Couch in Listening Room ??

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by trip1, Sep 13, 2017.

  1. trip1

    trip1 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Saint John, IN
    Dose a couch hurt the sound field when positioned in front of a stereo system?
    My couch is 7ft wide with the back up near my ears, my speakers are 10ft from each other, 3ft from the back and side walls.
    I sit 10ft back center. the problem I'm hearing is touch more of bass which I'm not use to for lack of clarity.
    Anyone have these couch issues?
    Maybe the solution is to get rid of the couch all together and use a recliner.
     
  2. misterdecibel

    misterdecibel Bulbous Also Tapered

    I don't think the width should be an issue, if anything it should help damp the room. However, the high back is problematic for me, it is my opinion that any listening chair should leave the head free from any obstructions.
     
    Ntotrar, ruben lopez, gd0 and 2 others like this.
  3. KT88

    KT88 Forum Resident

    I'd welcome "a touch more bass". It is probably taming some reflections of high frequencies. In a few days, you and your new couch should be inseparable.
    -Bill
     
  4. trip1

    trip1 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Saint John, IN
    I was thinking the same thing about the back head.
    My ears are lined up with tweeters and the back of the couch.
     
  5. Otlset

    Otlset Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Temecula, CA
    Maybe sit on a cushion sufficient to put the head above the couch back. I sit on a couch to listen, but the back comes up only to about the back of my neck, so no problems of that sort.
     
    SandAndGlass likes this.
  6. Is the couch up against a wall or out into the room? Either way, moving the couch forward or back can affect the bass response, so you can tinker with that.
     
  7. Warren Jarrett

    Warren Jarrett Forum Resident

    Location:
    Fullerton, CA
    I have noticed many times that taking a couch or over-stuffed recliner completely out of the room, and using only director's chairs, improves dynamics and clarity of details. Bigger and softer listening chairs cause a warm, compressed and damped sound, which has never been an improvement to my ears.

    I have no explanation, only my listening experience. But it is worth doing a careful comparison in your room, with your listening preferences.

    I prefer a low director's chair for long-term comfort, not the standard high shape. But, of course, there are many styles of chair somewhere in between something basic and something over-stuffed.

    Also, I tend to fall asleep if I sit in a recliner to listen. It is great to have a nice nap, but when the CD or record is over, and I missed all but the first song, it is somewhat disappointing.
     
    SandAndGlass and timind like this.
  8. Black Elk

    Black Elk Music Lover

    Location:
    Bay Area, U.S.A.
    Don't put the speakers equidistant from back and side walls!
     
    Kyhl likes this.
  9. Kyhl

    Kyhl formerly known as Strabo

    Location:
    Savage
    So what in the room changed?
    Is this a new couch? If so, are your ears now at a different distance from the back wall (back wall being behind you)?
    If a new couch, move it forward an inch and see what happens. Repeat until you are satisfied.
     
  10. trip1

    trip1 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Saint John, IN
    The couch is new and leather.
    It is placed 3ft from a back wood display.
    Lost some clarity and gained bass even thou my ears are lined up with the tweeters. The speakers are Golden Ear
    Aon 3 that are broken in 100hrs.
    So might have to go back to small recliner.
     
  11. Agitater

    Agitater Forum Resident

    Location:
    Toronto

    Give yourself a week or two to adjust to the change. What you'll most likely find is that the new couch is perfect. You'll soon wonder how you ever got along without a couch in the listening room.
     
    SandAndGlass likes this.
  12. tim185

    tim185 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Australia
    Side walls should be equidistant at the front. Symmetry extremely important.
     
  13. trip1

    trip1 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Saint John, IN
    That would mean speakers toed in 10- 15 degrees from the sidewalls towards listing position.
     
  14. Black Elk

    Black Elk Music Lover

    Location:
    Bay Area, U.S.A.
    I'm not suggesting an asymmetric installation, I'm saying that the distance from the sidewalls to the center of the speaker should not equal the distance from the front of the speaker to the rear wall.
     
    robertzombie likes this.
  15. trip1

    trip1 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Saint John, IN
    Thank you for this info.
    Will work on it.
     
  16. tim185

    tim185 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Australia
    Sorry, ok I get it.
     
  17. Is any of the couch taut, like the skin of a drum? Jim Smith described a setup he did where a couch with a tight back was resonating and screwing with the sound.
     
  18. trip1

    trip1 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Saint John, IN
    Back is not skin tight.
     
    Pinknik likes this.
  19. Lebowski

    Lebowski Forum Resident

    Location:
    Eastern MA
    Do you always listen alone?
     
  20. Warren Jarrett

    Warren Jarrett Forum Resident

    Location:
    Fullerton, CA
    The most obvious sonic degradation, to my ears, in my living room was with a leather couch. Exactly as you describe, there was a gain in bass (although only mid-bass, not low bass) and loss of clarity. An over-stuffed recliner was better. And a pair of director's chairs was even better.

    I think you should just do the sonic comparison yourself, and choose whatever pleases you most.

    Ikea has a 1-year no-questions-asked return policy. And they have a large selection of chairs that are comfortable but not bulky or over-stuffed.
     
    Balthazar likes this.
  21. libertycaps

    libertycaps Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR, USA
    I have a love seat there. :love:
     
    timind likes this.
  22. lonelysea

    lonelysea Forum Resident

    Location:
    Twin Peaks, WA
    I've heard this before (Vandersteen literature?). Why is it so, any idea?
     
  23. Hipper

    Hipper Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Herts., England
    Leather couches are said to reflect the higher frequencies - that could be the cause of your loss of clarity. You could test this by putting a throw over it or sticking a fabric cushion behind your head.

    I use a high back fabric recliner. I like the fact that I don't get rear wall reflections.
     
  24. Black Elk

    Black Elk Music Lover

    Location:
    Bay Area, U.S.A.
    Because it will excite the same reflections from the back and side walls (assuming the reflection coefficient is the same). Bass frequencies are pretty omnidirectional, so you run the risk of the interfering reflections being larger in amplitude as they combine back at the speaker.
     
    lonelysea likes this.
  25. Kyhl

    Kyhl formerly known as Strabo

    Location:
    Savage
    Lean forward a foot, does the bass drop back down a bit? Sit on the edge and repeat, leaning farther forward. Any change?

    The speakers are new too? And you are surprised that the sound has changed?
     

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