Where to Place Floor Standing Speakers

Written by: Zach Wright

Depending on the room, floor standing speakers should be evenly placed throughout the area so that the sound can disperse correctly. No matter what, never place 2 speakers right next to each other, as that will create feedback.

Speakers are the lifeblood of any Hi-Fi system. You can invest in high-quality speakers that will last generations or make do with some budget ones. Whatever the case, if you don’t set them up properly, you might end up turning your dollars to dust.

It is essential that you put in maximum efforts to correctly place your speakers. Proper placement can help improve the audio experience by leaps and bound. As an avid music fan, you might want to fully experience the months of efforts poured in by your favorite artists.

About Floor Standing Speakers

Floor standing speakers are perfect for those audiophiles who need a serious listening experience. They’re quite unique as they do not require any stand or table. You can simply place them on the floor. In addition to this, they are large enough to house multiple drivers.

This way you get an all-encompassing solution for high, low and midrange frequencies.

Every Room is Different

An important note is that every room is different. Since they all have different constructions, the acoustics in each room are bound to be unlike the other. Unless you are designing a home cinema, chances are that the audio experience in your room is mediocre.

To truly convert the room into an acoustic dream, the only liberty you have is to position the system. For each room, the set up might be different, but the basic rules are the same.

First, you need to understand the interaction between a room and speakers. When you play the speakers at low frequencies, the quality is heavily influenced by the dimensions of the room. Another factor that comes into play is boundary loading. This defines how close the speakers are to the boundaries of the room.

On the other hand, playing your speakers at high frequencies results in reflections. This is also dependent on the positioning of the speaker with respect to the walls. Another factor that comes into play is the material of the walls and the floors. In addition, other surfaces in the room such as couches, tables etcetera can influence the quality as well.

All in all, each room performs differently in terms of acoustics. You need to understand the basics of acoustics and how well your room can cater to it. The entire process is purely intuitive as there can be no hard and fast rules that apply to every room.

Where to Place Floor Standing Speakers

Speakers standing in a room

Here are our tips to help you in placing your speakers.

  • Place your speakers in such a position that they play along the length of the room.
  • In case of surround sound systems, place the listening spot in the middle of the room so you can enjoy left and right sounds from the stereo system.
  • Do not place items directly in front of the speakers. This can include something as simple as a stack of CDs or DVDs. It leads to audio distortion.
  • Choose speakers that are neither too short nor too tall. They should be the same height as your ears when you sit down at the listening spot.
  • Placing a mat underneath the floor standing speakers will prevent them from rattling and disturbing your audio.
  • Leave some space between your speakers and your walls to prevent reverberation.
  • Don’t place them completely parallel to each other. Angle them in a way that they face the listening spot. On the other hand, some models are designed in a way that they do not need to be angled. Check your manual for complete instructions.

Setting Up Floor Standing Speakers

Once again, setting up floor standing speakers depends on the type of room you have. Generally, following these rules yield the best results:

Golden Rectangle Rule

Place the speakers as far away from the rear and side walls as possible. Otherwise, it can result in boundary loading which messes up the bass quality. A good rule is to place them about 3 feet from the front wall.

Also, try to place the speaker in a way that the speaker’s distance from the nearest side wall is 1.6 times the distance from the front wall. If your room is wider than it is longer, then apply the reverse rule. This means that the distance from your front wall should be 1.6 times the distance from the side wall.

Once you have set the speakers at the accurate distance, orient them at a 30-degree angle. The position should be in such a way that the speakers face the listening spot.

Remember that precision is the key here. Set the couch or the listening spot so that it forms an equilateral triangle with the two floor standing speakers. Use tape or a protractor if you want to be intricate.

One-Third to One-Fifth Rule

Another useful trick is to place the speakers at a distance so they are at one-third or one-fifth of the room. This helps eliminate any standing waves and reflections. Next, simply follow the golden rectangle rule.

Experiment as much as you can

Our top tip is to experiment as much as you can until you find the perfect position. While these rules may work great for some people, others might be left with distorted audio again. We recommend that you experiment with the distances and angles as much as you can.

Keep testing the speakers and checking their quality until you find the perfect position even if it means going against our rules. Remember that while room size, shape, and furnishings are a major factor to good audio quality, the preference of the listener is a greater one.

If you prefer your bass to sound a certain way, then go for the position that supports it that way.

Final Thoughts

Placing your speakers in the proper position can help you achieve acoustic paradise. In the end, remember that there are no hard rules and the placement is open to experimentation. Still, our rules and setup guides can help you in getting started. 

Written By:
Zach has a vast experience in digital audio and sound design. Being a studio owner for 13 years, he actively helps musicians and producers with technical issues around musical instruments and studio and audio equipment.

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