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Room Help? (photos)

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by CygnusX1, Sep 16, 2006.

  1. CygnusX1

    CygnusX1 Auditioning

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    A couple of years ago, I added a sizeable extension to our little first home. I decided to make the new living room large enough for whatever. I ended up making it 18' deep and 23' wide with an 8' ceiling. I didn't know much about HT construction but I knew enough to run some wire in the walls for the surrounds. I have been enjoying it alot but I want to improve the room acoustics. As you can see in the photos I started with some patio cushions in the front corners for bass traps. Not sure if they are doing anything but I am investigating options. I include photos from all sides so you can see speaker and furniture placement. The two openings behind the HT wall are going to get french doors and possibly curtains. Half of the rear wall is open to a large dining/family room with a cathedral ceiling and a stone fireplace. I am thinking about closing the opening with curtains?

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    Any suggestions for room treatments? I think it is a very reflective room as it stands.

    Thanks,
    Dave
     
  2. Brian D H

    Brian D H Second Unit

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    Option 1 (Very low WAF):
    - Wall to wall carpet
    - Acoustic panels either spaced at reflective points or simply on top half of all walls
    - Bass traps (if necessary - may not be after the above)
    (Remember that the above suggestions still leave half the surface area reflective because your ceiling is completely smooth and flat.)

    Option 2 (Very High WAF)
    - Larger area rug with thicker padding
    - Book cases
    - Fabric wall hangings and curtains
     
  3. CygnusX1

    CygnusX1 Auditioning

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    I got the "better half" to let me experiment with some panels. [​IMG]

    I ordered (6) 24" x 48" x 2" Owens Corning 703 rigid FG panels. I am going to try to get left and right first reflection points and then try the panels on the rear wall to compare effects.

    With two of the boards, I plan to make four "strips", 12" x 48" and stack them in two of the corners. These will be narrow but tall bass traps, basically a 12" wide by 8' tall panel in both front corners. (not ugly at all)

    Once I get the wall panels where I like them...and she likes them. I will burlap them and see if she lets me keep them there. (cross fingers).

    I really like the idea of a larger area rug and heavier padding. I will have to pass that idea on to the wife. I also am going to hang a couple of velvet curtains over the two openings on the HT wall. The bookshelf would have to be expensive to be accepted, so I am not going to bring that up yet. [​IMG]

    I am going to do a mix of your ideas, Brian D H, and hopefully It will be OK. I am also concerned about that large expanse of ceiling. But panels on the ceiling may be a bit tough to sell. The wife really wants crown molding so I may go with the foam type, which may help a bit acoustically..??..maybe.

    I am also pondering a Radio Shack SPL meter and a test CD so that I can quantify what I hear.
     
  4. CygnusX1

    CygnusX1 Auditioning

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    UPDATES ON TWEAKING:

    Well I spent a couple of hours with the 63 test tone CD I downloaded from the net.

    When I first listened carefully to each tone, I found some major valleys and peaks.

    The largest valley was at 45Hz. 45Hz was really prominent in the left room corners both front and back. On the couch, 45Hz was virtually non-existent! No surprise, most of 90Hz was also missing.

    30Hz, 35Hz, and 40Hz were also fairly low.

    I had a very large peak at 65Hz. Super Boomy.

    85Hz-95Hz was the width of the 90Hz valley.

    According to MY ears the sound range is from 30Hz to 16KHz before and after that I pretty much hear nothing....



    SOLUTIONS:
    Move the sub back against the wall with about 2" clearance - this brought the 30Hz and 35Hz to life.

    Stacked some outdoor cushions in the front and back left corners. This brought back some 40Hz.

    Changed the crossover in the Onkyo to 80Hz and set the FRONTS to LARGE. This sends the front speakers full range. This brought 85-95 in but it also gave me a new huge peak at 65Hz.

    I adjusted the subwoofer crossover and was easily able to bring down the 65Hz peak.

    As a result, I was able to raise the subwoofer gain a bit to match up with the mid's and the high's.


    Conclusion:
    It is not perfect but as you run through the test tones, you dont get any dramatic peaks or valleys anymore. The sound is RICH and SMOOTH. I listened to all types of music and it just simply amazes me. Orchestra is so good that I can pick out instruments in the field and I can hear the string bows breathing on the strings. Neil Pearts drum solo on the R30 DVD is simply awesome. The bass drum is absolutely in my livingroom and the snare rim shots are ALIVE!! We listened to Jazz at 70 on the volume dial and my wife usually complains around 65. She was very impressed.

    Future:
    I ordered six 2'x4' sheets of 2" Owens Corning 703. I will play around with those to try to eliminate first reflections and to create some corner bass traps on the left side (front and rear) of the room.

    -Dave
     

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