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Vivek Batra

Building a dedicated stereo room

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Hi Guys

 

I am planning a new home contruction with the liberty to have a dedicated room for my 2 channel setup (Forte IIIs). I am planning a basement of size (36x54 feet) Planning to reserve around 25x15x10 for the room. I would like to know your suggestions on how should the room be designed, starting with the size first. Is there anything like ideal room size in terms of LxBxH?. Do I defenitely need acoustic treatment for 2 channel system?

 

 Also, on the rack built in the wall or free standing racks, what would be a good option.

 

If you could suggest something or post some pics of yours dedicated rooms, that would be great.

 

Thanks a lot.

Vivek

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18 hours ago, Vivek Batra said:

Hi I am planning a new home contruction with the liberty to have a dedicated room for my 2 channel setup (Forte IIIs).

 

Always the question is how much to spend.

 

Minimize hard surfaces, carpet at least in the middle, wood or sound absorbing material on the back wall

I prefer a finished ceiling, in a basement it can be difficult if you need access to the utilities, so hanging tiles are frequently used. I don't like them and prefer to build in access panels where needed.

I would smooth and seal the cement walls, and paint them with bright white. Paint the floor battleship grey. Low cost option stop there.

 

Quote

I am planning a basement of size (36x54 feet) . I would like to know your suggestions on how should the room be designed, starting with the size first. Is there anything like ideal room size in terms of LxBxH?. Do I defenitely need acoustic treatment for 2 channel system?

 

If you build one partition, and leave the entertainment room at 36x36, this would be a nice space you could work with.

 

The rest of the space could be for the appliances, storage, work shops etc. You will need a high volume dehumidifier and a way to heat the space, the sky is the limit if you want to spend.

 

The speakers will need to be off of the floor so they don't rot from wicking. A small platform that is ventilated.

 

You didn't mention ceiling height, more is better, 10ft, there is something to be learned from the raised ranch design with 4-6ft in the ground and the rest above ground, this might allow for a walk out patio if the yard slopes away, maybe a 2ft retaining wall and sunken patio that ends at ground level?  beer and Beethoven.

 

Also windows that open to the outside solve many problems when open.

 

There are choices for acoustic panels for the walls, I think you can make your own and use 4x8 sheets of plywood and carpet, or foam and fabric covering. How to attach them to the walls you need someone smarter than me on the subject. You can price out DIY vs buy. Panels can become wall art.

 

Quote

 Also, on the rack built in the wall or free standing racks, what would be a good option.

 

Heat is the electronics killer, if the gear is vertically racked or in a cabinet, you will need quiet cooling fans.

You could also buy or build something with two shelf levels that is 8-9ft wide and approx 24in tall and open.

Another option is buying a very wide China Cabinet, and throwing away the top, the bottoms are popular for TV stands,

A top can be made, and attached, and  the drawers taken out and made into shelves for equipment or a mix.

If you can score a large TV to hang over the table centered slightly above eye level, stereo sounds great with a video,

some of the best recordings are concert videos.

 

Enjoy

 

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PS

Once your room is built, tuning in or finding the sweet spot for the speaker will take some experimentation.

 

Consider changing materials behind them once you find the sweet spot for them, If the wall is hard, you can experiment with wood panels, stained but not sealed plywood etc. It should have an effect on the sound, something to play with once you are all set up like tube rolling.

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I agree that higher ceilings are better, with 9 feet as a minimum.  Also, if the room has non-parallel walls, that’s a good thing.  The ideal is to have the room become gradually wider towards the back, like a good concert hall.

 

There are books on audio architecture.  Hopefully, one of the other Forum members will be able to think of some of them, since I don’t know the names of any, just that they exist.k

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6 hours ago, Bubo said:

 

Always the question is how much to spend.

 

Minimize hard surfaces, carpet at least in the middle, wood or sound absorbing material on the back wall

I prefer a finished ceiling, in a basement it can be difficult if you need access to the utilities, so hanging tiles are frequently used. I don't like them and prefer to build in access panels where needed.

I would smooth and seal the cement walls, and paint them with bright white. Paint the floor battleship grey. Low cost option stop there.

 

 

If you build one partition, and leave the entertainment room at 36x36, this would be a nice space you could work with.

 

The rest of the space could be for the appliances, storage, work shops etc. You will need a high volume dehumidifier and a way to heat the space, the sky is the limit if you want to spend.

 

The speakers will need to be off of the floor so they don't rot from wicking. A small platform that is ventilated.

 

You didn't mention ceiling height, more is better, 10ft, there is something to be learned from the raised ranch design with 4-6ft in the ground and the rest above ground, this might allow for a walk out patio if the yard slopes away, maybe a 2ft retaining wall and sunken patio that ends at ground level?  beer and Beethoven.

 

Also windows that open to the outside solve many problems when open.

 

There are choices for acoustic panels for the walls, I think you can make your own and use 4x8 sheets of plywood and carpet, or foam and fabric covering. How to attach them to the walls you need someone smarter than me on the subject. You can price out DIY vs buy. Panels can become wall art.

 

 

Heat is the electronics killer, if the gear is vertically racked or in a cabinet, you will need quiet cooling fans.

You could also buy or build something with two shelf levels that is 8-9ft wide and approx 24in tall and open.

Another option is buying a very wide China Cabinet, and throwing away the top, the bottoms are popular for TV stands,

A top can be made, and attached, and  the drawers taken out and made into shelves for equipment or a mix.

If you can score a large TV to hang over the table centered slightly above eye level, stereo sounds great with a video,

some of the best recordings are concert videos.

 

Enjoy

 

Hi 

 

Thanks a lot for your detailed reply, much helpful and appreciated. I am planning a room of the size around 25x15x10 feet. Flooring being full carpet and once the space is ready I will definitely think about some kind of room treatment.

 

Thanks

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This would be ideal look at the bolt area.

Room dimensions:
length:21
width:15
height:10
ft.


https://amcoustics.com/tools/amroc?l=17&w=12&h=8&ft=true&re=DIN 18041 - Music.

 

If I was building a room from scratch I would not use sheet rock. I would change dimensions and build false walls. you also have enough room to build in bass traps.from my experience horn speakers like properly place diffusion, not over absorption. Treatment is different from conventional speakers .If you need more details let me know.


One other suggestion not about acoustics but audio room ergonomics.On the front wall build a utility closet you can run all your wire unseen also get to the back of your equipment with ease also can build bass traps in front wall.I did home theater for a guy he loved it clean install without mess off wires.
 

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On 4/25/2021 at 9:54 PM, Hemihorn said:

This would be ideal look at the bolt area.

Room dimensions:
length:21
width:15
height:10
ft.


https://amcoustics.com/tools/amroc?l=17&w=12&h=8&ft=true&re=DIN 18041 - Music.

 

If I was building a room from scratch I would not use sheet rock. I would change dimensions and build false walls. you also have enough room to build in bass traps.from my experience horn speakers like properly place diffusion, not over absorption. Treatment is different from conventional speakers .If you need more details let me know.


One other suggestion not about acoustics but audio room ergonomics.On the front wall build a utility closet you can run all your wire unseen also get to the back of your equipment with ease also can build bass traps in front wall.I did home theater for a guy he loved it clean install without mess off wires.
 

Hey 

 

Thanks a lot for your comments. Most liek;y my room size is gonna be around L -> 26 Feet, W -> 16 Feet and Height -> 10 Feet. More info on how to treat the room is always welcome. 🙂

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My only advice is, stacks of equipment where you have to kneel down to turn on/off/adjust/play a record, etc. are just dumb. Arrange the equipment so you can access it while standing. That means some sort of shelving. And don't forget easy access to the wiring; maybe a rack which swings out on hinges or rolls on casters or, in a closet-like setting where there's easy access from the rear. I'm sure an A/V room design company would have all sorts of good looking solutions.

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36 minutes ago, Peter P. said:

My only advice is, stacks of equipment where you have to kneel down to turn on/off/adjust/play a record, etc. are just dumb. Arrange the equipment so you can access it while standing. That means some sort of shelving. And don't forget easy access to the wiring; maybe a rack which swings out on hinges or rolls on casters or, in a closet-like setting where there's easy access from the rear. I'm sure an A/V room design company would have all sorts of good looking solutions.

Sure, I will keep this in mind on how to arrange the components.Thanks for the suggestion.

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I seem to recall once reading that a room that is more narrow in front and wider in the rear will also be a benefit.  I think it had something to do with helping to reduce/minimize standing waves since the walls aren't parallel (?)

 

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3 minutes ago, Coytee said:

I seem to recall once reading that a room that is more narrow in front and wider in the rear will also be a benefit.  I think it had something to do with helping to reduce/minimize standing waves since the walls aren't parallel (?)

 

Thats right and I read that too on the intetnet. But making such a room would waste a lot of space which is very precious 😞

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My room is rectangular so don't pay much attention to me....but that said, if it IS of valid benefit then that alone might fix other issues that you might have to go back, spend more to try to fix/manage (?)

 

Maybe the room itself could be rectangular....but slightly angle in the walls (or one of them?) to get a narrowing.  At the narrow end you might have some natural space then to "wall mount" your electronics with the space behind them.

 

I used some of the dead space under my stairwell to build a closet for the electronics.  Now they're totally hidden and at chest height so I've got easy access to them without having to crawl around and my wife LOVES that they're not seen.

 

Just throwing some spaghetti on the walls for you.

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On 3/4/2021 at 10:56 PM, Vivek Batra said:

Hi Guys

 

I am planning a new home contruction with the liberty to have a dedicated room for my 2 channel setup (Forte IIIs). I am planning a basement of size (36x54 feet) Planning to reserve around 25x15x10 for the room. I would like to know your suggestions on how should the room be designed, starting with the size first. Is there anything like ideal room size in terms of LxBxH?. Do I defenitely need acoustic treatment for 2 channel system?

 

 Also, on the rack built in the wall or free standing racks, what would be a good option.

 

If you could suggest something or post some pics of yours dedicated rooms, that would be great.

 

Thanks a lot.

Vivek

A perusal of youtube on the subject is worth a little time.

 

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=building+the+perfect+audio+room

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9 hours ago, Coytee said:

Maybe the room itself could be rectangular....but slightly angle in the walls (or one of them?) to get a narrowing. 

Don't laugh; I seem to recall an article in Stereo Review decades ago where they reviewed a reader's system. It had Klipschorns if I recall correctly.

 

To prevent standing waves or some other audible demon, he had the contract tilt (top to bottom) the walls 2 degrees! Not sure whether it was just the side walls or all four.

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Seriously, the angling of walls is not nonsense. 

 

The fewer parallel surfaces in your room, the fewer standing waves you'll deal with, and the less effort you'll have to invest in acoustic treatments.  I've been in professional recording studios where the control room had seven walls, and the cathedral ceiling was angled.  

 

My listening space right now has a ton of advantages, especially regarding bass nulls, because it's an L-shape with a ton of outcroppings.  I can stand anywhere in the space and the bass response does not change, and that's HUGE. 

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On 5/3/2021 at 4:26 AM, Vivek Batra said:

Hey 

 

Thanks a lot for your comments. Most liek;y my room size is gonna be around L -> 26 Feet, W -> 16 Feet and Height -> 10 Feet. More info on how to treat the room is always welcome. 🙂

 

I built a dedicated outbuilding/artist's studio/listening room to these exact dimensions. Floating concrete floor, SIP walls with 5/8" plywood on the inside/ceiling.

 

The room dimensions don't exactly fall within the Bolt area, but ease of construction and maximizing materials trumped acoustic theory in my case.

 

I installed lots of polycylindrical diffusors (inspired by a PWK Dope from Hope article) made with coroplast to cut the reverb, which was VERY obvious before. Also installed lots of absorption with 4" rockwool on the side walls and back wall (behind the speakers). I've posted pictures in other threads if you want to see.

 

Measurements of my room still show some pretty nasty FR swings in the sub 300hz range. I know that I'll eventually need some subwoofers to help smooth that out, but in the meantime I can say that it's a real pleasure and privilege to make this room my haven of music! The 10' height is something I've rarely experienced elsewhere. It really seems to let the sound-field develop scale and breadth.

 

My current system is a tri-amped Q-Pie/EV Sentry IV-B hybrid, but I did have my Forté Is in here to demo them to a buyer. WOW! They had been a mainstay for 12 years in my home, in our living room where they made great, mostly background, music. Installing them in the studio was like letting a dog off it's leash for the first time - FREEDOM!! Scale, dynamics, emotion, clarity. The buyer was gobsmacked and frankly, so was I. Interestingly, he spent more time listening off axis outside the sweetspot, I suspect it was to hear how they would fare out for several people on a couch. He remarked how uniform and pleasant the sound was from everywhere.

 

Good luck with your build! Please post pictures as you progress.

 

Daniel

 

 

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3 hours ago, Ray_pierrewit said:

Measurements of my room still show some pretty nasty FR swings in the sub 300hz range. I know that I'll eventually need some subwoofers to help smooth that out,

 

Corner bass traps would probably be cheaper and more effective,  just saying.  The subs will still suffer when your room has standing waves like that, because the frequencies are self-cancelling,  no matter how much energy you add to them.

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19 hours ago, GriffinFL said:

 

Corner bass traps would probably be cheaper and more effective,  just saying.  The subs will still suffer when your room has standing waves like that, because the frequencies are self-cancelling,  no matter how much energy you add to them.

 

I'm not averse to going this route before building some subwoofers. Do you have any experience or DIY recipes to suggest?

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Are you going to use tube gear? Is room going to be fully enclosed? Ventilation becomes very important in this case. Also, will you use dedicated electrical homerun to panel, any 220 gear?

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