What makes a good hotel speaker?

Good morning friends.  I've been thinking about my limited experience at audio shows and about what makes a speaker perform really well in them. 

I've always followed the standard ideals that controlled directivity is very important in an untreated, or acoustically bad room, but thinking back some of the best sounding speakers I've heard were in cramped rooms with just a little room treatment and they were rather traditional.

So, with the understanding that a hotel room is not a living room, and that they are notoriously bad environments, what are your best at-show sounds?  Is there a pattern you've noticed to getting excellent performance in a room with a calico rug?


I have never been to an audio show, but to me, your statement that the speakers in smaller rooms sound better makes sense. The set up probably has a more near field listening position, which means less interference to the sound from a bad room.

You need those bowls on the walls and tchotchkes all over the place :)


Agree the person's ears that set it up are key.

Constantly amazed by the ability of those setting up the systems and the stunning accomplishments made by some by the last day of the show. 


It is indeed set up and knowledge of rooms.  It's amazing how some exhibitors focus on cables and source but set up speakers improperly.  

If you walk in a hotel room and see a speaker being demoed right next to or up against a wall, know that this company knows little about acoustics.   These systems usually do not sound good unless they are extremely narrow dispersion, a trait that is usually the opposite of what you want for home use.  

Getting speakers away from the walls as far as possible is the first step.   Same for homes or studios!