or Connect
AVS › AVS Forum › Audio › Audio theory, Setup and Chat › Am I too dead?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Am I too dead?

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 
I finally got round to addressing my 1st reflection ceiling and walls. The very first thing I noticed after the job was completed was the atmosphere within the room with no audio playing, it was very quiet and quite unusual. The very first thing I noticed after 8 point Audyssey EQ was the dialog on the first BD I put on, it was bang slam in the middle of my acoustic screen! Never had I heard the speaker pin pointed with the sound it was playing like this. The sound was directly in behind the screen and I felt I could point to it for the first time. Also all the highs and dialog were tamed, softer, mellow, deeper, un digital sounding....

I started playing more discs and everything was so different to what I had heard over the last 1.5 years, this was going to take some getting used to. In the past I was playing with tone controls to soften the highs, now it was completely opposite, I was thinking have I lost my highs????

I had plans to take the acoustic treatments a bit further addressing the 2nd/3rd reflections but I had some concerns....

My sister came over who knows absolutely nothing about these things. She went into the HT without anything playing and said what's wrong in here? I asked what's the problem? she said its sounds very different, unusual, she said I sounded so different, not normal..... gee this is not what I wanted to here. We stepped outside the room continuing the conversation, then she said, now we sound normal. I was amused by this conversation and thought, wow do I finish the job that I had plans for or not???

Now I know this whole subject is very controversial with many from different camps on the subject, but I would like to hear from the likes of Ethan and some of the other experts in the field.

No this room is not completely covered on absorbers and bass traps.... They are not 6" thick like many use, I only had room for 2" thick panels.

Thoughts please guys... Do I finish this job I started or not?
post #2 of 36
What does the room look like now? Maybe you didn't need it to begin with, but I doubt the first reflection panels are going to deadened a room, especially 2" panels.
post #3 of 36
Thread Starter 
My REW graphs were not so good and needed reflections tamed.
post #4 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

I finally got round to addressing my 1st reflection ceiling and walls. The very first thing I noticed after the job was completed was the atmosphere within the room with no audio playing, it was very quiet and quite unusual. The very first thing I noticed after 8 point Audyssey EQ was the dialog on the first BD I put on, it was bang slam in the middle of my acoustic screen! Never had I heard the speaker pin pointed with the sound it was playing like this. The sound was directly in behind the screen and I felt I could point to it for the first time. Also all the highs and dialog were tamed, softer, mellow, deeper, un digital sounding....

I started playing more discs and everything was so different to what I had heard over the last 1.5 years, this was going to take some getting used to. In the past I was playing with tone controls to soften the highs, now it was completely opposite, I was thinking have I lost my highs????

I had plans to take the acoustic treatments a bit further addressing the 2nd/3rd reflections but I had some concerns....

My sister came over who knows absolutely nothing about these things. She went into the HT without anything playing and said what's wrong in here? I asked what's the problem? she said its sounds very different, unusual, she said I sounded so different, not normal..... gee this is not what I wanted to here. We stepped outside the room continuing the conversation, then she said, now we sound normal. I was amused by this conversation and thought, wow do I finish the job that I had plans for or not???

Now I know this whole subject is very controversial with many from different camps on the subject, but I would like to hear from the likes of Ethan and some of the other experts in the field.

No this room is not completely covered on absorbers and bass traps.... They are not 6" thick like many use, I only had room for 2" thick panels.

Thoughts please guys... Do I finish this job I started or not?

There's a reason why audio dealers are worried about buyer's remorse, and it just ain't the money.

The way our brains work, a familiar sound that we have associated with a good experience in the past will trigger the release of endorphins in our brain (pleasure causing chemical also associated with heavier experiences like sex and hard drugs). Any sound that is too different from what we are familiar with will not initially do that.

Your initial reaction to the dramatic new sound is likely to feel strange. Over a period of time, this will change but we can be talking days or weeks. Frankly, this can happen even if you took the room the wrong way.

It would be helpful if you posted a picture of your listening room before and after if possible.
post #5 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

I finally got round to addressing my 1st reflection ceiling and walls.

I had plans to take the acoustic treatments a bit further addressing the 2nd/3rd reflections but I had some concerns....
If you've absorbed the 1st reflections, then you're not going to have 2nd/3rd reflections.

Imagine dropping a rubber ball onto the floor so that it bounces 3 times. If you put a soft fluffy pillow on the floor to kill the 1st bounce, there isn't going to be a 2nd/3rd bounce.
post #6 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

There's a reason why audio dealers are worried about buyer's remorse, and it just ain't the money.

The way our brains work, a familiar sound that we have associated with a good experience in the past will trigger the release of endorphins in our brain (pleasure causing chemical also associated with heavier experiences like sex and hard drugs). Any sound that is too different from what we are familiar with will not initially do that.

Your initial reaction to the dramatic new sound is likely to feel strange. Over a period of time, this will change but we can be talking days or weeks. Frankly, this can happen even if you took the room the wrong way.

It would be helpful if you posted a picture of your listening room before and after if possible.

I always try to explain to people who claim that their speakers break in that what happens is their brain breaks in to the new sound. Give it some time.
post #7 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdurani View Post

If you've absorbed the 1st reflections, then you're not going to have 2nd/3rd reflections

Not true, fist order reflections are sound hitting a surface and directly reflecting to the LP. Placing treatments at these reflection points won't stop second order reflections - those are sounds hitting two surfaces before arriving at the LP which will almost always be different points in the room as there are two different angles / surfaces.
post #8 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtn-tech View Post

Not true, fist order reflections are sound hitting a surface and directly reflecting to the LP. Placing treatments at these reflection points won't stop second order reflections - those are sounds hitting two surfaces before arriving at the LP which will almost always be different points in the room as there are two different angles / surfaces.
Yup, my mistake. Should have known better, considering I have absorption forward of my side wall first reflection points to specifically address later reflections without absorbing the first reflections.
post #9 of 36
Thread Starter 
OK it sounds like I shouldn't worry too much then. Ive listened to the room for so long its going to take some time to adjust to the new listening experience. The sound stage used to be so HUGE, its not now, but its all tightened up and each front speaker is distinct.

On another note, movies are much more pleasant to listen to, the shrill highs are gone. Voices seem deeper and much warmer....
post #10 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV 
On another note, movies are much more pleasant to listen to, the shrill highs are gone. Voices seem deeper and much warmer....

Has the intelligibility of dialogue improved?
post #11 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by goneten View Post

Has the intelligibility of dialogue improved?
Very much so.
post #12 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

Never had I heard the speaker pin pointed with the sound it was playing like this. The sound was directly in behind the screen and I felt I could point to it for the first time. Also all the highs and dialog were tamed, softer, mellow, deeper, un digital sounding.

Not un-digital as much as "not roomy" sounding.

A well-treated room can be an acquired taste, as Arny mentioned, but in my experience once you learn to appreciated the improved clarity, there's no going back.

--Ethan
post #13 of 36
I'm experiencing the same thing. I installed two bass tri traps three days ago and can notice a difference in the sound but it will take some getting used to.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk 4
post #14 of 36
Have a look at the first minute of this video for the other extreme... http://youtu.be/HY-rJoFK_7M?t=3m20s


I agree to give it some time for you to adjust to the new experience. Then one day remove the panels (if reasonably easy to do..??) and then see what you think of your room with out the panels.
post #15 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ethan Winer View Post

Not un-digital as much as "not roomy" sounding.

A well-treated room can be an acquired taste, as Arny mentioned, but in my experience once you learn to appreciated the improved clarity, there's no going back.

--Ethan

Ethan, can you ever have too much?
post #16 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

I started playing more discs and everything was so different to what I had heard over the last 1.5 years, this was going to take some getting used to. In the past I was playing with tone controls to soften the highs, now it was completely opposite, I was thinking have I lost my highs????

Just another take on your situation since I have just started using room treatments myself. The problem may not even be that you think the room sounds too dead, instead you may not actually like the way your speakers actually sound. I have Paradigm v.2 Mini Monitors which are a very mellow sounding speakers. Mellow sounding speakers seem to work great in rooms that add harsh high and mid frequencies due to bare walls and less than ideal room placement. The untreated walls will somewhat balance out the mellowness of the speakers. The chances of you actually hearing your speaker's real sound wherever you bought them from is slim as well since most retailers don't even have proper listening rooms. So you liked the way the speakers sounded wherever you listened to them for the first time in a false setting, but when you treated your room, your speaker's voice has changed and it's because of the treatments. However treatments are never a bad thing. Hearing your speakers in a well treated room is your speaker's true sound. When I put my treatments up I found that my mellow Paradigms sound a little too mellow. They still sound good and their sound stage is larger than ever before, but they don't sound as open and lively as I would like them to sound. It still beats the pants off of the shrilling highs bouncing off my side walls and the droning of all the mids destroying all clarity and integrity of the overall sound. Don't take any of your treatments down. Give your ears time to adjust or try a new speaker.
post #17 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Audio View Post

Just another take on your situation since I have just started using room treatments myself. The problem may not even be that you think the room sounds too dead, instead you may not actually like the way your speakers actually sound. I have Paradigm v.2 Mini Monitors which are a very mellow sounding speakers. Mellow sounding speakers seem to work great in rooms that add harsh high and mid frequencies due to bare walls and less than ideal room placement. The untreated walls will somewhat balance out the mellowness of the speakers. The chances of you actually hearing your speaker's real sound wherever you bought them from is slim as well since most retailers don't even have proper listening rooms. So you liked the way the speakers sounded wherever you listened to them for the first time in a false setting, but when you treated your room, your speaker's voice has changed and it's because of the treatments. However treatments are never a bad thing. Hearing your speakers in a well treated room is your speaker's true sound. When I put my treatments up I found that my mellow Paradigms sound a little too mellow. They still sound good and their sound stage is larger than ever before, but they don't sound as open and lively as I would like them to sound. It still beats the pants off of the shrilling highs bouncing off my side walls and the droning of all the mids destroying all clarity and integrity of the overall sound. Don't take any of your treatments down. Give your ears time to adjust or try a new speaker.

I never heard any of my speakers before I bought them as they are all in wall Klipsch THX speakers, they need to be installed to hear them correctly. But the 9.2 speakers always sounded too shrill for my likings, I was always trying to tame them after Audyssey XT-32, 8 point EQ. There is no need to now reduce the shrill sound they made as that's completely disappeared!

Klipsch have always had a name for being bright sounding, but after the room treatment I am thrilled I'm no longer searching for ways to remove the shrill sound from them.

I also now realise Im hearing the speakers as they were designed to be heard, Im getting the real thing and that's a treat. Its almost like Ive bought brand new speakers of a better quality. wink.gif
post #18 of 36
So would it be that you just don't find the soundstage to be as enveloping around you...???

I found that from adding more treatments in my room that the soundstage becomes more defined with better localisation. i.e vocals come from a more defined point and I get more of a sense of depth to the soundstage. It is now something I prefer over a more diffuse soundstage.
post #19 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwi2 View Post

So would it be that you just don't find the soundstage to be as enveloping around you...???

I found that from adding more treatments in my room that the soundstage becomes more defined with better localisation. i.e vocals come from a more defined point and I get more of a sense of depth to the soundstage. It is now something I prefer over a more diffuse soundstage.

With 9.2 its very enveloping with 7 speakers up and around the screen. Its also much more distinct from every speaker, maybe a more intimate experience than what it was before treatments.

Before treatments the front soundstage seemed HUGE as it was confused and muddled,but to me it sounded much bigger. Problem was the 7 speakers up front could have almost been a huge MONO speaker as sounds were not distinct and localized like they are now.
post #20 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

Ethan, can you ever have too much?

I believe he has like 42 panels or so in his living room, what do you think?
post #21 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckademic View Post

I believe he has like 42 panels or so in his living room, what do you think?

Im not too sure about that, if I thought mine seemed dead, his maybe fossilized. cool.gif
post #22 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by goneten View Post

Has the intelligibility of dialogue improved?
Very much so.

You bragging or complaining? ;-)
post #23 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

You bragging or complaining? ;-)

Probably bragging but it is still taking time getting used to this new sound.....
post #24 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

You bragging or complaining? ;-)

Probably bragging but it is still taking time getting used to this new sound.....

Not much in the scientific literature about break-in of human hearing... ;-)
post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

I finally got round to addressing my 1st reflection ceiling and walls. The very first thing I noticed after the job was completed was the atmosphere within the room with no audio playing, it was very quiet and quite unusual. The very first thing I noticed after 8 point Audyssey EQ was the dialog on the first BD I put on, it was bang slam in the middle of my acoustic screen! Never had I heard the speaker pin pointed with the sound it was playing like this. The sound was directly in behind the screen and I felt I could point to it for the first time. Also all the highs and dialog were tamed, softer, mellow, deeper, un digital sounding....

I started playing more discs and everything was so different to what I had heard over the last 1.5 years, this was going to take some getting used to. In the past I was playing with tone controls to soften the highs, now it was completely opposite, I was thinking have I lost my highs????

I had plans to take the acoustic treatments a bit further addressing the 2nd/3rd reflections but I had some concerns....

My sister came over who knows absolutely nothing about these things. She went into the HT without anything playing and said what's wrong in here? I asked what's the problem? she said its sounds very different, unusual, she said I sounded so different, not normal..... gee this is not what I wanted to here. We stepped outside the room continuing the conversation, then she said, now we sound normal. I was amused by this conversation and thought, wow do I finish the job that I had plans for or not???

Now I know this whole subject is very controversial with many from different camps on the subject, but I would like to hear from the likes of Ethan and some of the other experts in the field.

No this room is not completely covered on absorbers and bass traps.... They are not 6" thick like many use, I only had room for 2" thick panels.

Thoughts please guys... Do I finish this job I started or not?

 

I don't understand. If you put acoustic treatments in the room, what did you expect?  That it would sound just the same as without them?  Of course the room will sound different after you have treated it! You have damped down reflections, so naturally when you speak in the room, it will sound less lively than it did before. But the room isn't for holding a conversation in. It is for reproducing a movie soundtrack. That's where your focus needs to be - not on what a conversation with your sister sounds like in there. You got it right IMO when you said she knows absolutely nothing about acoustics, so why you attach so much importance to her comment, I do not understand.

 

It is possible to make a room sound very 'dead'. But I doubt very much if the relatively few 242 treatments you have installed will do this. If you believe you are experiencing a drop-off in HF, then get REW out and measure the room. Did you do this?  Did you measure before you installed the treatments so you know where to install them for maximum effect? You can't just stick them anywhere. After installation, you need to measure again and look at the ETCs to see if you have brought the reflections into line. Also, you can easily look at the FR and see if there is a drop-off in treble or if you are just imagining it. 

 

Taming reflections is more difficult than taming bass with broadband bass traps - you can more or less stick those across as many corners as you can and you will be OK. To tame reflections, first you need to measure to see where the reflections are coming from. Then you need to decide what you want to do about them. Then you need to install the treatments, and then measure again to see if you have made things better or not.

post #26 of 36
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post

I don't understand. If you put acoustic treatments in the room, what did you expect?  That it would sound just the same as without them?  Of course the room will sound different after you have treated it! You have damped down reflections, so naturally when you speak in the room, it will sound less lively than it did before. But the room isn't for holding a conversation in. It is for reproducing a movie soundtrack. That's where your focus needs to be - not on what a conversation with your sister sounds like in there. You got it right IMO when you said she knows absolutely nothing about acoustics, so why you attach so much importance to her comment, I do not understand.

It is possible to make a room sound very 'dead'. But I doubt very much if the relatively few 242 treatments you have installed will do this. If you believe you are experiencing a drop-off in HF, then get REW out and measure the room. Did you do this?  Did you measure before you installed the treatments so you know where to install them for maximum effect? You can't just stick them anywhere. After installation, you need to measure again and look at the ETCs to see if you have brought the reflections into line. Also, you can easily look at the FR and see if there is a drop-off in treble or if you are just imagining it. 

Taming reflections is more difficult than taming bass with broadband bass traps - you can more or less stick those across as many corners as you can and you will be OK. To tame reflections, first you need to measure to see where the reflections are coming from. Then you need to decide what you want to do about them. Then you need to install the treatments, and then measure again to see if you have made things better or not.

Keith of course I expected the room would sound different after applying treatments. I would never had added them if I thought adding room treatments made the room sound exactly the same as before the treatment that would be madness! I just was very surprised it made such a dramatic difference, I thought it would be very subtle. Its so dramatically different to the way it used to sound (night & day) its taking time to get used to it.....

I would have thought voice from a person standing in the room talking to me shouldn't sound too different to a person talking in a movie......its still the same room with the same acoustics......Maybe you might like to explain why talking in the room sounds any different to dialog from a movie?

I know my sister doesn't know anything about acoustics, but she was the very person I had a conversation with in the room after the acoustics were added. It was just a surprise statement she made which I thought I would share, but certainly of "no importance"

I did measure with REW before I added the treatments as it was you who mentioned after looking at the readings that I had lots of reflections...
I don't think I just stuck the treatments anywhere, I used a mirror to find them on the walls and ceiling, that's the areas I addressed.

I also asked advise on this forum first....

Im happy, as I say its just going to take some time to get used to the much warmer sound, I like that though and each day gets better....

As someone else here mentioned, you get so used to one sound over a long period of time, when you change it, its quite a shock!
post #27 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

Ethan, can you ever have too much?

Certainly not in the bass range anyway.

BTW, I have a total of 55 panels in my 25 by 16 foot living room. Some of them are smaller than 2x4 feet though. biggrin.gif

--Ethan
post #28 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Audio View Post

The problem may not even be that you think the room sounds too dead, instead you may not actually like the way your speakers actually sound.

Yes, this definitely happens.
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwi2 View Post

I found that from adding more treatments in my room that the soundstage becomes more defined with better localisation. i.e vocals come from a more defined point and I get more of a sense of depth to the soundstage.

That too. Untamed early reflections in a room drown out the larger sounding reverb embedded in most recordings, so adding absorption typically makes music sound larger, not smaller.

--Ethan
post #29 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by RapalloAV View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post

I don't understand. If you put acoustic treatments in the room, what did you expect?  That it would sound just the same as without them?  Of course the room will sound different after you have treated it! You have damped down reflections, so naturally when you speak in the room, it will sound less lively than it did before. But the room isn't for holding a conversation in. It is for reproducing a movie soundtrack. That's where your focus needs to be - not on what a conversation with your sister sounds like in there. You got it right IMO when you said she knows absolutely nothing about acoustics, so why you attach so much importance to her comment, I do not understand.

It is possible to make a room sound very 'dead'. But I doubt very much if the relatively few 242 treatments you have installed will do this. If you believe you are experiencing a drop-off in HF, then get REW out and measure the room. Did you do this?  Did you measure before you installed the treatments so you know where to install them for maximum effect? You can't just stick them anywhere. After installation, you need to measure again and look at the ETCs to see if you have brought the reflections into line. Also, you can easily look at the FR and see if there is a drop-off in treble or if you are just imagining it. 

Taming reflections is more difficult than taming bass with broadband bass traps - you can more or less stick those across as many corners as you can and you will be OK. To tame reflections, first you need to measure to see where the reflections are coming from. Then you need to decide what you want to do about them. Then you need to install the treatments, and then measure again to see if you have made things better or not.

Keith of course I expected the room would sound different after applying treatments. I would never had added them if I thought adding room treatments made the room sound exactly the same as before the treatment that would be madness! I just was very surprised it made such a dramatic difference, I thought it would be very subtle. Its so dramatically different to the way it used to sound (night & day) its taking time to get used to it.....

 

Oh no - the difference between a bad room and a good room is dramatic. Remember the room is the most important component in the system and the most influential on the final sound you hear. (Speakers matter too of course).

 

Quote:
I would have thought voice from a person standing in the room talking to me shouldn't sound too different to a person talking in a movie......its still the same room with the same acoustics......Maybe you might like to explain why talking in the room sounds any different to dialog from a movie?

 

One is live and one is recorded. The recording has already been made in as close to ideal conditions as the sound engineers could get. They have already managed any issues caused by bad reflections and so on. In your sitting room, that is not the case and you (and your sister) are accustomed to hearing voice reproduction with numerous influences from the room. If you record your voice in your sitting room and then play it back in your HT it will sound terrible - all reflection-y. If your record your voice in your HT and play it back, it will sound 'normal'.  A space used for recording has totally different characteristics to a space used for playback.

 

Quote:
I know my sister doesn't know anything about acoustics, but she was the very person I had a conversation with in the room after the acoustics were added. It was just a surprise statement she made which I thought I would share, but certainly of "no importance"

 

I just wanted to caution against listening to people who don't understand the objectives of the HT environment. Yes, the room sounds 'funny' because she isn't used to it. She'd say the same in a cinema, a recording suite in a studio etc.

 

Quote:
I did measure with REW before I added the treatments as it was you who mentioned after looking at the readings that I had lots of reflections...
I don't think I just stuck the treatments anywhere, I used a mirror to find them on the walls and ceiling, that's the areas I addressed.

 

That is good. have you used the string as well yet? :)  That's when you know you are so far down the rabbit hole you are close to emerging on the other side of the world :)

 

Quote:
Im happy, as I say its just going to take some time to get used to the much warmer sound, I like that though and each day gets better....

As someone else here mentioned, you get so used to one sound over a long period of time, when you change it, its quite a shock!

 

Yes, this is true. The main point is what you said first: you thought imaging was the best you have ever heard, dialogue was precise and so on. IOW, you liked it!

post #30 of 36
Thread Starter 
Very interesting Keith....

Now I am sold!

Something must have gone wrong with my XT-32 EQ straight after the new acoustic treatments were installed and maybe that's why I thought things sounded dead...I thought I had lost my highs....

Tonight I re did XT-32 8 points and its completely different, the highs (tamed by the way) have returned, wow!
The sound in the room is absolutely amazing, its wonderful, clean, tamed, dynamic, the sound stage is crystal clear and the imaging distinct, its everywhere, my eyes are following the audio over the 7 channels up front.
I'm absolutely thrilled with the result.

Gee what may have gone wrong with that EQ I did straight after the treatments went in, I was blaming the treatments for deadening everything too much. It really wasn't the case, something went wrong with that calibration...... That's taught me something, if it doesn't sound right, re do Audyssey.....
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Audio theory, Setup and Chat
AVS › AVS Forum › Audio › Audio theory, Setup and Chat › Am I too dead?