Filling a Room with Music

I recently acquired some really nice speakers to use in my living room. My living room is not and never will be a "listening" room. It is my wife's room in a traditional/formal house. I have a separate room for my primary system.

I hear a lot about optimizing a listening room for a primary system. Get the speakers away from the wall, get your listening position closer to the speakers, treat reflective surfaces etc. All of these seem to optimize SQ for a single position. With my primary system the sweet spot is quite small.

However, I never hear anybody talk about optimizing sound quality for an entire room that might have multiple people in it sitting in various locations. Is there any resource that addresses basic two channel SQ for a whole room? Does it help to have more speakers than two? How do you manage volume issues for those close to the speakers and those further away?

Or, from an audiophile standpoint is this just a lost cause?

Interested in your thoughts/experience on this.


Helps to have better than one baffle like Ohm Walsh. And some kind of loudness control.
Dealing with your acquired, try aiming them towards the wall and reverse absolute phase.  You might need a Loki to make it work.
I have Polk lsim707  right n ou w driven by a SAE 502 Amp.200 wpc .it fills the room.20x40 with a balcony and cathedral ceilings it's like a concert  hall.
If you want to show them off hang mirrors in the firing zone.
Depends how much WAF credit you got.
Given only two speakers, the best you can try to do is aim for a best-effort compromise across multiple listening positions. Someone, or everyone, will experience time- or volume-related inaccuracies.

With more speakers, and signal processing, you have potentially more options and can therefore achieve a better compromise (e.g. Trinnov), but no one has yet produced a system that uses active cancellation to produce multiple sweet spots that do not interfere with each other. Alternatively, you could go with a single "point-source" speaker.

As a thought-experiment, you could have two speakers so far away from the relatively small physical area where all listeners are located, so as to have minimal SPL loss or differences in timing. But that's probably not possible in your home unless your living room is a TARDIS.
2 channel kinda, 4 channels, no problem. It was and is used on dance floors..

You can push them into the corners, they will be like most, places with music or sound.

One speaker each corner, usually hung from the ceiling, off the floor, with very positive caster, (top tipped forward)

A lot of folks STILL use it. Square dance floors, roller/ice skating rings

For two speakers Corner horns (Klipsch) are just for that, in a home environment.
Clears the floor and makes it a lot more milti-listener friendly. That's two channel.

No reason you can't have more than one tape mark on the floor, ay?
Most speakers will work.. Just need to raise them up a bit, (if you can), and push towards the corners..

Yes the Ohm Walsh is the ticket 
Thanks guys. I had heard of Ohm Walsh but did not know what they were. Interesting but I've already got the speakers.

I've seen speakers hanging from the ceiling in small venues. Of course my wife would nix that idea. She barely consented to let me put the speakers in there to begin with.

And I guess to clarify I should say I'm not looking for 'big' sound per se. The Aerial Acoustics 6Ts that I have in there do a decent job of that. I should also say the question is theoretical in that it doesn't seem like something that is discussed much here. But it seems like it would be a 'thing' for rooms not dedicated to a single optimized listening position.

Here is an interesting twist. I also have a Bryston 5 channel amp and a pair of Aerial Acoustics 5Ts. So I could do 4 speakers and try to optimize the system for low-to-conversation-friendly volume. Not sure if that is possible.

I'm trying to sell those components for an estate but I could keep them if I wanted to. The bigger hurdle would my wife allowing all that stuff in her formal living room.
I built some Woden Avebury full range back loaded horns for my lounge. I too wanted room-filling sound so the family can enjoy enveloping fatigue-free listening - and these work perfectly. Just spent most of the day playing Radio Paradise through them. Lovely.