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vman
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Room Size

Newbe - thought of posting this in Entry Level but this forum may be more appropriate.

I am building a new room (office and hopefully listening room) and am concerned that it may be too small for quality listening.

Dimensions are about 15" square (not exactly square, one wall may be a foot longer), with two walls vaulted to a 9 or 9 1/2 foot ceiling. The two vaulted walls are connected forming a corner. So back wall is normal (where the speakers would be), right wall is normal, front wall (listening position) vaulted, left wall vaulted.

I can place the speakers 7 - 8 feet apart, can sit 8 feet back (speakers recommend listening distance match speaker distance) with at least 5 feet more behind me (vaulted).

Cool looking glass skylights (that can open) will be added to both vaulted ceilings.

I have a Cayin 50T tube amp, Dali IKON 6 speakers - thinking of adding a sub as well.

So is this doable, or am I gonna hate it? Any advice?

Much appreciated!

dcstep
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Re: Room Size

Yes, it can work. It'll help a lot if you have heavily padded furniture, thick rugs and other "stuff" in there. Don't get real hung up on trying to set up by measuring. Thankfully it's got some irregularities. Your spacing along the front wall sounds about right. However you'll have to work a lot to get the fullest bass possible without ruining your midrange. There's a thread about the Sumiko Master Set method for placing speakers.

If you're really interested in trying that I'll give you a tutorial here.

If you could post a picture or two of your room we might give better advice.

Dave

vman
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Re: Room Size

Some pics. The back wall (with the door) is where the system / speakers will be. Ceiling will be raised about 2 feet. Skylights added to vaults. Knee wall about 4 feet high.

pics located at:
http://gallery.mac.com/vinnie4639/100010

Thanks!

dcstep
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Re: Room Size

Yes, all those irregularities will work to your advantage. It will be helpful to have thick carpeting and some overstuffed furniture.

Is the floor pretty solid? I'm afraid it won't be and you may need a stout cabinet for your turntable, or a very stout wall mount. I'm using an armoire with a very solid bottom shelf and an isolation base to get good isolation for the TT and hide away the electronics gracefully. In that frame part of the structure you may need something like that.

The process of setting the speakers is pretty involved, so when you ready let us know. Better yet, buy a Sumiko distributed product like Vienna Acoustic or Sonus Faber and have the dealer set the speakers for you.

Dave

vman
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Re: Room Size

I was going to place the tube amp and turntable on top of a nice wall table, with other components inside or within exposed openings. I will make sure it is substantial.

I was planning on having a hard wood floor border (2 feet?) around the outside of the room with carpet in the middle. That way the table would have solid footing. Good idea - or does this introduce too much reflection?

Oh - and when discussing this with my dealer he offered to come by and help. Little plug here - working with a dealer has saved me more money (taking home components to audition that don't work out, helping to setup the turntable, etc) then I could have ever have saved buying components for a little less on-line.

Thanks for your help.

dcstep
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Re: Room Size


Quote:
I was going to place the tube amp and turntable on top of a nice wall table, with other components inside or within exposed openings. I will make sure it is substantial.

I was planning on having a hard wood floor border (2 feet?) around the outside of the room with carpet in the middle. That way the table would have solid footing. Good idea - or does this introduce too much reflection?

Oh - and when discussing this with my dealer he offered to come by and help. Little plug here - working with a dealer has saved me more money (taking home components to audition that don't work out, helping to setup the turntable, etc) then I could have ever have saved buying components for a little less on-line.

The hardwood border should not be a problem at all and will look nice I suspect. Make sure it's wide enough to put any stand or cabinet either totally on it or totally off it; otherwise it may be unstable. Predicting the ideal place for you speakers relative to the front wall is impossible until actually get them in the room. They could be anywhere from six-inches to four-feet from the rear wall. My wild guess is that the rears will be about 2-feet from the wall.

I love great dealer stories. I've got a great one here in Colorado (Soundings). Not only have I gotten great service, but they've beat internet pricing on several of my components. Spending two hours helping me find the ideal placement for my speakers was a giant benefit.

Keep us posted on your progress.

Dave

ethanwiner
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Re: Room Size

Square is not a good shape, but it can work okay given enough bass traps. Even non-square rooms benefit greatly from bass traps. When all else is equal, larger is better than well-proportioned.

--Ethan

KBK
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Re: Room Size


Quote:
Some pics. The back wall (with the door) is where the system / speakers will be. Ceiling will be raised about 2 feet. Skylights added to vaults. Knee wall about 4 feet high.

pics located at:
http://gallery.mac.com/vinnie4639/100010

Thanks!

Make sure the skylights are symmetrical in the room if at all possible, that will lend a bit of even reduction in nodes. A bit of pressur enode calculation will make the ir location perfect. I expect them to be big - in comparison to the room's longest dimension. Ie, decent fraction thereof (24"x24") so the centering of them should not create that much of an issue.

As well, in the lower sharp corners, lay a tube trap corner round on it's side, in corners, radiating out. that's two traps per corner, each sticking outward from that corner. A total of 4 traps. Easy on the stuffed chairs and any heavy wall treatment, all it does is suck the life out of the upper midrange and highs....while leaving all other problems intact. The floor on the listening end and the wall right behind you, on the steep slope, that's a good place to have a bit of wall treatment, to cut the 'cupping' or 'horn loading' of the mid levels. The whole sloped wall/floor interface is a pressure node build up area, which is where treatment becomes most effective. A cross between diffusion and absorption in this area will work wonders to help it acoustically disappear. Racks of music are good here, but not racks of gear. You don't want to dump the energy in the highest pressure area....into your gear. That's a bad thing.

vman
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Re: Room Size

OK - so I actually have 2 spaces I can use to make a room. The original one I shared with you is a spare room on the second floor (12' 8" x 15' 7").

I also have a third floor attic I can use. It' more narrow (11' 3") but much longer (30').

I have updated the images on my site (link in several posts in this thread). Any idea on which is better?

The third floor bothers me because it is narrow and I will not be able to get my speakers very far apart - thus my listening position will be near. The second floor bothers me because it is not very deep.

Hell, I'd turn the dining room into a listening room if it had doors - we're never in there!

BTW - all the measurements are to where the wall would be once built, assuming a 4 ft high wall prior to the vault. And the posts in the third floor attic will be removed - support will be handled another way. The second floor option will be cheaper.

Thanks!

dcstep
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Re: Room Size

I'd be most tempted by that third floor space. It's got good volume, particularly if you can keep it vaulted in the center of the room. At the point of that alcove it's 17' deep, with is generous. You don't have to center the speakers on that long wall because there's plenty of space to avoid sidewall reflections.

If you have to put a low ceiling in there, then it could be problematic. Will you be able to keep it vaulted in the middle length of the room? If so, then it could be a really nice space. Have them double the wall board to maximize stiffness and consider sound deadening wallboard or insulation behind them and under the floor.

That alcove would be nice for equipment, then run high quality interconnects to little Rowland mono-blocks behind each speaker. Of course, you could put equipment all kinds of places in there.

Looks like you're going to have fun.

Dave

vman
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Re: Room Size

Yeah - I would keep it vaulted to 9 feet in the center. That 3 foot raised area will contain built in cubby holes on top - sized for LP's.

I had another idea as well. The alcove exists because I have to work around the HVAC equipment. I could build a 3 foot high enclosure (with access panel) there instead of a wall - matching the 3 foot high section on the other end of the room. I could then place my hi-fi equipment on nice wood sections on that 3 ft wall, with speakers at the top end of the room. Thoughts?

I am confused on where you are saying you would put the speakers. I want to put a small desk in there for when I work at home as well.

dcstep
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Re: Room Size


Quote:

I am confused on where you are saying you would put the speakers. I want to put a small desk in there for when I work at home as well.

Ideally I'd put the speakers along the long wall, opposite the alcove. The ends can also work, but placement will be hypercritical, given the shortness of those walls. Most of that can be resolved with careful placement and, perhaps, some room treatment.

Dave

ethanwiner
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Re: Room Size


Quote:
Any idea on which is better?


The longer room for sure.


Quote:
thus my listening position will be near.


Nothing wrong with near-field listening!

BTW, the main advantage of a long room is the wall behind you is much farther away. The rear wall is a prime source of peaks and nulls. The farther back it is, the better. Side wall reflections are trivial to treat with absorption.

--Ethan

dcstep
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Re: Room Size


Quote:

BTW, the main advantage of a long room is the wall behind you is much farther away. The rear wall is a prime source of peaks and nulls. The farther back it is, the better. Side wall reflections are trivial to treat with absorption.

Ethan, when the short wall is seriously narrow as in this case, then side and corner reflections can be very disturbing. I think he'll have a much easier time setting up on the long wall.

Dave

ethanwiner
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Re: Room Size


Quote:
Ethan, when the short wall is seriously narrow as in this case, then side and corner reflections can be very disturbing. I think he'll have a much easier time setting up on the long wall.


Side wall reflections are mainly a mid and high frequency issue, so those are easily tamed with relatively "thin" absorption panels. But bass problems are much more difficult to solve, requiring many thick bass traps. So I always opt for the best bass response because the higher stuff is trivial to cure.

--Ethan

vman
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Re: Room Size

So it looks like I am going with the smaller of the two rooms (lots of reasons).

I have an option to use "acoustic sheetrock" - I asked about it, and here it what the builder said:

"Acoustical sheetrock is available for this job. The acoustical sheetrock is what is used in media rooms and will deaden sound as well as offer the best acoustical sound quality for the room."

It is much more expensive, adding about $1,700 to the total cost.

Questions:
- Is this stuff good for hi-fi?
- Good enough to justify $1,700?

Thanks!

KBK
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Re: Room Size

Green glue and the right hangers is the better way to go. More effective, cheaper. The hangers are not cheap, though.

The hangers are for isolation from other rooms, more than anything, but also allow for a better 'cleaning up' of the acoustics in the room itself.

http://www.greenglue.ca/

For your purposes, the Green Glue may do enough. The thing is to remember to follow their instructions-exactly. No cheating. I could tell stories where drywall firms and the like have tried to 'clip' a few dollars off a multi-million $ contract (by not paying for and not using the 'contracted' amount of green glue)..and ruined the entire install.

http://images.google.ca/imgres?imgurl=ht...%3Doff%26sa%3DN

The clips take it the rest of the way. The exact amount of 5/8" dual wall separated by the greenglue between, then strung up on the hangers works very well for broadband isolation. We're talking bass effective. Which is the entire point.

Of course, at that point you have to do the floor, and every single point if egress..otherwise..like a bucket with a hole in it, you've just wasted a lot of time and money.

Pay very close attention to the last statement and remember it every day, during an install. No cheating, or slipping up. Otherwise you've wasted all your money.

With the proper finishing (wall ceiling and floor seams) and the right floor installed, you can get to a broadband -50-to -70 db. (depending on solutions in use) But it's expensive!....

When I say 'broadband', I mean actually fully effective into the low bass range. But that would raise the price of your room by about $7k-10k for the install.

This was done for a basement recording space for a Drummer so he could do 'his thang' for album work at 3:30am, while his kids were sleeping upstairs. The recording space was 'perfect' for fully blown whacked out rock drumming with respects to both the recording quality achieved (for album release) and to not wake his kids up-or disturb his neighbors. Basements are like shotgun barrels when it comes to directing bass energy straight up, so the install was even more impressive for that point alone. Yes, sub bass at -65db, measured -in that install.

That kind of quality. Of course, the floor and inner room acoustical treatment were unique. But the wall/ceiling isolation basics are what is listed here.

If you are mostly looking for a LITTLE isolation for the room, combined with a bit of inner quality to the room, the green glue is the only place to start. The standard 'acoustical drywall' is nearly junk in comparison. There are many valid technical reasons for this.

ethanwiner
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Re: Room Size


Quote:
I have an option to use "acoustic sheetrock"


I agree with KBK that Green Glue is a much better value, and probably works better too. But both of those products address sound isolation - not sound quality inside the room which I assume is your main concern. $1,700 spent on bass traps and other acoustic treatment will do a great job in a small room.

--Ethan

KBK
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Re: Room Size


Quote:

Quote:
I have an option to use "acoustic sheetrock"


I agree with KBK that Green Glue is a much better value, and probably works better too. But both of those products address sound isolation - not sound quality inside the room which I assume is your main concern. $1,700 spent on bass traps and other acoustic treatment will do a great job in a small room.

--Ethan

Yes, thank you for the needed point of clarification, Ethan. I agree.

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