Best/most optimal speaker placement in a room with a corner TV - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 07-04-2013, 02:21 PM - Thread Starter
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So recently moved into an apartment with some friends/acquaintances, and the living room furniture was already there.

I have a basic 32" LCD (for now) sitting in that corner (in-between the speakers in the picture is a small entertainment center).

We tried to figure out if any other kind of setup would work, with that entertainment center or with the one I could get as a hand-me-down from my parents since they are also moving (larger, supports their 50" plasma and all their a/v electronics), but with the room size and two couches, we just can't figure out how it can work and have comfortable seating and viewing angles.

So, I'm stuck with the dreaded corner TV setup (the sound-field couldn't really encompass all seating positions even with a standard TV against flat-wall approach, so I don't think it's losing that much compared to what "could be" in this situation).


So, what do I do with speakers?
BTW, the center speaker is also up in the air as to placement. Trying to figure out if everything can fit in the entertainment center, and since it's not likely, I am contemplating installing a corner shelf above the TV. That'll place the center speaker above the optimal ear-level height by a fair bit, but in this situation, will that really negatively impact the sound stage?

I don't know if I want to try and encompass both couches and end-up with a surround speaker (relative to each couch) that is actually more in front than surrounding.... or if I want to make it so that the longer couch has a more "prime" sound stage and forget about the loveseat.

In the drawing is how I have the speakers sitting right now, though not hooked up.
In corner 1, the sub is under an end-table, and a bookshelf speaker is on a 30" stand.
In corner 3 is the other bookshelf.
In corner 4 are the two front towers. The center, for this scenario, is on a shelf above and behind the TV. If/when I install shelf, I don't know if I want to plan for a larger TV and ensure it's at least high enough to only be slightly blocked, if at all, by a larger TV... or if I should just keep it as low as possible for now, and see if I even end up purchasing a larger TV in the next year (lease-term) and maybe just want until I move out on my own. This was my college TV, so the 32" 720p set is getting long in the tooth, but at the same time, the whole point of this current living situation is to try and save money and pay down debt so I can afford a decent mortgage later. wink.gif


For reference: the areas marked kitchen and dining are essentially open areas behind the living room area. There is a wall back there, and a wall in the dining area that comes off the stump I drew representing the hallway.
I just didn't want to measure literally everything, and how I have it right now is a fairly accurate representation of the room as it stands now.


Thoughts on speaker placement?

Thanks!


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post #2 of 12 Old 07-05-2013, 12:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Bump - this thread was starting to get buried
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post #3 of 12 Old 07-06-2013, 10:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Any thoughts?
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post #4 of 12 Old 07-06-2013, 05:22 PM
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2.1, no center and no surrounds. Move them a foot or so along the side wall each side of the TV and point them generally towards the door. Start with them at about the height of the center of the TV screen. Move them around a bit to get the best sound. Center could help or hurt in this case, try to put it below rather than above the screen if possible.
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post #5 of 12 Old 07-07-2013, 09:47 AM - Thread Starter
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So you say 2.1 or perhaps even 3.1.


I'm not looking to fit "perfect" audio into this imperfect situation - I'd rather try and fit imperfect surround into this.
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post #6 of 12 Old 07-08-2013, 06:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Any other thoughts?

It's quite likely my roommate (as well as myself) is getting a little irritated that the living room is full of disconnected equipment. I don't want to hook anything up until a few things are settled, like where I have to tuck wires for the rears and where the center is going.

Speaking of center, if I install a shelf above the TV and place it there, would that be "just right" as long as I did something to point the center down toward ear-height?
I wonder if it really matters that much, since nobody will be sitting precisely where the TV and center speaker are pointing.
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post #7 of 12 Old 07-08-2013, 02:59 PM
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People don't like to give advice around here unless it matches the Dolby or THX standards for speaker placement. Sorry to say, that your only option is to try things for yourself. I'm remodeling my living room after asking the same question.
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post #8 of 12 Old 07-08-2013, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by destrekor View Post



Thoughts on speaker placement?

Thanks!


If it sounds good it is good. In your situation I'd probably do it the same way.

Bill Fitzmaurice Loudspeaker Design

The Laws of Physics aren't swayed by opinion.
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post #9 of 12 Old 07-08-2013, 03:46 PM - Thread Starter
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What's annoying about it is I asked here because I saw similar threads with numerous responses with acceptable resolutions.

There's one thing I'm thinking of trying, because I saw this suggested elsewhere:

Fronts: toe-out a little (as opposed to straight or toe-in), so that each forms a slightly obtuse angle with the TV
Surrounds: place them at Corners 1 and 2 (as depicted in first image) as far from couch as possible, and have them pointing straight at the opposite wall (the wall between corners 3 and 4)

I actually just ordered this, because it sounds like the consensus is for the center, if it's going to be slightly off the line formed by the tweeters on the fronts, it is better to have it slightly above as opposed to below.
And the only option below is quite below. And I can still aim it down slightly if that is ideal.

And if it turns out otherwise, I can use that for the cable box and the speaker goes in the tv stand cabinet below. It'd be about a foot off the floor, and a foot or so below the tweeters of the TV (which, oddly enough, are just about at mid-height of the display). If the speaker is on top of the TV, it'll be about roughly the same height above the tweeters as opposed to below.
The rear bookshelf speakers, on 30" stands, have tweeters at almost perfectly the same height, odd how that worked out (and it probably worked out in a way not in my favor, knowing how these things work :P).


I'd love to have a room that's configured to create the perfect THX and/or Dolby experience - but that's not happening and when it can happen, many things are getting upgraded anyhow. And I won't be living in an apartment when that time comes.
Close enough will leave me pleased, as long as at least a few seats can get a decent aural experience.
Honestly, I only truly care if one seat gets the "best" audio but I'd like to spread it out as much as possible without sacrificing a prime spot if one can actually be achieved.
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post #10 of 12 Old 07-08-2013, 04:08 PM
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Disclaimer: I'm not an expert.

In any of the speaker configurations I've seen using direct radiating speakers, you want all of the speakers aimed at the primary listening position. I can't really tell if that's on the couch or the love seat (or if this is drawn to scale), but I'd start with aiming the speakers in that direction. I can tell you from my recent personal experience, having the surround channels in front of the listener is distracting. Perhaps bipole/dipole speakers would be a better solution. If you go that route, I'd try one near the #2 and another at the same height on the wall that shares the counter top.
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post #11 of 12 Old 07-08-2013, 07:20 PM - Thread Starter
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I've thought of bipole speakers before, but I just don't want to invest in more speakers at this point. I don't want to buy anymore until I can afford much better speakers than I've got. I cannot afford a pair of quality surrounds, and even then there's an issue of there being too much distinction between the front and rear sound stage.

I've really tried to put out of my mind the thought of bipole speakers for that reason. Wiring would be a pain in the ass too, and since it's after the fact and in an apartment, there could be no level of 100% hidden.


As for directional audio, that's the reason I wrote that post: as far as I have ever been concerned, speakers should generally be aimed at a prime listening spot(s).
There's also something for reflected audio - and there's also the idea that rear speakers shouldn't draw too much attention to their exact location. If you're sitting on that long couch (I think the middle seat and the seat closest to the door on the long couch, and the one closest the door on the love seat are all equally "almost prime").
But say both rear speakers are on the long couch (corners 1 and 2) -- if the speakers are pointing in at the listening spots, I think their proximity is going to draw strong attention to their location, in that it might limit the imaging ability. They aren't premier speakers so they are already limited in that regard I reckon (I've usually had some more separation between listening spot and speaker location).
But with decent imaging, if they point more in the direction of the opposite wall, the couch listeners should still get the rear imaging, at least to some degree I'd imagine?

I know I'm not at all sure about what's going on with the front speakers getting toe-out treatment. The discussion was all about widening the soundstage, but still trying to at least tighten it up in the general location of the designated "main listening spot." How effective such a setup would be, I'm not sure yet.
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post #12 of 12 Old 07-10-2013, 08:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Any other thoughts on this?

I'm really debating between:
- speakers at corners 1 and 2 -- and whether they should face square with wall, tilted into center of couch, or straight at opposite wall
- speakers as they stand at corners 1 and 3 -- either facing straight along couch edges, one or both angled toward listening area, or...?

I hesitate to just try one because it's going to be awhile before I can really put a good ear toward testing, and the method of wiring will change a bit between one or the other.
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