A listening room is the fantasy of every music lover. What could be better than relaxing in your own home hearing your favourite music at its best? Buying good equipment is important but knowing where to position it is the key to creating the ultimate listening room. In this blog I’ll give tips on just how to achieve the perfect acoustic sweet spot and recommend some ear and eye pleasing equipment.
-Note: these pointers can applied to a home theatre system too as that also relies on a great sound set up.
Finding the sweet spot is a matter of maths. As all rooms differ in size there is a generally accepted method called the ’38 percent rule’ which ensures you can find the best acoustic point in any room. This rule means that you should arrange your seating at a measurement of 38% of the way into the room. This can be taken from the front or back wall but ease of explanation let’s assume that’s from the back wall. Measuring from the back wall also ensures you’re not sitting so close to a wall or screen in front of you.
Some research suggests you’ll get the same or even better sound quality if you position the seating diagonally, facing the far corner as opposed to facing directly forward. This is supported by the fact that you shouldn’t sit in the middle point between the right and left walls at the bass response is worst at middle distances. Ultimately how you choose to orient the seating at this point, as long as you’ve abided by the 38 percent rule, is up to you.
From here you can map the speakers within the room; imagining a triangle between the seating area and your speakers, with the point of the triangle just behind your head. The loudspeakers should always be in front of you rather than behind as you may have seen in many old theatre set ups. The idea that placing the speakers behind you creates a surround sound experience is tarnished by the fact that the sound reacts terribly with the back wall. Placing them in front of you means they’re farther from the back wall.
Play around with the position of your speakers along the walls or within the room along the lines of the imaginary triangle to find the best acoustic and aesthetic placement.
Your other speakers should be placed to the side of the seating at ear level but not halfway between the floor and ceiling. If listening height is halfway between the floor and ceiling then adjust the speaker heights to avoid that area.
Now that your room is set up properly you can put your equipment in i.e. stereo, turntable, speakers etc. Check out Nuovo systems for the audio systems for your listening pleasure