Recommendations for monitor/bookshelf speakers

I have a smaller sized room listening room 12x12x10(height) with soon-to-be built-in shelving on one wall. I am shopping for speakers that cannot be taller than 20" and I assume front ported as the shelf they will be placed on is only 20" deep. Am I wrong about must having front ported speakers since the rear of the speaker will most likely to be very close to the wall? To date I have only found the KEF XQ20. I listen mostly to roots rock, jazz, and the Grateful Dead.
Thanks a million.
Not sure what price range you are looking to be in, but the Joseph Audio RM7xl's are front ported bookshelves.

***** Joseph dealer disclaimer *****

Goldprint Audio
I highly recomend the Triangle Comete ES. It's about 17in tall and front ported. Very lively and well ballanced.You can get them used for around $500 here on Agon.
Hope this helps.
Though not inexpensive,the XQ 20 are the best I've heard at my local high end dealer.They are beautiful(in the rosewood)and the soundstage is unbelievable!!!
B&W 685 and Triangle Titus EX may be two speakers worth checking out. You also can get on the websites of the major manufacturers (Polk, PSB, Paradigm, Wharfdale, KEF, etc.) and look at the specs. Good Luck and Happy Listening.
In practice, with shelf placement, the use of a front or rear port is not as important as you may think. What will impact the sound more is whether the speakers will be placed on shelves which are enclosed. With enclosed shelves, you will essentially be placing the speaker box inside another box. This type of placement will make all speakers sound pretty much the same, which is just OK. You will lose a lot of the nuances. On open shelves, the speaker sound will not be as closed in and will have a chance to open up.

I can tell you that if your shelves will be enclosed, there are a number of rear ported speakers that are designed with near rear wall placement in mind ... the Rega R1s, for example. The Regas are probably one of the best for this type of application. I was also surprised with how well the Energy RC10's sounded inside an enclosed bookcase. Equally surprising was how poorly the Spendor SA1's and Totem Mites sounded on enclosed shelves.

If the shelves will be open, then the Ascend Acoustic Sierra 1's would work very well. The Sierras can also be placed on their sides with no ill effects. My comments are experienced based as I have owned every speaker that I mention and have lived with speakers on enclosed shelves and on top of bookcases for decades.

My tastes in music run similar to yours ... Americana, folk, country, roots, etc. Try Rosanne Cash's 'The List' or Stills/ Young 'Long May You Run' when/if you audition.

I second the Triangle Comete nice speakers especailly with tubes
Rar1 makes a good point. If your shelves are closed it might be better to get smaller speakers (that put out less bass and have more rigid cabinets) and complement them with a musical subwoofer, e.g. Rel.
As I reread your original thread, by constructing these built-is will you be turning your 12 x 12 room into a 12 X10 room?

The only speakers I have ever heard that don't get too much bass bloom close to a wall are Anthony Gallo A'Divas. I've tried acoustically sealed as well as front ported, and they all had too much bass reinforcement. If you are going to put them in the shelves, or very close to the wall...audition some Gallo A'Divas or Reference Stradas.

Hope this helps,
Thank you for all the recommendations and advice. I wish I could compare all of them in one sitting.

@Rich - Yes, once the shelves are constructed the room will be effectively 10x12. The speakers will be placed between 6 and 7 feet apart, on center, on top of a shelf that is 24 to 27 inches off the floor.

Thanks again, John

P.S. No one recommended Harbeth. I am kind of surprised after all the good things Audiogoners seem to write about them.
Your set-up should work.

What I have just found frustrating with the 'enclosed bookcase/ enclosed bookshelf' type of placement is that the more expensive speakers don't usually perform much better than more modestly priced speakers.

So, I am not surprised that Harbeths are not mentioned ... you will not get your money's worth.

I had picked up Rega Aras for $300 NOS and they performed well on enclosed shelves. Good bass for their size. I also used Energy RC10s ($350) and they performed well, I decided to do a major upgrade and purchased the Spendor SA1 ($2100) and they sounded mediocre, which surprised me since they are sealed boxes and port issues should not be an issue. Also, the Spendors were designed with shelf placement in mind. I then auditioned Totem Mites ($750) and loved them in the store, but they were just so so on enclosed shelves. It is the enclosed aspect that is the great equalizer.

I came across the Ascend Acoustic Sierras and they have given me the upgrade boost that I was looking for. I had them on shelves and recently have moved them to on top of the bookcases. The sound really opened up when I took them out of the enclosed setting.

no speaker its best inside a shelving unit....that being.said...i would look at mirage omni stats...they throw out alot of sound for their size...and they make nice subs as well.if u wanna upgrade....