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Toe in or no in ?

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Klipsch la Scalas,

Is there a general consensus on whether to toe in, or fire straight down the room placement, for the big boys, o or is it the traditional thumb rule.

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Those horns should be pointed right at the nugget and that requires toe-in unless the speakers are parked right up along-side one another. The only things firing them straight down the room accomplishes is opening the listening position to 1st reflections off the walls, lovely off-axis response, and slap-back (or delay) from the rear wall, if SPL's are high enough.

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I've played LaScalas both ways. depends on the room, in my experience.

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I found that aiming them slightly (about 3 feet) behind the listening position seems to take the edge off a bit.

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From the listening position having lines intersect behind your head is where I always start.

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If they are toed in and intersect a little behind you, you will have a slightly wider sweet spot, great for more than one listener. Pointed right at you makes a narrower sweet spot but doesn't allow for much movement left/right.

Unless the room is very wide and the side wall a large distance away, firing straight may cause more issue with side reflections.

Bruce

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I used to have my Fortes toed in. I remember running across a review of Fortes that said the best sound from them was 0 toe-in. I tried it and to my ears the bass increased and the sound from the speaker smoothed out quite a bit.

When I moved my system from the basement to our mail floor I set them up with 0 toe-in and love the way they sound.

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I used to have my Fortes toed in. I remember running across a review of Fortes that said the best sound from them was 0 toe-in. I tried it and to my ears the bass increased and the sound from the speaker smoothed out quite a bit.

When I moved my system from the basement to our mail floor I set them up with 0 toe-in and love the way they sound.

My KG 4.5's are 0 toe in. The LaScalas don't seem to benefit from this. I suppose it has something to do with the speaker being on the surface rather than way back in the horn path. LaScalas are definitely more directional.

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Klipsch la Scalas, Is there a general consensus on whether to toe in, or fire straight down the room placement, for the big boys, or is it the traditional thumb rule.

Here's PWK's input to the discussion (enclosed).

Chris

Toe-In -- DOPE from HOPE.pdf

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Well I reckon that last reply should be regarded as our definitive one.

So Thanks guys seems my Speakers happen to be in the right place.

One more step taken on the road to Audio Nirvana.

Thanks for all the input,

Just wish they were known about more over this side of the pond

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I find that aiming a little uprange or on-axis with your listening position works well with Heritage speakers (i.e., K-horns with false corners, Belles, La Scalas, Cornwalls, Heresies), probably due to the fact that they have relatively constant polars in the horizontal plane. I'm not sure about the other Klipsch speaker lines on this point-but I'd assume that it was largely true for them also. By way of contrast, dipole speakers and cone-type direct radiator speakers have very unconstant polars. This is a problem when you place the speakers in a real room (as I found out with dipolar Magnepan MG-IIIs many years ago).

 

One of the things that I noticed about PWK's advice was that the K-horn actually requires that the speaker is symmetrically positioned (i.e., 45 degrees) into a corner--looking down in plan view--with respect to the corner in order to avoid a ~250 Hz response dip from the bass bin. This is actually in tension with the midrange/tweeter performance needs in-room.

 

How do I know this? Owning Jubilees, Belles, La Scalas, Cornwalls, or Heresies allows one to play with toe-in. From this experience, I find that what you are trying to achieve is to keep most of the midrange's early reflections off the side-walls or front wall since this very negatively affects imaging. You also want to get the speakers into corners for the improved bass performance (assuming that you EQ the bass to be relatively flat after you place them in corners) The net effect is a reduction in required woofer displacement for a given lf performance, thus dramatically reducing lf intermodulation distortion (both AM and FM distortion products):

"Anything that moves...distorts"

...as the saying goes. Minimizing IMD was a major theme in PWK's professional career.

 

I find that PWK was also a bit less effective in communicating the need for outstanding room acoustics (i.e., smooth boundaries around and between the front speakers, and constant SPL polars from his speakers' drivers/horns). Pulling PWK's speakers out into the room increases imaging performance via a decrease in early midrange reflections from nearby walls, but it also really decreases their lf performance.

I alternatively recommend putting your speakers into the room's corners (if possible) then applying one or more midrange acoustic absorption tiles on the two walls directly adjacent to the midrange horn. Tweeter frequencies get attenuated on the first bounce - so you don't have to worry about hf. Imaging performance will go through the roof when you do this, and you don't have to sacrifice lf performance to achieve it.

 

Chris

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I would guess that folks here that use a zero toe-in angle probably have a an issue with early reflections from between-the-speaker electronics racks, electronics boxes, and possible flat-screen TVs/center speaker boxes. If their flanking corner speakers have peaking response on-axis from their midrange and upper bass horns/drivers, toeing them toward the center listener will likely result in a decrease in imaging performance, whereas the effects of zero tow-in on sidewall early reflections might be mitigated by either by smooth sidewalls or positioning the corner speakers away from the corners toward the center of the room (resulting in decreased lf performance/increased bass IMD).

One alternative way to deal with this situation is to apply acoustic absorption tiles to their center-room early reflectors--as I have done to the sides/top of my center Belle and to the front of the fireplace mansonry, and place a temporary quilt or acoustic tiles in front of the flat screen TV when listening in two-channel mode. This works quite effectively in restoring imaging performance with toed-in front speakers in the corners of the room.

 

EDIT: In my particular situation, it is K-402 2-way Jubilees in the front corners with tapped-horn subwoofers backing them up like false corners along the front wall. This allows the Jubs to move into the room another 1.5 feet (~1/2 meter) and clears a significant portion of the early midrange reflections due to the fireplace masonry. The Auralex tiles clean up the remaining early reflections. I have intended to put an updated picture of my setup for some time to illustrate this approach, but you can see the general arrangement of the speakers without Auralex absorption tiles and the elevated center Belle in my profile picture (...just click on my user name at left and scroll down to see the picture...).

 

Chris

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Every once in a while I see an article that suggests an even greater toe-in, one that has the speaker axies crossing a few feet in front of the listener. What do you think is going on with that? Thre last such article was in Home Theater about 3 Months ago.

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Every once in a while I see an article that suggests an even greater toe-in, one that has the speaker axes crossing a few feet in front of the listener. What do you think is going on with that?

That is the method proposed by PWK (assuming the the listener was in a room where the short sidewall dimension is being used as the front wall and the listening position is behind the front-back center of the room--no one wants to be on the exact center on the room due to mode pileup/cancellations at that location).

 

I'd say that it would work well if the front wall is clear between the front speakers, but the sidewalls are a bit more cluttered. The only reason why I might suggest a more "downrange" pointing is to avoid the front wall early reflections due to the general tendency to put equipment/architectural details between the stereo speakers.

This is taken from another thread:

"Imaging and creating it by having two varying acoustic signals is an interesting undertaking. I have found that a smooth, unobtrusive boundary between the two speakers works very well with well behaved and consistent polar patterns. The other thing that I have noticed that works well is no boundaries like playing the speakers outside. Both do a very good to excellent job of accomplishing the imaging goal. But the caveat is that no boundaries forgives nonconsistent polar patterns while a smooth boundary is a strict enforcer of consistent polar patterns.

Pretty cool how that happens." (extracted from an email to me from Roy Delgado, 3 Nov. 2010)

Chris

Edited by Chris A

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