Totally Gong Studios

Washington State

USA

Watch as our client sets up our ACDA units, Carbon Panels, and QD-17 diffusers. He has two rooms, one is a live room and one is the control room. Notice that both rooms are coincidental and almost square. Notice the number of units used and where they are placed. Notice that we used our staged approach to placing treatment by starting with the ACDA (low frequency) units and then the Carbon Panels with the diffusion sequences placed last. Remember that room tuning is all about doing a lot of little things correctly but also in the correct order. Stay tuned for part 2 where we go over the before and after treatment performance of each room.

Room Tuning

Room tuning is a process. Where do we start the process? We start with the low-frequency issues within our room. Every room size and usage has its own set of axial, tangential, and oblique modes. Modes are unwanted air “pressure” between two parallel walls that can’t fit and begins to produce room distortion by exaggerating or smothering certain octaves whose wavelengths are not a match for the room’s dimension. Axial modes are between two parallel walls. Axial modes can occur between the sidewalls, front and rear walls and floor to ceiling. Tangential modes occur between four walls and oblique modes occur between all six surfaces within a room. The live and control rooms in this project were what is termed coincidental rooms.

Coincidental Room Size

A coincidental room is one in where the length and width of a room are close in size. They are within 15 % of each other. We won’t go into the reasons why this is but for the sake of this discussion,  we will know that the coincidental modal issues at frequencies below 200 Hz. within a room are exaggerated by up to 400% at some frequencies and locations within the room. I believe our distances were 24′ w x 22′ l x 11′ ceiling. Whenever a dimension is one half the distance of another room dimension, there will be more issues. More issues or the same issue as a regular-sized room only supersized. We had to do two things. First, we had to physically change the dimensions of the room by lining the room with our 16″ deep ACDA-10 and ACDA-12  broadband carbon absorbers.

Photos provided by client

Powerful Technology

With new room dimensions due to the ACDA depth of 16″ and the high rate and level of absorption provided by the ACDA Carbon Series, we now have enough surface area coverage at the correct rate and level and just as importantly, in the right position. Treating the room boundary surfaces at the wall/ceiling/floor intersect is the best location to manage axial modal pressure. Treating the walls closet to a sound source (DAW) is also required. Notice the Carbon Panels (black) sitting on top of the ACDA units. They start at 40 Hz. and go up to 6,300 Hz. with the foam face. Two technologies for two frequency and amplitude types. Room tuning is a process. You start with broadband 30 Hz. absorption with the ACDA units and then fill in any other issues above 40 Hz. with the Carbon Panels. With room tuning the elevator to success is out of order, you must take the stairs one step at a time.

Quadratic Diffusion

Diffusion takes all of this balanced energy from 30 – 6,300 Hz. and balanced it must be and spreads it out. I get calls every day from people who want to discuss diffusion before having their lows, mids, and highs balanced before you introduce diffusion. Diffusion will actually make your room sound worse if you don’t treat the lows, mids, and highs first and foremost. Diffusion acts as a magnifying glass and will highlight the untreated frequency issues within your room. Listen to how Jon describes the diffusion in the room. We sent him the diffusers last in his room tuning process. After we started with the ACDA units, we then added the Carbon Panels to continue our quest to go after the room modes. You won’t know you have a 40 Hz. and above issue at the back wall top until you treat the room first. Once you start treating surface areas in the room, the untreated ones will start to “speak”.

Products Used in this Treatment

ACDA 

– A broadband, low-frequency, absorber starting at 30 Hz. and going through 6,300 Hz.

Carbon Panel

-A smooth, low-frequency, absorber that starts at 40 Hz. and goes through 6,300 Hz.

Quadratic Diffusers: 13, 17, & 23      

-Wooden quadratic diffusers based on prime numbers 13, 17, & 23, with each size pertaining to a different frequency response range. 

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