Room acoustics

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by bob1, Mar 26, 2006.

  1. bob1

    bob1
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    I will be removing the carpet from my room and putting a wood floor down ,how will this effect the room acoustics,i'm very pleased with the sound at the moment so i'm hoping it won't change the sound too much.
     
  2. MacReady

    MacReady
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    Whilst not a real wood floor but rather a laminate one, I found that after having carpet the sound in my living room was much harsher and a bit too bright. It still bothers me and I would like to be able to try and remedy this in the future.
     
  3. mjcairney

    mjcairney
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    You'll really only know after you've made the change but I reckon that it will make a big difference to the acoustics with a wooden rather than a carpeted floor.

    Cheers,

    Martin.
     
  4. Jammyb

    Jammyb
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  5. MacReady

    MacReady
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    That is what we did...big rug in the middle of the floor...then loads of cushions...big thick curtains...all to try and reign the harshness of the sound in a bit:(
     
  6. bob1

    bob1
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    Well its not real wood ,its laminate but i suppose the effect will be the same.To be honest i prefer carpet myself but the wife wants a change,at least she wants a big rug that will cover most of it up ,whats the point in that:rolleyes: .
     
  7. Killahertz

    Killahertz
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    That is an interesting point, and one that i've been considering recently, as an extension/update to my mention of laminate flooring in my article that JammyB linked to:

    http://www.apsalisbury.dsl.pipex.com/practicalacoustics.doc

    Whilst it is impossible to test all types of hardwood and laminate (either wood veneer or printed finish) flooring, it is possible to generalise, and that generalisation would lead me to suggest that of the two, laminate is the poorer acoustical choice. Why?. Well, regardless of the laminate construction type, the process results in a very dense board, with a very hard (plastic) surface. Finished natural wood, even hardwood, does not have this density, and hence their acoustical properties are different. A simple 'test' is to drop a coin on to the flooring - on a laminate floor the coin will produce a resonant 'clack', whilst on a hardwood floor it will be a much duller, and far less reverberent sound.

    And reverberation (particularly higher frequency flutter echo) is the acoustical area most affected by a flooring change such as this. Primarlily in terms of what is known as the room's RT60 (which is covered in the above article). Suffice to say here that as a room become more reverberent (ie RT60 increases), vocal legibility (in particlular) decreases (quite rapidly for relatively small changes in RT60). This is, incidentally, the reason that people sing in the bathroom!.

    In terms of treatment the laminate floor will need a large surface area, full thickness rug. This should span both the area between the two front (stereo) loudspeakers, and the area between the front loudspeakers and listening position. Multi-channel system owners may benefit from further treatment (a light carpet is a popular choice) of the side walls in the front half of the room. Towards the rear of the room, experiment - the rear effects channels may actually benefit from some additional (controlled) reverberation.

    :)
     
  8. Knightshade

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    Worth bearing in mind that ALL woods behave differently. A resinous hardwood will actually be rather good at absorbing sound. Cork will soak up vibrations and sound very well. Pine is also quite good. Apply a thick coat of floor varnish and you can reduce the 'good' acoustical properties of the wood. Harder woods such as certain Oaks and Walnuts tend to act in a similar way to laminates and although they can look stunning, from a hi fi point of view are best avoided....
    Any Laminate will be very poor and (as already mentioned) will need a large rug to help the system out.
     
  9. pat clancy

    pat clancy
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    hi bob,i expect the sound will change,the best way i check is the clap test,clap your hands before and after you change the flooring,if you get an echo and clanging in the clap the sound will be harsh and bright,but you can remedy it with thick curtains,rugs and wear heavy wooly jumpers all will sound good,pat ps joking regarding jumpers
     

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