The downside to multiple pairs of speakers in one room

Discussion in 'General Audio Discussion' started by z-adamson, Dec 31, 2017.

  1. z-adamson

    z-adamson AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    How much of a loss is there when you have one pair of speakers playing and 5 pairs of speakers not playing in one room?

    I am talking about large bookshelf, 3 way type of speakers.
     
  2. Blue Shadow

    Blue Shadow I gotta get me a new title

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    If they are positioned properly and used as room treatments, bass traps, they can be beneficial. I have 5 pair of larger speakers filling up the corners at the front of the room, behind the main speakers. That is my excuse and I'm sticking with it.
     
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  3. asilker

    asilker Bible Reader Subscriber

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    There are threads here about this. people have mentioned that all of the woofers in the room will move as one set is playing
     
  4. restorer-john

    restorer-john Super Member

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    I remember experiencing the phenomenon when setting up the speaker room to a large comparator in my retail days. Each additional speaker pair affected the room acoustics, especially the large floor standers. Basically, they became 'passive-absorbers' (my term for it). Pressure was soaked up by the un-powered speakers moving, especially of course in the bass region.

    My solution is to short the terminals of the unused speakers in my listening room- the bass drivers are then electromagnetically damped and sound improves significantly. Try it out- you'll be surprised. Make a short 4mm jumper lead or use a paper clip.

    Realistically there should be only powered speakers in your room, but for most of us (hoarders/collectors) we have several pairs...waiting for audition of course. :)

    At one point I was messing around with feedback systems and used un-powered speakers, being modulated by nearby speakers as they produce quite a bit of EMF.
     
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  5. motorstereo

    motorstereo the wonder of it all Subscriber

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    My solution is simple..........if they're not in use turn them around and have them face the wall just like we used to have to do after misbehaving:).
     
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  6. Mister Pig

    Mister Pig Pigamus Maximus Subscriber

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    My solution is to own one pair of speakers.

    Regards
    Mister Pig
     
  7. WaynerN

    WaynerN Super Member

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    I have 9 pairs of speakers in my vinyl room. 4 sets in front, 1 set in lower front, and 4 sets at the sides used a binary type of speakers (which is pretty fun with causal listen to FM (primarily classical). All but one is connected to an amplifier. I really have no interactions between (yes, perhaps woofers do move), but I listen to my speakers at 9 o'clock or less and the fronts are at a different level then the side speakers.
     
  8. jrtrent

    jrtrent Super Member

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    Linn used to insist on dealers having what they called single-speaker demonstration rooms, meaning that only the driven pair is in the room when demonstrations were being performed. There has been some debate as to whether or not there is an audible effect. My recommendation is to clear your room of all unused speakers, then test it out by comparing the sound with and without some extra speakers in the room. In other words, let your own ears decide if the extra speakers are a problem.

    "Linn also invented and introduced the concept of single speaker demonstration for hi-fi retailers, as un-driven loudspeakers present in the room re-radiate in sympathy with the driven loudspeakers, distorting the music. Single speaker demonstration was intended to replicate the reality of a person’s home listening environment, and so judgments made in a hi-fi retailer would bear out when products were purchased and taken home."
    https://www.linn.co.uk/company-history
     
  9. totem

    totem AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    In my case it was immediately noticeable when I placed a pair of 15" EV's behind my main speakers.
    And not in a benificial way, but to exacerbate the effect they were in the corners.
     
  10. crazy-in-az

    crazy-in-az "Dinsdale!" Subscriber

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    I turn all of my unused speakers so that they face each other woofer-to-woofer. Not only does that keep them from interacting with the speakers that are playing but it protects the drivers from damage.
     
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  11. the_nines

    the_nines AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    I never really grasped the concept of more than one pair of speakers in a listening environment (excluding of course surround sound for home theatre).

    If the speaker does what it's supposed to do, all you need is two. If you need more than two, then your present speakers (or system) are lacking something, and/or your room setup is not optimal.

    I'm with the pig on this one.
     
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  12. BigElCat

    BigElCat AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Dang guys.

    Now I have to find some place to store my subwoofers, which can't be used with my current set up.

    I touch the cones, and sure enough, they're vibrating with no power going to them.
     
  13. asilker

    asilker Bible Reader Subscriber

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    Other obvious downsides to having multiple speakers include

    - losing tons of usable square footage
    - trading a clean asthetic for something that's visually overwhelming
    - losing acoustic space and introducing weird diffraction points

    :)
     
  14. lini

    lini just me...

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    t_n: Well, for one thing there can be several listening environments in one room, and then one might also have several speakers for a single listening environment, depending on the application. For example, in my "computer corner" I have a pair of smaller nearfield monitor speakers placed closely to the monitor for general use plus a pair of bigger bookshelf speakers a bit farther away for a more room-filling presentation mainly for music listening. Same on the other side (my "TV side", opposite of my sofa/bed) - smaller nearfield monitors next to the TV set, bigger bookshelve speakers a bit farther away.

    Greetings from Munich!

    Manfred / lini
     
  15. SoCal Sam

    SoCal Sam Lunatic Member

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    Brilliant marketing. Neat audiophile theory that appeals to the OCD that is overt in some and latent in others...and gets rid of the competition. No chance of the listener hitting that pesky component selector switch and discovering that something else fits their sound preference better.
     
  16. JoeESP9

    JoeESP9 ESL's & tubes since 83

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    It's an indisputable fact that extra unused speakers in a room have a negative effect. If you must have them you should short the inputs as already mentioned.
     
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  17. asilker

    asilker Bible Reader Subscriber

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    PRAT PRAT PRAT PRAT PRAT PRAT

    does it have prat? It's gotta have prat!
     
  18. SoCal Sam

    SoCal Sam Lunatic Member

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    As long as there is a sale to be made...
     
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  19. Rockyhill

    Rockyhill AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    How about two systems each with a connected pair of speakers? In other words, no unused speakers.
     
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  20. Bodyblue

    Bodyblue AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Maybe all you need or want is two speakers, but many find that boring. Many enjoy the sounds of different speakers and systems......but thanks for telling us what we all need.
     

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