If you are trying to maximize the benefits of having speakers in your home, or you just bought new ones to get along with your TV, it has never been easier to set up speakers safely and start enjoying the music and movies played on your TV. Setting up speakers was quite difficult before, as there were many things you had to keep in mind about safety, especially if you were setting up speakers near your TV.

Whether it is safe to put speakers near a TV depends mostly on the TV. Speakers contain powerful magnets whose strong magnetic fields might distort the image on a cathode ray tube television. However, modern televisions are not impacted by this, so it is okay to put speakers near modern TVs.

Given the different kinds of sound systems available in the market today, it may get overwhelming about what you need to buy and place speakers so that they are most effective and safe. Speakers placed thoughtlessly near the TV may distort the sound but may not be secure. In this article, you will learn about the factors that determine whether it is safe to put speakers near a TV, so keep on reading.

Speakers Cause Electromagnetic Interference

Speakers contain magnets that have a magnetic field around it. The magnetic field causes an electromagnetic interference that may cause disturbance or distortion in the output of any other electrical equipment such as a TV placed in close proximity to its magnetic field.

Electromagnetic interference compromises any nearby electrical devices’ quality and performance by degrading the data or losing it completely. When speakers are close to the TV, the magnets inside the speakers tend to have a similar effect on the TV’s audio and video output, causing the result to be completely skewed.

Here is a detailed video explaining the biological impact of electromagnetic interference on plants:

YouTube video

Why It May Not Be Safe to Put a Speaker Near a TV

Keeping a speaker near a TV may lead to picture distortion. There is one caveat to this claim, though – a lot of these distortions happen on the earlier versions of the TVs, which were cathode ray tubes. With the advent of modern technology and LCD screens filling out that TV shelf in our living rooms, the speakers no longer pose as much of a danger.

However, if you are using the old cathode ray tube TVs, then the speaker’s magnetic field will distort the image. These TVs were built to utilize electron ray guns to project the image on the screen.

If speakers are kept too close to the TV, then the magnet from the speaker would pull these electrons, thereby distorting the image you see on the TV. Over a prolonged period, this could permanently damage the receptors on the front of the TV.

What Happens if a Magnet Is Placed Near Your TV?

Apart from the imminent danger of the end product being distorted, and the long-term exposure leads to permanent damage to the picture tube, the magnets in the speaker may cause stray magnetic fields, which can extend at significant strength, interfering with the typical day-to-day function of your TV set.

Till now, there were no effective standards recommended to help reduce this problem. Magnetic shielding is one of the methods found to be slightly effective in this regard. It is done with a degaussing coil that removes the magnetic fields created inside the picture tube. You will find more information on magnetic shielding in the subsequent paragraphs of this article.

How Unsafe Is It to Put Speakers Near a TV?

Depending on the TV, putting speakers near it may be quite damaging to the TV. Doing this makes the picture tube of the TV most vulnerable. If a speaker has a powerful magnet, as most large speakers usually do, it is recommended not to place those speakers next to the TV as it will gradually erode the TV’s performance.

The speakers’ placement is vital in securing the best sound for your listening pleasure and ensuring the other electrical devices are smoothly running around it, such as a TV.

What Is the Impact of Placing Speakers Near Cathode Ray TVs?

Cathode ray TV sets are relatively older and made of technology of the bygone years. It is equipped with a picture ray tube with an electron gun firing electrons on the screen. These electrons sweep up and down and back and forth many times in a given second to ultimately generate the picture that we can see on the screen.

With the placement of speakers in proximity to cathode-ray TVs, the electromagnetic field from the magnets inside the speakers interferes with the picture tube of the cathode ray TV. It forms an electromagnetic field in the picture tube. This results in data distortion and leads to the picture quality being impacted.

Even in general, it is advised not to hold a piece of magnet too close to the TV screen as it could permanently and irreparably distort the screen.

Are Magnets From Speakers Damaging to LCD TVs?

Magnets usually do not impact LCD TVs the way they do a cathode ray TV. However, intentionally keeping magnets near a flat-screen TV may distort the screen irreparably, resulting in the color scheme being wrongly shown on the screen and damaging the picture tube.

However, LCDs work using tiny voltages to produce pixels of color, unlike its predecessor, the cathode ray TV that used electrons. Because of this reason, they remain unaffected by the proximity of the speaker and can function just as well even if the speaker is placed near them.

Are Plasma, LED, and 4K TVs Affected by Electromagnetic Fields?

Magnetic fields do not affect plasma, LED, and 4k TV sets, much like LCD TVs. The logic also remains the same as these TVs use static liquid crystals to generate images rather than electrons that cathode ray TVs use.

That being said, these TVs are too sensitive to any changes to the electrical field, but it would take a substantial amount of interference to impact the display in any way.

Some of the LED and LCD TVs in the market today, such as the Samsung Electronics 32 “1080p Smart LED TV, are resistant to the magnetic field caused by the magnets in speakers.

Can Magnetic Shielding Help Prevent Damages to the TV?

Electromagnetic shielding is done by blocking the magnetic field by creating barriers of either conductive or magnetic materials. This helps build an enclosure that helps isolate the electrical device from its surrounding devices.

However, it has been found that even when using magnetic shielding, stray magnetic fields may still be present and cannot be harnessed fully. So, that does not guarantee the TV’s immunity from the magnets’ electromagnetic interference in the speaker.

It is always good to place the magnets slightly further away from the television in such cases.


If you want to have an immersive experience with your movies, music, games, and podcasts, it is vital to know how to place speakers the right way, but it is also important to keep safety in mind the whole time. Putting speakers near a TV was not advisable at one point in time due to the interference produced in the magnetic fields. However, as technology evolves, these things are also changing, and it is becoming increasingly safer to put speakers near the TV.