Tower Speakers Guide
Tower speakers are also commonly referred
to as "floor-standing speakers" or simply "floor
speakers". They tend to be taller and generally bigger
than bookshelf speakers. Sizes vary from those that are
small enough to require stands to the behemoths from companies
like Dunlavy or Genesis.
Floor Vs Bookshelf Speakers
Although I am a big fan of bookshelf speakers,
I must admit that they may not be the ideal choice for everyone.
Bookshelves tend to lack deep bass and
even though you can add a subwoofer, this creates added
complications. Also, proper integration can be quite difficult
to achieve without extensive knowledge and experience in
speaker setup. The best bass I have heard are from gigantic
full range tower speakers like the Apogee Diva, Dunlavy
SC-IV, Wisdom Adrenaline, and Wilson WAMM or more reasonable
floor speakers like the M80ti or AS-F2.
Another disadvantage of bookshelf speakers
is the need to buy suitable stands. Decent speaker stands
can sometimes cost as much as the speaker itself. The recommended
stands for my old Proac Response 2s cost over $600. I guess
this is why some people simply plonk their bookshelves on
Tower Speakers and Listening Height
With tower speakers as long as the tweeters
are situated at ear level, for listeners seated in the primary
listening location, there is no need to be concerned with
stands. I estimate that ear level for most listeners in
a typical home is between 35 and 45 inches.
Floor Speaker Bass Response
According to Hoffman¡'s Iron
Law the bigger enclosures of tower speakers will deliver
more bass into the room. A bigger cabinet will also accommodate
many more and much larger drivers to move more air in the
room. All this means that you will get more bass slam, impact
and thus better reproduction of movie effects, rock and
large-scale classical music.
Since a tower speaker may tend to dominate
your listening room, you may want to consider such things
Footprint size and height ¡V
a small footprint with a slimmer appearance takes up
less room space and looks far less imposing.
Cabinet finish ¡V high quality
furniture wood, high gloss finishes, and colors adds
to general aesthetics depending on the existing décor
of your home.
Grill design ¡V most grills
are black cloth although some manufacturers will provide
other options. I tend to play my speakers without their
grills provided there are no small children at home
Setup demands ¡V some tower
speakers like to be placed out into the room, away from
room boundaries, for optimum performance. This can be
very intrusive where space is lacking.