It depends on the flooring beneath your speakers. Unfortunately one way is not best for all homes or even systems. I like using a combo of spikes into Herbies big fat gliders. This is the best I have heard thus far in my room. Better than just spikes. I also like spikes into a nice tonewood platform and the platform on Herbies fat gliders. My floors are hardwood over floor joists.
Too many variables in play to recommend a specific approach. The design of the speakers - port in the bottom/front/rear, weight, type of the floor (what's right below the speaker, next layer, etc.), height of the rug, etc., etc. What works for me may and probably will not work for you. Rule of thumb; couple with concrete floor and decouple/isolate from suspending floor. My experience FWIW.
What you are doing with the vibrapods is adding mechanical damping to the speaker cabinets. I have been working on this issue for a while doing constrained damping. In my case this is sorbothane glued to the cabinet with the sorb covered with 4 layers of electrical tape. The effects are amazing.
Similar things are being done with headphones. Sennheiser used some kind of polymer damping material in the headband of its top models and I would imagine the same for their big bucks electrostat Grado uses a special polycarbonate and there are several other phones and speakers working in this line. I have my own solutions using sorbothane worked out for Stax phones. That's for another post. You can see some of the history here https://www.head-fi.org/threads/damping-mechanical-energy-distortion-of-stax-and-other-phones-with-s...
I fully expect the area of damping to develop and make other current phones and speakers obsolete. (however one can to post-hoc modifications with sorbothane to just about anything).
Getting back to the original point, I would still say that you have given up some performance from the spiking although obviously you are finding the footers much more effective. However what I am suggesting is keeping the advantages of spiking and damping. They are both aimed at getting rid of cabinet vibration.
With all the possible combinations of speaker cabinet/flooring interactions possible. there is no one size fits all.Plus the likes of the listener. More bloom? vs tighter sound?Glad the op found something better. but IMO this discussion is not going anyplace.. except to say different stuff works for different situations.
Thanks again audiosens,
I’m going to try my 70 duro 2.5" diameter x .25" thick sorbothane discs too and see how it matches up with the Vibrapods. I agree with elizabeth too. There are so many variables it's best we try a bunch of stuff. Having some good experiences/reports here to build on helps though.
Anybody try the SVS Soundpath feet under their floorstanders?
I have them under my HSU sub and definitely noticed an improvement.
Mapman, you probably know this already.
Amish directions in the event you encounter an alien in an aircraft, although I’ve been under the assumption Amish folk are known to have an inborn fear of flying and deep mistrust of technology generally and aviation specifically. But I digress. In case of an alien encounter while in an aircraft,
1) Crawl under your seat & look away,
2) avoid eye contact, and
3) In the absence of eyes, avoid ALL contact.
Good of luck in your quest for the meaning of gravity and it’s opposite, comedy.
Every speaker, floor, room combo is unique as some here have already stated. It might take a while, and a lot of music playing, before you settle on the best combination for your sound.
I now take a variable approach, but in the learning curve past went through different stages of fixes that in time I discovered usually finding a flaw.
here’s a practical example that I went through
When I was the marketer for AudioPoints late 80’s - mid 90’s I found myself needing to do a lot of mods to the setup to get things how I and clients wanted. There is a lot of hit and miss when depending on a cone or spike to make everything perfect or even close. That brass, or other metal, zing is always waiting there to jump out at you. Metals are great but can easily throw a system out whack and lead to fatiguing. Part of the fix to this for me was designing wood Top & Bottom voicing squares. In the mid 90’s I realized I was going to need to make my own cone and spike designs and have been doing so since. Many materials, shapes, sizes and specific applications. Finding a better metal cone or spike though isn’t the end of the story as the OP points out. Developing a system that gives more flexibility to the relationship between speaker/floor/room combos is where the hobby has been heading for the last 20 or so years. Seems like a long time but look how many cones, spikes, pads, feet, platforms, springs, floors, stands and coupling and decoupling devices have been made. Shoot I design and market my own floors and whole rooms. I’ve even designed whole buildings from the ground up, and I can tell you after thousands of the systems I have worked on, there is not necessarily any quick fixes.
Recordings vary, and our Earth is made up of varying forces. And our systems, including room, are producing vibrations, waves, interactive fields, pressure and more. All of which are good things when in tune and bad things out of tune. Everyone here has their system at least slightly different from the next. Whether we agree or disagree on audio debates, you are the master of your own system and never sell yourself short as you discover things that work for you, even if no one else in the hobby seems to think your ideas have merit or not. The more you explore your system the more you are going to discover just how good it really is and how far it can take you. Many people who have moved their same system around will usually tell you that the same system in one space sounds nothing like it did when moving into another, especially from one house type to another.
These types of threads that are based on ones’ personal experience are treasures, because they show how variable this hobby is. For me, it’s like the next chapter of the hobby for HEA. Or as I say on another thread "the walk of the hobby".
Three points determine a plane. Four points do not necessarily determine a plane. That’s plain old plane geometry. Thus, oft times three cones will be less wobbly and sound better than four. For tall heavy speakers four cones can be a little dangerous inasmuch as if someone accidentally bumps into them they can fall over. Which is why large footprint boards should be used under the speaker with the cones under the board. Much more stable.
1: Cement slab floor on mother earth (not cement sheet) = spike (couple)
2: Suspended floor wood, sheet, (includes cement sheet) = no spike (decouple)
If you spike a speaker into a suspended floor as in 2, you transfer the bass of the speaker into that floor, making it a sound board for the bass and ruining it.
I've experienced significant gains in transparency and cleanness of sound by decoupling my speakers from my carpeted basement room. After hearing the improvements in the main speakers, I decoupled the subs. Have great tight deep bass and greater transparency still as the ruckus inherent in subs. is not vibrating my rack mounted gear. YMMV.
Generally, it's best to follow the directions of the speaker mfg with regard to whether use spikes or other footers based on type of floor. You especially don't want to mess with speakers that already account for a certain resonance with their cabinet. Many speakers use this to their advantage versus trying (usually in vain) to rid all cabinet resonances and floor born resonances.
On the flip side...a lot of speaker makers don't put much effort into their feet/stands. In those cases, I would actually recommend this one combo that I've found works generally well. Take the spike footers that come with most speakers/stands and insert them into Oyaide INS-BS pucks. Whether it's on wood floors or carpet, they seem to have a positive impact for a much more reasonable price than other exotic options.
Another option is to construct a sandbox with a floating top and put your speakers on top of that without spikes. Nothing dissipates the significant vibrations of speakers while also providing a solid base like sand...especially at a cost effective price.