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Well, that’s a very strange question is’nt it? During my +30 years in this hobby I have always concentrated my efforts to hear bass notes, dynamics, treble, air, fatigue, natural sound, textures, 3D, 4D etc in dead center of the speakers. Just because that’s how it is and that is how it should be. Or is it? 

During my latest +10 years I have had a sneaking feeling that good sound is easiest to hear from for example the kitchen when playing music in the audio corner and not in the dead center between the speakers and with my ears in the perfect height. For me it is much easier to evaluate good sound from way outside that triangle than it is inside of it. Why? I have no dea! That’s why I started this thread. To see if there is anyone else that recognize this as well and if someone possibly knows the answer to why this is. Or is it only me and my imagination! ?

 

Don’t get me wrong. The SQ always gets better in the dead center of the speakers, but the evaluation process is just easier to determine outside the triangle.

 

Since this is an honest question I would appreciate honest replies! ?

 

 

 

 

 

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I've seen the concept mentioned over the years in various magazines, usually starting with an anecdote about the reviewer's wife/significant other coming in from another room and making a comment about the sound from other parts of the house.

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12 minutes ago, wgscott said:

I recall @4est saying something like this at one time.  (Apologies if that is wrong.)

Well sort of. All I assume I was getting at is some things are easier to discern because of averaging. Overall intelligibility, frequency balance and PRaT for example. It should draw you in even from another room. If it doesn't you likely have issues IME.

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3 hours ago, Cornan said:

Don’t get me wrong. The SQ always gets better in the dead center of the speakers, but the evaluation process is just easier to determine outside the triangle.

 

Since this is an honest question I would appreciate honest replies! ?

 

And then if I might elaborate, we are not wowed by the system forgiving other faults due the the spectacularity of change.

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58 minutes ago, Hugo9000 said:

I've seen the concept mentioned over the years in various magazines, usually starting with an anecdote about the reviewer's wife/significant other coming in from another room and making a comment about the sound from other parts of the house.

Yes, I have read that too I must admit. I did’nt think it matter much until I realized the importance in my own evaluations.

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21 minutes ago, 4est said:

And then if I might elaborate, we are not wowed by the system forgiving other faults due the the spectacularity of change.

 

Not sure if I follow you on that one?  Why is it more forgiving listening off center than in center of the speakers?

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Let's back up a bit.

Is this is about listening to the system as opposed to listening to the music?

 

I don't mean that in a pejorative way. My brain cannot function well in both worlds at the same time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Say I build a house with a massive window in the best position to capture the amazing view on offer.  I put a chair in the exact perfect spot to take in said view.  One day I'm across the room and everything aligns to equal what I normally see. 

 

Does this confuse or elevate my enjoyment?  

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On 9/4/2018 at 12:02 AM, Cornan said:

 

Not sure if I follow you on that one?  Why is it more forgiving listening off center than in center of the speakers?

 

The top end is very directional in most speakers. When listening off-axis less high frequency energy will reach your ears.

 

If your speakers sound fatiguing from the listening spot then you need better speakers with a flat response on-axis.

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One of my favourite listening positions is with my back to the speakers and sitting well *inside* their magic triangle. Easy to do because of how some of my furniture is set up, my speakers are set back behind a sofa firing down the room.

 

Perhaps not the most accurate rendering but seem to pick up more detail and wider and deeper soundstage than in the theoretical sweet-spot. My speakers are very directional, with narrow dispersion so I am significantly off their axis, may be that is why

 

why not try it if you can, it might be good for you too

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33 minutes ago, diecaster said:

Yea, I like to go to intimate concerts and sit with my back facing the stage.......?

 

?yup sounds weird but it works!

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Maggies are unforgiving about not being in the center sweet spot.  I also recently experienced that when you have 5'5" tall speakers, a 10' ceiling makes a big improvement for imaging vs an 8' ceiling.

 

 

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OTOH, a line source allows you to move around w/o the inverse square attenuation of the conehead aficionado experience... 

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I think it in part shows reflected, off axis response in a way you won't get in the sweet spot. According to Sean Olive at Harman, the idea speaker doesn't change at all with off axis response, and had flat frequency response sloping down about 8dB from mids to treble.

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I can't think of any reason why an "off center" listening test has any value or can provide any useful conclusion. 

 

And yes.... The "around the corner" listening observation Jim Smith referred to in his book was corny.   

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On 10/24/2018 at 4:04 PM, stevenswall said:

I think it in part shows reflected, off axis response in a way you won't get in the sweet spot. According to Sean Olive at Harman, the idea speaker doesn't change at all with off axis response, and had flat frequency response sloping down about 8dB from mids to treble.

 

Speakers targeting sound power over axial response often are too bright sitting in the sweet spot in a typical equilateral triangle design. Those types of speakers are best pointed forward and listened to off-axis.

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6 hours ago, pippenainteasy said:

 

Speakers targeting sound power over axial response often are too bright sitting in the sweet spot in a typical equilateral triangle design. Those types of speakers are best pointed forward and listened to off-axis.

Maybe a good speaker characteristic to avoid?

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10 hours ago, wgscott said:

I can think of several.

 

 

My post did not say "off axis". 

 

I am am suggesting an off center or out of listening position to gain some information for any reasonable deduction. 

 

Ppl in this thread are suggesting back to or stepping into or behind whatever. 

 

I simply don't know of any reasons but interested in your thoughts.

 

thanks in advance

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How to listen speakers? [step-by-step]

  1. I suggest, listen speakers in usual position (like it shown in speaker user guide).
    Speaker have apperture (angle dependency of frequency response). So different positions can cause different impression.
     
  2. Listrening room is very important matter. It should have middle of high sound absorbtion. Don't use rooms with many glass and ceramic surfaces.
     
  3. As test stuff, I recommend:
    - bass note sequences from lowest to almost midrange.
    What listen: Resonances, how notes are separate.
    - cymbals.
    What listen: So callsed "send". Distortions on high frequencies.
    - trumpets.
    What listen: "Oil" in sound.
    - stick on snar, acoustic guitar.
    details so touch to instrument, scratches of strings, attack of notes.
    - classical compositions with very loud and quiet places.
    check  sound "transparency" and so called "air" on quietest level places of a tested musical piece.

Number channels is not matter. Before listening multichannel system should be adjusted/calibrated (if you like calibrated sound more).

 

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6 hours ago, HIFI said:

Maybe a good speaker characteristic to avoid?

Or look for the harman Target response, which specifically addresses this issue by tilting the treble down a bit.

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19 hours ago, HIFI said:

I can't think of any reason why an "off center" listening test has any value or can provide any useful conclusion. 

 

And yes.... The "around the corner" listening observation Jim Smith referred to in his book was corny.   

It could help you in determining whether or not a speaker is super beamy, and if your room isn't an anechoic chamber, it is better for it to radiate sound evenly in a way similar to its on axis frequency response so that the reflections sounds similar to the direct sound.

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