I have 2 acoustic problems dictated by decor: 1-An 8' wide wall unit between, and 4-5" behind, speakers, and 2-Near-field listening position (5-6') forced by dining island behind sofa-(my full range dynamic speakers with ribbon tweeter coaleses at more like 8-10'.) What can I do to control the acoustics?
I don't know that the wall unit is that much of an issue depending on design as it is a decent ways back, but the less reflective objects in it the better (if you have a TV, try to get a blanket or the like to cover the screen during critical listening). With regard to the nearfield listening position you will likely have to treat the first reflection points. I recently redid my living room to push my listening position from 7' back (equilateral triangle with speakers) to 9' back and it made a *huge* difference. In either case, try something like Echo Busters Double Busters MK II as they can be set up to be mobile to make sure there are no waf issues or if to be left in place can be ordered in a variety of colors.
I have similar issues and just purchased a Lyngdorf Room Perfect system. It records room characteristics using a high frequency and low frequency sounds and then "equalizes" the sound without distorting the signal. It made a huge impact for me without moving a thing or treating the room at all. Neal at Sound Science in Castlerock Colorado sold it to me if you don't have a local dealer.
In addition, although it is counterintuitive, try briefly a radical move of listening position to within 2 to 3 feet in front of the plane of your ribbon tweeters. You didn't mention brand of speakers. Relative position of speakers on the front of the speaker may render this trial worthless.
Sometimes, there is a surprising coalescence by the ears and brain into a coherent three dimensional nearfield window into the performance. Maybe it is successful in certain cases partly by reducing first reflection point issues.
Just a quick movement of listening position is worth a try. I know of two such full range dynamic speakers with ribbon tweeters where this has been grudgingly adopted as a useful compromise to cope with room or decorator constraints.
Of course, while enjoyable, this will not be identical to the listening experience that you originally were seeking.
Thank you all for your sage suggestions. Listener57, I will try moving my speakers up closer (BTW I have the LSA10, formally known as DK Design XDreams.) Mmike84, I'll look into the Lynngdorf for possible future addition. Bar81, I noticed something like what you suggested right here on audiogon (@ $110 each, a definite possibility.) So all of you so far have indeed helped me much already!
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