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Sound Isolation .vs. Acoustic Treatment

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Lewis_Cobb, Dec 5, 2004.

  1. Lewis_Cobb

    Lewis_Cobb Auditioning

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    Hello - I have been lurking here for quite some time in the process of researching a home theater project I would like to start next year. After reading and re-reading many posts on the subject of room construction / treatment I could not find the answer to my question so I thought I'd toss up a question.

    Can the construction techniques that are commonly used to provide sound isolation (staggered studs, blocking, rc channels, insulation in the wall cavity) - affect the sound quality INSIDE the listening room and the subsequent acoustic treatment for sound quality?

    Here's my issue - I am the only one in the house - there are no other sources of noise outside the room and I don't really need to worry about "isolation" issues as a result. However, I want to make sure that any construction techniques do not cause me undue torment down the road when I am doing the measurements/treatments required in the room to create a proper acoustic environment inside the room.

    The only thing that I can think of at this stage is the tampanic resonances of sheetrock causing the "room boom" issues people talk about but I am under the impression that bass traps will assist here. I have a room in a basment that has sheetrock but unfinished ceiling (floor joists exposed) and unfinished floor (concrete slab). 2 walls are outside walls with the framing spaced off the concrete by 3 inches and insulation that's a full 8+ inches thick behind the sheetrock. The other two walls are interior walls - one is 2x6 one is 2x4 - they are sheetrocked and empty inside.

    I am not against tearing open all the walls and re-doing things once I start this project - there will be far more money spent on other things and this cost will be small compared to the overall budget - but I don't want to waste time and money either if it's not really necessary.

    Anyway, if anyone can point me to some documentation on this sort of subject it would be greatly appreciated.

    Lewis
     
  2. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Wayne
    I expect it’s only the over-the-top types talking like this. “Room boom” is an issue with standing waves, which in turn is an issue with room dimensions, not vibrating sheetrock. Bass traps and (especially) sub equalization can make a dramatic difference.

    Even if the sheetrock does contribute to the problem, it would be completely overwhelmed by the audible effects of the room’s acoustical input – reflections, standing waves, etc. Also consider: A powerful subwoofer can indeed make the walls vibrate, but what will you be actually hearing - the walls or the sub?

    If you’re really worried about it you can use thicker 5/8” sheetrock – perhaps even double up on it - and go with closer spacing of 2 x 4’s – say 12” centers instead of 18”. You might also use metal studs, which are denser than wood.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  3. Lewis_Cobb

    Lewis_Cobb Auditioning

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    Wayne - thanks very much for your feedback on this. I appreciate it. I am still months away from starting to swing a hammer and will probably have a few more questions in the meantime. You folks on this forum are a friendly lot [​IMG]

    Cheers,
    Lewis
     

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