Bluetooth speakers are pretty magical things to have around your house. At the touch of a button, you could be listening to your favorite tunes or a hopefully not boring podcast with great bass and clarity.
However, depending on where they are placed, Bluetooth speakers can sound very different. Yes, sometimes it is indeed a problem with the product itself – some Bluetooth speakers aren’t great – but if you are lacking bass as well as getting atonal or tinny sound, you might want to think about moving things around.
So where can you place your Bluetooth speakers to get the best sound? Well, that question isn’t as easy to answer as you might think. Every single room and every speaker is different, but we can give you some advice to consider.
Picking Your Positioning
Picking the correct position for your speakers can make them sound significantly better. Obviously, if you have your speakers facing a wall, the volume and sound clarity will be significantly dampened as the sound waves both bounce off and are absorbed into the wall.
Naturally, the first step is to position your speakers towards you or the area you want the sound to radiate at.
However, it is important that the speakers aren’t too low or too high above where you want to be listening. If you are positioning your speakers so that they are radiating at the couch, you will want them to be roughly at the same height of your ears while sitting there.
Another tip is to keep your speakers at least a few inches from the wall as it will improve the bass response. The bass might actually seem better if you get them back closer to the wall, but you might also notice that the mid-range sounds start to lose their clarity.
A placement that many audiophiles prefer is to place the speaker in a corner or a nook so that the hard surfaces better reflect quality sound and bass response. However, you don’t want to fully enclose it, for obvious reasons.
Tiled rooms are also great at reflecting sound since it just bounces right off and creates great acoustics.
This makes your kitchen a pretty good choice if you have a tile backsplash on your counters. However, the most common titled room is your bathroom, and you probably won’t have too many kickin’ parties in there.
Finally, if you are using more than one speaker, if you want great surround sound, you should go for a triangle type placement around your usual listening area. This means that the sound should be coming at you from all sides and you will get an amazing listening experience.
Buying a Speaker of the Right Shape
Bluetooth speaker shape is occasionally pretty standard, but sometimes you will find cylinders or some more overly odd shapes among the pack.
These shapes are not just about visual aesthetics, but they affect sound acoustics as well.
The shape of your Bluetooth speaker will also affect where you should place it. Your standard cube or brick model does best when facing its audience.
However, the cylinder shape thrives best when it is placed in the middle of the room since it radiates sound from all sides.
Even if you have an odd-shaped speaker like, for example, the BeoPlay S3 that looks more like a stately dodecahedron than your typical rectangular parallelepiped-shaped speaker, even then it usually will only radiate sound from all sides, or in this case, one face side. So the positioning tips for normal-shaped speakers still apply based on that knowledge.
While we can give you positioning tips, every single room is different. Some surfaces reflect sound better than others and some people like to listen to their speakers in different places. The only concrete tip we can give you is to experiment.
If you feel like your speaker isn’t giving you the best possible sound experience, try setting it in a different area, at a different height, or in a different direction. If, in the end, you aren’t getting the results you want, it may in fact be the speaker’s issue, possibly even the Bluetooth connection.
Bonus Tip: AptX
AptX is essentially Bluetooth, but with an audio focus. This is the reason that the sound can be better or worse on the same speaker depending on the phone you use.
In an ideal listening experience, you want the speaker as well as the phone to be able to use Bluetooth AptX since it allows for higher quality music and sound streaming. While this is pretty standard in speakers and many phones, this isn’t something you will get with iPhones.
They seem to wage a dirty little war with Bluetooth, and it is hurting us all in terms of sound quality since they don’t use AptX.
However, if your device does not support AptX, you can also get the same better quality sound by connecting your device via the 3.5mm port. However, in these days of wireless and mobility, fewer and fewer Bluetooth-enabled speakers are coming with that option.