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Simple Question: How wide should I place my monitors?

Discussion in 'Monitoring & Headphones' started by ThirdBird, Mar 21, 2011.

  1. ThirdBird

    ThirdBird Active Member

    Dec 4, 2007
    Toms River, NJ
    I have two Berh#()*r0943u Truth 2031A's.

    I have them ear height.

    How far apart should they be?

    Google searches are ruined by computer monitors, and a search of this forum didn't return much either.

    Thanks! (waiting for the one in the left trash can, one in the right trash can joke...)
  2. TheJackAttack

    TheJackAttack Moderator Resource Member

    Mar 20, 2008
    currently Billings
    No less than a 45 degree angle (isosceles triangle) and probably no more than 90. YMMV. It is sort of experimental at a certain point due to imaging and the room they are in. The first rule is there are no rules. As important as height is to place them so there are no reflections from whatever the monitors are sitting on.
  3. octavio

    octavio Member

    Feb 4, 2005
    The industry standard is an equilateral triangle with the listener at one corner. The speakers are then 30º either side of straight ahead, with a total included angle of 60º.

    The distance between the speakers should be the same as the distance from you to each of the speakers and, in most cases, the speakers should be pointed directly at your head or else slightly in front of your head, which allows you some lateral movement of your head without disturbing the image too badly.

    This can vary, depending on where you want to create the listening window. For example, if you have a couch with three clients behind you and you want to create the best stereo image for them, you might compromise your set up and have the speakers cross slightly behind your head, so they all hear a good representation of the mix. The compromise is that you then have to keep your head centered.

    The way most people have their speakers set up at home and often in studios, too, is to have them firing nearly straight ahead. In this case the only place proper stereo can be heard is exactly down the center line. This is inconvenient, limiting and unnecessary.

    For proper playback of Blumlein type recordings, the proper angles change and the correct plan view of the playback situation is a right isosceles triangle. The right angle is at the listening position and the 45º angles are at the speakers. The speaker should then, from the listening position, be 45º left and right of center - for an included angle of 90º.

    These days some home listeners are experimenting with wider angles like these for listening to regular "stereo" (quotes intentional) and enjoying the wider soundstage.

    The industry standard is 60º all around, though.
  4. rocksure

    rocksure Active Member

    Jul 18, 2007
    New Zealand
    Home Page:
    Great reply. Saved me a heap of writing. I just want to add that I know a number of people seem to space the speakers pretty wide apart in their regular listening as you stated at the end there. I find often in that case scenario the center image becomes hard to pinpoint without a center speaker and it sounds unnatural to me.
  5. lotus1

    lotus1 Active Member

    Mar 19, 2011
    No less than 2' apart,no more than 6' apart...too close and it becomes mono,too wide and you lose the coupling which creates the phantom center...Angle:this is determined by the distance between the speakers...5' is different than 6'..Basic..tweeters should be pointed at your ears...high frequencies "beam" so,to hear "all',tweeter should aim at the receptors..Oh,Yes the equilateral triangle is correct...Mario.

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