A deeper more holographic soundstage.

I was wondering by what means you have created a deeper soundstage. I am satisfied with the width but I really feel it is a bit 2 dimensional. It doesn't go back far enough. I like more layers of sound that reach towards you from the blackness.
As I've already spent quite a bit on my system I am unable to buy much more expensive components.
Did you upgrade one component that made the difference? Placement of speakers? New footers or tweaks such as Stillpoints?
Two subs instead of one(I have one)? Different placement of subs? I am working with a very tight space so it is difficult to move things without them being in the center of the room.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
The illusion of depth is strictly a function of the recording. Anything else is just adding an artificial amount of reverberation and should be avoided!
Turn off the lights and listen in the dark. Aside from that, as what roberjerman said, it's the recording. Speaker placement can be an issue as well. 
Actually, you probably mean 1 or 1 1/2 dimensional, as your system probably doesn't render much information about height either.

The *illusion* of depth is created in a number of ways.  For *most* systems, pulling the speakers further out from the wall behind them is the quickest, easiest, and cheapest solution.  This works, at least to some degree, 9 times out of 10.  If there are, err, domestic reasons why this cannot be done, you're up the proverbial creek.

Next up would be the correct acoustic treatment of your listening, but that's more expensive and more complicated, so let's try solution #1 first.

For the moment you can forget all those other tweaks.
I see no mention of acoustic upgrades only equipment. More equipment is just throwing money away on this problem. Only way to fix a limited space is acoustic treatment.  A sub array may help too.
My soundstage increased to where I wanted it upon the following:
Upgraded to an incredibly good preamp (Jeff Rowland Criterion); upgraded speaker cables to the best I could afford.  That gave me the depth and then the cables shaped the rear of the soundstage and gave it the definition.  I then added 6 Hemoltz Resonators (Vicoustic Bass Traps) and that took out any bass smudge that was taking away from the definition of the depth of the sound stage.  I then upgraded my turntable, arm and phone stage and it just spotlighted all of the information from front to back with gobs of music.  
roxy, you really need to give more info on your room and speaker placement.  While, yes, the recording has much to do with how much depth can be reproduced, speaker placement is the single biggest thing that will re-create what is on the recording.  You do not need expensive gear to do this.  In a prior small audio room I had, the speakers were nearly half way out into the room with the seat near the rear wall.  Depth was very very impressive.  A trumpet recorded at a distance would extend way beyond the front wall--at least that was the illusion that was created.  Any other things you do will be very minor in comparison.
I have found that imaging is affected by room acoustics in the same dimension.  That is, to make a sound stage deeper, worry about what is in front and behind the speakers, including behind the listening area. My go to brands are :

ATS Acoustics
GIK Acoustics

Besides positioning you speakres correctly is one thing but If you did nothing regarding your room acoustics you can try Mathaudio Room EQ ( mathaudio.com ) in combination with Foobar2000 completely for free. But first invest in a decent measuring mic like an UMIK-1. Did spend quite some money on audio gear in the past where you can buy a nice car for. The lousy 90,- euro’s for a measuring mic was the best audio investment i ever did (i’m 61 now). It leveled out my frequency response
drastically whit an outstanding result for instance in imaging.

Here under my frequency respons graph. You can see at some point there is a almost 15 db gap this is killing my lows. mathaudio corrected this flat (my target curve that i can draw my self in mathaudio room eq an i prefer). Measuring is KNOWING let your ears do the rest.



Some details of your room size and a picture of your speaker set up would be helpful. Small changes to the speaker position such as toe in might even help. 
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Assuming your room acoustics and speaker positioning are dialed in, I have found that 3D imaging can be improved with tube rolling and using Rollerblock Jr's.  Similar to tvad I'm referring of course to tube gear.
As three_easy_payments said tube rolling has improved this for me. A recent acquisition of Sophia Electric KT88 tubes has really changed the sound stage for the better and yes, proper speaker placement is a must.
In order of importance: Loudspeaker. Loudspeaker position. Room acoustics. Pre-amp/amp. Source. 
In order of importance: Loudspeaker. Loudspeaker position. Room acoustics. Pre-amp/amp. Source.  Other miscellaneous tweaks.

Here what I said to another member, and his reply a few weeks later, after he did what I said.

"Equipment between the speakers is the single biggest killer of sound staging and depth perspective, it makes a hiend sound into midfi, because there’s no artist to place and see with your eyes. 
If you can’t go to the side, maybe the behind you, or as I did in one place that allowed it, the next room."

hiendmmoe OP
First and foremost to say it didn’t make huge difference would be the understatement of this century. I think I solved most of issues regarding everything. The two biggest improvements: spacial depth and much lower noise floor. Everything sounds so much more open. I’ll never place my rack between my speakers again!
Now we just need to convince the other 80% of "glitz queens" who would rather stare in wonderment at their lit up electronics and shiny machined racks, instead of seeing the imaging, depth and sound staging placement of the artists of the music they play.

It never ceases to amaze me with "glitz queens" at the money they spend just to look at their equipment while listening, and they really do stare at it, maybe trying to find the image/depth between the shiny machined boxes, instead of basking in it.

Cheers George

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+1 on speaker placement+1 recording+1 better componentry+1 room treatment-1 insults and exaggerationsG

Problem is you can’t isolate the room acoustics from the loudspeaker position or the loudspeaker, and given the op has limited space, then loudspeaker position and room acoustics cannot be decoupled and must both be considered to achieve the best results.

In order of importance: Loudspeaker. Loudspeaker position. Room acoustics.

w.r.t. George's comment, I don't think tall equipment between speakers is the biggest issue, but anything reflective between them can be an issue including equipment, televisions, etc.  Things closer to the floor are less likely to be an issue.
What speakers do you have @snarfie23? That almost look like something is broken. It is not a suck out, but a total shelving between about 220Hz if I am reading it correctly.
Well, rather than insulting folks who choose to place their equipment between their speakers
Only if you stare at it, in wonderment of what you bought, instead of focusing on the music.

Cheers George
While most all stereo recordings have good imaging left to right, a lot of them are fairly compressed front to back. There was even for a time Phil Spector's famous "wall of sound". Only a relatively small share of recordings have a lot of depth. So first of all make sure you aren't trying to put legs on a snake.  

That said, the first thing that will improve depth is to toe the speakers in so they are more directly at you. First assuming of course they are absolutely equidistant, level, and symmetrical. Then the more in they are the greater the sense of depth.

The next thing that will help create a superb sense of depth is Schumann generators. The dirt cheap circuit boards on eBay work great. I'm running 7 now and probably will add a couple more. Got mine Make Offer $10! No idea what or how these damn things do it but the improvement in space and depth and just an overall more natural palpable presence is amazing.

Another one I haven't tried yet but has a lot of very credible fans is super-tweeters like Townshend makes. They are on my list for this coming year. Townshend Pods, Cable Elevators, tubes, and turntables, whole lot of things upstream contribute, as well as downstream in the room. But mostly its recording, toe, Schumann, super-tweeter.  

Some of these ideas like equipment between the speakers, they might be confusing focus with depth. Yes anything between especially if its reflective will diminish the solidity or focus of placement. But as far as depth itself is concerned, red herring. I've heard systems crammed right against the wall with a rack across the full space between the speakers that threw a stage extending way back beyond the wall. This was in fact the very Linn system that hooked me into analog. So again, upstream stuff like analog and tubes does indeed contribute to depth.

The entire system needs to be capable. The recording needs to be capable. The listening venue, speaker positioning needs to be capable. Whoever sets up the system, needs to be capable.

Speakers are the messenger for the rest of the system.

All good suggestions but before you do anything else, make sure you disengage your eyes from the equation. Turn out the lights and listen in pitch blackness. If that isn't practical, close your eyes and leave them closed.
If you want to get an accurate reconstruction of the depth built into the recording which is a mix of:

  • Volume
  • Reverb and pre-delay
  • Modified frequency response

You need smooth frequency response and to control reflections. How much is that affected by electronics or the myriad of other things suggested? Almost none. It can be affected by having your turntable set up properly including matching on the phone-pre, but most of the other things discussed are not what is going to help with depth.

make sure you disengage your eyes from the equation
No No, the whole point is to hear and see the image and depth perception of all the music. Nothing better than being able to point out with your eyes a loan cymbal or triangle being struck up the higher and at back of everything else.
No, seeing is just as important as hearing if not more! As you can think you can reach out and touch some artist they are so "there" in front of you sometimes.

And until you have heard and seen this kind of imaging and depth, you have no idea of what your missing.

And this is how I achieved it, nothing between the speakers as far back as I could. https://ibb.co/SrF9K5d

Cheers George
I always enjoy it when I'm listening to a symphony, and most of the orchestra appears to be sitting beyond the outside wall of the room.
Any relatively good audio system will do....

Then dont spend money....

Second: All my gear is between my speakers which is bad and my speakers are not even ideally located, because one of my speakers is in a corner at few inches of the wall....

And guess what, my imaging is 3-D and the soundstage fill the room and the sound dont comes from my speakers in regular listening position or in nearfield and the timbre perception is right and natural......


In audio, good design electronics exist already for the last 60 years at least...

Then the electronic design of most relatively good audio system is probably not the culprit for your problem , because probably your electronic component are already good...And variance in quality of design count for sure, but the most important factors are 3 in numbers:

A-How much noise pollute the electrical grid of the audio room coming from the house grid...high noise floor destruct the timbre and imaging...

B-How much vibrations and also resonance affect my speakers, and even the rest of the gear? Same negative effect, these uncontrolled vibrations and untamed resonance will decrease S.Q.

C-And the very fundamental fact to add to these very 2 important one: is my room acoustic good? This factor, so much important were the others, this one is crux of the matter...

Almost no small room sound good without material passive acoustical treatment, ( you must look for a balance between absorbent surface, reflective surfaces and diffusor volumes) and no small room sound good  without passive acoustical controls : Helmhotz resonators, and varied resonators in size from the 3 cm copper bell to a 5 inches copper bowl for example....

It can takes also what i called a Shumann generators grid...It is one of my active acoustical control with my last discovery, a kind of ionizer for the air...

I use other devices also, some other acoustical controls but i cannot all explain here...Go to my thread...

This is why i had depth, imaging, soundstage in almost all my many thousand recordings with some variation relative to the quality of the recording process...Contrary to the saying of some the illusion of depth is a damn real thing, like the illusion of a rainbow....But there is no pot of gold at the end of a rainbow and no real violin in my room but by god! it look like there is one....
This "illusion" contrary to the saying of some is not ONLY in the recording but MAINLY come from the acoustical setting of your room, because it is the room that make your speakers able to speak clearly or not... Not only the microphone location in the recording studio....

Sum total of all my embeddings: around 100 peanuts butter jar in Us dollars...All is cheap available material, homemade if not very low cost... I dont buy costly products...It is NOT necessary at all...This is the result of my 2 years listenings experiments...

Dont upgrade anything, think and embed everything rightly...Thinking is more fun than buying....

Happy new year...

2 years ago with the same gear i own now i had the same problem perhaps worse because of the bad location of my speakers and bad location of my gear...But it was impossible for me to change that...
I worked in the 3 dimensions i speak about and 2 years after my 500 hundred dollars audio system can give lesson to much more costly one....Then have faith in your working ears and think....

+1 for all twoleftears comments

While I appreciate having nothing between the speakers, placing one kit along a side wall means a lot more money needs to be spent on cables, be they speaker or interconnects.

My rack is vertical, but plan to go low horizontal soon

placing one kit along a side wall means a lot more money needs to be spent on cables, be they speaker or interconnects.
If you listen to a system that you don’t care about getting the best out of it, then that makes sense.

My rack is vertical, but plan to go low horizontal soon
Then you’ll loose even more Imaging and Depth perspective, why not throw a TV into the mix also, then you can really listen/see midfi

Most here spend a small fortune on their systems, it’s false economy not to try to get two of the very most important aspects, Imaging and Depth perspective out of it, in all their glory.

And if that takes a few more bucks for longer interconnects or speaker wires, it's a BS excuse to use it why it's not done, it’s far better for your listening pleasure, probably cost as much as a couple of boutique snake oil fuses, or BS thingamajigs.
Interconnect and cables CANNOT make a big difference only a small one...

You cannot compare one second the combine audible effects of the decrease of the noise floor of the house and the controls of vibrations, and all the acoustical tratment and controls with the purchase of few cables, so good they could be....

It is not necessary most of the times to invest money....Just think, listen and experiment with cheap materials and very low cost electronic device... ( my schuman generators for example cost 10 bucks my grid of 12 cost a little more than peanuts then)...

I use aluminum paper with many other cheap materials for my room....
Cost 3 peanuts?
I created a polygonal shape (rectangle+triangle) with rigid and dense cardboard +aluminium paper covering it, to transform the void corners of the ceiling in polyedral convex flowing shape... The waves love that says my ears to my brain... This is only an example of how we can make the room an able tool ...

Audio forums are all about buying and buying.... I am more about listening/ thinking and listening....😊

Everything is dependent on everything else. You have been given some very good information on speaker placement, toe-in, room treatments, etc but the truth is some speakers and some electronics do not do a very good job of recreating depth no matter what you do. Generally, tube gear will work better than solid state for depth, but again that's a generalization and some tube gear is better at this than others. Removing componentry from between the speakers may help or may not, depending upon the speakers employed. I have heard speakers produce depth in this configuration and have heard others produce little depth with nothing between them. Experiment with pulling your speakers farther out into the room. You may lose bass reinforcement, but sometimes you have to choose what's more important to you. Good luck and have fun with it.
A good tube preamp will tend to give a much deeper and more room-filling soundstage if the rest of the system is up to it.And yes with a SS power amp.I have heard that effect many times in many systems.Supratek preamps are especially good in that regard and why so many people use them with SS power amps.Especially the DHT ones.Once you hear that there is no going back to flat and congested sounding preamps.
I dont have a dog in this fight since I am a home theater buff and dont have a 2 ch setup.

Recently I was speaker shopping at a Best Buy Magnolia and their set up is such that they can switch from amp to amp with a tap of a button. 

I noticed increased sound stage depth and holographics each time we switched from a Marantz SR8015 to a McIntosh MA5300. Like a 20 percent perceived increase of depth.  From that I concluded that sometimes electronics do matter for sound stage even in the solid state category.
You are comparing an AV receiver that could be doing any number of things to the signal to an integrated 2 channel that could also be doing many things and add in differences in level and expecting them to be the same.
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Nice to see today's discussions are somehow more focused on improving room acoustic treatments than equipment upgrades. We are getting somewhere. To the unaware, pay attention, it may cost you some up front but you will save a bundle in the long run.
From what I can tell in my limited time here @baylinor, it is a serious uphill struggle.  Unfortunately it is easier to change a fuse or cable and claim a big improvement than to actually take the time, learn, learn some new skills, break dogma, and have a real, substantial, and long lasting improvement.  Once you solve those acoustics issues, then you get even more enjoyment from that upgraded hardware. If you don't address acoustics, then you top out early in performance. Some audiophiles keep "tweaking" in hopes of moving forward. Others just give up. 
From that I concluded that sometimes electronics do matter for sound stage even in the solid state category.
Electronic design quality always matter but most of the times way less than good controls of mechanical, electrical and acoustical dimension....
Wow. Reading all the comments really demonstrates there's a long way to go in audio before we all agree. It almost seems totally subjective and opinion driven sometimes. 

Some here overlook all recordings have reverb to some extent. You can listen to one speaker with a mono recording and still hear reverb.

Depth is nothing more than reverb done well. Done poorly and it's unconvincing that it's music being performed in room or venue. Live music performed in a church has depth. A piano in a room has depth. How BIG is the church and how big is the room?  Once you can sense that, you know your can be happy about your system's ability to reproduce depth. 

The answer to the OP: Phase. Do phase well (especially out of phase information) and you get "depth."  
A piano in a room has depth. How BIG is the church and how big is the room? Once you can sense that, you know your can be happy about your system’s ability to reproduce depth.

The answer to the OP: Phase. Do phase well (especially out of phase information) and you get "depth."
Very good remarks...

I concluded that my acoustic treatment and control were right when i was able to hear this difference between the relative size of different recording live location, being it a small room or a church, i will add with the same perfect imaging in the 2 case...

Doing phase right for me was by listening experiments installing different acoustic devices or surfaces to make the waves timing with one another.... That ask for some balance between reflective, absorbing and diffusive surface....But also using resonators of different size....
Room treatment...you can use acoustic foam at all the early reflection points.  That means ceiling and floor too if possible. Use the mirror trick. This the cheapest and most effective. However WAF is zero.

Super tweeters don't work for this purpose. I have a pair of Townshend's lying in the cupboard.

Biggest jump up I had in creating a large soundstage was HFT's from Synergistic Research.  

Tunable resonaters are good, especially in combination with HFT's.  Need minimum two, more is better.

Synergistic Research make a very good one, I've forgotten what they call it, but it  has settings for many different ambiances and according to Jonathan Valin, it really works. Expensive though, around 3K...
Biggest jump up I had in creating a large soundstage was HFT’s from Synergistic Research.
I already speak about resonators in acoustic controls.... But instead paying big money i bought copper lure for fishing line among others things for few cent and try different size of other copper little bells with success...

Other active device controls would do marvel also at peanuts costs...

 I use it to ionize my air room and the effect is astounding, on par at least with my active Schumann generators grid (10 bucks by pieces)

Sometimes i think that placebo effect work by pricing the object costly and waiting for selling it...It is way evident with costly acoustical materials...If somewthing work it is NOT because his brand name is costly sometimes....i never bought specialized acoustic materials but chose by listening experiments with completely cheap one and my room is like a costly hall soundwise....


Source can make a big difference: I was comparing two CD players. Same CD in each. same interconnects with both players played simultaneously- switching line inputs from the remote meant A/B blind testing was easy.

The main difference between the two was the 3D soundstage. One (a nearly top of the range Naim) had a wide but flat soundstage . The other (Vitus) went back way behind the speakers in an incredibly deep way. So please do not discount source.
When I replaced my BAT VK5i and 150 SE monoblocks to the new setup, my sound stage shrunk big time. BAT is known for big and deep sound stage, but I didn’t expect I would lose over 50% of the depth and 1/4 of width. So the equipment is important. I changed PC, IC, and speaker cables. They made less than 5% difference. 
I moved the speakers further away from the back wall and pointed them outward and that helped. But you can only do so much before the soundstage losing it’s focus. So I agree equipment may be the most important factor.
Source can make a big difference: I was comparing two CD players.
For sure source is important...

But between all dac or cd players, half of them will sound wrong and the other half relatively good (it is a way of speaking i dont know the exact number).

It is the same thing for speakers and amplifiers.... It is very important to chose our basic element in the good half section of possible relatively good component....

BUT when this choice is done, the main reason for the lack of information in S.Q term are the uncontrolled mechanical vibrations and also the electrical noise floor which is too high all along the house and mainly because of the room and bad acoustic cause a bad timing of the sound wave reflection and mingling and reverberation and echoing...

These reason are the main problem if the components are well chosen to begins with and are on the right section of the audio products offered in the market...

In a word source count, but embeddings controls count on par with it ....

OP, same quest here.  Was ok but things popped when I did what Millercarbon is suggesting. Symmetry in all dimensions to the inch, or quarter inch when possible.   Get a $39 Bosch laser measuring device.  I didn't get from your post what you've done to date so sorry if you've done this.  Unless or until you do this, its a fool's errand.