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 Tuning My Musical Journey

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Sonic.beaver



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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Wed Dec 24, 2014 2:19 am


Greetings Michael!

Yes, this is all beginning to make sense now Very Happy

Sonic agrees that "the trick is going to be that fine line between loosing music content through absorbing the energy and keeping the music real while burning the Boo." Let's work on that.

I don't think you need to do a new diagram because I have your earlier drawing of a Tunable Wall -- the one with the row of Shutters on the ceiling across the width of the room to create a pressure chamber in the rear of the room.

An Idea Can the Brazilian Pine boards I have on order and are now nearly cured be repurposed /built into something that could augment the Bookcase Wall and give me lots of harmonics? Idea

From what Sonic hears of the harmonics that Brazilian Pine can generate, this might be all I need to achieve the explosion of girth and Harmonics that I am looking for.

Sonic is settling the system in and without the BOO! Sonic has been able to hear through more clearly. Possibly a sign of this is a tune I made using Michael's Space Cones that shows me now how strongly these products can work. More on this in a few days.

Greetings of Christmas to you Michael and all Zonees!

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Thu Dec 25, 2014 6:22 pm

Merry Christmas Sonic

With the size of your room and the hardness of the walls and based on what you are saying, I'm not sure the Brazilian Pine boards would be enough to offset the rear wall. My thought is the only way to really offset the wall and dimension would be to have another "whole wall" in front of it.

Air pressure that gets through to the back wall makes it part of the rooms behavior.

Based on this pic



the bookcases are sitting in the room, and what we're talking about is making a different room dimension and one that has a major wall as something that gives a different tonal flavor to the room.

well I had to do it anyway  Smile



See how much of the hard wall I have cut away? That's a major step forward in the pressure and tonality department.

then again Idea



Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Dec 26, 2014 8:24 am

Greetings Michael and Zonees!

Now that Sonic is hearing a sound and soundstage that is not coloured by the BOO! I can hear through and get a quicker read into what Tunes are needed to shape my sound plus being able to hear the effects that might have been obscured before.

Here is one – and it is working very well.





Four Space Cones from Michael go point up supporting the MW 1” x 1” x ¼” squares that act as the feet for the CD player.  Almost immediately Sonic got a bigger sound that has a more transparent midrange.  Better still the treble now has a nice sheen. And when switching between analog and CD, the CD player has caught up in naturalness and realism noticeably.

Volume on digital is up and I can hear more even when played at a lower volume. The soundstage is better proportioned across the width of my room and Sonic can hear in violas more wood body and cellos are more real. Given that string quartet musick is one of my favourite musical forms, this is really nice!

Compared to LP, the most readily observed difference and shortcoming with CD playbacks is a lack of the bigness and warmth in the upper bass and bass. While this range as well as the more naturally extended treble gives analog its “breath of realism” some of the upper bass bloom it might be an artifact of analog and perhaps of Sonic’s Ortofon. Certainly the CD’s bass goes deeper.  

Now that Michael has named the nature of my room’s problem -- a natural resonance, a “note” -- a lot of things in Sonic’s Tuning experience are falling into place.

To wit:  

If indeed my room’s issues are arising from my room having a “note”, so we know what the BOO! is – it is a wild tone that derives from this “note” combined with the liveness of the room that comes as part of the Tune approach.  This therefore explains why my Tuning actions that were meant to catch and amplify the resonances and redirect the pressure flow had no effect or worsened the BOO! This is because there was either very little to redirect due to the hardness of the room, a shortage of the warm/good resonances that would make for good redirection, or the BOO! gets worsened instead because I was now propagating it around the room.  This is not a fault of Michael’s products at all, it is just that there is no one-size-fits-all blueprint placement for all rooms and now that Mr Green has identified the problems you can see how he is able to redirect the Tuning.    

So it is not illogical that Sonic is finding that a controlled amount of damping (and this is a fine balance as Michael said) is effective because it actually breaks the cycle of the BOO! and consequently weakens it.

On the other hand Zonees with rooms/dwellings of drywall construction has a diaphragmatic condition where there is a flow of pressure that is in the bass range that can redirect, attenuate or shift in pitch with Michael’s tune devices.  
Sonic has been in a friend’s dwelling (in another country, in another clime that is not Asian) that is built with concrete pillars and ground floor, everything mostly wood and drywall construction.  Even the untreated bare room which was to be used for Home Theatre there was no BOO! and the “note” is a broader range of frequencies, the frequency shift is flat.  I remember thinking “if this is my listening room, a few acoustic tuning products from Michael, a couple of weeks of Tuning, some lightweight Brazilian Pine Racks/platform and the room’s done”.

So what is ahead in Tuning as Sonic approaches 2015?

The next defining step will be when I get the Brazilian Pine Boards from Michael.  This should bring in a ton load of harmonics into my room which I can tune in.

Michael, thank you for the diagrams. There are four things which preclude me from taking this approach:

1.      The Bookcase Wall needs to be pretty far out from the back wall to be effective and both the front and rear of the Bookcase Wall assembly is lined up with the doors.  A Tunable Wall flush with the Bookcase Wall will prevent the doors from opening.

2.      The air-condition/dehumidifier system is mounted on the top of the wall.  The Tunable Wall flush with the Bookcase Wall leaves me with no airconditioning and de-humidification.  Remounting that on the suggested new wall is a different matter with running pipes, drainage arrangements, power supply and load bearing. And the enclosed area where my instruments are will need humidity control.

3.       I’ll need to re-do the lighting of the room for the front half and the enclosed walk-in closet where now a single low-wattage lamp in the Bookcase Wall works nicely.

4.       Convenience – my LP, CDs, musical instruments and books will be in the walk-in closet and access will be difficult.  

Not to mention I will have to get approval for this and Sonic has pushed things with this room with regards to my dwelling to near the max. So this sadly this won’t go. But the M Green mini speakers are something I want to explore for the coming year.

I’ll PM Michael on the Brazilian Pine Boards.    

Till that time we get the right possibilities Sonic might tread the fine line of controlling the room without reducing the musick.  In my experiments with small amounts of acoustic foam more than what Sonic is using now, I found the flipside of the BOO! – which is a thick, lifeless sound with rolled off treble, bleached out harmonics and paper cut-out images. It is as nasty and it takes a surprisingly small amount of superfluous damping to do this in my room. I can hear it very quickly.

Sonic is seeing how absorption is a trap for audiophiles which I would be prey to if I had not been a student of the Tune. Absorption can easily cause a shift up in pitch.  This upward shift combined with the absorption of high frequencies can cause room echo (ring) to be emphasized.  And an unsuspecting audiophile not knowing the cause may respond not by cutting back on the damping but buying more and applying it and by the time the ring is reduced the room will be too deadened for music reproduction.  Sonic is bemused to read of a very expensive system described in a high-end site that has curtains on the front and the entire ceiling covered in about an inch of acoustical foam and the entire back wall lined completely with about 4 inch thick acoustic foam.  I shudder….

While Sonic is keen to give the Dow Blue Styrofoam a try, I have unfortunately found this exact product may not the available in my town – at least not in consumer quantities.  The building company sells this to builders in packs and pallets and Sonic needs initially “just two pieces” at which point they lose interest in talking to me.  I also want to make sure what they supply is the product in Michael’s pix, give it knock and hear it resonate before buying it.  

On the other hand, post-BOO! I am feeling a degree of satisfaction with my system and the sound of musick through it.  

I am listening to more and more musick, for longer periods and feeling no urge to touch anything. These last few weeks I have been listening to a wider and wider variety of music and finding how rich the musical heritage of the East and West is. This could be a brief flowering of an infatuation with this sound that will pass or a sign that Sonic is finally happy. Let’s see.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Dec 26, 2014 6:09 pm

Hi Sonic

Here's how my thinking works for me, and I'm only saying this because you have asked "what would I do", so what I say is me thinking in my world.

When I find something wrong, I by nature am unsettled till I fix the wrong. If I do things that I have done in the past knowing they are only going to take me so far, I have a hard time spending too much time in the realm of "IF's" and "Maybe's". For myself I know where that is going to get me in the end and I don't want to take the slow train getting to the same place as I could with a jet plane.

Knowing what I know about recordings having their own code, and that if I have a setup that is on the maybe side, I have a hard time dealing with this.

here's why

I know that someday I'm going to run into a recording that kicks me right in the butt and if I do my setups around compromises that are stuck inside of my brain it will make listening to anything a drag for me. I would rather know my system could tackle the challenge and I could choose whether to tune or not, than face the up hill climb of not having everything I want any time I want.

I see the audiophile thinking as being about "almost there" and their own reasoning for that. My mind only lets me go to that place in small doses untill I say "that was cute" and the big brother in me slaps me, and shocks me into a different state of mind. For myself, I need a system that can do it all. That means everything I ask of it, everytime I change my mood, or everytime I set out to explore how deep that recording goes. In other words, if my wall offends me pluck it out. If I listen to music once knowing I have compromised the signal it's very hard for me to feel comfortable till I find that meaningful place of contentment. I'm one of those who finds it tough being in the tradeoff wars.

my thinking

If I was in your room and realized the walls were causing a problem I wouldn't dampen them. What I would do base on your last post would flip that room around untill I found the best situation. If the air conditioning was the problem, I would flip the room still putting in the wall. If my landlord wasn't going to let me put in a wall, I would make a partitioned wall.

If the partition was off the table I would do this, leaving the bookcase where it is and listen to what it is doing good and bad to the room.



Instead of the wall behind you, see what these sound like as the wall in front of you.

In the second drawing, you could even do the dampening so it was not a direct absorber, having the bookcases between your ears and the foam burn.

like this



Main thing to keep in mind is, if your setup right now starts to show problems, keep in mind that introducing the foam has changed all the variables. Secondly remember rooms also work in reverse. And third think "in balance". Don't think live end dead end think about spreading the burn.


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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Mon Dec 29, 2014 8:58 am

Greetings Michael and Zonees!

Been listening to these two classic albums:



and



The Byrds album has Ballad of Easy Rider and the wonderful playing of Clarence White.  The Bert Jansch and John Renbourn record was the prelude to Pentangle and has an intriguing version of Charles Mingus’ “Goodbye, Pork Pie Hat”. A good version of this lament for the late Lester Young but not one of Sonic’s favourites of the piece – my favourites are the Mingus original and a very melancholic version performed live by John Mclaughlin and bassist Jonas Hellborg. Yes the cover is little tatty but the LP was in excellent condition.

Thanks Michael for the idea of turning the room around and using the Bookcase Wall as the front wall! It is doable, does not conflict with any of the conditions of my dwelling.  Sonic just needs to have the time and the determination to apply the effort – and this is going to take a notable effort plus the weeks of work to get it everything to make musick.

Right now my level of “satisfaction” tempers my determination to attempt any project as major as this. But as we get more into settling and I get into the groove of 2015, who can tell?

Now while Sonic may be using acoustic foam, Zonees need to know that it is of mixed benefit.  Yes, it has solved the BOO! but acoustic foam has a sound of its own which I recognize and will describe in detail with the appropriate vocabulary shortly. However, to my ears the BOO! is such a pungently awful artifact compared to the signature of acoustic foam that Sonic is able to tolerate the signature of foam for now.  

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Tue Dec 30, 2014 5:35 pm

Hi Sonic

Sorry it took me a while to post the pics. I had them ready to go and got started doing something else Rolling Eyes

That said when I saw these covers it got me excited and now I must go looking through the collection and find them, which may take a while. Hope they're not in the collection in Ohio or Wis.

I watched "Easy Rider" maybe a month ago.

Cool

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Tue Dec 30, 2014 5:47 pm

Hi Sonic

I think this last go-round for you helped me hear your room a little better. I would agree, study what the room is doing for what it is now is job one. The good news is you can hear the foam. That's very good and will be helpful in the future.

I'll tell you, I learned as much about systems and sound by doing things that took away some of the signal as I did figuring out how to preserve it. And the key is your probably hearing other things that are coming out in the recordings and that will be useful.

As you know I don't believe in black and whites, but the variable greys. Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Jan 02, 2015 9:24 am

Hello Zonees

To start 2015, here is Sonic’s first tune for the year.

There is an effect in the system that I wanted to correct for some time and it is this: imagine a loud harmonic-rich instrument like a hurdy-gurdy playing around the Right Channel but recorded in stereo with a Blumlein mic pair. You should hear the harmonics and the rattle and air of this instrument spread across the stage to the Left Speaker evenly across the soundstage.  In my system, Sonic notices there is a weakening in the centre so the hurdy-gurdy is ending somewhat double-spherical around the two speakers. It is not noticeable on all programmes but Sonic wanted to work on it.

Sonic’s first thought: strengthen the Pressure Zone at front wall centre and the sound images there will push out.  

This may involve moving the FS-DRT/FS-PZC further apart which often broadens the centre images.  I tried that and it was no better, so asked Sonic “why not bring them closer together?” So I brought the two FS-DRTs that flank the central FS-PZC closer together by about 6 inches a side. Given that the reflective sides face each other, it may cause the middle PZ to project out.

The two channels started to be connected more evenly.  



I’ll listen more as this settles and adjust the spacing. But in the couple of days since I did this Tune, the images have become larger and more 3D across the plane of the soundstage and it appears a slight reduction in spacing is beneficial.

To ring in the New Year, Sonic listened to:







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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Jan 09, 2015 8:26 am

Hello Zonees

Sonic has concluded that my present loudspeaker locations are right for this state of Tune, the equipment combination and state of the room to within 2 inches. I have tested alternatives in a grid form so this sensitivity means that if I move the speakers closer together or further apart by 1 inch a side and/or moved them further back or forward by 2 inches there will be serious losses in some aspect of musical reproduction quality. So this is about it till something significant changes.
 
Then as Sonic was groovin’ to Vivaldi and Indian ragas played on the sarangi (a bowed instrument with three melody strings and 36 sympathetic strings), the Tune Instinct told Sonic to try an experiment given that I can identify the signature of acoustic foam on the music.



Down came the two pieces of foam (see Sonic’s post of Dec 16, 2014 on this thread). I did this test because there was a kind of “realism” that I found Sonic has missed.  It was almost refreshing. A nice “flow” to the music came back.

Then came the BOO! test – the result is either a near pass or a near fail. Sonic can hear a hint of the evil BOO! in the reflection back to my ears.  I think it best to let the system settle and then in a more relaxed state of mind after musick listening decide if Sonic can detect the effect of the BOO!

If BOO! is detectable then the foam can either go back where they were or put someplace else in the room to give an equivalent suppression of the BOO! while maintaining the “flow” in the musick Sonic is hearing. A dilemma I suppose.

Sonic read Michael’s post about CES2015 where he pointed to no (or the lack of) Turntables in sight.  Is this a sign that analog is headed for extinction?  It ain’t necessarily so.

Another view Sonic has heard is that it will be optically read disk-stored digital that will go extinct and be replaced by streaming, NAS and SSD storage.  And alongside this there will be a significant market for the LP for those people who love physical storage and a different experience of listening to and interacting with music. A rather ironic outcome when CD was said to be "perfect sound forever" and people had written off the LP as something gone the same way as the Edison wax cylinder.

Now Sonic is planning my Tunes for the year now that we got a handle on the nature of the beast (my room). Since any form of modification to the room itself is out of the question due to the conditions of my dwelling the only path is to introduce good wood sound into the room.   Sonic has four Brazilian Pine boards on order from Michael which can be used to flavor the room perhaps as aeroplanes. Michael has pointed out that on their own these might not be as effective as Sonic hopes given the severity of the room’s problems.

The other thing in Sonic’s search for blockage is the main blockage might be staring me in the face – the heavy hemlock chipboard shelves of my clampracks  Exclamation   Now these are genuine articles from Michael but dating from the 1990s.  There is a lot of fresh thinking from Michael since then and the move to lighter racks and then to platforms.  I  could ditch the heavy hemlock shelves for Brazilian Pine or Music Ply ones.  This is an idea that may take Sonic up another level.

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Wed Jan 14, 2015 9:50 am


Greetings Zonees!

As Sonic begins to understand my room with guidance from Michael, I am learning more. Sonic has found the “Band of BOO!”

What’s that?

It is Band of space in my 10.5 foot high room which starts about 6 feet from the floor and ends about a foot below the ceiling.

This is a Band on all four walls of the room where the attachment of any room treatment that has a reflective component to them will trigger a BOO!

For instance, if I placed a FS-DT on top of my CD cabinet (which puts the FS-DT smack in this band) at the extreme rear of the room I get BOO! If Sonic placed FS-DTs or FS-DRTs on the Bookcase Wall (similarly in the band) a ringy BOO! results. Ditto any application of this class of treatments on the front or side walls within this band of space will produce BOO! So this Band exists both in front and behind the Bookcase Wall.

If this Band remains untreated as it is now, it is neutral to the BOO! Experimenting, Sonic used acoustic foam in this zone and this has an immediately noticeable effect of damping the room and shortening the decay time. But then the acoustic foam signature becomes audible which works against the flow of the musick at least when large pieces are used.

Below and above this Band on the walls, the ceiling and floor, all the RoomTune products – Corner Tunes, EchoTunes, Sound Shutters, Tune Strips, Tune Squares, FS-PZCs, FS-DTs, FS-DRTs -- work perfectly as advertised with their reflective sides facing into the room as indicated in the instructions from Mr Green. While there is some acoustic foam at this altitude to manage BOO!, Sonic knows that if I took an ET or something down the sound changes for the worse.

If Zonees look at the recent pictures of my rooms and spot any of these products within the Band of BOO!, you will find they are turned with the absorptive side out.

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Jan 16, 2015 3:54 am

Hi Sonic

How tall are the bookcases?

"For instance, if I placed a FS-DT on top of my CD cabinet (which puts the FS-DT smack in this band) at the extreme rear of the room I get BOO! If Sonic placed FS-DTs or FS-DRTs on the Bookcase Wall (similarly in the band) a ringy BOO! results. Ditto any application of this class of treatments on the front or side walls within this band of space will produce BOO! So this Band exists both in front and behind the Bookcase Wall."

So what about while your sitting?

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Jan 16, 2015 10:04 am

Greetings Michael

The Bookcases are 72 inches tall.

The BOO! is evaluated from my listening seat – while Sonic does a walk around BOO! test and certainly the BOO! does vary around the room, my reports and assessments on whether the BOO! is acceptable or not are always in relation to what I hear seated in the listening chair.

So putting treatment with reflective surfaces in the Band of BOO! worsens the effect at my listening chair.

But for the Zonees who might have been wondering what I was talking about in Sonic’s last post, this is an example of what can bring the BOO! back.



Apart from discovering the “Band of BOO!” not much Tuning has been done this week by Sonic – perhaps this is the peace of satisfaction. I did however learn that the removal of the central FS-PZC causes a thinning of harmonic richness in the sound.



Yet I got to do a good amount of listening:



While Sonic doesn’t want to get more into the analog vs digital debate, yet comparing this LP to the CD version, the first noticeable difference is in Johnny Cash’s voice – the analog version puts his voice more forward, with more mid-bass warmth and size. I hear a big man with a deep big voice that filled my room.  The digital version only hints at this in Mr Cash’s voice. The LP has as much fine detail as the CD but presents it in a relaxed, unforced way.



This is the Philips European issue of this classic.  This is a 56-year old record yet it plays back clean with extended treble, no distortion and little noise.  Good warmth and bass too. The singing, harmonies, arrangements are of a different age of country music.



This is a really good one. Enjoyed it very much.



Sonic was told I must listen to this recording to get the spirit of the late 70s/ early 80s. A classic according to someone who was big time into that era. So I found the LP in a low-cost sale bin. Good condition….but after listening…..what’s the fuss about? Well played synthetic, processed sound and rather ordinary disco-pop competently played. Relates at no deep level. That’s the spirit of this era?  

Now this is something much more:



A new interest of Sonic’s – the early baroque period before the time of Sebastian Bach, Handel, Telemann, Vivaldi.  I have discovered the musick of Johann Heinrich Schmelzer.  Am going to make a minor quest to seek out recordings (LPs and digital disks – CDs/SACDs) of his musick and from composers of this era. Actually Sonic already has some in my collection like Buxtehude but this early period is a gap in my listening and collection which I would like to fill.

Sonic has made arrangement with Mr Cooper to change my heavy hemlock chipboard genuine Michael Green Clamprack shelves to Brazilian Pine shelves.  I think this might be the big unblock Sonic has been looking for. Might be exciting soon!

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 17, 2015 7:19 am

Hi Sonic

I'm again thinking of answering but I'm trying to process things. In my mind I'm thinking "ok Sonic heard the cardboard pressure box dull the sound but now he has foam up". To my ears, I would hear the foam kill a lot more info than the boxes.

The other part I'm thinking is If your going to tame the upper area with burn, what would be the best burn to use? Your saying it can't have any reflective character, and when I hear that it makes me think of burners I use to make for studios.

I'm wondering if MGA should be making burners available too, and it goes against my grain, but maybe some need and want that burn.

explain to me again what you hear good and bad with the sound of the foam

Also tell me this, what happens when you turn the DecoTune in the back the other way around, and if you repace the foam with the DecoTune burn side facing out in the front? I would like to know from you how the two burn products sound as burners.

I'm trying to get an idea of flavor.

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 17, 2015 9:40 am


Michael is asking Sonic questions that push the limits of my vocabulary to describe these things. Let's go:

MG comment: In my mind I'm thinking "ok Sonic heard the cardboard pressure box dull the sound but now he has foam up". To my ears, I would hear the foam kill a lot more info than the boxes.

Sonic: Not so. With the amount of foam I am using now, I don't get any of the dullness that the cardboard pressure boxes gave. But adding more foam progressively brings this effect on along with a dead, sterile, bland-info, harmonically bleached sound. So the amount of foam Sonic uses stops short of producing this effect while negating the BOO!

MG asks: explain to me again what you hear good and bad with the sound of the foam

Sonic: Simple -- with foam, no BOO! And given that the BOO! is a midrange overhang, the sound without the BOO! is more transparent and I can hear details of musick that were obscured in the signature frequency range of BOO!

Another good thing - when the music decays or stops suddenly, either as part of the work being performed or Sonic hitting pause, the decay in the room for all frequencies is even. Previously, the BOO! frequency stayed on longer while everything decayed at a faster rate. Now the decay is even.

The Bass has improved slightly in bigness and girth with the foam. The middle of the soundstage is well defined and forward towards me.

What don't I like with the foam. Subtle things -- something in the ebb and flow of the music is not entirely right, image size at the area on and around the speakers' physical location is compromised, smaller that I would like them and more attached to the speaker panels than before.

MG asks: Also tell me this, what happens when you turn the DecoTune in the back the other way around, and if you repace the foam with the DecoTune burn side facing out in the front?

Sonic replies: I just tried it after the system warmed up with a few hours of music play. First up, there is no return of the BOO! In fact a BOO! test shows no difference. But on musick play, the immediate effect is not large -- playing Palestrina choral works, either the midrange is more articulated or there is a slight "cupped hands colouration" that can also emphasize such details. This way (with the burn side out) the effect is so small that on a cost-benefit basis given the price of a DT, I won't use it this way.

Your thoughts Michael?

Sonic


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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 17, 2015 10:38 am


Hi Michael and Zonees

The DT high up on the CD cabinet with absorptive side facing into the room causes a "cupped hands" coloration. Down it comes.

Now listening to Elgar's Pomp & Circumstances Marches on 78 rpm 12 inch records -- BBC Symphony Orch. conducted by Sir Edward himself Very Happy

Playing these pre-RIAA records with a modern phono stage will give too much bass and a muffled treble but equalized with my Technics 5-band graphic equalizer and with the preamp set to mono to cancel vertical noise from the Stanton stereo cartridge using a broad groove stylus, the sound is remarkably good.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 17, 2015 9:10 pm

Hi Sonic

Have you ever used a Parametric EQ?

I'll be honest, if it were me I would make some room choices like I described earlier so the room had more consitant values to work with. I say this because in a well tuned room you can put a small piece of foam in it and the sound will go bad in a heartbeat. So I'm surprised that the foam dulling sound is not being bothersome.

Also the loose fiber burn is more powerful (DecoTune) so I get that sound.

Ok, based on what your saying I would be tempted to foam the upper areas of the room, leaving the lower parts without as much foam, but I'm not there. On the other side of the coin, if you can live with the extra parts the signal has to pass through and become a master at parametric, you might be able to fine the balances you want.

I myself would go the room build and the super system route, but I have gone the other way in studios and a couple of homes, and of course halls and can tell you if you get really good at it, you can do some remarkable notching and curves with a P-EQ. Plus it's a component as well and can be tuned. The fact that your room is responding to membranes the way it is tells me you are in a pretty stuborn room where the build and dimensions are doing a bunch of off patterns. With speakers like the Maggies it's more than likely making the patterns more difficult.

Lastly don't forget, you can tailor your burn to your type of voicing. There are different types of foam that have different sound characters.

Laughing I feel like I'm back in my studio days

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sun Jan 18, 2015 9:35 am

Hi Michael and Zonees

What Sonic has done and the reason why the foam appears to not to shut down the sound in my room is quite straightforward.

Let’s start with the Problem: my stubborn room whose hard surfaces have a ringy midrange, upper midrange and low treble.

Introduce the Tune: the Tune works against the Problem and ameliorates it BUT as the Tune is applied progressively in the standard way into the room, that is by removing curtains, carpets, furniture and such, the Problem grows in strength and in places gets stronger than the Tune – resulting in BOO! and the colorations that come with it.

Zonees who follow my thread will have seen how hard Sonic struggled to deal with this demon within the framework of the standard Tune model. My hair was turning white and the thought of headphones crossed my mind.

Enter Foam: I was thinking of economic Quantitative Easing -- by increasing money supply though lowering interest rates, government bond buying programmes or simply printing money, a “poison” of inflation is introduced to cure the illness of a weak economy. Too much “inflation poison” and the economy experiences runaway inflation and you get awful problems but in the right dose, the effect of the “poison” is offset by economic growth and everyone benefits – that is the idea at least.

So in this case, the Foam is the “poison” because Sonic discerned to me that the dulling from foam offsets the ring of the room.

In the dose Sonic applied, Foam (dullness) and the Problem (BOO!) offset/weaken each other enough so the Tune rises in prominence and effect.

All the foam is on the front wall because that is the active surface in this room – a trampoline for all the BOO! energy to funnel out. The foam in use is contoured – it is a product used in recording studios -- and (while I do not show it) mounted slightly offset from the wall. The placement has nothing to do with Don and Carolyn Davis’ Live End Dead End idea which is more complex than people assume and was designed by them to solve certain studio control room issues.

The Tune now has a clear shot at working from here. The Brazilian Pine shelves on order for my racks is likely to take the tune and the sound of this system/room forward if what Sonic has done has right.

I got another idea that might be a big step up and Sonic will PM Michael about it.

Now listening to a LP of viola da gamba pieces by Louis de Caix d’Hervelois (1680 – 1780) – Frantisek Slama (gamba) and Josef Hala (harpsichord), Supraphon. The instrument is woody and projected into the room Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Jan 23, 2015 8:39 am

Hi Michael and Zonees

This post is a kind of thought-in-progress.  Sonic has discovered in my room there is an “axis of effectiveness” where treatment applied along this line (axis) fixes problems particularly well with no side effects.  The “axis of effectiveness” which is the antidote to the underlying “axis of evil” is front to back, down the centerline of the room.  

Here is the elaboration from Tune experiments Sonic conducted:

a.     this Tune dropped the Reverb Time of the room further and completely removed any ringing (this is post-BOO!) residuals with no drawbacks like deadening.



These are ET sandwiches where the absorptive sides are the meat in the sandwich.  The absorptive sides face outwards.

This can be overdone – another Sandwich placed along the “axis” thickens the sound such that the instead of bright and clear ambience I get air that is a choking acoustic smog. Acoustic foam creates this same smog very easily.

b.     apart from the acoustic foam on the front wall, all MGA Tune devices on the wall surfaces in Sonic’s room must be mounted reflective side out as Michael directs.  Any devices mounted absorptive side out on a wall, ceiling or floor surface causes the sound to dull but does not fix any acoustic problems like BOO!







c.     facing across the room (mounted on the sidewalls), Tune devices are less effective

d.     acoustic foam is useless on the sidewalls. The sound just shuts down, I get acoustic smog liken to a thick mud in the aid. Sound images get pulled to the speaker positions and surprisingly the BOO! starts to return

e.     Sound Shutters work as advertised when mounted  as if to intercept a front-to-back /back-to-front axial flow (you’ll see this in the pictures).  They are ineffective when mounted to intercept sideways flow – indicating there is very little sideways flow to intercept

f.     placing absorption or Tune devices on the ceiling or floor either over-damps the room or is ineffective – indicating there is no vertical axis of flow

So it seems to Sonic that my room has an axial flow going front-to-back/back-to-front which when treated especially at the top half of the room solves problems and supports musick well.

There is some flow side to side but it is minimal compared to the front to back axis and not worth wasting treatment on it.  Ceiling-to-floor has almost no flow energy – when MGA devices or absorption is applied it either solves no problems or in the case of absorption it shuts down the sound.

Have other Zonees encountered this?  Perhaps this Flow Axis is something that is less prominent in small rooms and more prominent in larger rooms?

Michael, does this fit anything in your discovery of the Tune?

Result of the latest Tune: an improvement and more satisfaction with the sound of musick here  Very Happy  

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 24, 2015 4:33 am

Hi Sonic

I few things pop into my mind as I read the last months work in your place.

I'm thinking of 4 specific rooms that I have owned that were plaster over brick, plaster over blocks, poured concrete covered in plaster and an experimental tunable room where I would change out the materials for testing different surfaces.

Two of the rooms were bigger than yours, one about the same and one 14 x17 x8 (the smallest of the four). These rooms were not fun (except for the testing room) and I was constantly playing with odd shaped zones. A few things I recall about the 3 rooms was they didn't respond well to furniture. The waves in the rooms would seem to go haywire if there was anything in there like book cases, and I had victrola and string bass in the biggest room. If I moved either one of them things would get really weird. And forget bookcases.

I can remember getting fedup and starting from front to back with sound shutters. This was an education and quite fascinating. All of these rooms ended up with sound shutters both Magic wood and Western Red Cedar in a mix. All the rooms, except for the smaller one needed SAM's behind the listening chair. One of the rooms ended up needing to be turned into two rooms, which ended up giving me two great listening rooms instead of one disaster room.

Those rooms ended up being PZC's, Sound Shutters, AeroPlanes and sometimes (depending on the recording) a couple of speciality thud rugs. The one room BTW had 12 foot ceilings and when I opened it up to the tin orginal ceilings they were 16 feet tall. That room I then hung clouds in, worked really well too.

As far as the foam goes, when I have space I'll make me a couple PZC's with foam burn and listen to them again. I have not liked the sound of foam much, but a closed mind is a mind that doesn't explore and I don't mind opening up that door again to see. I have two PZC's here made so I can add whatever type of burn I want to listen to. My last foam adventures ended up using many different types. I'm not opposed to adding more tools as they are needed in the mix. I did get a Sonex Square, but wasn't able to use it in my systems without hearing a hole in the stage, but there are many materials out there.

Another thing I wanted to bring up. A few years ago you started to go the Sound Shutter route and then went in another direction. At that time I was sure you were going to go the PZC, Shutter and Aero route, check your notes and see what made the direction turn.

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 24, 2015 7:23 am

Sorry Sonic

Had a server thing that came up.

A couple of posts ago you said the barricade side of the tunes were causing a weird pressure balance with your walls. Do they do the same thing with more sound shutters up I wonder?

Most of the time there is more energy within the laminar flow along the walls, than the reflected energy that is able to push it's way through the on-coming waves. However I know this can be the other way around. I'm thinking if you have more waves doing parallels then surface motion it could be how some of those waves are setting up. I'm just thinking outloud and trying to put myself in your space.

I should hop on a plane and come over with a bunch of stuff to play with.

I didn't understand this one ??

"These are ET sandwiches where the absorptive sides are the meat in the sandwich.  The absorptive sides face outwards."

Did you mean to say the live side is facing out and the absorptive is in or the other way around?

"d.     acoustic foam is useless on the sidewalls. The sound just shuts down, I get acoustic smog liken to a thick mud in the aid. Sound images get pulled to the speaker positions and surprisingly the BOO! starts to return"

Now this is what I'm use to hearing with foam. A very quick shut down, and stuck in the speakers.

"e.     Sound Shutters work as advertised when mounted  as if to intercept a front-to-back /back-to-front axial flow (you’ll see this in the pictures).  They are ineffective when mounted to intercept sideways flow – indicating there is very little sideways flow to intercept"

Did you do the side walls after you did the ceiling or before?

"f.     placing absorption or Tune devices on the ceiling or floor either over-damps the room or is ineffective – indicating there is no vertical axis of flow"

Oh you got flow there alright, but your room is acting like a bunch of wave valves being turned off and on instead of pressure building. It looks like the waves are traveling in cross patterns instead of pressure zones, which is pretty unusual. Your rooms on the top floor right?

It's too bad we can't use cardboard in your room, it would be good to play around.

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:10 am

Hi Michael

This is getting exciting!

MG:A couple of posts ago you said the barricade side of the tunes were causing a weird pressure balance with your walls. Do they do the same thing with more sound shutters up I wonder?

Sonic: I had more Shutters up using your balsa.  I could reduce the number without audible problems

MG: I should hop on a plane and come over with a bunch of stuff to play with.

Sonic: That might be an idea to finally deal with the room and achieve the Tune.
 
MG: I didn't understand this one ?? "These are ET sandwiches where the absorptive sides are the meat in the sandwich.  The absorptive sides face outwards."

Sonic: No, the two live sides of each "Sandwich" pair face each other and the absorptive sides are outwards.

MG:  [Sonic said] acoustic foam is useless on the sidewalls. The sound just shuts down, I get acoustic smog liken to a thick mud in the aid. Sound images get pulled to the speaker positions and surprisingly the BOO! starts to return"

Now this is what I'm use to hearing with foam. A very quick shut down, and stuck in the speakers.

Sonic: My use and placement of foam (its is Sonex) is specific. In the places you see it solves problems by neutralizing the BOO! Elsewhere like the side walls and the rear wall, I get the fast shut down effect.

MG: [Sonic said] Sound Shutters work as advertised when mounted  as if to intercept a front-to-back /back-to-front axial flow (you’ll see this in the pictures).  They are ineffective when mounted to intercept sideways flow – indicating there is very little sideways flow to intercept" Did you do the side walls after you did the ceiling or before?

Sonic: my notes say I had a handyman who had a powerful concrete drill put them all up at one go in late 2009.

MG: [Sonic said] placing absorption or Tune devices on the ceiling or floor either over-damps the room or is ineffective – indicating there is no vertical axis of flow" Oh you got flow there alright, but your room is acting like a bunch of wave valves being turned off and on instead of pressure building. It looks like the waves are traveling in cross patterns instead of pressure zones, which is pretty unusual. Your rooms on the top floor right?

It's too bad we can't use cardboard in your room, it would be good to play around.

Sonic: the rules of my dwelling permit the use of cardboard. My room is at ground level, there are dwellings above. I think I pointed this out when you thought I had a suspended floor and it helped you understand my plight once I said it is parquet over concrete.

About your questions on where Sonic went after the Shutters...

Here is the procession starting from late 2009:

Shutters

BookCase Wall created

Episode with Pressure Boxes, and Space Cones, addition of AAB1x1

The BOO! war starts although it was not characterized as such

Enter the DTs when MGA had a representative in my town

Integrated the LP and SP playback capability into this system

Movement towards my present layout with things like Builders Paper on windows

Simpler system with tuning with no subwoofer system

Long fight with BOO!

Demon of BOO! exorcised and consigned to the outer darkness

Here we are in the years.

Sonic is glad we went this way because if I had piled on the PZCs and the MCCs etc (had they been available at the time I was asking for cost quotations) without the present understanding that you and I now have of my room, I might have got into an even bigger jam.  

Fortunately the temporary unavailability of these items forced Sonic to stay with devices that had "burn" which led to the fairly happy spot where we are now.    

Question: what's a "thud rug"?

Sonic


Last edited by Sonic.beaver on Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:15 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Added a question for MG)
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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:41 am

Thud rugs are just different sounding and size rugs that I would use during certain recordings in my harder wall rooms.

Well, with the cardboard I was thinking we could try some stuff. One of them zoning off the laminar flow into sections, but if the sound is at a good place right now enjoy that till you run into something weird.

Never miss out on a good listen Cool

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Sun Jan 25, 2015 9:35 am

Hi Michael and Zonees

Sonic would avoid any more "acoustic burn".  Using the carpets I have in other parts of my dwelling, Sonic finds they carve chunks out of the soundfield. Awful things.

What are the materials of the "thud" rugs you have found to be beneficial?

Good advice from Mr Green -- "never miss out on a good listen"

Here is what Sonic is listening to this evening:



And early barogue!



Michael -- you mentioned experiments with cardboard in my room -- what have you in mind?

I been in contact with Mr Cooper -- looks like the Brazilian Pine shelves for my Clampracks might be ready mid-February!  Now that is a step that could take Sonic and the system a good way forward.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Wed Jan 28, 2015 9:30 am


Michael said Sonic's room may be acting "like a bunch of wave valves being turned off and on instead of pressure building". I don't understand what Mr Green is precisely saying but for sure the room has its oddities.

While the tricorners, the 4 vertical corners and the lower half of the room behave as the Tune predicts, elsewhere -- particular the upper parts of the walls and the ceiling -- things don't behave as predicted and application of MGA devices may give unexpected results. Sometimes good, sometimes detrimental.

Sonic is maybe getting a hang of this and after the Sandwiches which appear successful, I got something to add on which Sonic might be able to describe later this week.

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PostSubject: Re: Tuning My Musical Journey   Fri Jan 30, 2015 9:46 am

Hi Michael and Zonees

Sonic wanted to investigate Michael’s cryptic saying about my room acting like a valve so I thought it was worth advancing the idea of Sonic’s seeing the centre-line/front-to-back as a definitive axis.

Given that the sandwich tune Sonic came up with last week was promising, I decided to take the idea further.  This is what was done:



See the pair of white ETs are mounted on the ceiling with their absorptive side facing the camera and the FS-DT on the BookCase Wall top surface, again reflective side facing the rear wall?

If Zonees want to see how Sonic’s idea relates to my January 23 post:



The effect is “very curious” thinks Sonic  Question  

The room has a more controlled and defined decay when excited with a hand drum strike or a BOO! The imaging has cleaned up and strands within a piece of music are more distinct without upsetting the voicing of the piece. Images that were on some recordings were tethered to the speaker panels, like 60s rock, are now set back from the panels by about one foot.  The treble sings better with a smoother lower treble.

But Sonic gave this tune the thumbs down!

The reason is the bass has gone funny – on some recordings there is deeper bass than before YET while on others bass notes I know are there are now softer ie: rolled off. This has the character of an uneven hill and dale bass. Of course Sonic could pair this with the Janis W-1 subwoofer….but no, we are not going there.  Sonic is convinced that a simpler set up ultimately sounds better and my perseverance to this idea (thanks to Mr Green and Hiend001) has shown this is truly the better way.

But here is an observation of definite import:

I was playing my bass range test CD when testing this set up and walked over to get some object at the side of the room and heard there was a lot more bass there! So more walking about and listening – yes, there is noticeably more bass along the Left and Right side walls  Shocked  

And after the ETs and the FS DT came down and the bass returned to normal and what I would call “acceptable” bass levels at the listening chair, there was still more bass along the two side walls. OK, not the most even in frequency response but more fulsome.

Sonic recalls that Michael once had to face a room which had no bass in the centre (where the listening chair was) and all the bass as thrown to the sides.  

Michael, how did you deal with this? How will you deal with this today if faced with this.

Fortunately Sonic’s room displays only a mild version of this problem.  At the listening chair, the bass evenness and extension is acceptable, no actually rather good, but at the side walls there is more pronounced bass.  

If Zonees wonder “how come after all this time Sonic didn’t know this about this room?”

The Answer: I have known this effect for many years after discovering it when I was using the Janis W-1 subwoofer system.  With the Janis W-1 subwoofer, the bass was way excessive at the side walls but I thought it an artifact of the subwoofer system and since I don’t listen sitting at the side walls, Sonic ignored it. But now that there is a semblance of this effect with a subwoofer-less system.

The question is how do I tap this bass energy?

Sonic
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