Tips for Better Home Acoustics

You've just installed a new speaker system, butwhen you turn it on, something just doesn't sound right. No matter how much youfiddle with the equalizer, the surround sound isn't as impressive as youthought it would be or the bass still sounds a little high-pitched.

Or maybe you can hear your neighbours" TV sowell you decided to throw away yours and cancel your own subscription.

In both cases, what you're dealing with is poorhome acoustics. Whether or not you're aware of it, building acoustics impacts thelevel and the quality of the sounds-and noise-you hear, affecting yourproductivity, well-being and communication.

How To Improve the Acoustics In Your Home
The way sound propagates, is reflected andabsorbed in a room describes the acoustics of that space. If there are manysurfaces for the sound waves to bounce off, it will echo - think of the way soundreverberates in an empty room. On the other hand, if the room is crowded withfurniture and heavy draperies, too much sound will be absorbed, and the spaceis defined by too much bass. How toattain the optimal sound diffusion/absorption ratio?

1. Decor the Corners

Corners tend to be the place where bassvibration amplifies and builds up. If you want to pitch the space up a note,block the corners with lamps, vases, bean bags or whatever suits the room. Thiswill help the sound reflect better before it reaches your ear, leading to abetter perceived sound quality.

2. Hang Things on the Walls

Empty walls are the perfect surface for sound tobounce off of. A painting, a wall rug or even a TV can reduce the echo in theroom, if placed in the right spot. Not sure what is the right spot? Take thehandclap test. You just need to stand in different positions in the room andthen clap your hands as loud as you can. This will help you observe if thesound is primarily reflected, absorbed or if it's diffused just right.

In a well-balanced space, you should hear ashort and crisp reverberation after the handclap. If the space is overlyreflective, the reverberation will be loud and blurred. Lastly, if the spaceabsorbs too much sound, what you'll hear is a muffled sound.

3. Soundproof the Room

Depending on where the sound "leaks" you cansoundproof the walls, the floor or the ceiling. How can you check that? By usingthe same handclap test.

According to Mike from acoustic solutionscompany Noise stop Systems -"Soundproofinghelps sound remain in the same space where it was created, instead of passingthrough the walls and diffusing in the rooms around. Depending on your materialof choice, it can also block outside noise, which is vital for a calm andwelcoming home".

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