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Acoustical Treatments Because the room matters

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Old 09-21-2019, 02:47 AM
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Default Finally Ordered Acoustic Panels

After months of going back and forth on the return on investment for acoustic panels, I finally broke down and ordered some today, I have tweaked my system in so many ways imaginable, the biggest improvement may yet come from room treatments.

I ordered two sets of the Impression Series from GIK and 10, 36"x24"x2" acoustic panels from Acoustimac. I wound up ordering the sample kit from Acoustimac to be sure which colors and fabric I wanted. I was set on the suede and executive fabrics, once the sample kit arrived, the DMD fabric was the best of them all IMO.

I'm really looking forward to installing these panels and seeing how well they work. Now the wait begins!
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Old 09-22-2019, 09:02 PM
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When placed appropriately, you will be very satisfied with the results of room treatment. I have a mixture of ASC Tube traps and acoutimac panels and i am very satisfied with the end result. Congratulations and keep us posted on your thoughts.
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Old 09-23-2019, 12:32 PM
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When you get those placed such that they attenuate the primary reflection points in your room (relative to speaker and listening position) you'll slap your forehead and say "why didn't I do this a long time ago!!??"
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Old 09-23-2019, 02:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sircharles View Post
When placed appropriately, you will be very satisfied with the results of room treatment. I have a mixture of ASC Tube traps and acoutimac panels and i am very satisfied with the end result. Congratulations and keep us posted on your thoughts.
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When you get those placed such that they attenuate the primary reflection points in your room (relative to speaker and listening position) you'll slap your forehead and say "why didn't I do this a long time ago!!??"
Thank you both, this is very encouraging and helpful. Are there tools available to get an understanding of the main reflection points? I get the back and side walls are critical. How about the ceiling and back walls?

Thanks.
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Old 09-23-2019, 03:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarSanz View Post
Thank you both, this is very encouraging and helpful. Are there tools available to get an understanding of the main reflection points? I get the back and side walls are critical. How about the ceiling and back walls?

Thanks.
Hi Mar,
You can use a simple mirror to determine your first reflection points for your panels. Just slide along the each side of the room to see the reflection points for each speaker. You will note that the left and right speakers on each side of the room have their own respective reflection points, and ideally, you have a panel at each point on each side for each speaker.

Regading the panels you ordered from AcoustiMac, the "acoustical panels", are sound-absorbing, and are best for attenuating and mitigating slap echo, but they won't do anything to add diffusion, and thereby life and sparkle to your room. I've found I don't need much of these as my space is pretty heavily furnished (see photos below). I do have a panel from AcoustiMac on a wall that separate my living space from the kitchen area and above a large picture window that is an "outside" wall.

I'm going to go out on a limb and guess you will find the GIK Acoustics Impressions panels will provide the most notable and enjoyable improvement. I was kindly gifted 8 of the GIK Acoustics Alpha 4A panels and 4 GIK Polyfusors by a local AA member, and its turned out the Alpha 4A panels have brought, by far, the biggest improvement. I originally put all four Polyfusors into my well-furnished "room" and it sucked all the life out of the presentation. So, now, I only have one, in 1 corner of the space. The other 3 are presently sitting unused in the spare bedroom.

The Alpha 4A panels, OTOH, really bring a very nice improvement, and I've now got 5-6 of them in the room. I'm still playing around with placement with some of the remaining 4As but I have two along the "front wall" (which in my case is a half-wall, one at a reflection point in the window behind the couch, and two in the corners between the outside wall (near the big window) and the corner of the half-wall on top of the REL sub.

You've probably read what the Alpha 4A and Impression panels do, and I really like the improvements they bring. They are intended to provide both some diffusion and liven up a room, and they do this in a very nice and natural-sounding way. They make the presenation more spacious, lively, and "focused" in a very good way, and they also improve the imaging of the stereo sound field.

There is a technical paper on what they do on the GIK web site on Decoding Diffusion: https://www.gikacoustics.com/decodin...tic-solutions/

I'm using the linear 1D panels, 4" deep as that is what I was kindly given by Keith.

Here are some pics to show you how I am using the Alpha 4A diffusor panels.
The main rack and the Harbeths. You can see two the panels on the half-wall behind the main rack.


A wide-angle view, showing the panel on the left at a first-reflection point. You can also a see an AcousticMac acoustical panel on the wall near the celing and above the couch and window.
.

Behind the right speaker:


Behind the left speaker:
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Old 09-23-2019, 03:45 PM
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Yesterday I brought in two more Alpha 4A panels and set them in cater-corner at the corners of the front (and side walls).





As the 4A panels are 4" deep and have acoustical rock wool fill, they also function as a bass trap.
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Old 09-23-2019, 05:46 PM
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Stephen.......Very attractive room and setup.


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Old 09-23-2019, 06:15 PM
Soundmig Soundmig is offline
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As Stephen (Puma Cat) says, the mirror method works really well and will give you the locations that "must be" treated. Most acoustics guru's also say that you can add too much absorption, but you can't add in too much diffusion, so if you have any "budget" left over - add some diffusors. Diffusion instead of absorption behind the speakers (front wall) is generally a good idea, and diffusion at other points around the room can be helpful as well. I see that Stephen is using diffusion enhanced absorption devices - good call!!!! If budget becomes an issue I've found that hitting the ceiling and back wall reflection points with inexpensive high density polyester absorption panels (cheap at amazon.com) are surprisingly effective and can be attached using those removable 3M mounting strips. Those can also be cut in half (at a 45 degree angle) to make triangles that can be mounted as "flags" to the wall/ceiling interface which cuts down on flutter and "splash".
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Old 09-23-2019, 06:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdandy View Post
Stephen.......Very attractive room and setup.


Thank you, Dan!

It sounds pretty nice, too.
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Old 09-23-2019, 06:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundmig View Post
As Stephen (Puma Cat) says, the mirror method works really well and will give you the locations that "must be" treated. Most acoustics guru's also say that you can add too much absorption, but you can't add in too much diffusion, so if you have any "budget" left over - add some diffusors. Diffusion instead of absorption behind the speakers (front wall) is generally a good idea, and diffusion at other points around the room can be helpful as well. I see that Stephen is using diffusion enhanced absorption devices - good call!!!! If budget becomes an issue I've found that hitting the ceiling and back wall reflection points with inexpensive high density polyester absorption panels (cheap at amazon.com) are surprisingly effective and can be attached using those removable 3M mounting strips. Those can also be cut in half (at a 45 degree angle) to make triangles that can be mounted as "flags" to the wall/ceiling interface which cuts down on flutter and "splash".
Great info!

Yes, the GIK Alpha 4A panels work really, really well. The 1-dimensional pattern of slots in these cause a mathematically random scattering of sound waves and really improve the sound quality. And, I would agree that you can't have too much. This is exactly what James at GIK told me as well, and when I bring in additional panels from the spare bedroom and set them up, each one makes the presentation better. The only issue I'm having right now is I've got pretty much all the easy places to place these already occupied with these. There is another place in the room where it would be beneficial to place one of these at 1st reflection point on the right side, but presently it means I have temporarily place a small Ikea end table there and then put the 4A panel on it, as it is too thick to mount permanently to the wall in this position. I'll probably order some 2" thick 24" x 24" panels and mount one there, and put the other along the remainder of the big picture window along the left side of room, behind the couch.

In my case, I don't really need to worry about the rear wall because my listening space opens to a 40' long hallway down to my master bedroom. So, I don't have much of an issue with reflection off the back wall causing peaks or nulls in the room modes.

All told, I am very impressed how well these GIK 4A diffusors work! You can immediately hear the positive improvement they bring.
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