Record Player and Speaker Placement

  • By: Andrew
  • Date: April 27, 2022

Record players produce high-quality sound and add decor and style to any room. It’s vital to put record players and speakers in the right location to deliver the best sound. When your speakers and record players work together, they can generate fantastic sound.

You should put your record player and speakers on a flat, sturdy, and stable surface. Keep the record player away from other speakers or anything else that’ll cause unwanted vibrations and other frequency-emitting electronics. Put speakers equidistant in front of you to create a stereo effect.

The rest of this article will explain where and how you should place your record player to protect it from interference and environmental factors. I’ll share everything you need to know about speaker placement, speaker stands, and subwoofer speakers.

Table of Contents

Where You Should Put Your Record Player

Proper record player and speaker placement is essential to get the best sound. Record players are extremely sensitive and can easily pick up other vibrations. So, it’s necessary to separate them to ensure they pick up the correct vibrations. Using speakers to create a stereo effect makes it feel like the singers are in the room with you, allowing you to achieve a vibrant sound.

The most important part of a record player is the turntable. It’s vital to place it on the right surface to get the best sound. 

You should put your record player on a completely flat and stable surface. Ideally, the surface should be stationary and heavy because you don’t want it to move while using your record player. 

The tonearm on your record player tracks the record’s vibrations while the vinyl is spinning and helps produce the sound. The tonearm shouldn’t pick up any other vibrations outside the record player. If it catches excess vibrations, your sound quality takes a massive dip. 

If your record player is on an unstable surface, it can cause friction on the tonearm while the records are playing. This can cause your records to skip and track improperly, resulting in distortion and clipping. If your tonearm constantly catches extra vibrations, it can wear out extremely quickly.

Isolation platforms are also available for you to purchase. You can put your record player on specially designed platforms to get the best sound with minimal extra vibrations. Many record players have replaceable feet that you can change for better isolation and minimal vibrations.

Eliminate Other Sound Frequencies in the Room

Other electronic devices in your home can emit different frequencies and vibrations that affect your sound system. Be sure to keep your record player away from any electromagnetic interference (EMI) devices. 

These EMI sources include:

  • Wi-Fi routers
  • Electric Circuits
  • High-energy electronics (such as microwaves)

These devices emit sound vibrations that can interfere with your record player. 

Keep your record player away from:

  • Amplifiers
  • Large electronic devices
  • Kitchen appliances
  • Cell phones

All these devices can cause interference, drastically lowering the sound quality of your record player.

Temperature, Environment, and Other Factors in Record Player Placement

Avoid placing your record player in direct sunlight as it can damage the player or cause it to overheat. 

Your record player should be in a relatively stable environment where the temperature doesn’t fluctuate. 

Try to keep your record player at room temperature. Avoid putting it in basements or other extremely cold or hot spots. 

Avoid placing your record player in drafty regions as well.

Where You Should Put Your Speakers

Since excess vibrations lead to poor sound quality, don’t put your speakers too close to your record player. The record player tracks all minor grooves on the record, which is how sound is reproduced. Speakers also produce strong sound vibrations in the air. 

Putting the speakers too close to the turntable will inhibit the record player from reading all the grooves because the turntable will also pick up the speakers’ vibrations.

The ideal spot to put your speakers is equidistant from where you’ll be listening to imitate a stereo effect. The sound will arrive in both ears from two different directions. You want the speakers to form a triangle with you at the point.

Take some time to adjust and maneuver your speakers and their placement to get the best sound quality. It’s best to start with your speakers about six feet (1.83 m) apart and change them from there. Many people suggest playing different records to test the sound quality of various types of songs.

Put the speakers in front of you and out to the sound to get the feeling of surround sound. It should sound like the singers are in the room giving you a private performance. Although many people do it, you don’t want to put your speakers behind you. 

You’ll get the best sound quality if the speakers are in front of the listeners at ear height. If you’ll be standing most of the time, put your speakers at standing ear height. If you’ll be sitting while listening to the speakers, put them at your sitting ear height. 

To improve sound quality, point your speakers toward the listeners. Be sure to put some space between your speakers and the wall because you don’t want them directly against the wall. Your speakers should be about 10 centimeters (3.94 in) away from the wall.

Speaker Placement

There’s debate about the optimal speaker placement. You can put them onto:

  • The floor
  • The table
  • Speaker spikes
  • A wall

Spikes used to be the preferred method for holding your speakers. Using spikes involved screwing your speaker into the floor or the stand it was on. However, many experts have recently discovered that putting your speaker on spikes diminishes the sound quality.

The best way to secure your speakers is to separate them from the surface they’re sitting on. 

For example, if you place your speakers on the floor, you’ll want to put them on some padding so that they’re not sitting directly on the floor. The more space you get between the speaker and the surface, the better. You can use any of the following materials to isolate the speakers from the floor:

  • Foam
  • Springs
  • Soft pads

Speaker Stands

Speaker stands are another great option for holding your speaker. Bookshelf or monitor speakers will most likely require speaker stands. However, you don’t need a speaker stand with a floor speaker.

Speaker stands come in various materials. They’re made from different types of materials. A speaker stand can add to the sound quality. So, choosing a stand that enhances the quality and fits your budget is essential. Stands made from wood and metal are the most popular stands.

If you want a more intense and direct sound, you’ll need to put your speaker on a heavier stand. The sturdier and heavier the frame, the more intense your sound will be. If you want a more airy sound, use a light speaker stand. Metal stands tend to be heavier, and plastic or wood stands are generally more lightweight. 

Just as you need separation with your speakers on the floor, you’ll also need separation if you put your speakers on a stand. Using isolation with your speakers will give you a better sound quality because you combine the stand quality with whatever material you’re using to separate the two.

Subwoofer Speakers

Subwoofers are speakers that emit lower frequencies. If you want the best sound quality in your listening area, you’ll want to add a subwoofer to balance out the frequencies. The best place to put a subwoofer is in a room’s corner or slightly away from the middle of a room.

A subwoofer will amplify the bass in a room. It should blend effortlessly with your other speakers and shouldn’t be too overwhelming. Adjust the speaker’s control to get the best, most seamless sound.

Final Thoughts

You should put your record player on a flat, sturdy surface with minimal to no movement. The surface must be sturdy so that your record player doesn’t pick up other vibrations besides the ones from the vinyl record.

Put your speakers equidistant from you to form a triangle so that you get the best sound. Placing your speakers away from each other creates a stereo effect. 

Use an isolator or different types of padding to separate your speaker from the floor or its stand. Having your record player and speakers in optimal places will give you the best sound.