the folks at avalon acoustics recommend using marble about 1" thick or less & cut 4" wider and deeper than the speaker's footprint (this for the opus, which has an active down-firing woofer and bottom port). they also advise the use of supplied spikes for decoupling. this notion apparently came from an avolon owner who lives in a nyc loft that has wooden floors; he cut out the wood beneath his speakers and replaced it with marble. now that's a true audiophile!
I found the perfect place for my speaker and cut a hole out directly beneath them. Then I had a contractor come out and dig a hole under my house deep enough to get beneath the frost line so when the ground froze the concrete post beneath the speakers wouldn't move up and move the tweeter height. The wife sued for divorce and got the house and out of spite got the judge to award the the speakers because they covered up the concrete columns. Aint life a bitch..sookjustkiddingfolkshehe
I will not venture to say these work better or worse than a marble slab, but, you can get various kinds of floor protectors. These are available in a myriad of materials from lots of dealers. I use Tip-toes. The good news on these is that you can easily move the speakers to adjust toe-in, etc.
I'd recommend trying coins first. It should cost somewhere between $.06 and $2.00, depending on the coin and the amount of spikes. Although, I hear that old Spanish doubloons are eerily transparent and sublimely musical. :-)
Stones under speakers on a wood floor can improve the sound in many ways, but always bring some artifacts of the sound of the stone along to the party too. Therefore you need to choose the stone carefully. Granite is not good. Impure marble, soap stone and sand stone are all better. Even so you will still need to make sure the stone does not wobble on the floor - but upturned tip-toes work OK and the spike connects with the stone not the floor.
My system is also on a wood floor. I use 3/4x15x24 inchs slab of Granite under each spiked speaker. I work in construction and get it free. When a builder puts in granite counter tops in a kitchen the sink and built in range top are cut out and left as scrap! Check a few sites, talk to a few supers. For a six pack of beer and ten bucks the installers will trim and size the material while you wait.
I indeed have my Merlin VSM-Millennium over spikes over a granite slab (cut from a piece of my kitchen countertop where the sink goes) over wooden floor. I put four plastic "stickum" feet under each slab to isolate the slab from the floor. Works well in my opinion. I had expected the sound to be edgy (and the Merlin can sound like that in some setup) but it is not so. Very clean, detailed sound yet not fatiguing. By the way, since the kitchen counter has a shiny side, I put the rough side up to the spikes provide good coupling with the slab.
Each of my Acoustats sits on four Prozac tablets because someone told me these speakers are bi-polar. ;>)
You're not having any issues with your set-up, so there's really no problem, but I stumbled across a discussion at audioasylum.com where Bobby from Merlin recommended NOT decoupling Merlin speakers from the floor (which you're doing by placing rubber under the granite). He said that the Merlins are designed to couple to the floor. Like I said, it doesn't sound like an issue in your case, but you can always ask him for info if you're curious (and in the discussion I mention, someone had their VSMs on plywood, over carpetting...not really the same situation).
If you only desire to protect the flooring, I would recommend Audio Points Coupling Discs – made of solid brass with a smooth floor service. Stone even polished versions in contact with wood can scratch (more like scuff) finished flooring as well.
If you are searching to increase the sound quality from your loudspeaker, possibly double your enjoyment of listening and really hear your speaker investment for the first time, I would recommend Audio Points replacing the spikes.
As quoted by Ernie Fisher – Editor The Inner Ear Report – Volume 13 #2, 2001 –
“Folks with spiked floorstanding loudspeakers, regardless of make, should replace the spikes with Audio Points, for the audible benefits here are considerable and quite appreciable”.
The Audio Point is unlike any other cone or spike type product in the Industry. Have a look see at www.audiopoints.com.
To further your understanding of dynamics associated with coupling, de-coupling, absorption, isolation and The Science of Resonance Energy Transfer (a new way of dealing with detrimental resonance) telephone them.
Good luck with your floor and as always - Good Listening.
firstname.lastname@example.org: please disclose your association with audio points and sistrum racks. you post as if you're a civilian. i suspect you are not.
Hi Cornfedboy, On another thread (measuring vibration in equipment)Rcm1960 says he is a manfacturer who produces products that pertain to vibration control. He seemed open and honest but he would rather remain anonymous.
brulee: thanks, i read the post to which you referred. sorry, but i find it objectionable for an "anonymous" manufacturer to post what appear to be testimonials from end users, such as the one on this thread. these posts are, in fact, free "commercials" for the product being touted. they don't belong on this site unless they are clearly described as advertisements. just my opinion, FWIW.
Really didn’t want to remain in hiding as I awaited the Audiogon management’s approval to answer to some threads with no company push to sell our merchandise. I simply wanted to hear the rules governing the site (please note the reply under Measuring Vibration in Equipment – i/e perfectimage – 03/01/01). I now have the confidence to pursue.
I will however continue to expand on our company's latest discoveries and technology with regards to resonance and the control thereof. In addition we will also back up our technology and products with technical and/or engineering documentation. Some exceptions exist with our Patent pending processes and products as they can not yet be exposed. We are one company who refuses to be categorized as black magic, snake oil, etc…
We are currently increasing our advertising budget to become a posted client on this site so we are not to offend anyone who is a member.
One reason for our response to this site is some of our customers posted information and were immediately challenged as to the validity of the products they own as well as their technical abilities to inform people of something very new to the Specialty Audio Industry.
Some were somewhat offended as they were placed on an immediate defense status from a few senior audiophiles who should remember that not all people writing to this site are veterans of this hobby.
My message to the elite is simply call us at the factory and we will be happy to answer ‘all’ of your questions. This Industry needs the support of ‘all’ who enter in to it. I also have a sense of humor as I have reviewed some of your responses. A few responses have incredible delivery tactics.
The feedback we received from our customers opened the door for our participation as we only wish to provide some outlook and a very different perspective to the age old theories, proven facts (as there is always room for improvement) and applications of audio technology.
I am not the designer whose inventions we now bring to this market although I wish I had his talents. Our Senior Executive Designer is Mr. Brent Riehl. We are people who love music, sound and video. Our company membership includes engineers from all categories, mostly within the mechanical realm.
One of our products, Audio Points is now ‘the old man on the block’ as we have begun their thirteenth year of sales with well over a quarter of a million of them working in the field.
Our company is Star Sound Technologies, LLC. I am the CEO for the company and love to spend as much time with the public with regards to increasing the enjoyment of audio as possible.
Please feel free to telephone me (toll free 1-877-668-4332 or in Canada 1-877-542-7277) as my time is limited along with my ability to write about all the information we could share. We will be happy to forward any of our product information to you for your understanding.
We in turn wish to thank Audiogon and their membership for the ability to link us to people who have the same goals and interests as ourselves.
Now I only have one question, who are you? With a handle like cornfedboy, I vision you are from the Central portion of the US. Most of our products are manufactured in Lincoln, Nebraska – the Corn Husker’s State.
As always – cornfedboy – Good Listening
Very truly yours,
Robert C. Maicks
Well: This is after the fact as I was blocked out of posting all morning but I will post it anyway.
I agree with Kelly on this one. I enjoy the feedback from dealers and manufacturers in the threads on many subjects (including their own wares) as it's like getting free professional advice without the pressure to purchase. I do however feel that their position in the industry should be noted as is done by my favorite pro posters (although this does not have to be done with every single post as many are on general topics). There is another outcome of candid posts in that if caught in the act (in regard to this matter), the products tend to take on a negative impression in my mind (though I have never auditioned them). Kind of the reverse of what the shill was intended to achieve. I do not know who RCM1960 is and this post is not directed at them (if they do not fill the bill) but is just my take on this type of behavior, when it does take place.
robert: this one's for you.
a sargent, returning from a scouting party, gallops breathlessly into general custer's encampment at little big horn. he announces,"general, i've got some good news ands some bad news." the general replies,"well, i guess you'd better give me the bad news first." says the sargent, "we're surrounded by 15,000 warriors of the siuox nation and we're all about to meet our maker." incredulous, general custer asks, "good lord man if that's the bad news, what's the good news?" says the sargent, "well, at least we won't have to ride back home through nebraska."
no i'm not from the cornhusker state (NB: one word, no apostrophe; wouldn't write can nuck's, eh). i still count iowa as my home, tho i've lived in colorado since 1975. i'll withold further judgment on your posts until you explain what the hell you're makin' & sellin' besides those metal pointy things and racks with clever clefs. -kelly
All my floors our hard tile, so i built my own. 3 sheets of sheet rock 1 sheet of 1/4 inch plywood 3 sheets of sheet rock. Then to spark it up a bit i framed it in oak and stained them. Works for me.
If your flooring is wood and you have large speakers some sort of treatment is in order. I did some impulse measurements on my SC-V's (305 lbs) and on my old IMF Monitor IV's (90 lbs)in my living room. Under the location of the speakers I had cross braced the floor and put four floor jacks on oak blocks under the location of each speaker from the floor bracing to the concrete in the crawl space. My floor was built to hold a grand piano and the joists are full 2x10's on 12" centers with plank underflooring and oak flooring. This is certainly stiffer than most recently built houses. However, the measured impulse response clearly changed for the better as we adjusted the floor jacks. My bet is that any decent sized speakers on wood floors need some sort of bracing or decoupling. I'm going to take redkiwi's suggestion and get some soapstone and see if I can measure any additional improvements
There might be a way to go ahead and use spikes or granite or prozac tablets (GOOD ONE, elgordo, but wouldn't that be lithium?) on your wood floors without marring them. Most woodworking adhesives will not bond to a finish. It's S.O.P. in the trade to put a little finish on exposed parts near glue lines prior to assembly to avoid glue contamination of the raw wood and uneven absorption of the finish after assembly. The glue is simply shaved or struck off with a scraper. PVA glues like Elmer's white or yellow or perhaps better, polyurethane glues like Gorilla could be puddled over carefully marked area where the points would contact the floor. The polyurethane or varnish finish would keep the glue from making a permanent bond even after years and any marring could be burnished out with the BACK of a piece of sandpaper. The caveat would be whether the weighted point of the spikes or cones would eventually work through the glue. Alternatively, for existing damage, Mohawk Industries makes colored shellac sticks which are melted into a finish for spot repairs, again using the back of the paper to blend. I buy mine from a distributor but they have a website or the sticks are available to the public from Garrett Wade in N.Y., also on the web. Perhaps someone with the time and need would experiment with Elmer's, a finished board, some spikes and weights.
Kitch29: As the patriot said at Woodstock - "Give me Librium or give me Meth".
Hello again Cornfedboy,
What in the world are we selling besides those pointy things? Or what have we actually discovered about music and dynamics within the recording and musical playback processes?
First off I believe it best to explain what our company does and how we have positioned ourselves in the Specialty Audio Industry.
We are primarily a research and development company specializing in resonance control for both professional and consumer audio/video products. In addition we are capable of reducing noise and expanding fuel efficiency on products used in various commercial machinery.
We have ‘on call’ three mechanical engineers (all graduates of Lehigh University, PA – Materials Science, CAD Specialist and Computer Design); a DEE from MIT, a computer science engineer from China, a metallurgist and lead designer (with quite a gift) along with associated support personnel.
My personal background in music was spent within the recording sciences and sound reinforcement. The earlier part of my life was spent as a sound engineer working through endless studio recording sessions with twelve years of active touring amongst a host of internationally known musicians.
That said, we feel we have the ability and experience to open new avenues for the audiophile/videophile to discover exactly how much more quality they have already built into their systems design and equipment through controlling multiple types of detrimental resonance.
The primary focus of our research, within the audio/video field, has produced a newfound method of dealing with resonance (electrical, mechanical and the ‘huge’ air-borne variety), removing it and at the same time retaining all the dynamics related to the recording and playback processes.
For years we were always placing foam on walls, applying lead, sand, rubber, etc. (absorption materials) on equipment and thinking we were attaining a better sound quality.
We were never fans of the isolation theories, as we have never come up with a formula that had the ability to isolate equipment from air-borne resonance.
I do not have the time to type a book as we are leaving that up to the two PHD’s (Chaotic Vibration) and Universities we recently began working with. Our team has produced a formula that removes resonance from acoustical and electrical equipment by sending the energy via high-speed calculated conductive pathways to earth’s ground retaining the dynamics otherwise destroyed via the absorption methods.
The results of this process bring to the audiophile a ‘key’ ingredient that no wire; component upgrade or loudspeaker can produce. Due to the Patent process we are involved with, I can not disclose all, but you can contact me 1-877-668-4332 (toll free). I will provide as much information as I am legally permitted.
Better yet, you can always try the product. We have always returned the investment (in full) should a client not be totally satisfied with our products.
My experience in recording music and voice has made me realize one “very important characteristic” with regards to human hearing and that is no one hears alike. In fact the margin of distance between what you think one hears and what actually exists produces a greater - g a p – than the distance between the furrows in the corn field.
At times I was paid more for engineering a recording for what I thought was the worst material I ever laid down, but the producer loved it. He paid the bill so who was I to argue. Believe me there is a wider difference in the way each individual hears sounds and listens than one can imagine.
This is why this Specialty Audio Industry continues to exist, not manufacturer’s products or scientific discoveries and techniques just noting differences.
If you really think we are phonies, as I am led to believe from your posts, why not pick up the phone and bring us your questions instead of jumping on the bandwagon of others.
If I can not answer ‘all’ of your questions we have the personnel who will. If you wish not to reply, that is OK too.
I will answer all questions asked of our company and me. All I ask in return is the patience to await my reply. Our Audio Points™ product recently passed the quarter million mark and we are involved with more people each and every day. I also have to answer to our dealers and existing clients as well.
Very truly yours,
Robert C. Maicks
CEO Star Sound Technologies, LLC
Robert C. Maicks: as ceo of star sound technologies, llc, you must get to pick the company's theme song, eh? i'd suggest you listen to track 4 of mark knopfler's latest cd, "sailing to philadelphia." just so you don't hafta look it up your busy little self or, shudder, call in any chits from all your fabulously sucessful years in the record biz, the name of the cut is "baloney again." cheers! thecornfedboynotofnebraskaoranyotherstateaboutwhichbrucehaseverwritten
robert, i tink cornfedboy's objections stemmed not so much from the issue of whether or not y'all are fonies, but from the fact that, until yer *cover* was blown on on this thread, y'all were tryin' to come across as non-professional, disinterested end-users, who yust really like the product.
yust my opinion, doug s.
CornFB back to your original response I noticed several speakers in photos at CES using 12x12 polished marble tiles
under spiked speakers, sometimes turned diagonally for wide speakers. I recently bought some for $2 each at local builder square for use with Aurios MIBs under components,
but may now experiment with speakers as you state with Avalons set-up
This is a very serious thread. ALL I WANTED TO KNOW WAS -
HAS ANYONE HAD ANY EXPERIENCE WITH GRANITE UNDER THEIR SPEAKERS? Most everyone has been quick to point out the problems, but has anyone had any real experience with this?
Megasm you stated you have polished marble -how does it sound? Is there any improvement? Are the floors intact?
Cornfedboy lighten up! We all have an agenda.
I've been experimenting with 1 1/4" polished granite slabs under my Genesis V speakers on a rug over a suspended wood floor. I have tried using DH cones and Pulsar points with and without the granite. Right now I'm back to just the granite slabs (24"x24") and think this sounds the best, with tightened bass response and improved detail and image focus (maybe w/ the cones the speakers are raised to high???). Haven't noticed any 'ringing' that some have commented on. If anything, it's smoother. Hope this helps.
Fleone. I should have stated in my post, that the opinions I expressed were directly related to the experience I have had using each of the materials I listed. But I hoped that would go without saying. Yes, I have tried Granite under speakers and it rung in a way that was more annoying and intrusive than any of the other materials I referred to. Cornfedboy - don't lighten up! This site has been polluted by Starsound, and the clean-up needs to be swift as a warning to others. If Corfedboy and I are alone in this then I would be surprised. This site is (for me) about gaining and giving information through individuals sharing their opinions. Each opinion has to be taken with a grain of salt, but weight of opinion, and the opinions of those that have built up some credibility, amounts to very valuable information. The credibility of the opinions expressed on this site is undermined if we tolerate the pollution Starsound has attempted. I will not lighten up on this point, because without it, Audiogon is merely an advertising channel.
PLease refer to my post on AR concerning your query. www.audioreview.com/message/dcforumid6/6975.html
Hey Elgordo, if they are bipolar, you must use lithium tablets, defenitely not prozak. Lithium is cheaper than prozak, but you must be careful not to overdose. If you do, the mids will sag. So you have to use a sound pressure meter on them every fortnight or so, to find out if they still do allright.....pleasure, won't charge you for the advice.