Hi Charles I have been listening to Souondlab U-1's in the near field for several months now and can say that they work extremely well. Fullrange electrstatics, like the Soundlabs are actually exceptional in the nearfiled for a few reasons: 1.) They are either a single driver or two driver system and thus have very little or any cross over problems. You get a uniform, coherent, uniphasic sound field, not a blend of tweeter/midrange/woofer. 2.) By listening in the nearfirld you minimize the dipole radiation effets becuase you hear the front wave well in advance of tany rear/side surface reflections. Though some room treatmetn is still recommended to dampen out the rear wave. By sitting up close and spreading the speakers wider than the distance from you to the speaker youwill get incredible soundstaging and channel seperation. distortion will seem to drop appreciably as you minimize channel crosstalk. Bass will be considerable improved in resolution, tone and imaging. All considered I believe its a superior setup though it does feel a little weird being that close to the speakers. Alot has been written about speaker placement and sound quality. the truth remains however that you want to try and isolate right channel information for the right ear and left channel info for the left ear. That is after all what stereo is all about. Because of their ability ot produce most, if not all of the frequencys from a single driver, electrostats are ideal for this purpose. Since quads are 'full range' (sort of) they should work fine although I think they do use two different drivers, you'll have to experiment with how close you can get before you start to lose the blending of the two drivers. I hope this helps.
4 responses Add your response