Equipment Rack Placement

I have the Slamander S30 twin tower and thinking of placing it between the speakers to save space. Currently speakers are 7 feet apart and the rack is 44 inches wide. Would this has any affect on the sound? Currently, the power amp is the ony thing between the speakers.
The only sure way to know is to try it and see, but as a rule the space between the speakers (both at the plane of the speakers and to the rear) should be free of obstructions. A few pieces of equipment, especially if positioned low to the floor, shouldn't be a problem, but a large rack is problematic. That's the general rule, but give it a try and see.
Conventional wisdom is amp between speakers with long ICs going to rack on side wall. But if you look at pictures of high end audio shows of room set-ups many have rack between speakers wich are moved far out into room. My set-up is rack between spaekers which are pulled out 5ft from wall, speakers are 6ft center to center, seating position 7ft from face of speakers forming near field set-up. I feel if speakers are pulled out at least 5ft from wall, effect of rack in the center is minimized, all cables are kept short, plus you get to see your beautiful equipment, Sam
highend audio shows are not exemplars for equipment placement. having helped in the setup and teardown of rooms at ces and stereophile shows, i can tell you that you must frequently use your space for display as much or more so than for optimum sound quality. when i took the equipment rack from betweem my speakers a few months ago and treated the back wall where it had stood with asc wall panels, i experienced an improvement in soundstage depth and width nearly as great as upgrading the speakers themselves. (i now have only my amp behind and between the speakers--i use 6 ft. cables and 21 ft. ic between amp and pre). it costs some for this setup but its well worth it.
Corn F.B. no doubt your set-up is best if room permits and exta IC cost not objectionable. However I think in practice not many audiophiles take the trouble to do it because you very rarely see 20ft ICs for sale at Audiogon.
sam: actually, it's fairly easy to find 6,7&8 meter pairs of ic's on audiogon. just post a "wanted" ad, specifying the wire you desire and, i can almost guarantee you, you'll get at least one response very quickly. BTW, the 2 best audio shop soundrooms i've visited in the past 30 days have setups much like mine (audio unlimited, in denver; goodwin's highend, in waltham, ma), as do a number of my friends. it is no more expesive to go in this direction than using multiple sets of 1 1/2 or 2 meter pairs of ic's, as many do. and it truly does render a HUGE improvement in soundstage/imaging.
As long as the rack isn't more than 2/3 as high as your soundstage, or speaker height, is what I've also heard. I can't say from experience since my rack is off to the left of the soundstage and the other times where I had the rack in between the speakers, it was a shorter rack (20"). However, I haven't experienced any audible of effects of rack placement period.
I just moved my audio rack from just behind the speakers to the left of my listening sofa. The sound definitely improved. I suspect it has to do with a reduction in vibration. My speakers have side firing woofers. Also, I have noticed that placing anything in between the speakers, even a foot or two behind the tweeters (a tv) degraded the imaging quite a bit. I have noticed this phenomena with three different speakers. I have read / heard two different and opposing viewpoints on wether speaker wire length or interconnect length should be longer. The manufacturer of my speaker cables, Nordost, recommended ideal ic length of 1 meter, and speaker cable of 12 meters. Their technician said I should not go over 2 meters for an ic, but going 5-6 meters on the speaker cables wouldn't make a difference. This makes sense given the much higher signal levels going over speaker cables. I have heard this same advice from my local dealer. Also, I notice that interconnect quality seems to affect the sound more than speaker cable quality.
I used to use 20 ft. interconnects and 8 ft. speaker cables, but found that a lot of vibration got into the source components. When I put the equipment between and behind the speakers, using 1.5 metre ICs, although it was much closer to them, the CD player, for example, picked up much less vibration. I suppose it's the difference between directly in the "line of fire", although 15 feet away, and off to the side, though only a few feet away. I can't say I've noticed any difference in soundstage, but I'm much less sensitive to that than to dynamics and resolution. In both positions, I had the components mounted on 1.5 in. MDF shelves mounted directly onto a brick wall. For what it's worth the manufacturer of my amplifiers (Museatex/Meitner) recommends long interconnects and short speaker cables, so it's clear that not even audio engineers are unanimous on this topic.
I'm with cornfedboy on this one. Unfortunately few have the space required for this optimum set-up. ANYTHING between the speakers degrades the sound. Ideally there should be treatment between the speakers on the back wall as well as directly behind. Having said that I live with the compromises that space plays in my room. I am currently working on a sales plan to appease my wife's asthetic concerns that would permit me to do a set-up similar to cornfed's recommendations. It's going to be a tough sell but I think I have it worked out.