You are here

Sonarworks or bass traps query

Customising, building or repairing your own gear? Need help with acoustic treatment or soundproofing? Ask away…

Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby rggillespie » Wed Mar 20, 2019 5:52 pm

Hi, I hope some of you wise heads on the forum might be able to pass on some advice with my studio issue. I was having a problem with a standing wave or mode in my studio space before it was treated. Every time I played a bass or keyboard 'B' note it was twice as loud as any other, very irritating but a problem with small rooms I understand and not uncommon. After treating the room (2.5m x 4.5m x 2.4m height) with panels and a ceiling cloud the problem cleared up and all was well. I then changed up my monitors from small equator audio D5s to pmc twotwo6 monitors and the problem has come straight back. I'm just not sure of the solution and what to do next for a remedy. Do I need to get bass absorbers or diffusers or bass traps, I cant quite figure out which type would be relevant to my issue. Or would investing in the sonarworks software be a better solution to help with the issue? I'm assuming that the extra bass energy from the new monitors has triggered the issue, but they are staying. Any advice would be much appreciated as I've read plenty of articles but I'm none the wiser!
rggillespie
New here
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2018 8:24 am

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Mar 20, 2019 6:12 pm

Have you changed your listening position or the position of the monitors now you have the PMCs? The bass problem you had would change if you moved from an anti- node position to a node as standing waves reinforce the problem frequency at one point in the room only to cancel it at another. The cure could also have been due to a change of position after installing the treatment. I assume you tested like for like with the keyboard low B and with you in the same position as before? Apologies if you have already considered this.

WRT to further treatment to improve the bass in the room more bass trapping may help (some would say you can't have too much bass trapping in a small room) and certainly won't do any harm but reducing the bass getting to the speakers may also be necessary (you could say 'tuning the speakers to the room').
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9346
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby Wonks » Wed Mar 20, 2019 6:20 pm

It sounds like a big problem. so you probably aren't going to solve it all with bass traps, but obviously some extra trapping would be useful. Sonarworks is better at dealing with constructive interference than destructive, so could be an option but some people don't like the slight colouration it can impart on the sound. Obviously the less it has to do, the better it will sound.

Are you sure you haven't changes your monitoring position now you've got the PMCs? Is there a possible monitoring position you could move to where you aren't hearing the bass boost?

Have you tried adjusting the PMC's user EQ options, especially the HPF. I know there;'s a temptation to want to leave it all flat, but if the speakers are near a wall, then you do need to roll off some bass end. Even if not, some bass roll-off may still be appropriate.
User avatar
Wonks
Jedi Poster
Posts: 8612
Joined: Thu May 29, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Reading, UK
Correcting mistakes on the internet since 1853

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby rggillespie » Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:23 pm

Thanks for these replies it's just what I hoped for, I'll take onboard these suggestions. Firstly I'll move the new monitors about and test with a low b note to see if that makes a difference. I just placed the new monitors exactly where the old ones where, but now I'll experiment with placement. Hopefully that may work. I left the speakers flat thinking that was the ideal but maybe I should look at taking off some bass. It's hard to know where to stop with that, its sounds balanced to me as it is now. Maybe I'll leave sonar works as an option if all else fails. If the bass traps where going to help I'd be looking at them and not bass diffusers or absorbers? Three names I'm not sure if they are all the same thing! Thanks again for your help
rggillespie
New here
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2018 8:24 am

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:38 pm

AFAIK Bass traps and bass absorbers do the same job (and are different names for the same thing?). Diffusers would need to be unfeasible large to have a significant effect on bass in a small room.
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9346
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby magicmoo » Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:44 pm

For a small room, I'd say just do both. I've got a 2.50x2.50x4 meters room with a bunch of massive DIY bass traps everywhere I could and Sonarworks really works wonders. The bass response is especially clean considering the fact that my monitors go down to 30Hz and some strong modes have been really well dealt with thanks to Reference 4.

Frankly, I don't think I could ever get an overall response this satisfying without it and I actually never thought this was possible for this room. It was a total game changer. Plus, you get a decent calibrated mic which you can use with software like RoomEQWizard in order to understand what you're actually doing when moving your speakers around and adding treatments.
magicmoo
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:27 pm

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby Wonks » Wed Mar 20, 2019 8:03 pm

Otherwise you try one of those active bass cancellers, but they aren't particularly cheap (and I don't see the market swamped by them). But they might be the only solution in a relatively small room. Something like this: https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/psi-audio-avaa-c20.

Sonarworks is cheaper though! But EQ can only really cure bass humps, not dips. Because dips are caused by reflective cancellations, making the affected note louder, only results in more cancellation, with possibly a very slight increase in bass at that point. You'd need a huge increase in bass level (totally messing up the monitor amp power for everything else) to even stand a chance of trying to power your way into a flat response.
User avatar
Wonks
Jedi Poster
Posts: 8612
Joined: Thu May 29, 2003 12:00 am
Location: Reading, UK
Correcting mistakes on the internet since 1853

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby zenguitar » Thu Mar 21, 2019 1:11 am

The Equators are decent speakers for the money, but looking at Bob Thomas's review in the December 2012 issue of Sound On Sound (https://www.soundonsound.com/reviews/equator-audio-d5) he does comment that they don't have great bass extension. Your PMCs should have far better bass extension, so it could well be that they are driving your room modes far harder than the Equators and exposing the limits of your existing sound treatment.

Might be worth trying Wonks' suggestion and trimming the bass response of the PMCs. You might be able to get a workable solution just with that. And if it does work, it would suggest that it is worth looking into improving your bass trapping in the medium term.

Andy :beamup:
User avatar
zenguitar
Moderator
Posts: 9122
Joined: Thu Dec 05, 2002 1:00 am
Location: Devon
When you see a fork in the road, take it.
Yogi Berra

Re: Sonarworks or bass traps query

Postby rggillespie » Thu Mar 21, 2019 6:51 am

I think I've got some things to go on with now, your replies have helped me see the situation more clearly. I will do some moving of the speakers positions and testing, bass trapping, changing the speaker settings and then sonar works. Hopefully trying those options will get me there and be the magic bullet. I can't really record anything properly until the bass issue is sorted so that's what I'll be doing this weekend. Thanks again for the pointers!
rggillespie
New here
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2018 8:24 am


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users