seen in recording studios, are acoustically very advantageous.

Don’t position your loudspeakers directly on the wall

A loudspeaker that stands directly on a wall sounds differently than positioned in the room, with some distance to the walls. Try this out for yourself – you’ll be surprised at how big the difference is.

If the loudspeaker is positioned directly against the wall, the bass frequencies are amplified, but usually in a rather spongy way. The sound becomes more muddy, loses its transparency and three-dimensionality. This effect becomes even stronger when the speaker is placed in a corner of a room.

Professional tip: Move the main speakers approximately one meter away from the wall. You will get a much clearer and more spacious sound. If you want more deep bass power, you should think about a good subwoofer. Depending on the model, the subwoofer delivers an impressive, often noticeable deep bass without affecting the spatial quality of the sound.

The loudspeakers should stand free

Another factor that contributes to a blurred and indistinct sound is the reflective surfaces close to the loudspeaker. An example: A shelf loudspeaker stands in the bookshelf, is pushed back against the wall, flanked by two large illustrated books. The latter now form reflecting surfaces – and this is another acoustic stumbling block for clear sound.

Professional tip: Pull your shelf boxes to the front of the shelf so that they can radiate freely. However, it is even better to place them freely in the room, on stands. As the distance from the wall increases, the sound becomes more transparent and spatial.