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Thread: Question about center sweetspot being only about 12 inches wide...whats set wrong?

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    Newbie jsetliff's Avatar
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    Default Question about center sweetspot being only about 12 inches wide...whats set wrong?

    Quick newbie question for the placement experts. When I listen to stereo music and singer is perfectly centered between the speakers, my sweet spot is currently only about 12 inches wide. If I move my head 12 inches to left, then the singer moves into the left speaker, and if I move 12 inches to right then singer moves into right speaker.

    I would like to at least have a sweet spot that two people can enjoy at the same time. Please advise on possible speaker placement moves that should widen the sweet spot to wider than a single person. Is it the toe in angle that is at fault here, or the distance between speakers?

    My speakers are currently 65 inches apart.
    My seating position is 85 inches back from the plane of the speakers.
    My toe in angle is currently 8 degrees inward.

    Any positioning/movement advise would be greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by jsetliff; 12-22-2016 at 02:33 PM.
     
    Martin Logan Ethos x 4 (R, L, RS, LS); Martin Logan Stage X (C); Velodyne DD18+ (Sub); Krell Foundation 4K Processor; Parasound Halo A21 and A51; Oppo 103D; Kimber KCAG interconnects; Kimber Monocle XL speaker cable. All five speakers crossed with sub at 80hz.

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    Super User C.A.P's Avatar
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    Welcome to Two channel listening. There is only ONE sweet spot that is dead center vocals. You can experiment with positioning but generally there is only one SWEET spot.. HT or multi channel with a center channel give a better multi listening experience..
    Martin Logan... Odyssey...Krell KSA 100s...Krell KRC3 Pre Amp...Krell Connect Media server/DAC
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    Super User sleepysurf's Avatar
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    It's going to be tough to get a "true" 2 person sweet spot with the Ethos (narrower) 9.2" panel, and 65" spacing between your speakers. Doesn't look like your wall/entertainment configuration will allow much wider spacing, but just for kicks, try separating the speakers another 1-2 ft, then play with toe-in, and see what happens. If the sweet spot widens, you might consider reconfiguring that entire wall (which I think you mentioned in a prior post).

    I formerly had Summits (11" wide panels), but still only a 1 person sweet spot. Since upgrading to the Expressions (13" panels) and placing them 90" apart, I now have a "cozy" 2 person sweet spot. There's only so much you can do with the laws of physics!

    Alternatively, you can always do what Roger Sanders (of Sanders Sound Systems) does... place another listening chair directly behind the primary one!
    Squeezebox Touch/Bel Canto DAC 3.5VB + Oppo BDP-95 > Conrad-Johnson CT5 preamp and Premier 350 amp > ML Expressions 13A. Dual ML BalancedForce 210 subs. Audience Au24e I/C's, speaker cable.
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    Newbie jsetliff's Avatar
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    Thank you both for the info and advice. Reducing the toe in has helped slightly. I don't think that I will be able to place them further apart without changing the room or I will hit the close back wall problem. LOL...not gonna even chance telling my better half "here's your seat....right behind me!" That would not go over very well. Will do a little more experimenting, but for now I think reducing the toe in has given me a pretty wide sound stage and other then the small sweet spot I am happy with the sound. I am sure I will keep tweaking as I get the urge and the time.

    Thanks again for the advice.
    Martin Logan Ethos x 4 (R, L, RS, LS); Martin Logan Stage X (C); Velodyne DD18+ (Sub); Krell Foundation 4K Processor; Parasound Halo A21 and A51; Oppo 103D; Kimber KCAG interconnects; Kimber Monocle XL speaker cable. All five speakers crossed with sub at 80hz.

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    Super User sleepysurf's Avatar
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    One more (less than ideal) option is extreme toe-in, aiming the panels so they intersect a foot or two in front of the sweet spot. I've played with that approach in the past, and found it creates a more diffuse central sweet spot (with less distinct imaging) but better imaging when listening off axis.
    Squeezebox Touch/Bel Canto DAC 3.5VB + Oppo BDP-95 > Conrad-Johnson CT5 preamp and Premier 350 amp > ML Expressions 13A. Dual ML BalancedForce 210 subs. Audience Au24e I/C's, speaker cable.
    Click here to see my entire sytem. Member of the Suncoast Audiophile Society.

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    Super User Brad225's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sleepysurf View Post

    Alternatively, you can always do what Roger Sanders (of Sanders Sound Systems) does... place another listening chair directly behind the primary one!
    I agree with Alan on speaker positioning and sweet spot.

    At the last listening club meeting at Alan's, some of us perfered the higher seat behind the sweet spot on the couch. Try it and give your better half the conventional sweet spot. You may find the sound is as good or better and make a lot of points in the process.

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    Super User C.A.P's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brad225 View Post
    I agree with Alan on speaker positioning and sweet spot.

    At the last listening club meeting at Alan's, some of us perfered the higher seat behind the sweet spot on the couch. Try it and give your better half the conventional sweet spot. You may find the sound is as good or better and make a lot of points in the process.

    Its not a bad thing to be "Behind" the women you Love .
    Martin Logan... Odyssey...Krell KSA 100s...Krell KRC3 Pre Amp...Krell Connect Media server/DAC
    My system here

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    This a great thread, and is a question I have had. It's nice to see confirmation from others that there is only one single "BEST" sweet spot. 99% of the time, I am listening by myself so it's no problem. When my wife ventures in to "my" room, I always insist that she sit in the primary spot (and I don't even tell her that the other seat is not nearly as good).

    For now I will continue to tweak toe-in, distance from walls, etc - always looking for an even better sound stage..........

    Happy listening.

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    Super User Rich's Avatar
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    Electrostats are notorious for having a narrow sweet spot. ML's curved panels are better than the flat panels like Sanders Sound speakers in this regard, but they trade off a bit of imaging and soundstaging to get that slightly wider sweet spot. If you want a really nice wide sweet spot, go with a radial speaker like the MBL's. Maybe Gordon will chime in on this, but when I heard his MBL's, I was amazed at how good they sounded off-axis.
    Rich

    This comment is intended solely for educational purposes and should not be construed as conveying any express or implied warranty of fitness for any other purpose. Said comment constitutes merely the humble opinion of its maker and does not reflect the views of the MLOC or of ML, Ltd. YMMV. Trust your own ears.

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    Forum Administrator twich54's Avatar
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    all of the above and that's why it's called the 'sweet' spot ...............
    Dave

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    Super User sleepysurf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich View Post
    Electrostats are notorious for having a narrow sweet spot. ML's curved panels are better than the flat panels like Sanders Sound speakers in this regard, but they trade off a bit of imaging and soundstaging to get that slightly wider sweet spot. If you want a really nice wide sweet spot, go with a radial speaker like the MBL's. Maybe Gordon will chime in on this, but when I heard his MBL's, I was amazed at how good they sounded off-axis.
    Alternatively, if you have the budget, check out Muraudio omnidirectional stats... http://muraudio.com/
    Squeezebox Touch/Bel Canto DAC 3.5VB + Oppo BDP-95 > Conrad-Johnson CT5 preamp and Premier 350 amp > ML Expressions 13A. Dual ML BalancedForce 210 subs. Audience Au24e I/C's, speaker cable.
    Click here to see my entire sytem. Member of the Suncoast Audiophile Society.

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    Super User Rich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sleepysurf View Post
    Alternatively, if you have the budget, check out Muraudio omnidirectional stats... http://muraudio.com/
    Interesting! And hey, they cost less than a pair of Neoliths.
    Rich

    This comment is intended solely for educational purposes and should not be construed as conveying any express or implied warranty of fitness for any other purpose. Said comment constitutes merely the humble opinion of its maker and does not reflect the views of the MLOC or of ML, Ltd. YMMV. Trust your own ears.

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    Super User JonFo's Avatar
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    The reason the sweet spot is typically narrow is due to what's going on with the reflected rear-wave from the dipole panel.

    Remember, these speakers radiate *equal* amounts of energy towards the front wall as they do directly to the listener from the front of the panel. How that energy is bounced around, when and from where it arrives at your ear, helps define the soundstage and imaging.

    When you lean to the left out of the sweet spot, the reason the imaging anchors to the left speaker is that you now are hearing much more of the reflected rear wave bouncing off the left wall of the room.
    It's as if you have two left speakers, one is the main listener-facing panel, the other is 'in the wall' delivering a somewhat reduced level, delayed and out-of-phase version of the same sound.

    So changing the angle of the toe-in moves that phantom in-wall speaker forward or back on the side walls. Adding or reducing the delay and possibly the level (depending on materials in the path) of that reflected sound.

    Which is also why one the most effective ways of broadening the sweet spot is to actually modify that reflected sound, by either spreading it out to multiple phantom lateral images using diffusion, or minimizing it by using absorption on the wall behind the speakers.

    Any discussion of large dipole panel speaker positioning that does not account for the rear waves behavior is only looking at half of the problem.
    Last edited by JonFo; 01-11-2017 at 05:14 AM.
    Jonathan

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    Super User JonFo's Avatar
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    Oh, and if you want to visualize this rear wave impact, I mentioned a tool in this post on my huge Acoustics saga thread.

    That thread is worth reading if you really want to understand more about room acoustics and ML placement. It is a bit of documented journey, so it's not a short how to, but more how did we get here.

    My personal choice of using massive amounts of absorption and choice use of diffusion were all born from that research and then subsequent experimentation.
    Jonathan

    System #45 (Monolith IIIx, Sequell IIb, SL3XC)

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    Forum Administrator twich54's Avatar
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    good info Jonathan, Thank you !
    Dave

    System #79 - Analog is Alive and Well, if in doubt, click the link below !

    Click Here to see my System

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