Is the seated-centered solo listening to music a dated tech?

Is the seated-centered solo listening to music a dated tech? Is the design of modern loudspeakers that facilitates stereo wrong? Are we surfing a compromised tech please recall early 3 channel was superior they used stereo because it was a compromise? I have worked with a research group that used MRIs and sound to light up areas of catatonic people’s brains the research showed that higher quality playback lit up more areas but that stereo caused the brain to work harder is this a source of listening fatigue? After all, we are processing 2 unnatural sources that trick the mind into perceiving a sound field wouldn’t it be better to just have a sound field that actually existed? Stereo is a unnatrual way to listen to music its something that sound doesn’t do. Real music floods a space in all directions stereo design requires beaming and narrow dispersion to form an image is this just wrong? Mono had benefits over stereo modern loudspeaker design can make one speaker with a 360d radiation pattern that can form a soundstage for listeners almost anywhere in a room yet we still sit mostly alone seated dead center not wanting to move much because the image collapses just all seems wrong to me today. The more I experiment with non-traditional sound reproduction the more right it feels to me and those hearing it. Music should exist in a real space not a narrow sliver of it.


Is the seated-centered solo listening to music a dated tech?

no, not if one is seeking reproduction of the music as intended with some sense of space and soundstage

Sometimes I feel constrained by needing to be in the "sweet spot" in my listening chair. For that reason I have considered getting speakers that are more omnidirectional or which present a wall of sound with a much broader listening area (though for optimal results, there is still a sweet spot). These would be my short list:

  • Larsen 9 — review: Larsen 9 review / AbSound They excel at being placed right up against the wall, and aren’t really finicky for placement. Excellent bass response and quality.
  • Any MBL (this 120 is the "affordable one at ~$20k!) Review: MBL 120 review

I have heard the MBL and the Linkwitz (using similar design) at a show, and they are almost omnidirectional, with proper placement. They sound almost as good from the back as the front, and you can move around in the room a lot and still get a great soundstage and experience. The top-end MBL was just declared the best speaker at any price (in his opinion) by Jonathan Valin at Absolute Sound.

MBL are wonderful sounding I agree with what you say. At my home, I have many loudspeakers but the massive horns with multicells tend to be the best sound anywhere you are they sound great full, detailed, and easy to listen to but massively dynamic like real music is. When on even when you are in another room they have a near-real sound. I had more than one when walking up to my home asking if I had a live band playing. Even one in mono is an amazing thing and bests more costly audiophile small boxes on stand systems. This has made me rethink how audiophiles approach music reproduction after decades of buying some of the best most highly-rated audiophile products.

Have fun with omni loudspeakers, some create a sense of space. But the best sound stage loudspeakers for me have been direct radiators, perhaps that is because that's how recordings are mixed in the studio.  

A lot of studios used multicellular horn systems. I have many pictures of famous artists sitting in front of Altecs etc in the studio.