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Room treatment help
Michael Nixon

Good morning everyone.

Does anyone know how to measure, place, and recommend room treatments? I am interested in adding some to my 11 ft wide x 23 ft long dedicated listening room. Thanks for your help.

Michael Nixon

Sugar Hill, GA


David Snyder

I had good luck with ATS Acoustics using their free online room analysis tool. You can find it here:

I ended up purchasing four corner traps and seven 2 x 4 ft x 2 in absorbers. These brought the RT60 time (more useful for larger rooms) down from over 700ms to an average of 300ms in my 15.5 x 10 ft room.

GIK Acoustics offers a similar service here:

I can promise you that you're taking an important first step towards making a dramatic improvement to the resolution and articulation of your listening space. Congrats on this initiative. Please keep us up to date on this project.

-- David

David Snyder

I should add that I used Room EQ Wizard ( for my RT60 (and other) measurements. I have a variety of calibrated mics, but probably the UMIK-1 is the most reliable.

John Morrison

I would also recommend GIK Acoustics here in Gwinnett. Be sure to mention that you are a member of the AAC. The club does have a relationship with them. I believe that they will do a free room evaluation and recommend appropriate improvements.

David Snyder

Good point, John. I forgot that GIK is in your area. Good resource. As you can see, I'm using their QRD13 diffusers on my ceiling. :)

Jeff Todder


You may have received some overly simplistic suggestions. Room treatments can often over damp a room or not be the most effective solution depending on what you are seeking to accomplish.

Other solutions including better vibration control and power conditioning may produce more dramatic results. Factors to consider include: 1. Dedicated or shared listening area; 2. Room dimensions and surface materials; 3. Equipment you use such as type and number of speakers, amplification, sources; 4. Music preferences including digital and/or analogue; 5. Desired sound objectives.

You might want to start by viewing Norm Varney’s AV RoomService channel videos on YouTube. He is a well respected acoustical engineer and covers a lot of fundamental information that I think you will find useful.

I would also caution on over relying on room measurement with REW, Direc, ARC, etc. While it is sometimes helpful to use as a diagnostic the “fix” may not produce desired results. All these measurement paradigms use either generic frequency curves, or allow you to design your own/ import ones like Harman. Most will suggest raising lower end Hz and lowering the top end. This may not produce the most musical performance if you rely on room treatments as main solution to fix. Often you run the risk of applying a fix that solves for one issue and produces another problem. Also you may find that judicious use of natural materials in your room can accomplish better results.

Hope this helps.

David Snyder

Hmmm, John and I pointed Michael in the direction of companies that can perform an analysis of his space and determine appropropriate treatment to achieve his goals. How this is overly simplistic??

If you are arguing that power conditioning and vibration control will produce more dramatic results than proper application of room treatments, you clearly have never worked with a company like GIK Acoustics to treat a room. The difference that room treatments make, in my experience (and many others), is orders of magnitude greater than tweaks like power conditioning. You are doing Michael and others a disservice if you are attempting to dissuade them from exploring well-executed room treatments.

I suggested REW to perform acoustic measurements (before and after applying room treatments), not to apply digital room correction equalization. "Room EQ Wizard" is an unfortunate name since, as you pointed out, it's much more useful as a diagnostic tool than for applying EQ. Measurement is not the same as equalization. Please don't conflate the two.

Jeff Todder

It is simplistic to offer any solution without fully understanding what the problem is. Perhaps room treatments would be best. Perhaps not. My recommendation was for Michael and anyone else to do their due diligence first. Other solutions may better meet individual needs and sound objectives.

Suggest you not be so defensive. No personal slight was intended.

David Snyder

John and I have given Michael benefit of doubt that he is a mature audiophile who understands his room and system and has determined for himself that treating his room is the next logical step for improving performance. I have no reason to believe that he has not already done his due diligence or to doubt his conclusions.

Jeff Todder

I have a different opinion on this. When a member actively seeks help and guidance it should be standard practice to understand more fully what they are seeking to accomplish. Providing a response that could be obtained in a 2 minute Google search is not sufficient. The manufacturers apps you recommend are not designed to save money or factor in other confounding variables that may be more materially important.

One of the values of the community we are part of is to share experience and help provide guidance. Throwing $ at room treatment, buying mics & software may not be be the most viable path depending on circumstances. Members should be free to seek the counsel of other members with differing levels of experience and resolving systems. We all should recognize that in audio we frequently don’t know what we don’t know.

John Morrison

Interesting discussion! Let me add a few thoughts to the mix. I think that most audiophiles consider the "room" as the most important factor in sound reproduction. I think that both David and Jeff have made valid points. In my previous home, I had a listening room with a 7 foot dropped ceiling in the basement. We ended up using a lot of both home built and commercial sound manipulation (mostly diffusion and damping) with my early system. My systems got better, but the sound treatment remained the same. After several equipment upgrades, we were listening one evening and one of my friends told me there was something wrong! He said the music was dead and lifeless. He was right! We took every bit of sound manipulation out of the room and the sound was actually better. Then we started over and only used what added to the music. I ended up with far less "stuff" than we started out with and the sound was the best it had ever been.

We learned that the relationship between the equipment and the room was the most important factor. These are large impacts. As I had upgraded equipment, the sound had gotten better and we didn't need as much treatment. But, the room still had problems that needed to be fixed. Once those problems were accounted for, changes in equipment, even if the difference was only slight, were much more noticeable. Our approach since then has been "get the equipment/room interface right first. Once the room is no longer creating difficulty in hearing minor differences, equipment (both active and passive) changes are easier to analyze and correct. Rarely will equipment upgrades require changes in the room interface.

In far fewer words, get the room interface right and the rest gets easier and more effective!

I recommend as a first step that somebody like GIK do a room analysis to determine where the basic problems lie and what can be done to alleviate them. Once these "gross" room corrections are made, then it is time to start analyzing the effect of the equipment on the quality of your sound. I am NOT concerning myself with electronic manipulation of room interface problems. While digital room correction can be effective, I prefer to use physical correction first and only move to digital correction if problems can't be corrected physically. This comes from a belief that the less "processing" associated with the signal the better the result will be. BTW, I have used calibrated mics and the programs that come in surround sound receivers to equalize my cinema room. Once the program is done, I find that I always end up using that as a starting point to obtain what I consider to be better sound quality by using manual "correction".

Michael Nixon

Hi everyone,

Thank you for your input. I certainly get it that there are always many variables involved and that every room and system is different. Being that I don't have any added room treatments other than the usual such as a sofa, bookcase with vinyl, guitars on the walls and such, I just thought that starting with some basic room treatment might be a good alternative vs. my past courses of action - upgrading equipment.

If anyone would like to see my room set-up to get a better idea of what it actually looks like, I am happy to email them as requested. My email for quick reference is:

Most of you are much more versed on the technical side of audio than I am so your feedback is especially helpful.



David Snyder

This video may be worth the time to watch:


Thanks. I subscribed to his channel.

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