There is no doubt that placing the Bybee V2 on the loudspeaker baffles enhances the resolution of your loudspeakers as pointed out in the June StereoTimes article.
|Bybee V2 on the front baffle of one of my loudspeakers.|
It took me weeks of listening however to figure out that this affected the soundstage in my system and room. The V2's it seemed were almost too powerful on the front baffles of my speakers. This led to great resolution, but placed too much emphasis (for my taste) on the location of the speakers themselves. The resolution was astounding, but the speakers tended to have less of a disappearing act as a result of having the V2's on the front baffle.
My listening preference is for the location of the speakers to be undetectable sonically. leaving in it's place a soundscape that extends beyond the boundaries of the room. With a setup like this, and a good recording, I am transferred to the space where the recording is made.
This post came out of my experimentation with placement of the V2's in my listening room. The goal of this weeks long experiment was to have the resolution the V2's brought to the system and the soundscape I desired. It may not be your cup of tea, but for those who have tried the V2's on the front baffle of their speakers and had similar findings to mine, this might be the ticket for you.
So as I mentioned above, I felt the V2's might actually be a bit too powerful for speaker baffles, I wanted something slightly less powerful. Dark Matter Technologies products fit the bill in this regard. They have a similar, but less powerful effect than the V2's, and work very well together with them. I found the Qubes to work well in conjunction with Wormhole Dots, to get the effect I wanted without drawing too much attention to the speaker locations. More on that later however.
For those of you not familiar with the Bybee V2, below is a photo.
|The Bybee IQSE V2|
The new DMT Wormhole Dots are thinner, more attractive and way, way more powerful than the original Dots. We found them to work best on AC, on loudspeaker baffles, and as a room treatment. They are pictured below.
|The DMT Wormhole Dot. $99 each.|
The CanvasMy listening studio is about 15' wide and 25' deep. Towards the back of the room at about the 15 foot mark, the room opens up another 5 feet wider to accommodate a kitchenette, and further behind that is a set of stairs leading down to the ground level.
|The listening studio|
Below are our results after much placing, removing, and evaluating the V2's over several weeks.
Placement. One Step At A Time
Keeping in mind that the V2's aren't cheap, we have broken down our ideal setup into steps, so that you can add V2's as funds permit. It only takes 8 to get the sound we have alluded to. You can add more, and it will only solidify and intensify the effect. I had up to 12 in my room at one point, but one can get 90% there with only 8.
Step 1: Centered on the wall behind the speakersIf you only purchase a single V2, this is THE place to try it first. This will add depth, strengthen the center image, and also have the sonic attributes described above. Adjusting the height of placement affects image height. I like this V2 at about 65" off of the floor.
Step 2: The corners are THE key
Since the V2's work on the nitrogen component of our atmosphere, and sound tends to really bunch up in the corners of a room, it makes sense that they would be really effective here. The next 2 V2's (2 and 3 respectively) in the placement went into the corners where the ceiling meets the side walls and wall behind the speakers.
|V2 placed in the corner behind one of the speakers. Each corner behind the speakers were treated.|
|V2 placed in the lower corner of the listening room, behind the speakers. Surprisingly, this placement created a very significant improvement in soundstage height, width and depth.|
The pattern the placement of V2's created made an X on the wall behind the speakers. With one V2 at each end of the lines making the X, and one approximately at the intersection of the lines. I say approximately because by adjusting the height of the center V2, you can adjust image height. I ended up with the Center V2 about 65" off of the floor.
With the X pattern, the depth of image was greatly enhanced, vocals and lower frequencies sounded more open and natural.
|The X pattern created by the V2 placements.|
Step 3: Behind your listening chair
The 6th and 7th V2's were placed behind my listening chair. I have a corner off to my right, and one naturally went there. The fourth V2 was on the ceiling behind the listening position and off to the left. Essentially equidistant to the V2 that was in the corner to behind and to the right of my listening chair. I had no symmetrical corner to the left of me, so this set up the boundaries of the soundstage and kept it balanced. Adding the V2's behind my listening position further depressurized the room, making it feel larger than it is, but it also brought the soundstage around the side walls and behind me. Reverb or hall ambience now filled every corner of the room, and produced a natural, engaging and immersive sound.
Step 4: Completing the X pattern on the ceilingA V2 centered on the ceiling can improve image height and the sense of immersion. Again, it is all about balancing the front and rear V2's. My ceilings are 8' high and the distance between my speakers and listening position is a little over 10'. I find ceiling placement more beneficial in larger rooms with greater distances between listener and speakers. With a V2 Centered on the Ceiling, the soundstage was more immersive, but narrower. It drew the focus back to the center. Taking my cue from the placement of V2's on the wall behind the speakers, I placed 2 more V2's as near the corner of the listening space as I could. These however were near the ceiling, with the V2 placed behind me at the center was mid way between the ceiling and floor.
|If you look closely, you can see the V2 on the ceiling, just in front of the white diffuser. You can also see the V2 centered between the speakers on the window frame.|
What The V2/Dot combination Brings To Your System & Room
In every application of the V2, there is a common thread of sonic benefit. Clarity with low level resolution and speed, all with an even tonality. The sound is never forced or mechanical, unless of course that is how it is meant to sound. For acoustic instruments and the human voice, there is an ease and flow to the music that is quite simply more lifelike. Piano music is simply stunning. The complexity of music is there before you, around you, with openness harmonic complexity, dynamic richness. It makes you shut the analytical part of your brain off after the initial shock passes. You sit, for hours, in musical ecstasy. The effect improves when given more time, taking 24 hours to reach 90% of it's effect and 3-5 days to attain the remaining 10%. For those of you with less patience, the first effects are heard within 30 minutes.
Unlike other brands of room tweaks/treatments, the V2 is fuller, warmer, richer and to my ears, way more natural.
Placing the V2 in the room can quite literally make the room boundaries sound as if they have vanished, placing you in the recording venue when the recording is well done.
The Bybee V2 is essential to creating an immersive, engaging musical experience in a room. Right up there with Speaker placement, power conditioning, and conventional room acoustic treatment. Dare I say it's a 4th pillar in the foundation of a high quality music system? Yes, I am going to go that far. They are essential, and a must try for any music lover who craves a listening experience that makes them get up and dance, sing, air-guitar, whatever floats your boat.