Radical toe in once more


Hi all. I have bi-directional floorstanders, two way speakers with identical treble and woofer on the front and the back. Half of the sound goes to the front drivers, half to the back.

The toe-in of this type of speaker is very influenced by how the back sound wave and the reverberant sound behaves. These speakers often sound good with radical toe-in due to better room acoustics with a longer back wave towards the corners.

This is a huge topic, and my question is more restricted: what happens with the front firing sound?

Is there an "inherent" problem with radical toe in, when the main sound from the front drivers cross in front of the listener, instead of the more conventional setup where the crossing point is behind the listener - and if so, what?

Is this (potential) minus factor in fact low, if the listener is just a foot or so back of the crossing point?

 

Ag insider logo xs@2xo_holter

Is there an "inherent" problem with radical toe in, when the main sound from the front drivers cross in front of the listener, instead of the more conventional setup where the crossing point is behind the listener - and if so, what?

@o_holter Toe-in helps you to minimize side wall reflections, which are interpreted by the ear as harshness. I don't think there is a 'more conventional setup where the crossing point is behind' for this speaker. Generally if there are side walls nearby, that might not work out so well.

Yesterday I bought Endresen and Wesseltoft: Out here, in there, on 2 x LP 45 rpm (Jazzland records). It sounded so good that my wife played the whole thing once more (doesnt happen often). So I think we're nearly there. The setup is much like @rhljazz described. Ca. 40 degrees toe-in. I don't hear any front wave disturbance with the female vocal. The treble is a bit tamed, which is OK in my case. In a sense, this whole thing is like going back to start. Following the speaker designer's advice, with some minor adjustments from there. It will be interesting what my audio friends think, since they preferred conventional toe-in, some years ago. Anyway, it has been an interesting experiment, so thanks again for all advice.

Finding the best sounding firing axis angle is something that really needs to be determined by experimentation (as well as overall speaker positioning!) 

Are the frequency response measurement plots available for your speakers that show different amounts of on and off axis firing angles?   Ideally you would want to aim them such that the response of the top end gradually tapers off for the most pleasing sound.  

Get them in the best general position from room boundaries to give you the best sounding bass and aim them straight ahead, perpendicular from the wall. 

Listen for a few days with your demo songs and take notes, good, bad or other.  Listen for tonal balance, brightness, sound stage, center image, etc.   

Then aim them with some toe in- say 10 degrees or so (maybe ai inch from the inside front corner with tape marks.  Listen again.

Repeat the process inch by inch until you get to the extreme toe angle that aims a foot or so in front of you.  

Review your notes and put them in the best sounding spot!  

Lots of work but that is how you get the best sound out of your speakers 

Get a buddy to swivel the speakers while you are in your listening position.  Simple!

@o_holter 

I may have missed this but what brand and model are these loudspeakers. The way the speakers are wire has a huge affect on how they operate. Are the drivers in phase (both front and rear drivers moving out at the same time) or 180 degrees out of phase (front drivers move out, rear drivers move in)?? In other words are they Bipoles or are they Dipoles. Planar loudspeakers like ESLs are dipoles, the front and back of the speaker are 180 degrees out of phase. Using dedicated front and rear drivers gives one the opportunity to wire them either way with extremely different results. Once I know how they are set up I might be able to make some suggestions.