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Drock82's picture
Last seen: 1 year 8 months ago
Joined: Nov 10 2012 - 9:20pm
12x12.5 Condo Living room Floorstander or Bookshelves

Hi there,

My condo living room is 12x12.5. The one side is the ceiling to wall window and the opposite "side" is half open to the kitchen. Half because it's got the island that comes out to about 7', counter level height.

I've played with positioning of speakers. For years I've had bookshelves 2 feet from one wall facing the other wall. I've always been working on the base issues. I've come a long way with a rug. I'm basically starting all over. I had a primaluna dialogue 1, Usher Be178 bookshelves. Now I just have some audioengine a5+. Total downgrade, but hey I needed the money. These little guys are fun, and they have great aptx bluetooth which connects all the time, not like the airplay cutouts I dealt with for years.

For fun, I placed these speakers by the window side, so it faces the open space of the rest of the condo (kitchen). It definitely is the best option. But it's not as practical. If I want to watch movies with the speaker sound, I can use a nice tripod stand for the tv with the window behind it. But I'm not really sold on this. So it's either that set up, or back to the wall I had it on, with one change. I am selling my big tv fireplace unit which was quite wide. It will help open things up for the speakers, and bring them in a little which will help with imaging.

It's weird because I expeirence a type of fatigue. Always have. I always thought it was the base, especially with the Ushers, which I rolled down the low frequency on the EQ. But now I'm testing out if its the 2-4k freq range. And there was a smile on my face when I brought down these frequencies. So I'm still learning.

I want dynamic, full range sound. Something I haven't had yet, as far as what typcially towers can provide, even against the high end bookshelves such as the Ushers. (Correct me if I'm wrong)

I want smooth, non-fatigue, imaging, vocals, scale, intimate. I'm open to floor standers, but with this type of space, do you think it's not even a question that I need to stick to smaller speakers?

I also want great dynamics at low volume.

Your thoughts are welcomed! Thanks

Old Audiophile
Old Audiophile's picture
Last seen: 3 weeks 2 days ago
Joined: Jun 15 2017 - 7:34pm

It's difficult to get a mind's eye grasp of your sound room, based upon your description. Do you mean floor to ceiling window? In my humble opinion, I agree that having 2 channel or main speakers (with or without a sub) firing at the open end of a room like yours is best, sonically speaking. However, from a room decor aesthetic and practicality point of view, it does seem better for the TV to be located at or mounted on one of the solid walls if you are going to use your audio system to listen to movies, as well as music. This is a choice only you and your significant other can make. In either case, it might be helpful to have heavy or thick curtains or drapes on that window for the acoustic properties this will provide. Having your main speakers' fronts a foot or two forward of the TV would be good, as well. With regard to the sound performance you're after, I think this can be achieved with good stand-mounters and a sub. All the folks I know who use their audio systems for movie watching incorporate a sub into their systems, whether they have stand-mounters or towers. Small or moderately sized towers are another option to seriously consider. With regard to the listening fatigue issue, have you tried different tubes in your amp? I'm not terribly familiar with tube amps but my understanding is that you can achieve slightly different sound characteristics by rolling in different types of tubes. With regard to dynamic full range sound performance with or without a sub, I hope your condo has good soundproofing or tolerant neighbors. Whenever anyone asks me what the most expensive component I have in my audio system is, I always say: My house. Hope this helps!

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