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post #91 of 169 Old 02-03-2012, 02:53 PM - Thread Starter
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I forgot to post up pictures of the "outlets" I put in... These are kind of blurry, maybe that's why I didn't post them before.

For the right and left speakers I put up these -
On this one is an unused RCA plug in case I decide to wire in a second subwoofer...

You can also see a little "oops" where I accidentally overcut...

Behind the TV is this guy here:

-Aaron
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post #92 of 169 Old 02-04-2012, 07:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Had a free 2 hours today... so I took off the front right and left speaker/subwoofer plates, disassembled them, and made them a little darker - I originally tried painting them "Mouse Ears" black with a brush, and failed horribly - but my can of flat black spray paint worked fine!!


I patched the hole where my previous speaker distribution panel was, and planned to wait until tomorrow to sand it and paint the front wall "Mouse Ears" - but after a failed attempt at replacing a bearing on my car (they sent me the wrong bearing) - I decided to give it a go. The patch was already dry - so I smoothed it out the best I could ... which wasn't that well ... and went ahead with the painting!!



Lets just say that if you want BLACK - Mouse Ears is about as black as you can get! Holy crap! LOL!

Note the white panel still on the wall - I got lazy... I didn't move the TV earlier when I had the spray paint out - so that panel didn't get painted. I decided to just paint around it. It will never be seen anyway - and if it ends up bothering me I can take some spray paint to it then.

I will get some pictures tomorrow when it is dry and I move my equipment back into place. I plan to also do a "subwoofer crawl" and see if moving the sub up to the front left corner like I have been planning will actually help or not.

EDIT: will be doing a second coat tomorrow... As it is drying I'm seeing some spots I didn't get as well as I thought I did.

-Aaron
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post #93 of 169 Old 02-04-2012, 07:37 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm considering painting the first 2 rows of ceiling tiles black too... but I don't know if that will look stupid or if it will look good. The reason being that my "backlight" behind the TV hits the first row and a half of ceiling tiles - and with the wall being black now I am anticipating it really being distracting.

Any feedback?

I'm also considering a grey color for the moldings and the door at the front of the room... but the door could also end up being black... open to thoughts on that as well.

-Aaron
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post #94 of 169 Old 02-04-2012, 11:26 PM
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Well, that wall certainly is black! I was going to suggest using whatever grey is recommended (at least from what I've read), but I'm posting a bit too late for that now...

It might cost a few $$, but maybe you could buy some black posterboard (or whatever is cheap) from a local crafts or art store and cover your tiles before committing them with black paint. That way you could get an idea of how it would look with your backlighting.

I'd be curious to how you like the backlight now that the rear wall is black. Is this a proper 6500K temp like the CinemaQuest Ideal-lume, or just a generic light? Our current back wall is a lighter color but am interested in painting it whatever shade of grey is recommended, which will definitely be darker that what it currently is. I currently have a 6500K tube (at least per the packaging) that I bought at Home Depot behind our TV (wall-mounted plasma) but have the Ideal-lume ready to install...if I wasn't so dang lazy.

Also, all your posted pictures inspired me to take some new ones of our system, so I spent waaaay too much time earlier today taking waaaay too many pix. But since digital film is cheap, why not?!

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post #95 of 169 Old 02-05-2012, 04:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Haha! Yes... Very very black!
The only tint that was added to the base paint was 12 oz of black. I thought the can was going to overflow when it was being mixed!

I'm just using a generic bulb - it gets the job done... I'm ok with it not being perfect. I looked at the idealume lights, I still may get one in the future. Mine is just a "blacklight" fixture with the "daylight" bulb in it and duct tape used to mask it off. Looks very ghetto - but it is hidden so it doesn't matter.

Good idea on the poster board - I think my wife has enough in her scrapbooking room that i could just borrow and return without we noticing

Do you have a link to your pictures?

-Aaron
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post #96 of 169 Old 02-05-2012, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PTAaron View Post

Haha! Yes... Very very black!
The only tint that was added to the base paint was 12 oz of black. I thought the can was going to overflow when it was being mixed!

I'm just using a generic bulb - it gets the job done... I'm ok with it not being perfect. I looked at the idealume lights, I still may get one in the future. Mine is just a "blacklight" fixture with the "daylight" bulb in it and duct tape used to mask it off. Looks very ghetto - but it is hidden so it doesn't matter.

Good idea on the poster board - I think my wife has enough in her scrapbooking room that i could just borrow and return without we noticing

Do you have a link to your pictures?

I think if you do have a "daylight" labeled bulb, my guess is it's probably somewhere in the 6500K neighborhood so you're probably fine. At least more so than just a basic, general fluorescent tube. I bought the Ideal-lume as it has the rotating shield to better easily direct the light for the best effect.

And good luck with the borrowing of the wife's stuff. If you don't tell her, it never happened...

BTW, I personally like how your room's TV wall has been becoming cleaner with the relocation of all your gear. I would think the viewers would be more focused on the TV picture itself without all the other visual distractions. Of course if your lights are usually off/dimmed down anyways this might not have been an issue.

Link to some of the pix I uploaded this morning, along with one below which you can see the H1100 sitting on the center arm of the chair. GeekBoy here took sooo many pix using different apertures, shutter speeds (from 0.5 seconds to 5 or 10 seconds), etc. it's kinda embarrassing...but these posted pix seemed to come out the best.



BTW, the three sound panels you see behind my L/C/R speakers were the last addition/tweak to the system a few months ago, and I recommend them highly. With the mirrors on your left wall, and assuming your black fabric doesn't do much sound attenuating, my bet is you'd hear some BIG improvements.

When I first installed the panels and played my first test disc (Dave Matthews/Tim Reynolds - Live at Radio City Blu-ray), I was hoping to hear some improvements. But I was shocked to hear just how much clearer and more detailed the sound was. I bought these DMD panels premade from Acoustimac, but you could buy the parts from them and assemble yourself, or just go to Home Depot/Lowes and pick up most parts since you obviously know your way with tools. You might have to order the OC703 and fabric elsewhere, though.

My next project is two larger panels for the sidewalls, one of which will completely cover up the window on the right wall. I had Acoustimac cut eight wood strips to size (~ 54"x60" when assembled), so that way they will have the same front bevel as the premade ones. I'll probably go with a dark/black fabric with some kind of pattern on it so it won't look too boring...

After that fairly-easy project, the next one I'd like to tackle is to eventually move all the AV gear into the storage room on the left (you can see the door next to the L speaker). That way I could get rid of the rack, buy a nice stand for the center speaker, and have a nice clean look. Damn this hobby!
LL

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post #97 of 169 Old 02-05-2012, 10:36 AM - Thread Starter
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I like your room.
The link doesn't seem to work from my phone, but the picture you attached came through fine.

I was thinking of doing the panels behind my front speakers - DIY of course... because I'm cheap
Once I get rid of the mirrors I will be looking into some side panels too. At the moment the sectional couch blocks the mirror to just above the tweeter height of the speakers so it may be helping a bit.

The bulb I have is labeled as 6500k - I made sure of that.

This hobby definitely eats up the cash... Unfortunately I'm also into scuba diving - talk about eating up cash! Luckily around here with the weather I just alternate which one gets my focus. LOL!

Thanks for the comment about the front of the room.
I was going to put together a progression of the front of the room once I get things put back in place today.
The gear at the front of the room wasn't too distracting - it just made it feel less like a "theater" than I wanted.
It really does look a LOT better than when I first started.

-Aaron
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post #98 of 169 Old 02-05-2012, 04:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Okay... Put it all back together just in time for the big game...

Quick shot of my spray painted outlet covers:


The room with the lights on full - looks dark because the camera set the exposure for the TV... but you get the idea:

You can see I also painted the door to the closet.

Lights dimmed a bit...


Next step is to paint the white trim a dark grey color...

-Aaron
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post #99 of 169 Old 02-05-2012, 08:11 PM - Thread Starter
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After all the worries on my part about the backlight/bias light ... I tried out a few clips tonight with the black wall and no bias light - and it looked great. Contrast appeared just as good as with the bias light on, and blacks seemed plenty black! I know that isn't a scientific test or anything - but definitive enough for me.

The problem with the light being on and the wall being black is that it illuminated the ceiling and sidewalls too much and was distracting. It is gone now

I also played around a little this afternoon and made this 20x30 poster:


After spending hours a few weeks ago using the logos and making my own poster, I discovered that the stupid Wal-Mart website will make it for me in seconds! It just took a lot of clicking the "rearrange photos" button to get it to arrive at this configuration.

The poster is going to hang above the light switches.

EDIT: In case anyone is wondering about the poster - this thread here: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1062844 has all the information you need to make your own!

-Aaron
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post #100 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 10:26 AM
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I haven't checked on your photos in a while, but great progress on the bar and the theater. I can't believe what a difference it made to paint your front wall black. Looks really good! I can definitely see you moving toward a front projector at some point and putting the TV in another room.
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post #101 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 11:00 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mthomas47 View Post

I haven't checked on your photos in a while, but great progress on the bar and the theater. I can't believe what a difference it made to paint your front wall black. Looks really good! I can definitely see you moving toward a front projector at some point and putting the TV in another room.

Thanks!

Now that the front of the room is cleaned up that 73" looks almost too small! Unfortunately there isn't another room in the house where realistically could go... so I'm going to be keeping it for a while at least.

-Aaron
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post #102 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 12:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Here is an interesting progression of the front room from the initial setup to last night's version:


EDIT: Switched the "TV on" photo of the current setup out for a "TV off" photo to make it more consistent...
It is kind of funny that the carpet never looks the same in any of the pictures - it hasn't changed...

-Aaron
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post #103 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 02:33 PM
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HOly cow does that room look good now! Great to see the effort has paid off, good job Aaron!
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post #104 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 04:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PTAaron View Post

After all the worries on my part about the backlight/bias light ... I tried out a few clips tonight with the black wall and no bias light - and it looked great. Contrast appeared just as good as with the bias light on, and blacks seemed plenty black! I know that isn't a scientific test or anything - but definitive enough for me.

The problem with the light being on and the wall being black is that it illuminated the ceiling and sidewalls too much and was distracting. It is gone now

I also played around a little this afternoon and made this 20x30 poster:


After spending hours a few weeks ago using the logos and making my own poster, I discovered that the stupid Wal-Mart website will make it for me in seconds! It just took a lot of clicking the "rearrange photos" button to get it to arrive at this configuration.

The poster is going to hang above the light switches.

EDIT: In case anyone is wondering about the poster - this thread here: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1062844 has all the information you need to make your own!

Your WM didn't put up a fuss about the copyright images?
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post #105 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 07:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGoatLantern View Post

HOly cow does that room look good now! Great to see the effort has paid off, good job Aaron!

Thanks a lot man!


Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGoatLantern View Post


Your WM didn't put up a fuss about the copyright images?

Nope... The guy behind the counter didn't even look at it.

-Aaron
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post #106 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 09:26 PM
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Regarding the dang cool poster, is that one huge image, or twelve individual ones arranged perfectly on one big sheet?

And how much did this cost to print? I might be interested in doing something similar at Costco...

The room progression pix are great, it really looks fantastic!

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post #107 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 11:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mak99 View Post

Regarding the dang cool poster, is that one huge image, or twelve individual ones arranged perfectly on one big sheet?

And how much did this cost to print? I might be interested in doing something similar at Costco...

The room progression pix are great, it really looks fantastic!

Thanks!

The poster is one large poster. A few weeks ago I spent literally hours in photoshop resizing and laying out images - only to find out that uploading the files to the Walmart website let me click a button and have them automatically laid out better than I had done it!
Images are from tinstudio.com - there is a thread here on the board about it. The guy creating the files is a member here.

Cost me about $20 to print it... Designed it on the Walmart website and picked it up at the store an hour later

-Aaron
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post #108 of 169 Old 02-06-2012, 11:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Here is a shot of the poster hanging up:


...and here is a shot of the front of the room with the TV off so the room lights look normal:

-Aaron
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post #109 of 169 Old 02-07-2012, 02:38 PM
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Gotta say that mouse ear black is very very nice.
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post #110 of 169 Old 02-07-2012, 03:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGoatLantern View Post

Gotta say that mouse ear black is very very nice.

Thanks, I definitely love it. I have to give credit to the Waffle Wall build thread for the color choice...

Played Skyrim for a few hours last night without the backlight but with the rear overhead lights on at about 10% ... it worked out really well. No eye strain or fatigue from not having the backlight... and the blacks on screen looked plenty black!

I didn't get a picture of it, but I had painted a picture of mickey on the wall with the mouse ears paint when I first started painting

-Aaron
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post #111 of 169 Old 02-09-2012, 05:53 AM - Thread Starter
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After a few days with the black front wall - I LOVE it! I'm glad I went with that instead of the dark grey color. I was planning the grey because I thought it would look "good enough" without making the room too dark - I'm glad my wife said "Why not just do black?"

The only down side so far has been that the black door in the front of the room really trips me out when I go to open it in low light... I can't really explain it, but it just feels like the door is already open and it is TOO DARK in the room.

Anyway - anyone considering doing a black wall should definitely check out the Disney Mouse Ears color from Behr! It is great!
I do have a couple of small touch up areas where I smacked the "bias light" against the wall behind the TV when trying to adjust it and took off some paint - but those are hidden by the TV at the moment.

I also installed 2 IR mini blasters to control the lights and TV - so now all of my equipment is controlled by the Harmony 1100 over RF. I love the fact that I can now hit "Power Off" on the remote, set it down, and walk out of the room instead of having to stand there pointing it at the system and waiting. Same for power it up... just hit it and go.
Only down side to the equipment being remotely located is that I have no way of seeing what volume the AVR is at for bluray or PS3 use. I have both of those set to bypass mode because I don't feel like dealing with lipsync issues introduced by the AVR - so no onscreen volume display

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post #112 of 169 Old 02-16-2012, 05:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Just a quick update...

I have managed to set up the room so everything is now controlled via RF with my Harmony 1100 including the lights. This required mounting an IR mini-blaster on the ceiling to hit the TV and another one on the edge of a poster frame to hit the light switches. The setup works great and allows me to use a "macro workaround" on the 1100 for watching movies: The lights dim when I hit play, come up 5 levels when I hit pause, and come on full when I hit stop. It works great!

Last night I was down in the room reading and listening to Ghosts I-IV on blu-ray and it didn't sound right. The treble sounded awful and the midrange was really muddy - it was my first time listening to this on my BR player that I picked up in December, and the first time since I moved the speakers a bit and got the Emotiva surrounds. I was a little concerned to say the least - but it turned out to be an easy fix. SOMEHOW I had failed to turn off Dolby Volume for the input the BR player was hooked to - it was set at medium - killing that that fixed the midrange. I also had left the EQ turned on - I thought it was off on all inputs since I hadn't ran EZSet/EQ since I had the Infinity satellite system! Turning that off suddenly gave me my treble back! I'm surprised it hadn't occurred to me that the sound was "off" coming from the BR player until last night - but that just shows you how little I've been able to actually watch movies lately!

Just a quick shot of the whole room - I notice I haven't put one up that shows most of the room since painting the front:


Side wall paint is coming... I just have to make a final decision and act on it to get rid of the mirrors on the left wall.

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post #113 of 169 Old 02-17-2012, 04:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Downloaded REW last night... So hopefully I'll have some pretty graphs and waterfalls to show what I will need to fix acoustically in my room. I always just ASSUMED that it was some big expensive program that required expensive microphones and a masters degree in acoustical engineering - turns out it is free, very well documented, easy to set up, and works with the radio shack SPL meter I already have!
I played around with it last night upstairs in my office, and I'm hoping to get to get some baseline readings for bass this weekend down in the movie room. I don't have a laptop - so I will be relocating my desktop computer

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I'll be interested to hear your thoughts on REW. I downloaded it many moons ago but have yet to fire 'er up as, well...yep, I'm intimidated!

I've had the RS digital SPL meter for years, so would be fun to use with REW...

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post #115 of 169 Old 02-17-2012, 08:28 AM
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If you're still contemplating the Monoprice 8" in-ceiling speakers, i can let you know my experience. I got two pairs of them: one pair is in my living room serving as the rear speakers in my 5.1 system (front 3 are all Paradigm). They sound really good and not out of place. The other pair run off my Onkyo's zone2 output, with 1 speaker in the kitchen, and 1 in the dining room. They do a great job of letting us listen to music through those rooms, and even with only 1 speaker in each room they can fill the room with sound if you want it to. I have no complaints with them.

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Oh, also, awesome freaking basement! I wish i had that much space. We're finishing ours now, but some of the space is dedicated to a bedroom and a craft room. Love the open feel of yours. Must be great for entertaining.

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post #117 of 169 Old 02-17-2012, 09:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mak99 View Post

I'll be interested to hear your thoughts on REW. I downloaded it many moons ago but have yet to fire 'er up as, well...yep, I'm intimidated!

I've had the RS digital SPL meter for years, so would be fun to use with REW...

I'll be sure to post up some fancy looking graphs that I won't really know how to interpret as soon as possible
It is kind of intimidating - you're right there - but they documentation is really good and easy to understand.

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Originally Posted by saldog78 View Post

If you're still contemplating the Monoprice 8" in-ceiling speakers, i can let you know my experience. I got two pairs of them: one pair is in my living room serving as the rear speakers in my 5.1 system (front 3 are all Paradigm). They sound really good and not out of place. The other pair run off my Onkyo's zone2 output, with 1 speaker in the kitchen, and 1 in the dining room. They do a great job of letting us listen to music through those rooms, and even with only 1 speaker in each room they can fill the room with sound if you want it to. I have no complaints with them.

Great to hear! I ended up using some wireless speakers from Sharper Image that I had sitting around with the transmitter hooked up to the zone 2 pre-out on my AVR. They work "OK" for the time being, but are a pain because I have to turn them on and off when we want to use them.
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Originally Posted by saldog78 View Post

Oh, also, awesome freaking basement! I wish i had that much space. We're finishing ours now, but some of the space is dedicated to a bedroom and a craft room. Love the open feel of yours. Must be great for entertaining.

Thanks!!
We got lucky when we found the house - the basement was exactly what we were looking for, and the rest of the house was "just right". Only took a year of driving our realtor insane before we found it It was OK though - our condo took 4 years to sell so we were going to be working with him a while anyway.

It does work great for entertaining - when we have company over we're either out on the deck or in the basement

-Aaron
My Basement Movie Room and Bar/Game Room - actually doing stuff now... please comment!
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post #118 of 169 Old 02-18-2012, 07:07 AM - Thread Starter
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I just decided to try out REW this morning before I leave for the gym... this is what my initial tests looked like for the subwoofer:



and waterfall style:



...and spectrogram:



Looking at these - I expected to see a bigger difference with the doors closed. I know I feel more intense bass with the doors closed...

I'm going to try a couple of different positions for testing - including just in front of the seating position where the bass always feels stronger, and I'm going to move the subwoofer to and rerun the test...

-Aaron
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post #119 of 169 Old 02-19-2012, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PTAaron View Post

I'm going to try a couple of different positions for testing - including just in front of the seating position where the bass always feels stronger, and I'm going to move the subwoofer to and rerun the test...

How did your current sub location come to be - sub crawl?

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post #120 of 169 Old 02-19-2012, 07:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Sub crawl combined with the fact it was one of the 2 possible spots it would fit

I did position it differently and rerun REW and found that the corner position in fromt increased the SPL by about 5dB (as expected from corner loading) created a larger (more than 20dB) dip in the 45-50hz range. I also tested between the left and center speakers - less SPL than corner, same dip... but dang did it look good!

Graphs from the other 2 positions:




Ultimately the mic positioned 1 foot in front of my seating position smooths the lower frequencies but it isn't really practical:

-Aaron
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