Where to position speakers in new apartment

So I finally have an apartment which means I may actually get to hear my system sometime in the next year! The living/dining room where my rig will live is roughly 17 by 20 with windows on one short wall and an open kitchen at the other end (see a floorplan of the place here).

There are two possible setups as I see it: the speakers could go on the short wall with the windows, which would mean utilyzing the long axis of the room; or they could go on the end of the long wall towards the windows, leaving the listening field open on one end.

I'm by no means an acoustics expert, so I was wondering if you guys might take a look and tell me what you think would work better/best for speaker positioning. FYI: the room has 15' ceilings, hard wood floors, and a pass-through cutout to the kitchen; my Totem Forests are w 8 x d 10.5 x h 36".

Sorry if I've left out any vital information, and thanks for all your help. Room treatment fun to follow.

This ain't too different from my room and I have had good results with the speakers in front of the windows. However, they are 4-5 feet in front of the windows, there are adjustable acoustic drapes on the windows and I have a bass trap in each of the front corners. The nice thing about this arrangement is that the listening seat, facing the speakers, will have no wall or reflecting surface directly behind. The elimination of a short rear reflection is advantageous.

What Kal said. Put the speakers ~4 feet in front of the windows (cover windows with heavy-ish drapes), ~3.5 feet from each side wall and sit where your head is ~14 feet from the window wall. That should give you a great starting point, especially if the speakers are front ported. If they are rear ported, it may not sound as good, but will certainly be better than having drivers facing the windows. From that point, move the speakers by small amounts to taste. It takes time, but the results are well worth it.

Not having a wall behind you is a great thing and helps immensely with bass loading problems as well as high frequency reflection.

If you try to rush through room setup, you'll only end up frustrated and disappointed. Take your time and remember that this is all for fun and enjoyment. Go slow and have fun! Hope that helps, a little.
Thanks a lot for the response Kal. That's the setup I'm thinking of going with, the only drawback being that I can't then use my speakers in an HT setup should I decide to incorprate one, because the space between the windows is too small for a real screen. I'm not so gangbusters on HT anyway, though, so that's not a big deal. I'm curious who makes your acoustic drapes and bass traps?

Thanks again!

HT? Just close the drapes completely. You can then lower the screen in front from the soffitt above. ;-)

Actually, KR, you're a genius, because there is a cut-out in the ceiling and the windows actually extend higher than the ceiling, so there should be room. Only problem is that given the ceiling height, the screen will have to be pretty high up, and also I wouldn't be able to watch TV without closing the shades, since it's a pretty bright room. We'll see what happens.

Goinbroke: thanks for the measurements. I know this is going to involve a good deal of patience and incremental moving, but this setup is so much more idea than my last one, with a wall directly behind my head and no wall on the left side.
This is a very useful thread for me, I'm going through setup decisions now
and have a similar room. Never doubt that deliberations like these go further
than just their participants! Thanks all.
I actually have no video display in that room with the exception of a small 7" LCD for menuing. I like having the city views in the evening while I am listening.

My HT is in another room.

I agree with your philosphy on the listening room, Kal; however, the only other rooms available for HT are my bedroom and bathroom, and I don't like the idea of having a TV in the bedroom (I'm not even going to begin to bring up my philosphy on the bathroom!). I think I'll end up getting a plasma/lcd and throwing it on the short wall and maybe later I'll add a 5.1 system, but I don't think I'll be integrating my 2 chnl rig at any time.