Listening Spaces - Pathways To Nirvana Or Gateways To Hell?


Bronze Member
Username: Varney

BirminghamEngland, UK

Post Number: 70
Registered: Sep-04
Oh really! This is too much....

I've just been to the archived thread thus linked, to find out from the revered and all knowing J.Vigne and yourself (John A.) telling me, albeit by proxy, that I'm never going to get the greatly sought after and highly elusive 'performance' and, I think any true audiophile will know why....

Yes.... You got it. I have a living room with one good system in. The other good system lives in the studio. Neither of these situations are really set up as pure listening space. That would be, by my reckoning, sparsely furnished with lots of hard surfaces to reflect sound - and of course the obligatory central chair, located at the 'glory spot'. Surely, you must count the room itself as another part of the 'system'. Should I also mention you will have this chair set not only as part of a horizontal triangle with the two speakers, but the height axis will also form a crucial part of this near astrological set up, as the Pyramids were to Orion?

God only knows how one would set up the 5.1 surround system then in that case.

I envy those who have the space to implement this luxury. My house is small; the rooms being stupid shapes with too many doors and pathways-through.

Would that I did move on up to a bigger living space with enough rooms to have one spare as "Listening H.Q." But then when would I use it? The times I get to listen to music are when working at the drawing board. or moving around the studio from bench to bench. Spending all the time I do listen only would make me little more than a "tertiary imbibist", rather than a creative who feeds off the music for inspiration. You have the excuse that you (used to?) sell the stuff and can take care of what's under the bonnet. Stereo is what you're about. You are more like engineers than anything else. It's a hobby. I'd get no excercise if I went for another sit-down hobby and probably become fat and bloated. I have to sit down all the time at work as it is.

Which leads me onto the fact there may be no such thing as a 'good' portable stereo / walkman type thing (?)

It's kinda sad for me really.

BTW, Before you try looking up the word "Tertiary Imbibist" in the dictionary - don't. I made it up 'specially for this post.

Okay - so onto the surround sound thing:
I have two ears. This means that two speakers should be enough in order for stereo to have an effect. If the amp and source display a good ability to seperate, time, phase and picture; and the speakers are well sensitive - what more is needed for accurate reproduction of a performance (which most likely in the case of recorded music, was an instrumentally segregated one)?

Apart from a well-tuned listening environment, that is.

And does not a live performance's dynamic get somewhat dampened, depending on the local body mass of those present?

What is it you are looking for? Nirvana? 'Course you are. Aren't we all? Is it atainable? Have you reached it yet? Would you know it if you came across it?

I don't know of any where else I could have a more stimulating conversation about sound.

I need to read more of those archived posts but, John A., as you already warned - it may take a while.



New thread to keep the others a little less choked. Feel free to paste if you want to keep them all together in one place.


Gold Member
Username: Kegger


Post Number: 1870
Registered: Dec-03
Varney the one thing that keeps coming up on that thread is.

Does your music "need" to try and recreate the venue or event?

It seems you don't do much critical listening or take the time very often
like so many of us do and enjoy our systems. "not saying that is bad"

But what seems to keep coming up is that surround ruins the
recreation process!

Then others ask "well if I don't care about the recreation process"
Am I still listening to quality music?

If my system does not play neutrel but I like it, is that wrong?
And my system is not upto snuff?

My personal feeling is that preference is what one should be concerned
with in there own system, because you are the one who needs to be happy
with the system you are playing for enjoyment.

Then you have the "well if we let anything go then we have no reference point"

I believe you need some sort of reference point so things can be equal to
start with for everyones media or amps or speakers, to compare. But how
do you have a reference point but still let individual taste come into play?

That is the basics of that other thread!

J. Vigne
Unregistered guest

"Which leads me onto the fact there may be no such thing as a 'good' portable stereo / walkman type thing (?)"

Depending on your needs the Tivoli table radio or the P.A.L. by the same folks might serve your needs.

"I'd get no excercise if I went for another sit-down hobby"

That is one of the benefits of still listening to LP's. Up/Down. Up/Down. Every twenty two minutes.

"And does not a live performance's dynamic get somewhat dampened, depending on the local body mass of those present?"

Not if the hall has been well designed. The mass of bodies is taken into account in the design. Of course large scale failures have resulted from over planning also. Today's auditorium seats are designed to have the same absorption whether there is a person sitting in them or not.

One of the first qualifying questions I asked a client shopping for a system or upgrade was, "How much time do you spend listening and doing nothing else. Not reading the paper, watching TV, playing with the dog; but, just lsitening to and concentrating on the music?" Suprisingly few did just listen. I disturbed me somewhat when I would see the same people at the symphony the next weekend. What else were they doing except listening?

The remainder of your questions; what more is needed, what is it you are looking for, will take more time than I presently have.

I assume your comments toward me are in reference to the current discussion on old dogs.

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