Room treatment or upgrade to 9.1? - AVS Forum
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:51 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm getting the annual itch to upgrade the system and am torn between applying some basic room treatment, nothing too expensive as I will be moving in the next year or so. OR - adding some new fronts to my system, which will put me up to 9.2 from 7.2

Just blew another Deftech ProMon1000 being used as a front. Deftech will send me another driver - easy enough, but it will happen again on a front.

So my dilemma is to find some higher quality fronts that can take some abuse, but still sound well with my Deftech surrounds and center.

Just looking for some opinions/advice on the best bang for the buck considering my situation.

Onkyo TX-NR5008 9.2
Emotiva XPA-5
Def Tech CS-8080HD (CEN)
Def Tech ProMon 1000 X 6 (FR & SR)
HSU VTF-3 MK3 Subwoofer X 2
HSU MBM-12 MK2 Mid-Bass X 1
Room L30ft X W11ft
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Old 11-11-2013, 06:35 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schuyler Bain View Post

I'm getting the annual itch to upgrade the system and am torn between applying some basic room treatment, nothing too expensive as I will be moving in the next year or so. OR - adding some new fronts to my system, which will put me up to 9.2 from 7.2

Just blew another Deftech ProMon1000 being used as a front. Deftech will send me another driver - easy enough, but it will happen again on a front.

So my dilemma is to find some higher quality fronts that can take some abuse, but still sound well with my Deftech surrounds and center.

Just looking for some opinions/advice on the best bang for the buck considering my situation.

Onkyo TX-NR5008 9.2
Emotiva XPA-5
Def Tech CS-8080HD (CEN)
Def Tech ProMon 1000 X 6 (FR & SR)
HSU VTF-3 MK3 Subwoofer X 2
HSU MBM-12 MK2 Mid-Bass X 1
Room L30ft X W11ft

The importance of room acoustics to your system depends on what your room acoustics are like right now. That's kinda hard to grok from a text post while sitting thousands of miles away. Got diagrams or pictures? Given your fine equipment list it si probable that the room is your next frontier. Many room treatments are just hung on the wall with a screw or a nail, so they can be very portable to some new digs.
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Old 11-11-2013, 07:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Got diagrams or pictures? Given your fine equipment list it is probable that the room is your next frontier.

Notice the large cabinet in the rear left corner behind table. It's not a true dedicated home theater, but it's what I have to work with for the moment. Also sent some pics off to Gik Acoustics yesterday for some ideas.




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Old 11-11-2013, 07:42 AM
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My room is 11.5 x 25 so we have a similiar situation. Your seating seating distance is so far back i would suggest a motorized 92" screen in 2.35:1 and projector. Not what you asked but where i would spend next with room treatment to follow.
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Old 11-11-2013, 07:58 AM - Thread Starter
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I was actually debating on a projector, but moving soon and I plan to go BIG for the new theater screen. Plus with such a low ceiling, it really limits the size for a projection screen in my current room.

However, it looks like you've done a fine job considering your similar specs.
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Old 11-11-2013, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Schuyler Bain View Post

Just blew another Deftech ProMon1000 being used as a front. Deftech will send me another driver - easy enough, but it will happen again on a front.
If you're repeatedly blowing front speakers, then that's a higher priority than adding treatments or adding height/wide speakers. After you replace your front speakers, it's up to you whether to use the old ones as heights or wides (either will help bridge the long gap between your front speakers and side speakers). Also consider replacing your centre speaker to match the new fronts.

Since your room doesn't have any thick wall hangings or curtains, there will be lots of reflections coming at you from every direction. You also have some asymmetries. For example, just forward of your listening position there is an open doorway on the right wall (which acts like a giant absorber), but there is no similar absorption on the opposite side. Also, your front speakers aren't centered relative room width, which is exacerbated by reflective side walls, making soundstage imbalance all the more noticeable.

With all that in mind, there are a couple of no-cost things I would do right away. First, get the L/C/R speakers symmetrically placed between your side walls. Next, I would move the seating forward of the open doorway. If I'm going to have an asymmetry in my room, I want it behind me (where our human hearing isn't as good). This will have an additional benefit of bringing you closer to the front speakers, giving the sound a better direct to reverberant ratio. You'd have to move the side speakers forward a bit, to get them back in line with your seating.

Finally, once you upgrade your front speakers, if you don't have enough left over to buy treatments and/or don't want to make them, consider getting some thick drapes for your front wall. Get fabric that is double or triple the width of the room, so that the drapes end up deeply pleated. If you pick a dark-ish colour, like the green in your wallpaper trim, then that will also make your display look brighter.

Sanjay
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Old 11-11-2013, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schuyler Bain View Post

am torn between applying some basic room treatment, nothing too expensive as I will be moving in the next year or so. OR - adding some new fronts to my system, which will put me up to 9.2 from 7.2

I agree with the comment that your seating is too far back in the room. Your speakers and chair should form an equal triangle as explained here:

How To Set Up A Room

I also agree that adding room treatment will do more to improve sound quality than adding yet more speakers. Not just a little more, but a lot more. No matter what furnishings you might have in the room now, none of them will do anything at bass frequencies, which are just as important to tame as mid and high frequencies. This short article is mainly about home recording, but all the same principles apply to hi-fi and home theater too:

Acoustic Basics

--Ethan
busb0y likes this.

RealTraps - The acoustic treatment experts
Ethan's Audio Expert book

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Old 11-11-2013, 11:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the great advice. I see that I should place the FR and FL in equal distances from the Center. I attached a rough drawing with exact measurements.

It's difficult to see the space from the pics, but the entertainment center (center speaker) is 46 inches out from the front wall and exactly centered at 5.5ft from left and right wall. So when following the 38% rule from rear wall, am I far off?

Should I be factoring from front wall and disregard measuring from center to LP? If I moved the LP forward 2-3 ft, it would be difficult to move L and R surrounds forward as well due to the opening/doorway to the room.

Thoughts?

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Old 11-11-2013, 03:02 PM
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I see that I should place the FR and FL in equal distances from the Center.
And equal distances from the side walls AND equal distances from the front wall. Your left front speaker is closer to the front wall than the right front speaker.
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If I moved the LP forward 2-3 ft, it would be difficult to move L and R surrounds forward as well due to the opening/doorway to the room.
Move the seating AND the side speakers forward of the doorway. Don't move the seating just enough so that the right side speaker ends up in the doorway.

Sanjay
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by sdurani View Post

Move the seating AND the side speakers forward of the doorway. Don't move the seating just enough so that the right side speaker ends up in the doorway.

I am experimenting with moving the seating forward, but due to the length of the couch, I can't move it far enough forward to quite clear the doorway. This means that the side surrounds would be directly to the side of the LP, but forward about 2 feet. I know with 7.1 it's recommended to have the side speakers in line with your main LP. I can't win with this room.
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schuyler Bain View Post

I am experimenting with moving the seating forward, but due to the length of the couch, I can't move it far enough forward to quite clear the doorway. This means that the side surrounds would be directly to the side of the LP, but forward about 2 feet. I know with 7.1 it's recommended to have the side speakers in line with your main LP. I can't win with this room.
Au contraire, your room is ideal for a 7.1 layout (excellent separation between the side and rear speakers).

BTW, nothing wrong with placing your side speakers slightly forward of your listening position; will simply add spaciousness to the sound.

When you sit in the middle of a movie theatre, notice that there are surround speakers well forward of your listening position. Famous audio researcher Floyd Toole prefers his side speakers 20-30 degrees forward of his listening position. And the ITU spec for a 7.1 layout says the side speakers can be as far as 30 degrees forward of your listening position (see link).

http://hiddenwires.co.uk/resourcesarticles2011/articles20110503-09.html



So mount your side speakers on the other side of the open doorway and move your seating forward however much its size allows. It will sound great.

Sanjay
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:14 PM - Thread Starter
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I was looking at similar diagrams showing the surrounds 30 degrees forward, but was afraid that was only ideal for more square shaped rooms. I like it!! Thanks so much for your help!!

I also received recommendations from Gik Acoustics. They also said to get the L/C/R speakers symmetrically placed between your side walls.

Recommended treatment:
2 x TriTraps
4-6 x 244 Bass Traps - two on the ceiling and one on each sidewall at a minimum.


Now to decide if I want to fork over the bucks, knowing that I plan to move and rebuild from the ground up. Suppose I could have worse problems. smile.gif
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Old 11-11-2013, 07:54 PM
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I was looking at similar diagrams showing the surrounds 30 degrees forward...
UP TO 30 degrees forward. But your's won't be that far forward. Understand that the only reason you can do this is because you have another pair of speakers behind you. This doesn't work with 5.1 set-ups (all 5 speakers forward of your listening position isn't really "surround" sound).
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Now to decide if I want to fork over the bucks, knowing that I plan to move and rebuild from the ground up.
At the very least I would replace the L/R speakers so they don't keep blowing. You don't have to use the old ones for heights in this room. Just save them for your next place and do 9.1 there. But you don't want to keep blowing speakers for another year.

Sanjay
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Old 11-11-2013, 09:53 PM
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SPL is decreased by 6dB for every doubling of distance from speaker. So not only will moving closer to the mains help with imaging, you'll gain free SPL and hopefully stop killing your mains.
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Old 11-17-2013, 06:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Thinking about adding a thick curtain over the doorway. Do you guys think this well help room acoustics quite a bit - without adding a matching curtain to the other side? Considering this blackout curtain.
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Old 11-17-2013, 10:42 AM
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Thinking about adding a thick curtain over the doorway. Do you guys think this well help room acoustics quite a bit - without adding a matching curtain to the other side?
Acoustically, it's still going to be nothing like the reflective wall directly opposite. Either put a door in the open doorway or put a door-sized absorber opposite the open doorway.

Sanjay
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Old 11-17-2013, 11:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Acoustically, it's still going to be nothing like the reflective wall directly opposite. Either put a door in the open doorway or put a door-sized absorber opposite the open doorway.

The door is removed because there's no room to open it, so that's not an option.

Do you think a 24” x 48” Bass Trap opposite end of the open doorway would be better than 2 matching curtains?
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Old 11-17-2013, 01:14 PM
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Do you think a 24” x 48” Bass Trap opposite end of the open doorway would be better than 2 matching curtains?
Absorption opposite the open doorway would be better than curtains in the doorway. IF the doorway is 24" x 48", then an absorber of the same size will work.

Sanjay
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Old 11-19-2013, 07:13 PM
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Quote:
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Thinking about adding a thick curtain over the doorway. Do you guys think this well help room acoustics quite a bit - without adding a matching curtain to the other side? Considering this blackout curtain.

I bought these for a doorway in my basement. Doubled them up for looks and blocking sound from the basement to upstairs. These are thick, velvety and not expensive. I liked them so much, I bought another set for my screen wall & added absorption panels behind them. They would look good on your front wall - attractive and help absorb sound. The red are actually burgundy, green may match your décor.

It's much cheaper to go DIY for treatment. I used these for front wall behind curtains, and for side wall treatment, I framed and covered in burlap (can go better quality materials like GoM) . Works great for corner bass traps also.

A few hundred in treatment will improve your sound tremendously. Oh, and I agree with Orbitron on the pj & big screen. biggrin.gif

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Schmidt Haus Theater - WIP (or not) since 2010
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Old 11-19-2013, 07:57 PM
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I am experimenting with moving the seating forward, but due to the length of the couch, I can't move it far enough forward to quite clear the doorway.

Then lose that monstrosity and get yourself a smaller couch.
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