You might be better off going with a monitor/sub set up if the speakers need to be that close to the wall, something that you can sit close to(nearfield) without loosing focus. Sitting aganst the back wall won't sound too good so keep your chair out some too if you can. That won't leave much space between you and the speakers. Full range floor standig speakers will be hard to get balanced sound from that close to wall boundries. The sub will give you better ability to place it for the best low end without screwing up the mids. I know you specified floor standers with good bass output, but I don't think you will be able to make it work well like you are describing. Is there a way you can get a bit more centered where you are sitting? Sounds difficult to me.
I have to disagree with Maxgain here. The Dunlavys like to be close to the rear wall. After a lot of trial and re-positioning my athenas ended up about 2 ft away from the wall. My couch is right against the rear wall....use a bunh of pillows stacked on the back of the couch and that problem is solved. Side walls are another issue though and no matter what you are using reflections from the side walls can be a problem unless you have monitors set up studio style with your head buried between them. If you can better center your set-up on that long wall so you have about 5 ft between each speaker and the side walls another pair of dunlavys may be the way to go. Putting them too close to the side walls just kills their magic. Some SC IIIs woud fit your price without sub (add one later)or another set of IVs for mid $2k.
Piezo is right, some speakers are designed to be used close to the wall or right against it(the old Snell type A was one). Most floorstanding speakers I know much about don't like it but I have not begun to hear them all or pretend to know what sort of room placement every manufacturer suggests. You may need to find out who designes their speakers for that sort of placement. Speakers that are not voiced for that sort of thing will likley boom in the mid bass and loose their sense of space. Now put one in the corner and It just seemed to me that the boom will become BOOM. I only suggest the sub route because might give you more placement flexability. Sounds like you don't have many options due to doors and silly stuff like that? Dunlavys could be a good place to start.
Thanks maxgain and piezo. The Dunlavys are great, but for this room I need a smaller footprint. It will now be possible to go 3' from the side wall.
I would very much like to stay with a full range floor standing design as I most likely will be utilizing room correction software. Any specific speaker reccomendations? A "classic" that goes as low as 35Hz. in the $1500.(used)price range??
Dunlavys have some of the smallest footprints around for a given level of bass extension, because they are so tall. So I don't think you're going to find anything smaller that goes as low. Maybe look into the SC-III if you think the SC-IV is too big. Or try some of the smaller Aerial floorstanders, they all have pretty good extension for their size.
Merlin VSMs would probably work fine, but I'm not sure if you could find them that cheap.
The VMPS RM 1 will make that room rock or be intimate. Check out the site vmpsaudio.com - they retail 1700 but with a dealer discount you will be at your budget.
Audio Physic may be the way to go - they like to be positioned some way into a room and compete very well at their pricepoints. A used Tempo is around $1,600 - $1,700.
Give some serious consideration to the Harbeth Compact 7ES. These are amazing speakers in every way.
If you look for a while, you could find a pair of NHT 3.3's for close to $1500 used. They're reknowned for their bass performance and are made to be placed right against the back wall. You may not like their appearance (a true love it or hate it design). -Kirk
What does the rest of your set consist of? This might bring on more informed/better suggestions. Also what type of music do you listen to (is there a main interest)?
I like the Gallo Micro powered sub/sat. This is a very musical and flexible system. You can contour bass for this situation and the sats are quite good. The Harbeth suggestion is also quite good. Cheers.
Thanks to all for the kind suggestions. Dekay,in response to your questions. I will select all associative components upon making a speaker decision. My listening tastes are truly varied;classical,jazz,acoustic/vocalist,rock,reggae, electronic ect. Please see my first thread for my previous speakers.The thiels do so many things right imho, I just wish they were, for me, more emotionally involving.
a pair of used Linn Kabers would work well...Linns sound wonderful....spendor sp 1/2 would work well, too but might be a bit bass shy. A sub is required in any event with this budget
Resuviator, the Thiels may not be the problem? I used to sell them and(the older ones anyway) they really need electronics and a front end that can convey the emotive qualitys you felt they were lacking(most cd palyers sound unenvolving to me). All good speakers are stupid beasts, they just eat what you feed them. Feed them something cold and something cold comes out. They are a pretty clear window back to what they are hooked up to. I personaly liked them with something sort of romantic sounding like some of the Conrad Johnson tubes.(I understand the Carry stuff may have a sound something like that) but never with anything solid state that I ever tried them with seemed to do it for me. This is not an attack on you SS guys, so please don't all of you transistor types out there "flame" me now.
A used pair of Silverline Sonatinas might fit the bill nicely considering your tastes and room size. To meet your price target you might need to go with the old cabinet style, but I think it's actually more attractive than the Sonatina IIs. You will sacrifice a little bass with the older version though, but it should still give you enough to play with. I've always liked Thiels too, and I think the Sonatinas do many of the same things but evoke a little more emotion and are much easier to match with upstream components. Best of luck.
Get a pair of Spendor SP-7/1's. They are simply beautiful to both look at and listen to. You will not be sorry you bought them! Can be found periodically for about $1,200
a pair. Stunning mids, excellent soundstage, good enough bass and an ease and naturalness that will sweep you away.
Buy em. Plus they will fit in your room like a glove.
My listening room is very similar in dimensions to the one you describe, though a bit more than 10' width. But a few questions first: I am not sure I understand your restrictions on placement. If the speakers are placed on the long wall, with the right 2 feet from the side wall and 7' between the two, is the left speaker 12 feet from its side wall? And if the listener is 7' from the center axis, won't he be 3.5 feet to the outside of one of the speakers? Maybe I misunderstood the second, and it is seven feet away from the line connecting the two?
In any case, regarding the SM1's: Dunlavy specifically instructs owners to
-place them on the long wall
-to NOT have the speakers be the same distance from their back and side walls
-to have the listener sit reasonably close to his back wall
-to have the distance between speakers be greater than the distance from the listener to each speaker, as the crow flies
I think your set up meets these requirements except for my questions about the left speakers placement versus the sidewall, and the listener versus the center of axis. The SM1s are excellent in many respects and remarkable in imaging, but much less so if the distances from side walls and back walls are not consistent between speakers, and expecially if the listening position is quite off center.
Fly fish nz. C, In response to your questions: Yes the left spkr will be 12' from the side wall (with a desk in between)
Also the listening position will be 7' from the midpoint between the speakers,not the room. Thankyou for your Dunlavy SM-1 suggestion. Why is it do you think that this model (yr 2000 model according to audiogon)is not on the Dunlavy website? Have you heard them? Thanks D.
Maxgain,Anyone, Have you ever listened to thiels with Rowlands? specifically the 1.5's with the concentra integrated?
Resuviator, I never have listened to Thiels with the Roland, so I can't comment.
Hmmm, it seems that Dunlavy has significantly changed its website within the past few weeks. I seem to recall that a local company in CO. purchased DAL and perhaps they have changed names of speakers or consolidated the line, e.g., I was unable to find any mention of the Dunlavy speaker cables or interconnects. On the other hand, I checked a few Dunlavy retailers, and they still offer the SM1's as current.
If you are interested in learning more, you could do a search here and Audioasylum.com on sm1, and check out user reviews at audioreview. I have owned the speakers for about 2 years, and you can find my impressions at Audioreview, which by coincidence I filled out a few days ago.
In certain respects, your room configuration will pose some difficulties because of the differences in distance from side walls, but I have found that by varying the relative distance from back to side walls, I was able to overcome a similar, albeit less difficult, challenge (one of my side walls is a 1/2 wall between kitchen and dining/living room). For example, by making the distance to back walls relatively smaller, imaging became tighter, perhaps because the reflected wave off the back wall (which IS symetrical in my system) became relatively stronger than off the side walls (which are not perfectly symetrical). No matter which speakers you choose, something you may wish to consider.
R. FYI, per an ad on this site, Dunlavy changed the name of the SM1 to SC-IIa, and the only change is cosmetic. I would have been surprised if the new owners would have dropped the SM1 since I have never read any negative comments from anyone who has heard the speaker. The wood facing on the new speaker would be nice, but I use the grills on my SM1,s because I was told by Dunlavy that is how they are tested and voiced.
Fly fish nz. C, Thankyou for the follow up.
You might try looking for some of the Buggtussel Solitarious used. I have heard great things about thoses.
Check out the ProAc Response 1.5s. They will play down to the low 30s when set up properly. They do like a bit of room to the rear, but have the tweeter mounted to the inside of the speaker front to help eliminate side wall reflections.
I would also suggest that you go to Audio Physic's website and read their 5-page instructions on speaker placement. It is based on physics and psychoacoustics. Carefully following their directions, I had my ProAc's sounding the best they ever have (MY placement prior to using AP's was only off by about 10% ;) )