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  #351  
Old 09-27-2017, 04:31 PM
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My wife is willing to let me get two of the GIK Acoustics Monster Bass Traps for my birthday. It's 2 months away, but I'm trying to figure out if I really want to drop $458 on room treatments.

I came up with the idea of getting 2 because I'm struggling with whether I would want the optional Scatter Plate added. I'm thinking I would, but scattering is not generally recommended for first reflection points. So if I got two, I could play around with placement, see where scattering provides the most benefit, where straight-up absorption helps most, etc. Plus, with two of these, I would get more bass trapping, which apparently actually improves bass perception, interestingly enough.

When I first reached out to GIK, they recommended getting 3 cheaper standing bass traps, because I would have a lot of flexibility for placement. I think it will be hard enough to find storage for 2 of these things when I need to leave the room "visitor friendly."
After talking with the guy at GIK some more, I've landed on getting:

2 Tri-Traps. These are 4 feet long triangles that you stick in the corners of the room. You get the best impact when you buy 8 of them, so you can stack them in each of the 4 corners of your room to combat bass standing waves that make the bass sound monotone. By getting 2, I can try putting one in each of my front corners, where I can kind of hide them behind stuff, but start getting an impact. I can also experiment with stacking both in a single corner to see where I get the most improvement.

1 Monster Bass Trap. Though it's a bass trap, it's also a broad-band absorber, and should do a fantastic job at the point of first reflection on my troublesome right side, and will help supplement the bass trapping from the Tri Traps.

It's going to stink if I fix the reflections on the right side, only to find out I have a problem on the left side. If that happens, I'll try sticking one of the Tri Traps in a position to help with first reflections on the left side.

From all the reading I'm doing online, the guy I'm working with is a well-known expert in this field. He's been incredibly patient with me, even knowing that my order (at least my first) is going to be relatively small. I'm just super impressed.
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  #352  
Old 10-04-2017, 12:49 AM
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Fun serendipitous moment tonight! We had friends over this weekend, and sat outside with the fire pit. It was a little too cool even with the fire going, so my wife got a bunch of blankets out for guests. After the party, we stacked them up on a stool, right in the same place where I plan to put a sound treatment next month, to stop first reflections from that side.

Started listening to music tonight ... and it sounds awesome! Much improved stereo imaging, as previously the same instrument would jump around in space, depending on the note, a sure sign of reflection problems. Similarly, I'm getting a more balanced soundstage. Vocals are a good bit clearer. Yay!

Really looking forward to the impact I'll get from acoustic treatments actually designed for the purpose. I especially want to know what bass traps will do for me. My bass region seems very uneven right now.

Just another month or so left to wait!

Last edited by Egghead; 10-04-2017 at 01:14 AM..
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  #353  
Old 10-04-2017, 09:38 AM
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Haha, very cool.
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  #354  
Old 10-04-2017, 10:16 AM
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The most shocking thing out of my "poor man's sound treatment" is what it did to the balance. Before the blankets, I was having to bump up my right speaker 3.5 dB to get the phantom center where it should be. I figured that was just my lousy hearing. But the blankets forced me to set the balance back to even between left and right.

How weird is that, though? The blankets placed on that side made the sound seem to be coming MORE from that side. Intuitively, I would think it would be the opposite. But this is consistent with my reading, that really bad early reflections can actually cancel out some sound. Really freaky physics.
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  #355  
Old 10-04-2017, 10:53 AM
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Yeah, acoustics are complicated. Your ears play tricks on you based on timing issues, and they aren't intuitive. The only way you can really hear the source correctly is if you take out those early reflection points. It's crazy what a difference it makes.
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  #356  
Old 10-04-2017, 01:20 PM
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Yep, another benefit of absorbing the early reflections is the "height" of the soundstage. I'd achieved that effect one other time with an arrangement of the speakers that looked really crappy but sounded great (speakers pulled WAY out into the room).

I still don't have the best "depth" to my soundstage. Again, I've been able to achieve that in the past by pulling the speakers way out. I'm not sure if I'll have enough absorption to achieve the same effect while leaving my speakers where I've got to have them for aesthetic purposes. But we'll see. It's definitely fun playing with all this and hearing my system sound better and better.
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  #357  
Old 10-04-2017, 01:25 PM
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Yeah, acoustics are complicated. Your ears play tricks on you based on timing issues, and they aren't intuitive. The only way you can really hear the source correctly is if you take out those early reflection points. It's crazy what a difference it makes.
Read an interesting article that says this gets more important with age. Older ears not only don't hear the full frequency spectrum as well, but older brains struggle more than younger ones to make sense of the reflections and turning them into location of sound in space. So treatment of early reflections may be more important the older one gets.
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  #358  
Old 10-04-2017, 01:30 PM
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Read an interesting article that says this gets more important with age. Older ears not only don't hear the full frequency spectrum as well, but older brains struggle more than younger ones to make sense of the reflections and turning them into location of sound in space. So treatment of early reflections may be more important the older one gets.
Very interesting.
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  #359  
Old 10-23-2017, 12:38 PM
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Yeah, acoustics are complicated. Your ears play tricks on you based on timing issues, and they aren't intuitive. The only way you can really hear the source correctly is if you take out those early reflection points. It's crazy what a difference it makes.
Took me forever to realize this. I spent about a thousand hours back when learning about cone materials and crossovers and enclosure alignments, and didn't think at all about how the speakers would interact in a room.

As I set out to learn about horns 7-8 years ago, one of the benefits that was often touted was controlled directivity. Don't treat the reflections, just don't have the reflections... or at least attenuate them a lot. And I sort of got it, but not really, until I got my new speakers and toed them in a lot, so that they crossed in front of the listening position. At that angle, very little sound will hit the walls to reflect, though I do have some floor and ceiling reflections.

But that was my eureka moment. The imaging is just rock solid, even if you move left/right a couple feet. I'd bought a Klipsch center channel, but I've since unhooked it and it's for sale. It's not necessary, and it can't match the sound quality of my mains, so it got yanked.
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  #360  
Old 10-23-2017, 12:46 PM
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I did buy some old Radio Shack speakers a couple weeks ago, they have the Linaeum tweeter. They are small monitors and cut off around 80-100Hz, so a sub is helpful. Always wanted to hear this tweeter, and I paid all of $25 for the pair, so why not?

The Linaeum measures sort of ok, the response is a bit ragged from what I can find online, I haven't put a mic on them myself. These are a dipole, and they have a very pleasant, and very spacious sound. They aren't perfect, and things like cymbals don't sound fully realistic. But they are really enjoyable, and for $25 they make good garage speakers.

And I'm almost done with my second tiny tapped horn sub. I think I mentioned it previously, it's a little 6.5" Anarchy driver in a box that's 30x20x8.5, kind of looks like a suitcase and weighs maybe 30lb. They play well to 25Hz, but below that they unload and need a subsonic filter. Not the perfect sub for home theater, I suppose. But they only need about 100w to shake the floor and they sound really nice. I ordered a 250w plate amp from Parts Express that has a subsonic filter, they'll go in our son's room. It's a small room, so with room gain I expect the pair to really rock.
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