Bookshelf Speakers on Bookshelves

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by GregBe, Sep 30, 2003.

  1. GregBe

    GregBe Second Unit

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    We are redecorating the family room. I know that it is just a name, but my bookshelf speakers will actually be going on bookshelves. (WAF [​IMG] ). I have heard it is best to bring the speaker all of the way up to the front edge of the shelf. I have three questions.
    1) Is it best to fill in the left and right sides of the speakers with books, or will it sound better just to let them have a shelf to themselves with just air on each side.

    2) Should I put something under the speakers, or are wood shelves solid enough.

    3) I have my center channel on top of a 50" RPTV. Since it is much above ear level, I have it angled down to ear level at the main listening position. I am not sure if it is very practical to angle down main speakers on bookshelves. Does anyone do this, or am I better putting them at the same height as my center and not stressing about it, or is it better to put them at ear level even though the center is much higher.

    Thanks for your Help
    Greg
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Yes, you will want the speaker actually to be flush, or even have the front baffle sticking slightly out. If it is pushed back into the cabinet, you will get reflections within the cabinet, which will smear the sound. What speakers are we talking about again? Pardigms? Which models? Hope they are not rear ported...

    Isolate the speakers from the wood with some Blu-tack or similar. I found something that works very closely at OSH locally.

    Not sure about books on either side, because I've never seen this done. You might just have to try this one out. I would lean towards no books.

    3 depends on your setup and room. I would probably not angle the mains down, but the same height as the center would seem a bit too high for good imaging. Either don't tilt them, or don't put them so high. Within 1-2ft vertical is usually OK for front stage.
     
  3. Joseph Sabato

    Joseph Sabato Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the same situation and the following worked quite well:

    Center on top of 50" RPTV angled down to have tweeter aimed at ear level. Foam isolation pads on bottom.

    Left and right have end with Midrange/Tweeter end slightly protruding from the shelf and the woofer end in about 1/2" inside the shelf to get some "toe in" to the listening area ( JBL S-38s, actually set up to work well horizontally oriented on a shelf); they sit on high density foam pads with non-slip bottoms to keep them from moving and for isolation from the shelf; since they are at a different level than the Center, I also put additional spacers under the rear pads to aim the Tweets at ear level (The spaccers are real high teck, cut up mouse pads that I was no longer using). This setup has great imaging and clarity that was not quite there when they were just facing forward.

    To address the midbass "boost" that you get from shelf placement, I have a little EQ at 125 and 250 Hz (cut 2 to 4 db) and that helped with the muffling affect on male voices.

    This helped the WAF issue ( I wanted thr LR speakers on stands since they sound better that way), she is pretty understanding since there are 2 subs in the room too.

    Hope this helps.
     
  4. GregBe

    GregBe Second Unit

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    Thanks for the help guys
     

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