Published at Wednesday, July 31st 2019, 07:41:29 AM. Speaker Stands. By Emestina Krause.
We might call them bookshelf speakers, but does that mean it’s a good idea to put them on one? Nothing is stopping you from doing it, but it’s your sound performance that’s at stake – and there’s much to lose – and, if you’ve just shelled out a significant amount for your new speakers, it’s a bad start to what should be a great investment.
Whether you use stands or platforms depends on what else you have in your system: usually you’ll pick whichever makes it easiest to get your speakers into the right physical position without them being occluded by other equipment, such as computer screens.
The heavier the stand, the less it will move, and with many hi–fi and pro–audio speaker stands (including many of the models made by Atacama, for example), it’s possible to fill the hollow support column with a heavy material to add mass and to damp resonances. This could be sand, shot or any other heavy but well–damped material.
If you visit the various hi–fi forums you’ll find a number of conflicting views on what the best material to use is, but there’s often little to back up people’s claims, and I’d suggest that that way lies madness! Dry playground sand works just fine, and you can even leave it inside plastic bags if you wish to avoid things getting messy.
The HMS Series is considered to be Audiophile level by many and incorporates a significant increase in mass loading capacity and designed with very high quality speakers in mind such ProAc and other premium manufactures.
One of the roles of an effective speaker support is to prevent such vibrations from being transferred into other structures, such as wooden floors, desktops, shelves or mixer meterbridges. It should also hold the speaker as firmly as possible, to reduce movement due to the action/reaction effect.
Thus, the sand provides dampening, but it also prevents the stand from ringing when it’s excited by the right frequencies – another handy little add-on.