DIY Room Treatments - Coverings - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 25 Old 12-23-06, 01:36 PM
Eric_C
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DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

I am going to be redoing my setup at home in a little while and one of the speaker manufacturers I was looking at suggested room treatments for my room.

I am a DIY'er so I don't want something commercial(expensive).

I was sent a few links which unfortunately are on another computer but they were the polyfill/fiberglass/polyfill setups. Brown backer board with something like chicken wire over the top.

Covered with mislum and then burlap.

Wife and I went to JoAnn fabrics and she is not too thrilled with the burlap. Are there other materials I can use that are loose woven that might look a bit better?

Here are some pics of the room. Keep a few things in mind. One is the windows are uncovered right now. We just had them installed so the valances are not back up and we will have some kind of curtain over them on the sides, leaving the centers exposed. Second is the front speakers, Deftech 7002's will be replaced with line arrays and I'll either have a EB or 2 sonosubs located somewhere near them. The love seat is also going to move...just not sure where.

i65.photobucket.com/albums/h232/econnelle/Great%20Room/PC180009.jpg
i65.photobucket.com/albums/h232/econnelle/Great%20Room/PC180008.jpg
i65.photobucket.com/albums/h232/econnelle/Great%20Room/PC180007.jpg
i65.photobucket.com/albums/h232/econnelle/Great%20Room/PC180005.jpg
i65.photobucket.com/albums/h232/econnelle/Great%20Room/PC180003.jpg
i65.photobucket.com/albums/h232/econnelle/Great%20Room/PC180002.jpg
i65.photobucket.com/albums/h232/econnelle/Great%20Room/PC180001.jpg

Sorry I can't post pics yet, I'll fill in the image tag once I get 10 posts but you can copy and past those into a browser window.

I have not looked into traps, I'll get there but mostly what I am looking at are the wall panels. Where I should put them and how many.

On a related note anyone do wall panels of the type above to cut down on ambient noise? I read somewhere that the person said it really cut down on noise in the room. We thought of making some more decorative ones for the bedroom to make it a quieter and more relaxing area.

Thanks
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post #2 of 25 Old 12-24-06, 11:07 AM
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

Guilford of Maine sells specialty fabrics designed for wall panels.

I used their "Anchorage" (style 2335) fabric on my panel, and it looks great.
Anchorage is available in close to 40 different colors, including about a half dozen browns/cream colors.

They are not as easy to purchase as going to your local fabric store, but they do have a huge variety of both fabric patters, and colors within each pattern.

You can order samples from thier website at no charge.

www.guilfordofmaine.com
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post #3 of 25 Old 12-25-06, 08:19 AM
 
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

I am in the same boat in trying to find a covering for panels. When I mentioned to my wife about accoustic panels, she wasn't thrilled with what the room might end up looking like. So I thought of using an area rug or maybe an afghan mounted to the front of the panel (if I can find nice pattern).

Bryan
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post #4 of 25 Old 12-25-06, 10:56 AM
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

We're going to sit down and check that site out tomorrow once the family is all gone and cleaned up after.

The page I read said it needed to be loosely woven material and we went to JoAnn's without much luck.

They do have muslin on sale this week though

Thanks for the tip. If anyone else knows of a locally available(national chain type deal) for picking up compatible material it would be appreciated.
post #5 of 25 Old 12-26-06, 11:21 PM
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

Theres a few things to consider for fabric...

the panel fabric that Guilford sells is all fire rated, and I think its all moisture resistant so it won't absorb the humidity in the air, then sag.

Wal-Mart sells fabric - and I've bought from them for a few non-permanent projects (like freestanding bass traps)

I think a reasonable test is to put the fabric over your ear in the store - if what you hear is the same, then It's reasonable to assume that it's letting the sound through - you can verify this again at home - have a friend hold the fabric right in front of your speaker - it should sound about the same - if the high freqencies roll off a lot, then you can assume those are being reflected and not absorbed, and you may want a different fabric.
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post #6 of 25 Old 12-28-06, 05:14 AM
 
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

Thanks for the tip on the fire rating of the material. :holycow: I never thought of that safety concern or smoke alarms in the room in case there is a problem. Hopefully other people installing HT rooms keep this in mind.
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post #7 of 25 Old 12-28-06, 12:28 PM
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

Quote:
basementjack wrote: View Post
I think a reasonable test is to put the fabric over your ear in the store - if what you hear is the same, then It's reasonable to assume that it's letting the sound through - you can verify this again at home - have a friend hold the fabric right in front of your speaker - it should sound about the same - if the high freqencies roll off a lot, then you can assume those are being reflected and not absorbed, and you may want a different fabric.
I've heard similar "Tests".. I was also told to fold the fabirc in half to be doubly sure that there wasn't any interference.

One other note, I've also heard that you should look for "natural" fibers as opposed to anything synthetic.

JCD
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post #8 of 25 Old 12-28-06, 07:19 PM
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

Eric,

I see from your pictures that you’re using a family room for your system, and not a dedicated room.

That’s both good news and bad news. The bad news is that so-called room treatments that you typically see in dedicated rooms – such as acoustical panels - usually don’t fly in a family room. The good news is that family rooms often don’t need a lot of treatment, because the normal household furnishings do a good job of dampening and diffusing the sound.

Judging from your pictures, it looks like you’re actually not doing too badly in the room treatment department, what with the carpet and the soft furniture.

The only thing that’s really killing you (assuming you do have some reverberation problems) is that vast expanse of sheetrock behind your sofa, that’s directly opposite the front speakers. Anything you could do back there would be an improvement.

You might consider something like ultra-low pile carpet, like the kind they use in office buildings. Maybe a large section of it in a contrasting color, glued to the wall starting say, 7 ft. up and extending to 12-14 ft. You could frame it out for appearances, maybe do it in 3-4 divided sections, something like that. It might not look as bad as you think, seeing as how right now you basically have a huge, naked wall. Tell the wife the wall needs to have some character added.

Also, some heavy draperies for the windows flanking the fireplace would both dampen sound and cut down on light in the room for daytime viewing.

Regards,
Wayne
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post #9 of 25 Old 12-29-06, 02:22 AM
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

I'm thinking office carpet isn't going to do much, considering treatments for mid- or upper-frequencies need to be like an inch of OC703/704. ??? I put some carpet behind my fridge and it didn't help a whole lot.

There are two ways to approach the fabric covering though. One is to let as much air through, so that the stuff behind the fabric absorbs well. The other is to use fabric that doesn't let a lot through, but absorbs instead of reflects, and the stuff behind takes care of the rest. For example, sticking a thick wool sweater in front of an inch of semirigid fiberglass would probably only improve things, even though you can't hear as well through it or blow air through it as easily.

Also, depending on your decor, treatments can very easily fit in if you cover them in a way that makes sense. Even if they are sticking into the room, off the wall, by an inch or two. Covering the treatments on your back wall with an area rug or afghan could work very well.
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post #10 of 25 Old 12-29-06, 12:39 PM
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Re: DIY Room Treatments - Coverings

Joshua,
Quote:
I'm thinking office carpet isn't going to do much, considering treatments for mid- or upper-frequencies need to be like an inch of OC703/704. ??? I put some carpet behind my fridge and it didn't help a whole lot.
Eric brought that up when he said...
Quote:
On a related note anyone do wall panels of the type above to cut down on ambient noise? I read somewhere that the person said it really cut down on noise in the room.
...but I forgot to address it.

Carpet is a great acoustical treatment because it reduces reflections by absorbing them. Obviously anyone who has been a room with a concrete floor before and after it was carpeted can testify to that.

What you’re talking about is soundproofing. Soundproofing is not about reducing reflections. It’s about totally blocking sound from being transferred to from one room (or structure) to another (as much as possible, at least). Obviously you can’t apply room treatments to “soundproof” against noises that are generated inside the room you’re in. That’s why the carpet behind your ’fridge didn’t work.

That said – Eric, if the “ambient noise” you’re concerned about in your bedroom are generated internally, you’d have to find a way to mute the source of the noise. If it’s an external noise source, what you’d do about reducing it will depend on what and where it is.

Regards,
Wayne
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