When you’re setting up a home theater or audio space, pay attention to room sound. Every room has a different sound, and every surface in a room either reflects, absorbs, or diffuses sound. Room shape, width, length, ceiling height, and surface materials affect sound.
An empty room sounds different than a room full of furniture, and each part of your room is a factor in your room sound. Hard surfaces reflect sound and soft surfaces absorb it. To get the most from your audio components, design an environment to optimize sound.
Your main goal will be to control sound reflections, which can throw sound out of balance and make it sound tinny and bright.
Try these tips to reduce undesirable sound reflections.
1. Lay Out Your Room with Sound in Mind
A room that’s longer than it is wide is best, and put your TV and front speakers on the short wall. That leaves more room for sound to project. Use heavy wooden doors to seal in sound and reduce outside noise.
Plan to reduce sound reflection with soft, wide furniture, large plants, etc. When choosing décor, avoid large panes of glass that may reflect sound in an unpredictable way.
2. Acoustic Panels Can Sweeten Room Sound
Some dedicated sound-absorbing material can go a long way toward solving room sound problems. Made of foam or fabric, acoustic panels can become part of your room’s décor, and some are designed to look like canvas with artwork. Follow suggestions for placement.
3. Lay Carpet to Reduce Sound Reflection
Movie theaters have carpet for a reason, and that reason is to improve sound quality. Thick wall-to-wall carpet is best. If that’s not an option, place area rugs (the heavier the better—under-padding is good too) throughout your space, especially between the speakers and your seats.
4. Cover Windows to Absorb Sound
You may have open windows and mini-blinds in other rooms, but your home theater would love some heavy drapes. Glass will reflect sound back into the room and allow outside noises in, too. Draw fabric drapes closed to control sound refection, reduce ambient noise, and reduce light reflections on your TV screen.
5. Diffuse Sound with Bookcases
Your home theater makes a happy home for your books. The wall behind your seats is a great spot, but books on side walls help control sound too. Books’ small reflective surfaces help scatter sound, and if they protrude unevenly, it works even better. Add a reading lamp and you’ve made your home theater into a cozy reading nook, too.
Connected Home can help you set up your home theater, man cave, or media room for the best immersive experience! Call Connected Home today at (910) 317-0876 to discuss professional installation and support of your home theater system.