Room structure and bass. What would you do with this?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Chris PC, Mar 23, 2003.

  1. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    My basement room is funky. It has two concrete walls adjacent one another, and a concrete floor (with underpad and carpet), (the three concrete surfaces form a corner) a drop ceiling of ceiling tiles with egg cartons underneath, and two walls made of flimsy panelling. The panel walls have no drywall and therefore, I believe, they do not act as true barrier walls. The rooms dimensions are: 14 foot 3" x 12 feet. Drop ceiling at 7 feet 1". Wooden floor/ceiling above at approx 8 feet (so 12 inches of space above the drop ceiling).

    Here is what I noticed with my older stereo, with 50 watt per channel amp and 8 inch woofer Boston Acoustics acoustic suspension speakers. When I used to have my stereo along one of the flimsy walls, and I sat near one of the concrete walls or the corner of the two concrete walls, I noticed that there was more low bass when I sat there. Duh. No kidding? Well, why is it now that I have my new speakers and subwoofer along the concrete wall, that sitting out by the flimsy panel wall, I don't get the same bass response. It seems to me that listening position in a room is as important, or more important than where the speakers/subwoofer are. You'd figure with the speakers/sub along the concrete wall that bass response would be good, but its not necessarily so. Another noted characteristic of my bass leaky room is that when I'm in the other end of the basement, effectively in another "room" (separated only by the flimsy panels), near the other concrete walls of the basement, I can hear and feel bass possibly better than at my listening position back in the room where my equipment is playing? So with the older system, I had the enhanced bass of sitting by the concrete walls or concrete corner. I didn't set up my new system the way the old setup was. I believe I noticed though, that when I had my old system setup the way my system is now, it had less bass. I intend to find and purchase a BFD to EQ my listening position and do some tweaking, however, I still wonder about the flimsy walls. Here is my question.

    Should I replace the flimsy panel walls with proper drywall walls? This would create a more solid room. Would this complicate things or improve things or is there no way of knowing until I actually did it? Ie the results would be totally unpredictable and likely involve standing waves etc.

    Why don't I just re-arrange my room so I have my listening position near the concrete walls again? I could try that, and I might, but it would be difficult and involve extreme re-wiring and re-configuration of the room.

    I was thinking of doing some testing, and here is how! I could bring my receiver, CD and DVD player, speakers AND subwoofer all up into the room directly above me and experiment to see what things sound like in there. The room above is totally structurally sound, like a normal room with regular wood or drywall walls. almost identical in shape to within 2 or 3 inches, EXCEPT for the closet! It would be a huge hassle, but I think I would learn something from this experiment.

    So should I replace the flimsy panels with true structural walls made of drywall?

    thanx for any ideas [​IMG]
     
  2. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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    The standing waves between the concrete walls are probably going to be very strong depending on the listening position. Maybe during your tests, you were positioned to hear the "ringing" bass between the concrete walls.

    Instead of replacing the flimsy panels with drywall, have you thought of altering the concrete walls by softening them? A reason you hear a lot of bass behind the flimsy walls could be because the walls resonate therefore transfering some of the bass frequencies. By making those walls solid, you will probably reinforce the standing waves more in the room which could be better or for worse.

    What are your priorities? Do you want sound isolation from other rooms, or do you want a room that is acoustically dead? Perhaps you're just looking for a decent bass response in which case a BFD may be all that you'll need.
     
  3. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    I think I didn't explain it right. The two concrete walls are adjacent one another, and not opposite one another. That is how they form the "corner". A corner that includes the concrete floor.

    Good bass response mainly. I think I might make at least one wall, the one immediately behind my listening position, a drywall wall, but not the fourth wall. I'll do some testing in one of the other rooms of the house, but for now, I will look for the BFD [​IMG]
     

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