Room Too Dead

Hello All,

I am looking for advice and ideas on how to condition my Home Theater room.  I built the theater in my unfinished basement.  The foundation walls are covered in insulation and vapor barrier.  Instead of construction walls to cover them, I chose a "pipe and drape" to cover the walls.  I believe that the room is too dead.  It seems to affect overall soundstage in the midrange range.  Does anybody have experience with this problem and ideas to add a little "excitement" to the room?  Thank you all.


I think you may have a complicated issue. It’s not just too dead, it’s got a mid-range suckout. I have heard this in rooms with too many Tube Traps.  It happens when the absorbers perform too well in some bands but not as well in others.

Your problem may be that you aren’t taking out enough of the high end, so the room sounds too bright, and lacking in midrange only by comparison.

You may actually need to add better absorbers in the high end.

Diffusors are a good idea, generally speaking. placed behind and directly tot he sides of speakers they can really enhance imaging. One thing you can do is to try to create a quasi diffused pattern by removing some of the curtains you are using, at random intervals, with more removed towards the back than the front.

If you have any sort of tone control you can test this by reducing the treble to see if you find hte tonal balance more to your liking.

Measurements are good, but IMHO really hard to interpret for this type of issue.

Hello All,

I am overwhelmed with the amazing responses to my question.  There is a lot of knowledge here.  I tried to upload pictures into the Virtual System last night and encountered a problem with Audiogon.  I will attempt again tonight.  All of these responses are valid and I hope to begin playing tonight...

Not sure what you have up in the room so this may or may not help.  Possibly a quick and inexpensive fix:  Change the drapes.  Natural fibers (cotton, wool etc) will absorb sound but synthetic fibers (rayon etc) will reflect sound.

Change the drapes.  Natural fibers (cotton, wool etc) will absorb sound but synthetic fibers (rayon etc) will reflect sound.

@rick_n That’s a very good thought and gave me an idea — the OP could replace the drapes with plastic shower curtains and even choose a fun theme like underwater with cute little fishies, octopi, seahorsies, etc.  all around.  How fun would that be?  Seriously though, avoiding fabrics that absorb sound seems like, uh, sound advice.

Or, before going crazy.

If it was me before doing anything else, why not just buy a graphic equalizer and make adjustments to increase or decrease the offending eq bands.

I am a fan of the reasonably priced Schiit Lokius which I use in my system. Sometimes I just want to add a touch of bass, or a hint more treble. Other times just put it on bypass.