Speakers toe in or not toe in?


I think one of the most interesting activity of the forum is the sharing of the real experiences.
I was amazed by the “pics from the listening position” thread as in most of pictures speakers are very close to the bottom wall and parallel, not toed in at all.
this is a bit against the theoric approach that goes in the direction of toeing in and some space before the speakers.
I also used the same approach, as in my opinion it widens the scene and the possibility to understand instruments positions.
any suggestions or comments?




Take a look at previous topic
Creating a Soundstage - speaker placement - a massive improvement for zero cost! - Hi-Fi Corner - Naim Audio - Community

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thanks! there are many topics, I will look at this :slightly_smiling_face:

I don’t think it’s really a surprise that the majority of the setups are close to the wall. While I believe we all try our best to achieve the max out of the setup, at the end of the day we need to make do with the current space, and/or to cope with other external influencing factors (also known as WAF :shushing_face:).


There’s quite a few Kudos speakers on here and they are designed to fire straight on without toe-in. Also work well close to the rear wall.


In my experience toe-in gave a much improved stereo image and improved sound, BUT only in one precise position where the toe-in meets. You move your head by 5cm, and it’s lost which can be very distracting. Worse still, the sound in other parts of the room suffer. I find straight out is the best for any chair in my room.


this is very interesting, toe in is against social listening :grinning:

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Kudos speakers here with a little toe in and works great for a 3 seater sofa.
Anyone else can wait a turn. :rofl:


I have PMC speakers and after many trials I also prefer them parallel, not toed in at all. sometimes I move them, but after a while I get back to original position

Similar experience here, although I’ve chosen a compromise position with just a bit of toe in.


My speakers are designed to be “fired” with axes crossing behind the listener. They are designed to have quite wide dispersion. I put them that way, they sound great, so I haven’t altered. Weighing kg, having no handholds just nice veneer, and sitting on stands, changing angle and trying different is a major undertaking, so I haven’t.

As for position from front wall ((which is what I assume bottom means), the front baffles of mine (which is what counts) are an average of about 56-57 cm from the wall - and being over 50cm deep they are close to touching the wall at the rear. They are in the best position other than in front of the window & projector screen, as found by testing with REW software with my previous similarly full range speakers (my current speakers effectively not being moveable means the previous best position in front of windows and screen is not usable).

Toe in here. I sit about 3m away to left of centre and the toe in definitely makes a difference. I don’t need to use the balance control to compensate for the off centre listening position.


Thanks, is rew software something to position speakers?

Just try it out and see what you like better. Every speaker is different but the most important thing for me is to get the center image locked in. After that you may adjust slightly to improve soundstage or adjust treble response to your liking.


REW is software for measurement of a range of sound parameters: with it you can see peaks and troughs in response, reverberation (boominess at low frequencies, phase etc. it is not designed for speaker placement purposes, but it is a wonderful tool to assist with that, I find it much quicker, and more accurate, thab doing by ear, though ear may be the final confirmation or means of choosing between two otherwise equivalently suitable positions.

REW (Room Equalisation Wizard) is free software, though donations, are welcomed. You also need a measuring microphone – the one they recommend (UMIK-one) cost about £120 new last time I looked, but you can often find secondhand for half to three quarters of that– and easy to sell on if you don’t feel you have any further use.

Indeed, on the system pics thread I see hugely expensive speakers crammed into the corners and I think that can’t possibly work! I guess as stated it’s a balance of domestic harmony and optimum performance.

My ATC’s have a c30degree toe in and due to size of the room it’s a near field listening experience which works as I have a room allocated for music. The speakers are only 170cm tweeter to tweeter ergo I sit in close and by and large close to the rule of thirds.



I have Kudos speakers and just followed their advice from their website. Works fine.


Leaving aside orientation and distance from front wall, one thing that has particularly struck me is the number of asymmetric set-ups. Obviously some rooms by their very design may make system symmetry impossible, but the pics show that sometimes things are significantly asymmetric even when the room appears to offer easy symmetrical placement). And not infrequently there is a side wall very close, with no arrangements to reduce the inevitable early reflections that will result.

Toe-in is really speaker, position and room dependent.

I toe my speakers in, and Dynaudio recommends that, but I don’t use diagrams, or forum opinions or anything to detemine it. I use music and adjust for best sound and most realistic soundstage.

I have settled on a great recording to use and that is my old vinyl copy of Vivaldi’s Gloria, performed by Academy of Ancient Music, cond. Simon Preston, on L’Ouisseau-Lyre (Decca). It has everything. Complete baroque orchestra, choir, solists with minimal accompaniment, ensemble pieces. If I get that dialed in I check with some large-scale orchestral music (Debussy, Mahler, etc). If they sound great then everything else does too.


Clever use of toe’s can help control the influences heard of the room.
Firing straight could excite first boundary reflections heard at the same time as the drivers which could confuse soundstaging in some rooms.
Other rooms, this boundary reflection may well correspond with a pitch frequency that could enhance overall intelligibility instead of confusing.
Other times too much toe in could seem to diminish scale and believability.
Toes usefully aid control of our centre of gravity - as with in this scenario.
If one can’t find their way with the toe, they may well have to just hoof it instead.