Rear porting vs wall

J

Jack N

Audioholic
I’ve been on the hunt for a full set of speakers for the home theater/listening room that I’m building. The room is cramped for space so all of the surround speakers are going to have to be right up against the walls. The fronts won’t have much room either. I’d really like to buy speakers from Salk because not only would they sound good, but I can also get them front ported. Problem is I don’t think I can swing it financially. So I’ve been looking for speakers that don’t cost so much. The problem is the huge majority of speaker manufacturers use rear porting in their speakers so I’d have to plug the ports. I’d be changing how the speaker was designed to work. So, generally speaking, what would the consequences be? I know the output and the bass extension would drop, but what other affects would I be looking at?
 
Kingnoob

Kingnoob

Audioholic Chief
I’ve been on the hunt for a full set of speakers for the home theater/listening room that I’m building. The room is cramped for space so all of the surround speakers are going to have to be right up against the walls. The fronts won’t have much room either. I’d really like to buy speakers from Salk because not only would they sound good, but I can also get them front ported. Problem is I don’t think I can swing it financially. So I’ve been looking for speakers that don’t cost so much. The problem is the huge majority of speaker manufacturers use rear porting in their speakers so I’d have to plug the ports. I’d be changing how the speaker was designed to work. So, generally speaking, what would the consequences be? I know the output and the bass extension would drop, but what other affects would I be looking at?
Got a link to the site who is Salk. ?? I’ve never heard of this brand before , Rear port go a foot away from wall of your low on space .


Reptilians invading in year 2025
Tesla spoken to them
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
I’ve been on the hunt for a full set of speakers for the home theater/listening room that I’m building. The room is cramped for space so all of the surround speakers are going to have to be right up against the walls. The fronts won’t have much room either. I’d really like to buy speakers from Salk because not only would they sound good, but I can also get them front ported. Problem is I don’t think I can swing it financially. So I’ve been looking for speakers that don’t cost so much. The problem is the huge majority of speaker manufacturers use rear porting in their speakers so I’d have to plug the ports. I’d be changing how the speaker was designed to work. So, generally speaking, what would the consequences be? I know the output and the bass extension would drop, but what other affects would I be looking at?
What you would be doing is is converting to a sealed enclosure in the wrong sized cabinet. Without knowing cabinet size and driver T/S parameters I can't tell the precise effect. But the cabinet would be under damped as sealed cabinets need to be filled with damping material. So what you want to do is not recommended. The reason for rear porting is because the port is too small a diameter and they want to mask the port chiff from too high a port air velocity. So what you want to do can not be recommended. In any case pretty much all free standing speakers are designed with Baffle step compensation assuming at least a 14" clearance form all boundaries.

It sounds to me as if you need an in wall solution.

Are your walls still open? They should be as you need to place in wall conduit for all cabling. Unless you rethink this, you are going to end up with a poor sounding room.

It sounds to me as if you need a solution like this.





Something along those lines at any rate.
 
S

shadyJ

Speaker of the House
I’ve been on the hunt for a full set of speakers for the home theater/listening room that I’m building. The room is cramped for space so all of the surround speakers are going to have to be right up against the walls. The fronts won’t have much room either. I’d really like to buy speakers from Salk because not only would they sound good, but I can also get them front ported. Problem is I don’t think I can swing it financially. So I’ve been looking for speakers that don’t cost so much. The problem is the huge majority of speaker manufacturers use rear porting in their speakers so I’d have to plug the ports. I’d be changing how the speaker was designed to work. So, generally speaking, what would the consequences be? I know the output and the bass extension would drop, but what other affects would I be looking at?
I wouldn't plug the ports unless you know you are getting too much boundary gain. Outside of affecting extension and low-end output, plugging a port won't do much else to a loudspeaker. If you don't even want to deal with ports, just get a speaker that is intrinsically sealed like the Monoprice Monolith THX speakers. Those are very good for the cost. Read the Audioholics review.
 
NINaudio

NINaudio

Audioholic Chief
A lot of the Kef speakers use front passive radiators so should work closer to the wall for you. What is your speaker budget?
 
NINaudio

NINaudio

Audioholic Chief
Got a link to the site who is Salk. ?? I’ve never heard of this brand before , Rear port go a foot away from wall of your low on space .
We already know what your response will be... no need for it.
 
J

Jack N

Audioholic
I didn't think plugging ports would be a good idea, but I just didn't know what kind of an effect it would have. The search goes on........Just wish Salks' didn't cost so much.
 
j_garcia

j_garcia

Audioholic Jedi
It depends on the speaker as to how it will react to plugging the ports. If they don't really have deep bass extension, it will probably be fine actually. Some vented speakers rely on that port and won't like to be plugged, but some manufacturers even offer the port plugs (Paradigm used to for some models) for cases like this. The problem is, there's nothing in any speaker literature that would tell you which will work and which won't be happy.

When you say "right up" against the wall, is that a few inches or literally against the wall? A few inches likely won't really matter. Obviously better to have them further but it will work. What I've done in that situation is to angle the speakers relative to the wall (5-10 deg of toe) to allow a bit of breathing room for the port air movement.

Ascend's smallest surround is sealed. They may work?

http://ascendacoustics.com/pages/products/speakers/htm200/htm200specs.html
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Ninja
In my Den I use on wall speakers for surrounds since it’s a small room with many doorways so anything else would block a door. :)

They are Canton from Accessories4less.com. The specific model is Canton Chrono SL 516.2. They make a larger one that is thicker, Vento 816.2 as well.
 
colofan

colofan

Enthusiast
If you are willing to do some DIY , ports can be changed in size to remove port velocity noise. However the bigger port also has to be longer to keep the same tuning. Depending on woofer driver in the system plugging reduces lower octave performance. Better to find another speaker system. More bang for the buck make your own.
 
everettT

everettT

Audioholic Ninja
If the Salks are one of the TL designs, IIRC they can be placed close to the wall. Also Jim can make his designs front ported if needed.
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
Pretty sure every speaker NHT makes including the SuperZero is sealed!
However if you are actually mounting it on the wall, I think an on wall speaker like the Cantons that snakeeyes recommends are a better option.
 
J

Jack N

Audioholic
Yes, they will literally be going right up against a wall, well, except for the thickness of the speaker wire.

I'll check out the NHTs, Cantons, and Ascends. Thanks.
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Spartan
I’ve been on the hunt for a full set of speakers for the home theater/listening room that I’m building. The room is cramped for space so all of the surround speakers are going to have to be right up against the walls. The fronts won’t have much room either. I’d really like to buy speakers from Salk because not only would they sound good, but I can also get them front ported. Problem is I don’t think I can swing it financially. So I’ve been looking for speakers that don’t cost so much. The problem is the huge majority of speaker manufacturers use rear porting in their speakers so I’d have to plug the ports. I’d be changing how the speaker was designed to work. So, generally speaking, what would the consequences be? I know the output and the bass extension would drop, but what other affects would I be looking at?
I think you could be sweating this a bit much. For the surrounds, just cross them a little higher if bass becomes an issue, which I don’t think it will. For the mains, it sounds like they’ll end up on the small side so you might not have much bass to deal with anyway, plus audyssey is pretty good about pulling down peaks. Like J said too, you never know. Each speaker is different, and some(cant think off hand) might even have boundary compensation switches. FWIW I seem to remember that port diameter times 1.5 or 2 equals safe distance to alleviate problems. Don’t forget too that there will still be interaction between the front of the speakers and the wall if they’re that close as well. I think TLS guy might be right. A decent in wall solution might be just the thing.
 
TLS Guy

TLS Guy

Audioholic Slumlord
I think you could be sweating this a bit much. For the surrounds, just cross them a little higher if bass becomes an issue, which I don’t think it will. For the mains, it sounds like they’ll end up on the small side so you might not have much bass to deal with anyway, plus audyssey is pretty good about pulling down peaks. Like J said too, you never know. Each speaker is different, and some(cant think off hand) might even have boundary compensation switches. FWIW I seem to remember that port diameter times 1.5 or 2 equals safe distance to alleviate problems. Don’t forget too that there will still be interaction between the front of the speakers and the wall if they’re that close as well. I think TLS guy might be right. A decent in wall solution might be just the thing.
Unfortunately the OP has been sparse on details of his room, other than that it is small. My first thought is that will the problems he claims to have, that a really good two channel system would actually be best.

In the in wall system I posted above, in all honesty, I included the center speaker largely because I wanted to design it. I have a real interest in center speakers as the vast majority are so bad and quality spoilers.

You really can not tell the difference in the in wall system is running 2.1 or 3.1 with one exception. From any seated position even far left or right the system sounds the same. You would not know the difference. Speech clarity is excellent either way and the dialog centers just the same. The only way you can tell the difference is if you move around which unmasks the inevitable slight lobing error of the center speaker. Then the two channel wins! So in all honesty the best I could do with the third center speaker was to not make it significantly worse. If an attempt were made in that space to add more channels, then I'm pretty sure it would be significantly worse. As it is it a wonderful system in 2.1 or 3.1 with power to spare and really fills that really big space. My wife has had her desires fulfilled and then some.

The take home is that adding a bunch of channels and speakers is NOT a prerequisite of a really good music AND home theater experience.
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Spartan
Unfortunately the OP has been sparse on details of his room, other than that it is small. My first thought is that will the problems he claims to have, that a really good two channel system would actually be best.

In the in wall system I posted above, in all honesty, I included the center speaker largely because I wanted to design it. I have a real interest in center speakers as the vast majority are so bad and quality spoilers.

You really can not tell the difference in the in wall system is running 2.1 or 3.1 with one exception. From any seated position even far left or right the system sounds the same. You would not know the difference. Speech clarity is excellent either way and the dialog centers just the same. The only way you can tell the difference is if you move around which unmasks the inevitable slight lobing error of the center speaker. Then the two channel wins! So in all honesty the best I could do with the third center speaker was to not make it significantly worse. If an attempt were made in that space to add more channels, then I'm pretty sure it would be significantly worse. As it is it a wonderful system in 2.1 or 3.1 with power to spare and really fills that really big space. My wife has had her desires fulfilled and then some.

The take home is that adding a bunch of channels and speakers is NOT a prerequisite of a really good music AND home theater experience.
Mark, as usual I admire your work. Well done.
I also wonder if the problems OP is worrying about, simply won’t matter much. It would be nice to get some dimensions and use case.
As far as your take home, I may be just a touch quicker than you to add surround and center speakers. BUT, I absolutely agree, less is sometimes more. I’ve seen guys cram 7.1 in a 10x10 room. Can’t imagine it sounds very good.
 

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