A listening room - what for?

Bloged in Acoustics by Steve Deckert Sunday March 15, 1998

A listening room is a room where you listen to music - or is it a room that listens to music? Actually it’s a room that plays the music you listen to….

We basically have two things going on here, and we need to clarify which side of the fence you want to be on. There are two basic kinds of listening habits, one of them is called “passive listening” and one is called “active listening”. Passive listening is sometimes referred to as “background listening”. Perhaps we should call it “hearing” since the person doesn’t really actively listen to it.

A Passive listening system can be anything from a clock radio, to a fairly nice home stereo system that seamlessly blends into your decor and gets turned on for the purpose of filling the room with music which can then be enjoyed from anywhere in the room. (We ALL started out as passive listener’s with our speakers along the wall or in the corners didn’t we?)

An active listening style makes the stereo system the focal point of a room dedicated solely for that purpose. This format allows a much higher resolution of playback to occur, and since the stereo sound field can be experienced in three dimensions rather than two, the enjoyment of it can change into an almost holy experience.


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