Seems like a mundane question. You have a volume control right - so no problem - just use it.
But please bear with me. My speakers are Klipsch Forte III’s. For those not familiar they are fairly large floor-standers, horn-loaded in the mid and treble, and easy to drive at 8 Ohms and 99dB/W sensitivity.
They produce a crisp, lively, forward sound with no shortage of dynamics, drive and impact. Bass is deep fast and tuneful. My amp is a Moon integrated 100W/channel. The system will play frighteningly loud without showing any of the typical signs that things are being pushed too hard, ie. tonal hardness, softening of bass transients, a sense of strain and compression and loss of musical coherence.
I’ve had these for around two years or so. They are the first large speakers I’ve ever had at home - previously I’ve lived with bookshelf types, except for IBL’s.
It’s been a learning curve in many ways. I found I’ve had to re-adjust in some ways. One example: when I first got them my initial reaction was ‘where’s all the bass gone?’! They seemed to have less bass than the small speakers I had used previously! Not what I was expecting from their size! It took a while for the penny to drop. What I had regarded as ‘bass’ in the small speakers I’d always had before was actually bloated lower-midrange and upper bass. Lot’s of small speakers employ this trick - to make them sound fuller and to help disguise the fact that they have no deep bass at all. What I was now hearing was a complete lack of that bloat, so that unless the music contained real bass then there simply wasn’t any. But when real bass comes along you know about it. Deep, forceful and clean.
The other very curious thing is that setting the volume correctly seems much more important than ever before. Previously I’ve always just set the volume casually to whatever felt right at the time. Now I find that the sense of reality, of actually being there, is very greatly enhanced by getting the volume just right. I find myself inclined to play at slightly higher levels than what feels intuitively right, as doing so just makes everything so much more real. There’s a tangible sense of a rock band or orchestra actually being right in front of you. Yet lower the volume a little and this sense of reality is diminished.
Conversely, the speakers sound excellent at all levels, even when played very quietly. With many speakers one finds that the sound recedes into the boxes at low levels and loses presence and impact. This doesn’t happen here.
Maybe it’s something common to large speakers, I don’t know. But this greatly enhanced impression of reality once one hits a magic level is something I’ve never experienced before, with much smaller speakers. I’m left wondering about possible long-term hearing damage as this sense of realism inevitably means high sound levels!
So what are other people’s experiences? How loud do you typically listen?