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DSP or acoustic treatment, which worth more the money?

Miguelón

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Hi everybody!

I recently get a pair of Genelec 8030 cpm, stand placed on stand floors.

Very happy with the results, after a little bit tricky dip switches adjustments. By measurements we have a couple of spikes to correct, mostly on low range and one over 1 kHz (possible reflection on windows and marble table).

I can live with it, but in the future I want to improve a little bit the room response, so I ask myself if it worths some bass traps and acoustic panels, heavy curtains or if is better DSP correction.

Past experience of EQ on headphones and speakers give me the impression of less musicality than leaving as intact as possible the digital path and going for purely analogue filters, or just room materials and minimal filtering but perhaps is my imagination

Suggestions on some reasonable priced material for acoustic treatment are welcome, thanks a lot!
 
Past experience of EQ on headphones and speakers give me the impression of less musicality than leaving as intact as possible the digital path and going for purely analogue filters, or just room materials and minimal filtering but perhaps is my imagination
It's your imagination.
 
I'd say start with in-room frequency response and decay measurements to assess the situation.

Applied correctly, room correction will increase fidelity/"musicality" by removing distortion caused by an imperfect playback system.
 
Both: you could add a couple of broadband absorber panels at aesthetically acceptable locations and then do room correction. Note that room correction is mostly effective at the lowest frequencies which is where absorber panels or bass traps do not work unless those are (at least) 1 meter thick, or placed that distance from the wall to create an air gap. I find this tool very helpful for absorber panels: http://www.acousticmodelling.com/porous.php
 
Both: you could add a couple of broadband absorber panels at aesthetically acceptable locations and then do room correction. Note that room correction is mostly effective at the lowest frequencies which is where absorber panels or bass traps do not work unless those are (at least) 1 meter thick, or placed that distance from the wall to create an air gap. I find this tool very helpful for absorber panels: http://www.acousticmodelling.com/porous.php
Thanks, I see: 1 m to 0,4 absorption at 50 Hz, my little living room will virtually disappear :)

Very useful, I will study ways to software room correction, as most of resonances occurs around this point
 
DSP or acoustic treatment, which is worth more money?
DSP can be free if your source is a computer, or if it's already built into your AVR. For most of the frequency band you just use your ears and trial-and-error to get a sound you like, but lower frequency room effects usually should be measured to more-precisely identify the problem frequencies.

So you may want a measurement mic (about $100). "Diagnosis before treatment".

I will study ways to software room correction, as most of resonances occurs around this point.
See REW.

RealTraps also has lots of information about measurement & room treatment. ...Note that RealTraps philosophy/preference is for a "dead studio sound" with no reflections (and you sell you stuff). Not everybody wants a dead listening room, but even if that's not your goal they have lost of useful information.
 
I’d say it depends on how big/reflective the room is and how you’ve set up the speakers.

They seem like similar things but they aren’t really. Cleaning incorrect earliest reflections is quite drastic imo but you might not have any. EQing wouldn’t work as it’s not a frequency issue, although it affects frequency response.

The other thread where I receive a schooling in what room EQ is about might be of interest to you.
 
the impression of less musicality than leaving as intact as possible the digital path and going for purely analogue filters, or just room materials and minimal filtering but perhaps is my imagination
Imagination indeed.

Dont think about it as DSP -vs- Treatment.
IMO both are essential and have a place in the overall order-of-operations towards achieving the desired experience in your space.

Without more info about your room it is difficult to give specific info on treatments. I mean are we talking about a little 10x10 office/studio, or a 30x30 living room?
One persons "untreated room" could effectively be more treated than a "treated room" depending on furniture & flooring alone.
Also, seating and speaker placement drive the need for specific treatments.
I suggest posting more info and a picture of the space from a couple diff angles.

Also, saying a "a couple spikes on the low range" is pretty vague. Consider posting an REW Frequency sweep for us to review.

Nice speakers BTW. What led you to go with those?
 
Imagination indeed.

Dont think about it as DSP -vs- Treatment.
IMO both are essential and have a place in the overall order-of-operations towards achieving the desired experience in your space.

Without more info about your room it is difficult to give specific info on treatments. I mean are we talking about a little 10x10 office/studio, or a 30x30 living room?
One persons "untreated room" could effectively be more treated than a "treated room" depending on furniture & flooring alone.
Also, seating and speaker placement drive the need for specific treatments.
I suggest posting more info and a picture of the space from a couple diff angles.

Also, saying a "a couple spikes on the low range" is pretty vague. Consider posting an REW Frequency sweep for us to review.

Nice speakers BTW. What led you to go with those?
My room is about 4 x 3 meters, speakers on the long side and walls aprox. 1 meter aside speakers (monitors separation is 2 meters and placed at the center). One of the speakers is over a marble table, if I want to keep them centered but produces reflexions.
Other alternative is both placed on stand floors at the right of the table so less horizontal reflections but they will be closer than the right wall and less separation.

I will soon by a mic, the only measurement was made by a friend who helped me fast to dip switches corrections, and have no photos. I remembered not very high protrusions on the 50-100 Hz range, at my ears it sound quite well. Eventually with some bass guitar notes it “hummms” a little bit.

I came to the Genelecs by searching flat response monitors, I listen to classical and jazz most of time and have a digital piano: usually flat response translates better purely acoustic music. After trying Neumann’s and Genelecs for 5 and 4 inches I went to the 8030cpm by personal preference after listening.

Amir reviews helped a lot but for any reason I don’t like Neumann’s, nothing against objectively.
 
In a room that size it is very important to keep everything symmetrical.
Id figure out how to locate that marble table anywhere along the central(front-to-rear) axis of the room, consider putting a thick blanket/towel over it when listening to music to minimize unwanted reflections.

How far is your listening position from the rear wall?
Def get the mic. Simply measuring at the rear wall then in increments towards the center of the room you will see just how significant the lower frequency response will change then can determine if EQ will be of benefit.
 
In a room that size it is very important to keep everything symmetrical.
Id figure out how to locate that marble table anywhere along the central(front-to-rear) axis of the room, consider putting a thick blanket/towel over it when listening to music to minimize unwanted reflections.

How far is your listening position from the rear wall?
Def get the mic. Simply measuring at the rear wall then in increments towards the center of the room you will see just how significant the lower frequency response will change then can determine if EQ will be of benefit.
Thanks for your advices, in fact we have now the ok from the owner of our apartment (is located) to leave a false wall that create a division in out living room so it will convert on 4 meters (speakers wall) by 5 meters so possibly sound improve a little bit.

The table is constructed like a bar one’s (don’t know the name, here in Spain we call this an “american kitchen” so can’t be moved, maybe covered perhaps.

Possibly curtains will improve also reflexion from the windows and glass door behind speakers and protect them from sunlight (we have a really light ones that want to change) and a carpet can also helps with our wood-made floor.

After we will made measurements to see results, I’m searching to an affordable calibration mic.

Do we need a dedicated DSP? We listen to some discs and recordings that can be EQ on the computer, but most of time Qobuz from the tablet.

We probably get the WiiM Ultra in several months, can this type of onboard EQs be enough to room corrections?

Thanks again!
 
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