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So this is my alternative window plug approach....


...The snag with this approach is the window sill. If I have the foam squashed against that it rather undermines the whole point of having the other three sides squashed against decoupled battens.
Unless you are going for an extreme level of detailed sound-proofing, IMHO you are probably over-thinking this issue. It's common for window plugs to have foam contacting the sides of a window cavity. The key is normally ensuring there is no flanking path by using a layered materials approach to construction, such that any seams on an outer layer are covered by an inner layer (where inner = room side of the plug). Furthermore, the mass of the inner layer should be designed to help dampen sound moving in/out of the window.

As an example, my room's window plugs consist of foam insulation on the "outside" (adjacent to the glass) that fill the entire cavity, and multiple overlapping layers of different density material on the "inside" (room side). They are effective.
 

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+1

FWIW, my room has PA amps (class AB). Class D amps are quieter, but they are not all quiet. For instance, I also have a class D amp that is not quiet either. Just don't presume any amp you get will be quiet and you won't be disappointed. LoL. :)

Some people don't care about amp noise. You will generally only hear it during quiet scenes. Still, it can be annoying/distracting. In my case, I performed a fan mod on one of my amps to resolve the noisiest offender.

My rack is in the back of the room, due to architectural constraints. If I could have placed it inside a separate space with no view from the room, I would have. Almost all my controls of my system are wireless.

@HT Geek,

As I mentioned, I am going to start a build thread and I am going to start it off with my original post (here) but slightly revised. In that first post you will see some answers to your questions on certain topics as well as a video walk-thru of the room that I will upload to YouTube. That video will clear a lot up as well - especially what is going OUTSIDE of the room behind the walls. I am going to shoot the vid today and hopefully get it uploaded to YT and a new thread started by this afternoon/evening. I will post a link to the thread back here - it will be called the Belleview Park Theater Room. :)
 

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Risers on a floating floor?

@HT Geek

I'm just starting a new HT build, and I intend to put in a floating floor, probably OSB over a foam pad, but I'm not sure how to go about putting in a riser for the second row. Should I put in the floating floor, then install the riser over it, or install the riser on the existing subfloor and float the surface of the riser?

The room is over a garage, so my purpose is to keep the sound out of the HT.

Thanks in advance!
 

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@HT Geek

I'm just starting a new HT build, and I intend to put in a floating floor, probably OSB over a foam pad, but I'm not sure how to go about putting in a riser for the second row. Should I put in the floating floor, then install the riser over it,
YES

When you say "foam pad," what do you mean exactly? Do you have a particular product in mind? If so, what is it?

or install the riser on the existing subfloor and float the surface of the riser?
NO

The room is over a garage, so my purpose is to keep the sound out of the HT.
Gotcha. What sort of sounds do you wish to prevent emanating from the garage into the HT room? Is there an electric garage door opener beneath your future HT room? Are your garage doors metal or wood? Are they relatively heavy? How many garage door openers are in your garage? Do you have any beams in the garage? What's the floor of the future HT room/ceiling of garage like? Trusses???
 

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My apologies if this has been asked before but can someone recommend where to purchase clips and channel in the MD/DC/VA area? I am not quite at that point yet but it is something that I would like to add into my construction budget. Or is this something that is typically ordered online and shipped?

I am sure there are many diff. varieties of clips and channel out there as well so feel free to recommend away. I am located in the Annapolis area halfway between Baltimore and DC (30 min drive to each). Thanks in advance!
 

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New question - I'm curious about your experience soundproofing for serious bass.

On my next dedicated theater build (still in planning stage, probably ~2000 cu.ft.; sealed, dedicated room) I am thinking about a couple DIY subs (18"s?). This will be a LOT stronger than my previous theater (well soundproofed with help from SoundproofingCompany, but only had a couple cheap 10" subs) and I worry about WAF from noise leakage and being able to watch movies at all after bedtime.

I am familiar with the standard techniques and likely will employ decoupled walls, DD w/ GG, clips and channels for ceiling (DDGG too), etc, but I guess I just want to know if those measures allow for some serious bass. This will be a basement build down to foundation and exposed ceiling.

Thanks!
 

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So, question because i can not seem to find a definitive, or any answer. Duct work, bunch of it is mounted almost center in the joist, so my insulation wil either fit above it or below it.

Is it safe to have pink fluffy insulation making direct contact with duct work?

 

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I'm working on a poor man's home theater and music room on the second floor of a wood framed house, above the master suite. I'm not doing anything approaching proper room-within-a-room construction.

But I am thinking of putting down a layer of rubber (e.g. horse stall mat) and floating another subfloor (OSB or plywood or higher-density fiberboard) over that, as a way to reduce sound transmission into the master suite below and other parts of the house. I'm cognizant that with untreated walls and ceiling, this is likely to yield only modest improvements in sound isolation, but my guess is it's worthwhile nonetheless. Comments on that welcome.

Secondarily, there is no insulation between the first and second floor, and I'm wondering whether it makes sense to blow something fluffy into the cavities below the home theater/music room to reduce the drum-like resonance of those enclosed spaces and improve sound isolation. We have engineered joists, I think every 16", so I'd need to cut an access port in the subfloor between each joist to blow insulation in. Again, the question is whether the labor and cost of doing this are warranted.

So I guess there are three options:

1) Just put hardwood over an underlayment or carpet over a pad down on the existing subfloor.

2) Put a layer of thicker rubber down and float a second subfloor and put either hardwood/underlayment or carpet/pad over that.

3) In addition to rubber and second subfloor, also blow fluffy stuff into the cavities in the floor.

Obviously there are escalating costs (money and time) associated with these options, so the question, which I recognize is hard to answer, is what's worth it. Comments welcome!
 

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Thanks for the advice!

When you say "foam pad," what do you mean exactly? Do you have a particular product in mind? If so, what is it?
I'm probably going to be using two layers of carpet padding, the densest I can get. There's already one layer in the room, which is a chopped-up foam rubber. It's definitely not the crummy little bubble stuff.

What sort of sounds do you wish to prevent emanating from the garage into the HT room?
The furnace is in there, and the garage door openers (2). The doors are metal. Of course, cars, although it's likely I'll be in one of the cars when it's moving in or out.

Do you have any beams in the garage?
There's nothing that shows in the garage - it has a drywall ceiling with the GDOs hanging from it and a few lights.

What's the floor of the future HT room/ceiling of garage like?
The floor is OSB with a pad and carpet. I'll be removing the carpet to put the extra soundproofing and riser in, as well as shelves for a fairly extensive record collection and the standard (and a little non-standard) equipment.

Trusses???
The room is built with "bonus room" trusses. They're pretty heavy (at least 2x8s and maybe 2x12s - I'll check tomorrow) with fiberglass insulation between the joists. Right now, the GDOs make the most noise if it's not me in the garage. But I have a report that the vacuum cleaner running in the theater room is quite noticeable in the garage if there's no other noises.

Thanks for the advice. I'm a little concerned (which is not quite worried) about the floor load I'll be putting in the room. The garage span is three cars wide and 27' deep, but I've poked around in the crawl spaces beside the room and there's a lot of wood there!
 

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I'm probably going to be using two layers of carpet padding, the densest I can get. There's already one layer in the room, which is a chopped-up foam rubber. It's definitely not the crummy little bubble stuff.

The furnace is in there, and the garage door openers (2). The doors are metal. Of course, cars, although it's likely I'll be in one of the cars when it's moving in or out.

There's nothing that shows in the garage - it has a drywall ceiling with the GDOs hanging from it and a few lights.

The floor is OSB with a pad and carpet. I'll be removing the carpet to put the extra soundproofing and riser in, as well as shelves for a fairly extensive record collection and the standard (and a little non-standard) equipment.

The room is built with "bonus room" trusses. They're pretty heavy (at least 2x8s and maybe 2x12s - I'll check tomorrow) with fiberglass insulation between the joists. Right now, the GDOs make the most noise if it's not me in the garage. But I have a report that the vacuum cleaner running in the theater room is quite noticeable in the garage if there's no other noises.

Thanks for the advice. I'm a little concerned (which is not quite worried) about the floor load I'll be putting in the room. The garage span is three cars wide and 27' deep, but I've poked around in the crawl spaces beside the room and there's a lot of wood there!

Thanks for the info. Thoughts/feedback. I am presuming you float the floor in the HT room and use either clips & channel on the walls or double stud wall.

First off, don't worry about the trusses and their load bearing capabilities unless you are going to extreme lengths of adding lots of weight up there. They should be rated for over 50 psf for that room, plus a margin. Now, having said that.... Don't be surprised if you notice some cracks in a few places during or post-construction. Notably,


  • exterior wall of the room if your home's exterior is stone
  • ceiling of your garage (cracks along drywall seams)
  • less likely: garage floor
If you see those, do not panic! This is normal. You have to realize your house has already settled, but you are about to restart the construction process, and adjustments to weight here and there will shift things around. This does not mean it's not structurally sound (it is). This means the load balancing in that part of your home will shift, and because the rest of the home doesn't need to do that, sometimes people notice these minor changes. Do not get alarmed if you do as well. The biggest hassle is the cosmetic fixes to drywall tape/mud if the ceiling sheets in the garage form cracks. Also, you likely won't notice any of this for months, if it happens at all.

One more area where you *might* see a change is with your headers over the garage door entrance. They may bow very slightly in the center, again due to the shift in weight and the fact there is a lot of stress on those beams. That is a non-issue unless you begin to get an inordinate amount of flex (exact amount of what that means depends on the span). I'll skip the civil engineering discussion on that for the moment. LoL. Point is... this is again something that is common, even in new homes, so a small amount of flex is not going to raise any alarm bells. But you are adding more weight, so don't be surprised if you see this happen over time. You may never notice this, or you may notice it years later.

None of those alerts for you above will be sudden. They may or may not show up over time. Sometimes, during construction you will find cracks forming along the garage ceiling. That's just because you are banging the heck out of the structure up there. Again, not something to be concerned about other than cosmetics (but don't fix it until a few months after the room is finished, or you will probably need to re-fix it).

Now, let's talk about sound in the HT room from the garage:


  1. If you can currently hear/feel the GDOs (Garage Door Openers) in your future HT room, you will likely continue to do so post-construction, but they will be less pronounced
  2. Below in the garage, you will hear bass from the HT room
  3. You should not hear the sound of vehicles (unless they have the windows open and blaring music very loudly, plus a quiet scene in the HT room... then perhaps you might)
  4. You will still hear vacuuming in the HT room (below, from inside the garage), but it will be muffled
The worst part is going to be the GDOs. Since your garage doors are metal, they are not as heavy as wood doors and that is a plus. It means you *could* install quieter GDOs if they aren't already quiet (e.g. screw drive instead of chain driven). I'm ad-libbing a bit here since I know nothing about what sort of GDOs you have currently, nor your exact weight of your garage doors. I'm just going on experience here re: typical U.S. home.

How important is blocking all sound and vibration from the garage into the HT room? Is it a priority? Or not a huge issue? If it is a priority and you want true silence, you will have to kick-it-up-a-notch on the flooring. If you're OK with what I've described above, then with regards to the garage you'll be GTG.
 

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I'm working on a poor man's home theater and music room on the second floor of a wood framed house, above the master suite. I'm not doing anything approaching proper room-within-a-room construction.

But I am thinking of putting down a layer of rubber (e.g. horse stall mat) and floating another subfloor (OSB or plywood or higher-density fiberboard) over that, as a way to reduce sound transmission into the master suite below and other parts of the house. I'm cognizant that with untreated walls and ceiling, this is likely to yield only modest improvements in sound isolation, but my guess is it's worthwhile nonetheless. Comments on that welcome.

Secondarily, there is no insulation between the first and second floor, and I'm wondering whether it makes sense to blow something fluffy into the cavities below the home theater/music room to reduce the drum-like resonance of those enclosed spaces and improve sound isolation. We have engineered joists, I think every 16", so I'd need to cut an access port in the subfloor between each joist to blow insulation in. Again, the question is whether the labor and cost of doing this are warranted.

So I guess there are three options:

1) Just put hardwood over an underlayment or carpet over a pad down on the existing subfloor.

2) Put a layer of thicker rubber down and float a second subfloor and put either hardwood/underlayment or carpet/pad over that.

3) In addition to rubber and second subfloor, also blow fluffy stuff into the cavities in the floor.

Obviously there are escalating costs (money and time) associated with these options, so the question, which I recognize is hard to answer, is what's worth it. Comments welcome!

Hoping HTGeek, Big, or others might weigh in. And to modify the above slightly: I did built a new wall to enclose a loft space and create the room with staggered studs, double drywall on the inside, and Green Glue between the double drywall. But the existing walls weren't modified. My thinking on doing soundproofing in the new wall is that 1) since I was building the wall anyway, the marginal cost of some soundproofing wasn't that high; 2) it gives me the option of going back and doing the other room walls and ceiling properly in future; and 3) the new wall separates the room from the interior of the house, whereas the existing walls separate it from the outside of the house. That only goes so far, obviously, because the framing will still transmit sound to other rooms in the house. But it seemed worth clarifying for anyone (like Big and HTGeek) who helpfully advised me when I was debating how to construct the new wall.
 

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Good info!

Thanks for the info. Thoughts/feedback. I am presuming you float the floor in the HT room and use either clips & channel on the walls or double stud wall.
The nice thing about this room is that it shares no walls with other rooms. It is entirely above the garage, and is in sort of a "gable" with a window over the garage doors. There's a small hallway entering the room that shares a fairly small wall with the master bedroom, and I'll probably fill that up with insulation and a sound-isolating board. There might be room to stagger-stud that wall. It's about 8' by 8', and I'm also planning on a recording studio door between the room and the little hall. There's a good 8 to 10 feet between the wall of the theater room and an adjacent bedroom. Yeah, drawings would help, but I'm still moving in and I have no idea what pile of stuff my scanner is in!:(

First off, don't worry about the trusses and their load bearing capabilities unless you are going to extreme lengths of adding lots of weight up there. They should be rated for over 50 psf for that room, plus a margin. Now, having said that.... Don't be surprised if you notice some cracks in a few places during or post-construction. Notably,


  • exterior wall of the room if your home's exterior is stone
  • ceiling of your garage (cracks along drywall seams)
  • less likely: garage floor
The exterior is a painted hardboard faux siding, so that's not going to be a problem. The ceiling of the garage is drywall and it looks like crap, but I'll hold off on tidying that up until spring maybe.


Now, let's talk about sound in the HT room from the garage:
  1. If you can currently hear/feel the GDOs (Garage Door Openers) in your future HT room, you will likely continue to do so post-construction, but they will be less pronounced
  2. Below in the garage, you will hear bass from the HT room
  3. You should not hear the sound of vehicles (unless they have the windows open and blaring music very loudly, plus a quiet scene in the HT room... then perhaps you might)
  4. You will still hear vacuuming in the HT room (below, from inside the garage), but it will be muffled
I'm not all that worried about what sound leaks into the garage, because nobody is going to be doing serious listening in there. It wouldn't surprise me if my wife opened the door while I'm using the room, but the noise won't last all that long, after all.

The worst part is going to be the GDOs. Since your garage doors are metal, they are not as heavy as wood doors and that is a plus. It means you *could* install quieter GDOs if they aren't already quiet (e.g. screw drive instead of chain driven). I'm ad-libbing a bit here since I know nothing about what sort of GDOs you have currently, nor your exact weight of your garage doors. I'm just going on experience here re: typical U.S. home.
There's a two-car door and a one-car door. The openers are hung from steel angle lagged into the joists. They are chain drive, fairly noisy but again, it won't be lasting very long.

How important is blocking all sound and vibration from the garage into the HT room? Is it a priority? Or not a huge issue? If it is a priority and you want true silence, you will have to kick-it-up-a-notch on the flooring. If you're OK with what I've described above, then with regards to the garage you'll be GTG.
I'm already thrilled about the space I have available. In my previous house, I had a tiny bedroom in the basement, and the SAF for the subwoofer was minimal. This house I intend to do a better job of isolating the room (and no doubt making several mistakes, but I'm here trying to keep that down to a dull roar). I'm going to have a few HVAC issues, but noise from the unit doesn't seem a problem - it's hiding the registers! I have a few ideas, which may end up as plans, and then built.
 

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Hoping HTGeek, Big, or others might weigh in. And to modify the above slightly: I did built a new wall to enclose a loft space and create the room with staggered studs, double drywall on the inside, and Green Glue between the double drywall. But the existing walls weren't modified. My thinking on doing soundproofing in the new wall is that 1) since I was building the wall anyway, the marginal cost of some soundproofing wasn't that high; 2) it gives me the option of going back and doing the other room walls and ceiling properly in future; and 3) the new wall separates the room from the interior of the house, whereas the existing walls separate it from the outside of the house. That only goes so far, obviously, because the framing will still transmit sound to other rooms in the house. But it seemed worth clarifying for anyone (like Big and HTGeek) who helpfully advised me when I was debating how to construct the new wall.
Well, I hate to say this, but from your description the improvements you are suggesting are likely to disappoint when it comes to sound transmission between the man-cave and master bedroom below. Damping joists or trusses between floors (from above) and achieving a notable difference in attenuation is quite a challenge in general. They are efficient at carrying vibration, unfortunately (especially up and down). Not suggesting you don't do anything, but trying to prep you for potential disappointment. It depends very much on how your home is built; what type of beams and supports exist and where they are, what's connected to them, etc. Even though homes are mostly built in the same pattern, the weak points and transmission routes vary depending on where all the parts line up.

Now, with regards to side-to-side vibrations and sound transmission along the floor (i.e. on upper level), you should notice a bigger gain from floor treatments. I fear flanking noise is going to overcome any benefits between floors, and you might not even perceive a benefit at all (in room below).

If you want to improve your chances, you'd need to look at using something like a 2-4" thick Kinetics RIM product. The thicker the better. They manufacture one specifically for wood floors.

Regarding blowing in insulation between floors.... Unless you specifically want to focus on mitigating higher frequency sound transmission between floors (e.g. voices and higher pitches), I'm not sure i'd bother. In and of itself, it won't affect the LFE at all under your circumstances. Cumulatively with a floating floor, I don't think it's worth the effort given the bigger picture. However, if impact noise is a concern then I would reconsider doing it after all (e.g. high heels on hardwood floor). Again though, the real benefit would be minimal and I'm not so sure the cost would be worthwhile (probably not).

If you have the $ to blow (pun intended) on insulation, find out what a suitable roll of RIM would cost and consider going the latter route instead and skipping the insulation between floors. But before you spend $ on either one, ask yourself if it's still worthwhile if your perception of the final result is that it hasn't appreciably improved the situation. Unless you have plans for a re-do in the future with more involved soundproofing methods, I would stick with a minimalist approach (cost and time).

Hate to say all that, but endeavouring to be realistic here.
 

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I'm going to have a few HVAC issues, but noise from the unit doesn't seem a problem - it's hiding the registers! I have a few ideas, which may end up as plans, and then built.
Sounds good. Let us know when you're able to start a build thread. :)

Regarding HVAC... climate control is very important. Make sure you give it due consideration. Take a look at linear diffusers for registers/vents. They look nice, blend in well, and function well. Your best bet is to order custom-sized ones to fit your needs. HVAC is often one of the most complex pieces of the puzzle, especially when converting unfinished to finished space.
 

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So, question because i can not seem to find a definitive, or any answer. Duct work, bunch of it is mounted almost center in the joist, so my insulation wil either fit above it or below it.

Is it safe to have pink fluffy insulation making direct contact with duct work?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjhrXFo0Kw
I don't think having the insulation touch the duct work would be an issue, but not sure it is going to help that much. Are you talking about adding insulation around duct supply runs in you joist? Then yes that is done a lot. If you are concerned about sound from the lines you can put them in duct mufflers and replace the metal ducts with flexible ducts.

I watched the video you posted and one thing I would not do that he did in the video is to build a wall, put drywall on it then built another wall in front of it with a small gap. That will cause a triple leaf effect. Building to walls is good, but don't put drywall between the tow walls. Also better to decouple the wall inside the room at the top from the joist with clips so sound doesn't travel up so easily.

This is a good read and they are very helpful if you have questions.
https://www.soundproofingcompany.com/soundproofing101
 

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Well, I hate to say this, but from your description the improvements you are suggesting are likely to disappoint when it comes to sound transmission between the man-cave and master bedroom below. Damping joists or trusses between floors (from above) and achieving a notable difference in attenuation is quite a challenge in general. They are efficient at carrying vibration, unfortunately (especially up and down). Not suggesting you don't do anything, but trying to prep you for potential disappointment. It depends very much on how your home is built; what type of beams and supports exist and where they are, what's connected to them, etc. Even though homes are mostly built in the same pattern, the weak points and transmission routes vary depending on where all the parts line up.

Now, with regards to side-to-side vibrations and sound transmission along the floor (i.e. on upper level), you should notice a bigger gain from floor treatments. I fear flanking noise is going to overcome any benefits between floors, and you might not even perceive a benefit at all (in room below).

If you want to improve your chances, you'd need to look at using something like a 2-4" thick Kinetics RIM product. The thicker the better. They manufacture one specifically for wood floors.

Regarding blowing in insulation between floors.... Unless you specifically want to focus on mitigating higher frequency sound transmission between floors (e.g. voices and higher pitches), I'm not sure i'd bother. In and of itself, it won't affect the LFE at all under your circumstances. Cumulatively with a floating floor, I don't think it's worth the effort given the bigger picture. However, if impact noise is a concern then I would reconsider doing it after all (e.g. high heels on hardwood floor). Again though, the real benefit would be minimal and I'm not so sure the cost would be worthwhile (probably not).

If you have the $ to blow (pun intended) on insulation, find out what a suitable roll of RIM would cost and consider going the latter route instead and skipping the insulation between floors. But before you spend $ on either one, ask yourself if it's still worthwhile if your perception of the final result is that it hasn't appreciably improved the situation. Unless you have plans for a re-do in the future with more involved soundproofing methods, I would stick with a minimalist approach (cost and time).

Hate to say all that, but endeavouring to be realistic here.

Appreciate the thoughts.

My goal is to attenuate sound at all frequencies, not just bass. It would be nice, for example, to be able to listen to music or watch a movie or TV with my tower speakers, minus the sub, and not bleed a lot of sound into the rest of the house. (Separately, I wonder if I could set up different modes on my AVR so that I had a movie mode that used the sub and another one for music that didn't. But I'm also prepared to use headphones at times.) I don't really care about footfall noise, it's music and movie noise I'm trying to contain.

I have a bare subfloor now, so I'm in a position to do something fairly easily. My hunch has been that putting down a layer of horse stall rubber, and floating another subfloor over that, before putting down either carpet or hardwood, was pretty cost effective and likely to make a meaningful difference. I get that the exterior walls that are untreated, and the untreated ceiling (above which is an attic) will send a considerable amount of low frequency sound into the framing, though my guess is even there a floating floor would make a significant difference. The higher the frequency got, the more I'm guessing the floating floor would help. But I'm open to being persuaded it's not worth the effort and cost to do the floating floor.

My hunch is that something like RIM adds a lot of cost over something like horse stall mat, so that becomes even harder to justify under the circumstances. Any sense of where to look for prices on the RIM stuff?

On blowing fluffy insulation into the cavities between the floor joists, my guess is the difference would be minimal and it's probably not worth the cost and effort, whether I float a subfloor or not.
 

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I don't think having the insulation touch the duct work would be an issue, but not sure it is going to help that much. Are you talking about adding insulation around duct supply runs in you joist? Then yes that is done a lot. If you are concerned about sound from the lines you can put them in duct mufflers and replace the metal ducts with flexible ducts.

I watched the video you posted and one thing I would not do that he did in the video is to build a wall, put drywall on it then built another wall in front of it with a small gap. That will cause a triple leaf effect. Building to walls is good, but don't put drywall between the tow walls. Also better to decouple the wall inside the room at the top from the joist with clips so sound doesn't travel up so easily.

This is a good read and they are very helpful if you have questions.
https://www.soundproofingcompany.com/soundproofing101
Hello,

Thanks for the reply. This is solely just to get insulation in the joist and the vent runs down almost the middle in height. I wanted to be sure that the insulation touching the duct wasn't a possible fire hazard once the ceiling is all sealed up. There is about 6 inches above the duck so the insulation is not too compact, otherwise i could shape the insulation around it better cutting down the middle of the insulation and almost wrapping it around the duct.
 

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Appreciate the thoughts.

My goal is to attenuate sound at all frequencies, not just bass. It would be nice, for example, to be able to listen to music or watch a movie or TV with my tower speakers, minus the sub, and not bleed a lot of sound into the rest of the house. (Separately, I wonder if I could set up different modes on my AVR so that I had a movie mode that used the sub and another one for music that didn't. But I'm also prepared to use headphones at times.) I don't really care about footfall noise, it's music and movie noise I'm trying to contain.

I have a bare subfloor now, so I'm in a position to do something fairly easily. My hunch has been that putting down a layer of horse stall rubber, and floating another subfloor over that, before putting down either carpet or hardwood, was pretty cost effective and likely to make a meaningful difference. I get that the exterior walls that are untreated, and the untreated ceiling (above which is an attic) will send a considerable amount of low frequency sound into the framing, though my guess is even there a floating floor would make a significant difference. The higher the frequency got, the more I'm guessing the floating floor would help. But I'm open to being persuaded it's not worth the effort and cost to do the floating floor.

Yes, it will help more with higher freqs vs. LFE.

My hunch is that something like RIM adds a lot of cost over something like horse stall mat, so that becomes even harder to justify under the circumstances. Any sense of where to look for prices on the RIM stuff?
Horse stall mats and rubber mats in general are helpful, and they will mitigate some of the sound. However, loud and deep bass is going to pass through easily. It's really tough to say ahead of time if you'll be satisfied with the result. I can tell you IMHO, with a 2nd floor theater room, the floor in the HT room is the biggest challenge. Your best bet with that floor would be to rip out the sub-floor and de-couple the room's floor. I know that is a huge pain and easier said than done.

Presuming you don't do that, even with a floating floor, you're going to get considerable pass-thru sound (LFE in particular). Lay down a double-layer osb/rubber/osb/rubber combination (or similar) if you have the means. Anything you do above and beyond a normal floor will help. Thick carpet pad would be helpful as well. Just don't expect a miracle. :)

You'd have to contact Kinetics and ask them if they have a reseller local to you, or if they would sell direct. It's not cheap, but thought I'd throw that out as an option.

On blowing fluffy insulation into the cavities between the floor joists, my guess is the difference would be minimal and it's probably not worth the cost and effort, whether I float a subfloor or not.

I concur.
 

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I don't think having the insulation touch the duct work would be an issue, but not sure it is going to help that much. Are you talking about adding insulation around duct supply runs in you joist? Then yes that is done a lot. If you are concerned about sound from the lines you can put them in duct mufflers and replace the metal ducts with flexible ducts.

I watched the video you posted and one thing I would not do that he did in the video is to build a wall, put drywall on it then built another wall in front of it with a small gap. That will cause a triple leaf effect. Building to walls is good, but don't put drywall between the tow walls. Also better to decouple the wall inside the room at the top from the joist with clips so sound doesn't travel up so easily.

This is a good read and they are very helpful if you have questions.
https://www.soundproofingcompany.com/soundproofing101
Glad you re-posted that. I had not seen that video. That is a mix of good and bad info. He doesn't apply the GG to spec either, though I would not fault him for that as there is some debate over whether the manufacturer's spec is necessary or overkill.

Agreed that insulation around the supply HVAC runs is - generally speaking - not an issue. In fact, it is encouraged, presuming it's done properly (which is more a function of the ductwork and not the insulation itself).
 

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Glad you re-posted that. I had not seen that video. That is a mix of good and bad info. He doesn't apply the GG to spec either, though I would not fault him for that as there is some debate over whether the manufacturer's spec is necessary or overkill.

Agreed that insulation around the supply HVAC runs is - generally speaking - not an issue. In fact, it is encouraged, presuming it's done properly (which is more a function of the ductwork and not the insulation itself).

Good to know, why I never like to rely on 1 single source of truth, also trying to find things that apply to Canadian code as well vs U.S Code.

For the insulation,based on my picture, would i be better off to cut down the middle of that insulation and have it more "wrap" over/under the duct work vs having it slightly compressed above it? The insulation is 6" thick it notes, but above the duct it may be compressed down a bit to more like 5".
 
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