Room modification

I have the opportunity to modify my listening room by dampening my my front wall ( behind speakers) or back wall (behind me).

Any views as it if one dampened wall is better than another. My room is smallish 12x12x12 that is fairly well furnished.

Start with the front wall without doubt. If possible add some damping also on right and left wall at the reflection points.

Back wall is last prio and depending on how close you sit to it and how loud you play.

Some acoustic treatment manufacturers will provide free design advice if you email them your room dimensions as well as pictures of all four walls, including where your listening position is situated within the room. GIK Acoustics is one, but most others will as well.

I would see if it’s practical to change one or two dimensions so it’s not a perfect cube!

Room treatment is essential and doesn’t have to cost a fortune.

Do you have bass traps yet? This is essential for both room equalization and shortening the overhang of lower frequencies. GiK Acoustics makes a product called Tri-Trap that fits in your room corners. Highly recommend that you install at least (2) to (4) of these. Very difficult to overdo bass trapping.

Good luck.

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The space is 12x12x12, and unless it’s in meters, that’s not much volume to accommodate bass trapping that will be effective. I’m not saying don’t do it but how much can one afford to lose…

The Tri-Trap takes up about 16 inches of wall so not that much. And, you could place up against the ceiling to minimize reduction of floor space. These are very effective, not costly and are a no-brainer for room treatments.

Square rooms can be challenging, so I am told.

A bit off-topic, but if you have not worked hard on your speaker and listening position locations yet; and have not addressed the points of first reflection on your side walls and floor, then I would spend my money addressing these areas first. If it is not a matter of budget, then I would do all of the above and then the front wall – followed by the rear wall.

You used the term “dampening” but I am not sure what you meant. If you are addressing leakage to areas outside your listening area, that’s one thing. If you want to address room nodes and surface reflections, that’s another. Reasonable people have different opinions on whether absorption or diffusion should be applied to a given reflection point.

I recommend that you do some extensive reading about your options if you have not done so already. Your room dimensions, surfaces and speaker/listening position may all influence what you should address first and how you should address it.

How’s that for being unhelpful? :slight_smile:

Here is a specific suggestion: Get Better Sound

Buy this book. I can attest that it will save you time and money.

Have fun.


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Thanks to everyone for their help and contributions.

  • Will check out GIK and find my copy of Get Better Sound - forgot about that!
  • It is feet rather than meters and generally well furnished. It is unique in that there are two doors in the back corner and i can leave these open to help with nodes. One wall has 6-8 one foot wide floor to ceiling closet doors. I can open and adjust to help with bad reflections.
  • By dampening, i am looking to deaden the room by reducing reflections. The walls are hard and am thinking to moving the very large canvas painting on the back wall to the front and adding some “dampening” on the back. The dampening would break up and redirect the sound. The message i am getting so far is that this effect is better served on the front wall?
  • I will also work on side reflections. No doubt that will help.
  • Hearing that bass traps are key. I know of them, but never explored… I will look more deeply.
  • Mostly i appreciate scotte1’s advice to keep researching…but this this a very helpful start.

Many thanks!

FYI: GIK Discussion

@hshrader. I totally agree with @scotte1. Buy the book Get Better Sound and read it before you buy any room treatments. I wish I would have bought this book 5 years ago. It would have saved me both time and money. Get the package with the DVD for $60. Well worth it. It will put you in the right direction with regards to your speaker placement and room nodes and introduce you to other things that you might not be aware of.

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Thanks for the recommendation. Just bought the book and DVDs. Can’t wait to apply these tips & techniques.

Please share some of your experiences in a follow up or two, if you don’t mind.

Have fun!

I’ll be reading this book on my flight into Colorado today! I believe it was your suggestion in a different thread that made me order it.


My copy is getting a little dog-eared.

I pull it out every time I putz around with the room and kit layout and thumb through it as kind of a refresher/reminder about good practices.

Let me know what you think.


Got through the book yesterday (skipped a few things like the info on planar speakers and the reference list), and I’ll agree it’s a good read. I picked up a bunch of stuff I didn’t know or didn’t think about and reinforced some areas I knew but didn’t think about as much as I should. I wish I would have read this a year ago as it would have accelerated things a lot.

I’m going to have to spend a little more time on looking into ac polarity after reading this as well.

Thanks for the recommendation.

You bet.

And, you are correct about the book serving as a reference to help one “remember” or reinforce good practices.

Some of the best $$ I have ever spent.