Originally Posted by slansing
Great info Jon, I have a question of similar nature to any of you with experience. Once I receive the A5's I plan to place them on two square pieces of oak I have treated and glued together, the bottom piece being roughly 3 inches larger in all 4 directions when looking down on them. Would it be a good idea to take the spikes from the A5 mounts and screw them into the bottom of the wood stands to help decrease resonance? I had originally built them for a pair of Tektondesigns M-Lores of which I decided not to purchase and instead chose the A5's, so the top piece of wood was suspended by thre PVC pipes, I just pulled them out and glued the top to the bottom due to the increased size of the A5's.
Any other acoustic properties I can add to this solid wood? The A5's will be decoupled slightly by thick fabric squares on all four corners.
I don't have a simple answer, slansing, but this next bit may be intuitive to someone like you already planning and thinking about setup.
The trick is to couple the speaker to the world, so to speak, while not allowing it to pick up any input other than what the amplifier is sending it. To do this we ideally want two ideals somewhat at cross purposes. The first is complete rigidity, which means that whatever spikes you'll use should couple the speaker tower as thoroughly as possible to the environment, with that environment naturally being the floor they're standing on. The second is that whatever floor this is, it should not bend - even minutely at any frequency - and by not bending it shall not put any external energy into the speaker cabinet.
Realistically coupling the speaker to the floor pays more dividends in imaging, soundstage, bass focus and slam, and clarity then decoupling the speaker from the floor pays dividends in cleaner sound due to it not modulating the speaker cabinet. It takes a fairly hopeless floor to move enough to destabilize a speaker's sound and focus, while a very rigid stand spiked both up to the speaker and down to the floor can really
open up the definition.
A similar philosophy exists for turntable stands for high end suspended turntables: The intuition that lots of mass is good is incorrect. Lots of rigidity
is good but while lots of mass lowers and suppresses external vibrational energy, it also makes the system more susceptible to energy at those lower frequencies, where it approaches or even matches the turntable and/or arm/cartridge's fundamental resonance, thereby destabilizing either or both.
Loudspeaker cabinets don't have suspensions or their resonance behaviors, and they operate at orders of magnitude higher energy, but they too do not want to be either coupled at very low frequencies to things that naturally oscillate at those frequencies, nor do they want to be left highly uncoupled so that large electrical inputs can push them about. This is especially true of multiple long-throw SplitGap woofers run at high levels.
With this in mind, I'd suggest deciding on whether to use the base included in the A5 or your custom bases, and then screwing either directly to the bottom of the tower using the four threaded inserts provided. Then insert four pointed feet into the corners of whichever base you use to anchor it to the floor.
Unless your floor is very unstable, this is very likely to develop the best focus across the audible band. If your floor is prone to a lot of movement, then about all you can do is bolt just as much mass as you possibly can to the underside of the towers and float the whole shebang on well-damped isolators. The first method is likely to sound best in the majority of cases, and the latter should be thought of as a suitable compromise for really difficult cases.
If you think it through you'll realize that both seek to do the same thing, which is to prevent the speaker cabinet moving at all. One just views the floor as a reliable, quiet ally in this effort, and the other acknowledges that in some cases it is the enemy of rigid localization.