Suggestions: Interesting small speakers with flexible placement

Hey guys. Long time member. Proud owner of some Ohm Walsh 2s with Parasound electronics. 

i just moved into a new apartment and am looking for speakers for my bedroom. It’s relatively small at 500 square feet. I have some weird considerations that have led me to eliminate a lot of typical choices. Looking for any ideas on speakers that could work!



* listening position is the bed, but I’d like wide sweet spot so that I can enjoy them as I dress, which would place me well outside of the typical listening triangle. 
* they are going to have to be fairly close to the wall. Probably no more than 6” from the wall to the back of the speaker

* unless they are omnis or something, they will likely have to be in an actual bookcase or on a dresser

* they should look interesting and sculptural

* price range under $3k retail for a pair


will accept any suggestions. I love floor standers but doubt this room can accommodate any. Omni directional or other unusual designs encouraged. 


Get the smallest Ohm Walsh speakers! They will sound way better, imaging and dynamics, than any small box speaker. Also they are less critical of room placement! I am a Walsh owner and fan!

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Placement on top of a dresser or even on top of a bookcase, will yield much better results than inside a bookcase.  Inside a bookcase leads to a box inside a box situation and that is just tough to work around.

I have had speakers placed in this manner for most of my life (65) and have found that you don't have to go crazy price wise, so your budget is more than enough.  

Just realize that the goal is to get things to sound good.  Some of the audiophile niceties will get lost with this type of set-up, but that is ok.

Of current production speakers, I have had the most success with:

Omega Super 7MKII - $1K -(have also had the Super 3i & CAMs.  The Super 7s are preferable.  Used with a Rega Brio integrated)

GoldenEar BRX - $1700 - (currently in use with a Rogue Sphinx integrated).  The Aon models could satisfy the look factor you want.  

In a small bedroom you can also get creative with your choice of amp.  You don't need tons of power.  Something like a Jolida Glass FX 10 or even a vintage receiver (thinking something like a Marantz 2216B) could look very cool.

Good luck.


My favorite small speaker made for shelf or up against wall placement are the rarely talked about Vandersteen VLR carbon fiber tweeter.  Asked on the 70k+ Model 7 XTRM. 

they make a much less expensive version with the ceramic tweeter I believe. It s a must audition IMHO. It’s ver detailed while keeping its smoothness.  Sounds much larger than they are. I’ve heard them with an all in one Naim unit as well as with a system with Audio research integrated. They always scale and deliver. 

@jasonbourne52 - I thought about some smaller Walshes, but wanted to go with something different from my other speakers :) They are awesome though, especially in how flexible they are with placement, right!?

@rar1 - good tips I have to take a look at these!

@djones51 Thanks for the suggestion!

@ctsooner - I was looking at the VLRs, actually. Any ideas on how to get a hold of these to audition? Was the all-in-one Naim you saw them with a Muso Qb?

By the way, does anyone have thoughts on Sonab speakers, or their reincarnation as the Teenage Engineering OD-11? Those are getting hard to find in the US.

I have Ohm 1000s in my living room and Golden Ear BRXs in my bedroom.  They are quite different in the way they interact with the rooms (quasi-omni versus front-firing box) but both sound excellent, though my preference is for the Ohms. 

Years ago I enjoyed a pair of Totem Fire monitors and found they were not as "picky" about room placement.  Pre-owned they might fit the bill.  If not, and if you have a chance to visit a Totem dealer, they have other models which new are probably in that price range.

Try to find a pre-owned pair of Celestial SL700. BTW. . . 500 sq ft is hardly a small bedroom.

I really enjoy my Nola Boxer 3. I enjoy the musicality a lot. 
check them out if you can. 

@akg_ca  +1

The Triangle Cometes or Titus are efficient and easily driven - with imaging in spades. They are also very amenable to placement for wall adjacent, near field listening. 

...500 cubic ft. is roughly an 8 ft. cube. 🤨

500 sq. ft. for the apartment entirely makes sense for a compact '1 bdrm. apt.', or a 'tiny home' affair....

6" from a wall is a bit tight for an omni or dipole, but the mini Maggies could be a hit....

Golden ear brah!!  Save $1500 and buy these for $1500 or less.  These are fantastic check em out before you buy anything if you can.  Seriously tho at $3k, how could you go wrong.  Good for you tho.  I know some $300 pairs that could hang with most too but that's another post 🤙


For my part, i went from a pair of Triangle signature theta to a Focal pair electra 907be used (25ème birthday).

The Focal are both even more dynamic, more fluid and soft at the same time, the medium is more transparent, that's what i noticed the most.

I like music better with them, more pleasure !

The association with my tubes preamp + V-fet power amp is fabulous !





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DALI Menuet SE

They are lent to be placed close to walls: on a sideboard, work in a bookshelf or be mounted to the wall.

A subwoofer helps but isn’t necessary. As all small bookshelf speaker they needgood pairing (think power, dynamics).

review: SON-Blog 




Wharfedale diamond 220 or 225, bottom firing port, wide dispersion waveguide soft Dome tweeter. 

Just curious ... how would floor standers not work in a 420 square foot room, unless the room is naturally divided (bed area, sitting area, on suite bath)?  You would be talking a 21 X 20 room.   

Even if that were the case, slimline floor standers in the sitting area could do fine, unless you (or a SO) want the speakers near the bed, sitting on top of the dresser. 




Neat motive 3 . That would work nicely. Even though they are small they will fill a big room. Or the motive two or motive one both small floor standing speakers but getting well above your price limit. Personally I look for beautiful tone and harmonics  in the bedroom not for soundstage. On that note I have a great Australian tube amp and sonic frontier tube cd player hooked up to a set of some phase speakers all wired up with transparent ultras. 



OMG foot in mouth time, big big time. I was looking at floor plans with very incorrect areas. They were reporting cumulative area. I knew that 500 sq feet didn't seem right....but I'm not the world's most visual person.


It is actually.... 160 sq feet 😅.


Will edit the original posts.You may all laugh at me now lol.


@rar1 floor standers could work, and generally I prefer them. I was initially toying with buying some Vandersteen 2Cs but they, and many others, seem to need to be placed ~2 feet from any wall. It could work, just might not be a great use of the space in there and likely to be far too large sonically. I'm definitely open to floor standers conceptually.

Usher 718 BE

These are very cool and sort of different looking speakers that perform exceptionally well, esp for what they are.

I read a ton of reviews before I bought a used pair and I believe every single review spoke about the bass performance, but at least one of the reviews said that they actually perform "more like a floor stander". 

According to the requirements you laid out I believe it may be a good fit.

I can tell you that the beryllium tweeter is very special.  I have kind of a large bedroom in my place and have a pair of Martin Logan Summits that I love and if you can believe this, the Ushers actually do strings better than my ML's.

They're definitely cool looking.