Speakers, spikes vs rubber feet.

Pablo2k

Pablo2k

Junior Audioholic
Ratings
5
#1
Good morning audioholics!
My front speakers right now have metal spikes, which pierce through the carpet onto cement.
Should I keep it like that or should I use rubber feet so that the speakers just sits on the carpet?
Same thing with my sub, I never installed the spikes or feet on that one.
My speakers are B&W 683 (fronts) and the subs are Def Tech Supercube Reference.
Thanks!
 
S

shadyJ

Audioholic Spartan
Ratings
3,577 29 15
#2
Unless you rock your speakers so hard that they wobble, I don't think there will be a significant difference. The advantages of spikes is that they won't leave depressions or stain marks in your carpet that rubber feet would. Use rubber feet to protect hard floor surfaces, as spiked feet will surely scratch the flooring.
 
Pablo2k

Pablo2k

Junior Audioholic
Ratings
5
#3
Unless you rock your speakers so hard that they wobble, I don't think there will be a significant difference. The advantages of spikes is that they won't leave depressions or stain marks in your carpet that rubber feet would. Use rubber feet to protect hard floor surfaces, as spiked feet will surely scratch the flooring.
OK thanks, I thought maybe they change sound characteristics.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic General
Ratings
507 6 22
#4
Unless you rock your speakers so hard that they wobble, I don't think there will be a significant difference. The advantages of spikes is that they won't leave depressions or stain marks in your carpet that rubber feet would. Use rubber feet to protect hard floor surfaces, as spiked feet will surely scratch the flooring.
Unless you rock your speakers so hard that they wobble, I don't think there will be a significant difference. The advantages of spikes is that they won't leave depressions or stain marks in your carpet that rubber feet would. Use rubber feet to protect hard floor surfaces, as spiked feet will surely scratch the flooring.
Some spikes are supplied with round protection plates to put under for hard floors.
 
charmerci

charmerci

Audioholic
Ratings
58 1 4
#7
Yes, you definitely have it correct. You can even place something like - as I have done in the past - a stone/brick slab (which I covered in contact paper for looks) on top of the speakers to increase its mass and make it more solid.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
4,041 16 36
#8
Sounds like you're fine as is with your speakers.

Does your sub move/scoot on the carpet? If not, leave it as is.

Sound quality is not a function of the spikes or rubber feet.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic General
Ratings
507 6 22
#9
Sound quality could be affected if the speakers were placed on a wooden floor. Then, some low frequencies could get the floor to vibrate if the cabinets were supported by rubber feet but to a lesser extent if spikes were used. The main purpose of spikes is to reduce transfer of vibrations, isn't it? It's exceptional that these are not a snake oil gadget.
 
Last edited:
Pablo2k

Pablo2k

Junior Audioholic
Ratings
5
#10
Thank you for all the replies.
I just wanted to make sure I wasn’t changing the sound by doing that.
I had the spikes on for years now.
Thanks again.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Overlord
Ratings
4,041 16 36
#11
Sound quality could be affected if the speakers were placed on a wood floor. Then, some low frequencies could get the floor to vibrate if the cabinets were supported by rubber feet but to a lesser extent if spikes were used. The main purpose of spikes is to reduce transfer of vibrations, isn't it? It's exceptional that these are not a snake oil gadget.
That isn't the OP's situation. Adding something more than rubber feet on a wood floor I doubt has much impact either. Some actually like that extra resonance of some wood floors, too. The main purpose of spikes is to keep the speaker from moving/sliding on carpet.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic General
Ratings
507 6 22
#12
That isn't the OP's situation. Adding something more than rubber feet on a wood floor I doubt has much impact either. Some actually like that extra resonance of some wood floors, too. The main purpose of spikes is to keep the speaker from moving/sliding on carpet.
Try to find a serious report agreeing with your opinion that the purpose of spikes is to prevent a speaker from moving or sliding on carpet.
 
S

shadyJ

Audioholic Spartan
Ratings
3,577 29 15
#14
Try to find a serious report agreeing with your opinion that the purpose of spikes is to prevent a speaker from moving or sliding on carpet.
That often is their function. Perhaps not just to prevent movement, but also to prevent deformation of the carpet from wide feet. Sometimes speaker manufacturers will say some blah blah blah psuedo-science explanation about mechanical isolation, but those claims are based on nothing.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic General
Ratings
507 6 22
#15
Define serious. Hopefully you have something serious to support your position? :) Here's food for thought https://www.audioholics.com/loudspeaker-design/speaker-spikes-and-cones-2013-what2019s-the-point
Well, in this article, there's no mention whatsoever about the prevention of a speaker from moving on a carpet.

On page 115 of Vance Dickason's book "Loudspeaker Design Cookbook -7th Edition" he says the following:

"While the spikes may provide some degree of isolation by limiting physical contact, they can be made more effective by applying additional mass at the base, such as a heavy stone or marble platform which simply does not vibrate in any fashion and cannot transmit vibration to the floor."
 
tyhjaarpa

tyhjaarpa

Audioholic Field Marshall
Ratings
427 3 10
#16
I personally build platforms like subdude (https://www.auralex.com/product/subdude-ii/) from platfoam (https://www.auralex.com/product/platfoam/) to decouple my towers and subs from floor. For me the result was cleaner sound, could be that the speakers are now 6cm higher than before, and no more vibration on laminate flooring. I personally found it really annoying that the floor was vibrating and was really pleased when it was gone. Doubt it how ever that spikes vs rubber feet will have much of a difference tho.
 
Johnny2Bad

Johnny2Bad

Audioholic Chief
Ratings
310 6 4
#17
Although spikes can transmit vibrations to the floor when used with loudspeakers, you have a concrete floor which is ideal and will not propegate those vibrations to the room itself. They can be a problem if the floor is wood and supported by joists which tend to carry those vibrations to other items laying on the floor (like your equipment rack).

You are correct that spikes are intended to be used with carpet to reach the underlying floor, so correctly used in your situation there as well.

Since you check both boxes with regard to what is the proper use of spikes, all that remains is what is the advantage of spikes over soft (absorbing) supports? That answer is your speakers are constantly vibrating, and if placed on a very slippery surface (say, a teflon(r) pad) would move around rather than stay fixed in one location. Any energy lost to movement of the enclosure is energy better spent moving the air in the room. Spikes very firmly locate the enclosure, and I find the improvement in sound quality ... especially bass performance ... is quite noticeable.

I would recommend you continue to use spikes with your loudspeakers. You could consider sorbathane or some other energy absorbing support for your components, especially any that involve mechanical movement (turntables, disk players) or for the entire rack itself.

People whose sound room construction is not concrete flooring might benefit from an absorbing support for loudspeakers, but that isn't the case with your setup.
 

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