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Thread: Can we talk about floors?

  1. #1
    Addicted to Best! Diapason's Avatar
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    Can we talk about floors?

    The nerdcave has more than its fair share of acoustical issues, but I'm starting to become convinced that the floor is a big problem. It's a badly-laid, cheap, wooden laminate floor (which predates our purchase of the house) and it vibrates a LOT. There are certain areas at the speaker end where it's actually bouncy, but even aside from that it seems to resonate fairly significantly with certain frequencies and gives the impression of singing along to the music.

    I'm thinking it's time to do something about it but I'm not sure what the ideal replacement would be, acoustically speaking. I assume that if I rip up the current laminate floor I'll find poured concrete an inch or two below. I'm tempted to put down a deep-pile carpet with good underlay, since the sound of the room has always been zingy (it's a narrow concrete box, 21' x 9'). Is this the best approach, or would I be wiser to stick with a better wooden floor? Is carpet over concrete a bad idea? The room is a dedicated space, so anything goes really.
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  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Diapason View Post
    The nerdcave has more than its fair share of acoustical issues, but I'm starting to become convinced that the floor is a big problem. It's a badly-laid, cheap, wooden laminate floor (which predates our purchase of the house) and it vibrates a LOT. There are certain areas at the speaker end where it's actually bouncy, but even aside from that it seems to resonate fairly significantly with certain frequencies and gives the impression of singing along to the music.

    I'm thinking it's time to do something about it but I'm not sure what the ideal replacement would be, acoustically speaking. I assume that if I rip up the current laminate floor I'll find poured concrete an inch or two below. I'm tempted to put down a deep-pile carpet with good underlay, since the sound of the room has always been zingy (it's a narrow concrete box, 21' x 9'). Is this the best approach, or would I be wiser to stick with a better wooden floor? Is carpet over concrete a bad idea? The room is a dedicated space, so anything goes really.
    You could start by isolating your loudspeakers from the floor, experiment with visco elastic material, ( Sorbathane) a thick rug between you and the speakers will remove floor bounce, the ears aren't keen on horizontal reflections.
    Keith.

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    Addicted to Best! Diapason's Avatar
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    I should have said I already have the thick rug, but good call on the isolation.
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  4. #4
    You might have to experiment with the 'loading' of the Sorbathane, but it will offer broad band isolation.
    Keith.

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    Addicted to Best! rbbert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Purite Audio View Post
    You could start by isolating your loudspeakers from the floor, experiment with visco elastic material, ( Sorbathane) a thick rug between you and the speakers will remove floor bounce, the ears aren't keen on horizontal reflections.
    Keith.
    I think this is called "What's Best Forum", not "cheapest place to start forum" or "most cost-effective forum". There are several threads already in this section which address these issues (floor design and speaker isolation) in far more comprehensive detail. Here's one

    http://www.whatsbestforum.com/showth...o-loudspeakers
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    Addicted to Best! Diapason's Avatar
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    Thanks for that. I probably should have done a search first...
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    Member Sponsor [VIP/Donor] GaryProtein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Purite Audio View Post
    You could start by isolating your loudspeakers from the floor, experiment with visco elastic material, ( Sorbathane) a thick rug between you and the speakers will remove floor bounce, the ears aren't keen on horizontal reflections.
    Keith.
    Isn't that the complete opposite of using spikes which some say isolates and others say couples the speaker to the floor?

    Placing speakers on sorbothane will allow them to wobble and sway a lot. I would add a Lally column /screw jack column under your speakers. They are available at Home Depot and are under $100.

    I have doubled all my floor joists in my full basement, which wasn't terribly expensive, but there still is a slight amount of flex in the floor and when I play recordings like Turtle Creek Chorale's "Psalms", loudly, long sustained very deep organ notes will vibrate the floor throughout the room. I have even had things fall off shelves on the wall! More typical bass notes don't cause the floor to vibrate--only the deepest bass notes on an organ sustained for at least three seconds set the floor in noticeable vibration.
    Last edited by GaryProtein; 02-05-2016 at 07:44 AM.
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  8. #8
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    I live in an old factory building now 4 foot concrete floors. When we moved in we had oak strip laid on plywood. After having to strip all that out (water related) the room did get better, but I use an area rug in front of the speakers. I'd recommending ripping out the wood and then polishing the concrete below, then slowly add rugs/furniture/treatment until you get the sound you want. You can always add full carpet later if you decide that's the way to go.


    Quote Originally Posted by Diapason View Post
    The nerdcave has more than its fair share of acoustical issues, but I'm starting to become convinced that the floor is a big problem. It's a badly-laid, cheap, wooden laminate floor (which predates our purchase of the house) and it vibrates a LOT. There are certain areas at the speaker end where it's actually bouncy, but even aside from that it seems to resonate fairly significantly with certain frequencies and gives the impression of singing along to the music.

    I'm thinking it's time to do something about it but I'm not sure what the ideal replacement would be, acoustically speaking. I assume that if I rip up the current laminate floor I'll find poured concrete an inch or two below. I'm tempted to put down a deep-pile carpet with good underlay, since the sound of the room has always been zingy (it's a narrow concrete box, 21' x 9'). Is this the best approach, or would I be wiser to stick with a better wooden floor? Is carpet over concrete a bad idea? The room is a dedicated space, so anything goes really.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by GaryProtein View Post
    Isn't that the complete opposite of using spikes which some say isolates and others say couples the speaker to the floor?

    Placing speakers on sorbothane will allow them to wobble and sway a lot. I would add a Lally column /screw jack column under your speakers. They are available at Home Depot and are under $100.

    I have doubled all my floor joists in my full basement, which wasn't terribly expensive, but there still is a slight amount of flex in the floor and when I play recordings like Turtle Creek Chorale's "Psalms", loudly, long sustained very deep organ notes will vibrate the floor throughout the room. I have even had things fall off shelves on the wall! More typical bass notes don't cause theto vibrate--only the deepest bass notes on an organ sustained for at least three seconds set the floor in noticeable vibration.
    Spiking directly couples your loudspeaker to the floor, allowing vibration to pass easily , decoupling using visco elastic material will absorb 'some' of the vibration ( depending upon durometer and loading of the material) in Diapason case isolation/decoupling would appear to be optimal.
    Keith.

  10. #10
    Addicted to Best! rbbert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Purite Audio View Post
    Spiking directly couples your loudspeaker to the floor, allowing vibration to pass easily , decoupling using visco elastic material will absorb 'some' of the vibration ( depending upon durometer and loading of the material) in Diapason case isolation/decoupling would appear to be optimal.
    Keith.
    Did you look at this yet?

    http://www.whatsbestforum.com/showth...o-loudspeakers
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