Ideally, loudspeakers should be positioned approximately 20 to 30 degrees out from the central listening position. In practice, this may be affected by a number of practical considerations, such as room limitations and the desired width of the listening area. Finding the perfect position within your listening space can take some adjustment, but the results are well worth the effort. We recommend making incremental adjustments and spending time listening for the most convincing presentation.
Dipole speakers, like all speakers, perform best with 75 cm or more distance between the dipole drivers and the wall behind them for the most life-like presentation. Note that this is from the rear of the driver, rather than the rear of the speaker itself. This achieves a small time difference between the primary and ambient signals, recreating the dispersion naturally encountered when listening to live instruments.
In the case that it is simply not possible to position the speakers outwards from the wall, a satisfying level of performance can be achieved in closer proximity to the wall. In such conditions, it is advisable to include an acoustically absorbent surface behind the speaker, such as curtains or dedicated acoustic treatments. In such use, the performance becomes closer to a monopole configuration, albeit still without the ‘box’ colouration.
Toe-in is the angle from parallel to which the two main speakers begin to face each other. At zero toe-in, both speakers face straight forward. Toe-in is critical to optimum performance in regard to imaging and soundstage. That is, correct toe-in is essential in placing the instruments and vocalists where they should be within the overall audio-scape. While the optimum angle will vary by room and placement, a reasonable start can be to begin with the speakers aimed to form a common point just behind the central listening position. Further adjustment can then vary the sound between diffuse and well centred.