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post #1 of 9 Old 11-14-2019, 10:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Room/Speaker Layout advice

I posted this in the Audio Theory Set Up & Chat area as I thought that was most appropriate. Unfortunately I only got 2 very elementary replies and one was simply incorrect. Perhaps a moderator will want to close that thread as I don't know how/if I can.

That being said, aside from my question regarding the furniture blocking the left side in the new layout this is basically a subwoofer placement question unless someone sees this as an overall poor plan. This is a long note but you could skip that and go straight to the images and chime in. I appreciate any input.

Room layout help -or - No Good Deed Goes Unpunished
I promised my wife when I uprooted us from FL to move North to be with aging family that I would not let A/V dictate the house we rented and I would sacrifice and be practical. I kept my promise and what do you know - due to circumstances/market conditions etc. we ended up buying the house last year. I'm stuck with it for a while and about to go down the rabbit hole to improve the situation.

The goal here is two-fold. Primarily I would like to use my fireplace.....or maybe that's just what I told my wife

The second angle is to try to improve, or at least not worsen my A/V experience in doing so. I've attached the existing room layout and the best alternative I've been able to come up with. I'd appreciate any input that comes my way, particularly any that think this may be a step backward on the AV front.

Here is some info and my thoughts.

• The room is 13' x 21' x 8' with numerous openings marked in blue & green. Only the French Doors on the east side can be closed and of course they are wood framed and glass.
• Layouts aren't NASA precise but pretty accurate at 1" = 1'
• Carpeting and underlay is some of the thickest I've ever seen and FWIW it's an elevated wood floor.
• Whether due to the carpeting or the current arrangement of furnishings it's a pretty dead room.
• Atmos/DTSX not a concern at the moment. Just looking for a good 9.3 set up.
• Speakers/subs are indicated in red

Existing Pros/Cons
1. Can't use fireplace
2. Orientation is along the wrong wall and the seating is right against the back wall
3. Sound stage width is decent (even without the front wides) but depth is lacking
4. I miss my surround backs

Thoughts for the new plan
1. Corrects the orientation which will hopefully improve surround immersion and sound stage depth for music
2. Not sure how the sectional couch along the left wall will affect sound. Never had a configuration this asymmetrical/blocked on one side
3. Keeps the MLP at almost 1/3rd of the room length
4. Allows use of Surround backs - sacrificing Front heights - easy call
5. Offers better positioning for side surrounds relative to the MLP
6. Allows me to get at least 2 subs in opposing corners which is a more conventional layout, or offers placement of 3 subs where I can tryout the Geddes approach.
7. Decision on front 3 speakers may be determined by traffic area - I have 2 options indicated in the new plan layout. Older but decent bookshelves for more floor space or better full range towers.

Thanks in advance to any who have input.
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Last edited by Artzilla; 11-14-2019 at 10:15 AM.
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post #2 of 9 Old 11-14-2019, 12:53 PM
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Use the 2nd or 3rd layout, to allow use of the fireplace. Other than that, not much else to respond to. As with every subwoofer placement, it will be room-directed, so "planning" where it will go is a useless endeavor. The sub will tell you where it belongs.

You ask no specific questions, so you elicit few responses.
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post #3 of 9 Old 11-15-2019, 02:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
Use the 2nd or 3rd layout, to allow use of the fireplace. Other than that, not much else to respond to. As with every subwoofer placement, it will be room-directed, so "planning" where it will go is a useless endeavor. The sub will tell you where it belongs.

You ask no specific questions, so you elicit few responses.
I suppose there was too much "stream of consciousness" vs direct questions for the subwoofer forum. This was basically: Here's my plan - shoot some holes in it or make suggestions. In my defense it was originally posted in Theory/Set up & chat. The goal was to get opinions/critiques/suggestions on my approach to iron out wrinkles I may not be seeing before upending the room.

Here are 3 more specific areas I'd like to focus on and the original layout and new layout in question.

1. Should this layout (in theory) produce a better audio experience than the current orientation?

2. I know it can't be ideal but based on anyone's experience is all the furniture on the left wall basically cutting the room in half up to about 3 1/2' from the floor an acoustic no no? I've never had a layout like that before. I've always kept my room/furniture pretty symmetrical so I question if/how this might affect sub choices, or if there is conventional wisdom that just says "DON"T DO IT". Also, if blocking one side like that is going to destroy stereo imaging for instance - I need a new plan. It's mostly used for movies but is also my primary music system.

3. Agreed sub/room relationships are unique and... best laid plans....I get it but I wouldn't go as far as to say planning is useless. I see this kind of question asked and answered pretty frequently. It was such a thread that prompted me to start the original in Theory/set up/chat etc.

Having 3 subs it's not as simple as a sub crawl so I was looking for thoughts regarding whether the 2 in the front and back corners were a wise place to start - thoughts on proximity to openings etc. Caddy corner from each other and opposing mid wall are well documented dual sub approaches in sealed rooms but this is not that and I have up to 3 to use in this room. I thought there might be some with experience in similar spaces, sub expertise or ideas to share.

FWIW all are ported and 20Hz tune (though all can be adjusted lower or run in sealed mode). The 2 cylinders are of equal power. The ported box is considerably more capable than those 2. Combined or co-located however the cylinders produce more output than the ported box.
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Last edited by Artzilla; 11-15-2019 at 02:45 AM.
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post #4 of 9 Old 11-15-2019, 11:27 AM
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1. Not necessarily. Your stated goal is to make the fireplace useful. To that end you may have to compromise a bit on the sound quality (or not). The only way to really know is to try it out and let your ears decide. No guarantees in this hobby ...

2. Sitting towards the middle of the room (make sure it's not the exact middle, as bass suffers) is actually a benefit from a surrounds and bass response perspective, vs sitting against a wall.

3. Planning for sub position options is not useless. The more options you have, the higher the probability of success. There are a number of recommended options for a two sub layout, but all bets are off when you go to three (especially mismatched). Most folks here would recommend you invest in a UMIK and REW, so you can see what is happening in your room, and position accordingly. The more subs you use, the more complex the task.
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post #5 of 9 Old 11-15-2019, 11:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RayGuy View Post
1. Not necessarily. Your stated goal is to make the fireplace useful. To that end you may have to compromise a bit on the sound quality (or not). The only way to really know is to try it out and let your ears decide. No guarantees in this hobby ...



2. Sitting towards the middle of the room (make sure it's not the exact middle, as bass suffers) is actually a benefit from a surrounds and bass response perspective, vs sitting against a wall.



3. Planning for sub position options is not useless. The more options you have, the higher the probability of success. There are a number of recommended options for a two sub layout, but all bets are off when you go to three (especially mismatched). Most folks here would recommend you invest in a UMIK and REW, so you can see what is happening in your room, and position accordingly. The more subs you use, the more complex the task.
Thanks for taking the time to revisit this RayGuy.

1. Yeah the fireplace was what started this - but you might have missed my additional note "or that's just what I told my wife". Once I started thinking I might actually be able to make improvements that became more of a driver.


2. Yes - I know this from a previous home which is why was optimistic in seeing that depending on precise placement I can get the MLP at or around 1/3 of the room length.


3. Yes, the subs are a challenge but I have several EQ options available. Umik and REW are already part of my toolkit - that's what got me to the current sub placements. I also have an Audyssey ASEQ1 which runs the 2 cylinders as a single sub. Then I run Audyssey XT32 with the ported box on one channel and the ASEQ1 corrected cylinders on sub channel 2. I have since learned from ED at SVS that I would probably get better results running them off a single sub channel. I'll probably get a mini dsp HD for Xmas for more control.

I think I'm going to try the Geddes method as that is a 3 sub approach and not dependent on identical subs or maybe see if I can get the job done with just 2, or as I typed really small on the room layout perhaps stack the two cylinders as I had done with some success in a previous home. That way I'm essentially using 2 subs with 2 being colocated in the front corner acting as one and another in the opposing back corner.

I see I've slipping back into my rambling so I'll stop. It's almost as if I'm easilly distracted by the subject.
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post #6 of 9 Old 11-15-2019, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artzilla View Post
Thanks for taking the time to revisit this RayGuy.

1. Yeah the fireplace was what started this - but you might have missed my additional note "or that's just what I told my wife". Once I started thinking I might actually be able to make improvements that became more of a driver.


2. Yes - I know this from a previous home which is why was optimistic in seeing that depending on precise placement I can get the MLP at or around 1/3 of the room length.


3. Yes, the subs are a challenge but I have several EQ options available. Umik and REW are already part of my toolkit - that's what got me to the current sub placements. I also have an Audyssey ASEQ1 which runs the 2 cylinders as a single sub. Then I run Audyssey XT32 with the ported box on one channel and the ASEQ1 corrected cylinders on sub channel 2. I have since learned from ED at SVS that I would probably get better results running them off a single sub channel. I'll probably get a mini dsp HD for Xmas for more control.

I think I'm going to try the Geddes method as that is a 3 sub approach and not dependent on identical subs or maybe see if I can get the job done with just 2, or as I typed really small on the room layout perhaps stack the two cylinders as I had done with some success in a previous home. That way I'm essentially using 2 subs with 2 being colocated in the front corner acting as one and another in the opposing back corner.

I see I've slipping back into my rambling so I'll stop. It's almost as if I'm easilly distracted by the subject.
Aren't we all?

Given that you already are on the REW bandwagon, I have confidence you will succeed, eventually (tweaking is an iterative process). Stacking the subs and going with a 2 location approach may be a good strategy, if your three position approaches do not give you good results. Alternatively, just use two subs and sell the other (invest in room treatments?).

Seems to me you are going to have an interesting weekend ahead of you ... (get some furniture sliders, you only have one back!)
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Last edited by RayGuy; 11-15-2019 at 12:11 PM.
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post #7 of 9 Old 11-15-2019, 12:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Aren't we all?

Given that you already are on the REW bandwagon, I have confidence you will succeed, eventually (tweaking is an iterative process). Stacking the subs and going with a 2 location approach may be a good strategy, if your three position approaches do not give you good results. Alternatively, just use two subs and sell the other (invest in room treatments?).

Seems to me you are going to have an interesting weekend ahead of you ... (get some furniture sliders, you only have one back!)
Weekend eh? I love your optimism
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post #8 of 9 Old 11-15-2019, 12:35 PM
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Weekend eh? I love your optimism
Gotta start somewhere!

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post #9 of 9 Old 11-16-2019, 05:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Gotta start somewhere!
Indeed. After a little more thought my first attempt will be to go with the stacked cylinders and the opposing corner approach. Though I stacked them before and got the best results that way in my previous home this was before I learned about the Geddes method. I had completely forgotten that what got me to the point of trying that was looking at room mode calculators and wondering what would happen if I got one off the floor to combat height modes. I only had the 2 subs at the time but it worked great. I got more summed output as they were essentially colocated and tighter better distributed bass. That's the first time I achieved what some refer to as room lock I believe. Bass was everywhere and tactile.

It was a couple of years later I read Earl Geddes approach where he proposes 3 subs with at least one of them off the floor. So what I'm going to do is neither conventional nor as Geddes suggests but a mix of the 2. 2 downfiring cylinders stacked on top of each other in one corner puts one driver at the floor and one about 3.5" off the floor. The front firing ported box in the opposing corner.

To keep them tuned to each other I'll have to run them sealed (because of stacking and blocking the ports on the bottom cylinder - not going to mix I match ported vs sealed) but I think this will give me decent odds of addressing all modes. I might lose some low end extension running them sealed but I've always had to tame the low end in this room with eq despite the openings. I'm very curious to see how they behave corner loaded.

Once again - stream of consciousness here. Sometimes typing it just helps me work out my thoughts so why not share them. Not really looking for responses....unless anyone has some
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Last edited by Artzilla; 11-16-2019 at 06:03 AM.
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