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Thread: How many Bass Traps?

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    How many Bass Traps?

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    Simply speaking, how many bass traps do you need in a small rectangular domestic room to make a positive difference? Do you actually need one in each corner(4), or is it more a law of diminishing returns with this type of treatment i.e. one makes a big difference and each subsequent piece of treatment less?

    Idiot noob question - sorry. But I'd imagine I'm not the only one to have TOTALLY UNDERESTIMATED the importance of acoustics for years whilst focusing on shiny new kit with knobs on etc

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    4 is good and some folks have traps in other places like wall-ceiling joins. Iíd certainly start with 4 if you can but like a lot of home recorders your space may constrain you from reaching the ideal. I have 3 corner traps, floor to ceiling because I have a door in the 4th corner.

    And, to some degree it depends on what you are doing in the room, because if youíre not recording bass or mixing tracks with low frequency content then they are not quite as important, but thatís admittedly not the most common use case. My room is 90% just mixing and most of that is acoustic-y stuff without heavy bass, though there is bass content.

    And yeah, wish Iíd paid attention to this stuff a lot sooner. Would have saved me some time.

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    Depends upon what you mean by "small" ? In fact it would be very informative for the acoustics experts here to tell us their definition of "too small"?

    I have for instance read a comment by a well respected contributor regarding a noobs room that, "Stuffing it floor to ceiling would barely make it usable"! The facts of acoustic life must be faced, 40Hz has a wavelength of 27.5ft and if you cannot sit near peak pressure you cannot hear it.

    So, where do we draw the line? Assuming reasonable H,W,L ratio, 1000cu ft, 1500cuft, more than 2000cuft?

    Dave.

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    Smaller rooms = more energy per area to be absorbed. Larger rooms = less, but if using the same source, it's the same amount per room.

    1k cubic feet of water in a 1k cubic foot space = drowning. In a 3k space, wet shoes and pants. THAT ALL SAID:

    I find that the almost "universal" starting point to room treatment in a smaller to average sized room is [12] [2'x4'x4"] broadband panels. All four corners floor-to-ceiling (that's 8) and each high-side corner centered on the mix position (front & rear high corner, centered - high sides centered at .38 the distance from the short wall, assuming that's the room setup).

    That's enough to make an appreciable difference in most rooms. Whether it's enough to make the room "good" depends on too many variables. I have roughly 3x that amount of material in my space and I'm quite happy with it -- and I understand that my situation isn't the same as everyone else's situation -- but I'm just talking about what's working.

    I have yet to be in a room of typical construction that wouldn't benefit from that "base coat" of treatment.

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    I have (10) 2'x4'x2" broadband traps and (6) 2'x4'x6" mega-bass traps, and some diffusion on the back wall. I also have some flutter-echo treatment on the ceiling, and a small "cloud" over the mix position.
    I've thought about adding another (4-6) 2'x2'x4" broadband ceiling traps mostly in the ceiling corners...but I'm not there yet...maybe this summer when I'm motivated to make them, as I prefer to work outside with the fiberglass.

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    You're unlikely to reach the 'law of diminishing returns' in a small room. As much as you can comfortably put in to it. How small is 'small'? Assume you have doors, windows, other things that will be in less-than-ideal positions, too.
    I started with 6 4"x2'x4 panels, added mini superchunks in the rear corners, and 2 2"x2'x4' cloud panels above my mix position. I also stuffed the perimeter of the suspended ceiling with pink/yellow fiberglass (only a 3" space there). With everything else in this room (amps, guitars, keyboard, dining hutch...), I literally cannot put any more in!
    Mike B My new album on CD Baby: Fact and Fiction
    My Bandcamp site: http://mikebirchmusic.bandcamp.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by mjbphotos View Post
    You're unlikely to reach the 'law of diminishing returns' in a small room...

    ... I literally cannot put any more in!
    I guess you did.

    That's really the big problem with small rooms...the amount of trapping needed quickly becomes silly, as the room turns into a "bass trap warehouse".

    I have no more room to put up any on the walls or to have in the room...so the only place left for the additional 6 that I might add...is the ceiling...and that also is tight on space, considering I already have stuff on it...but I did the measurements and looked at the placement, and I can put 6 more traps on the ceiling.
    I can't go more than 4"...but then they will be flush against the ceiling. If I want to leave a small space between the trap and the ceiling, I would have to do 2".

    I'm thinking if I do 2", I'll use the 703 FRK with the foil paper, and put that side facing the ceiling, with a 1" air space. That way I can get a bit more low-end trapping in there even though it's only 2".
    I dunno...just thinking about it...no real decision yet.

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