Just confused


Hi I am fairly new to using high quality audio equipment.  I have assembled all of the gear I want for listening/enjoying the music.  Of course it’s only a matter of time before you ask yourself “What if?”.  I understand that room acoustics matter so I am off trying to implement acoustic panels - some good relatively consistent advice here.  What I struggle with is the subject of vibration control/isolation ... the advice from the community is not very consistent.  The floor in my listening room is slab cement with ceramic tiles on top.  I have Avant-garde Uno speakers (with spikes since that is they way they came), REL subs (rubber feet) and effectively an unbranded equipment rack (with spikes).  Are spikes what I should remain with for this kind of surface?  Does it make more sense to decouple the speakers and rack from the floor with some kind of isolation device?  Should I be replacing the current metal spikes with “cones” (or other device).  Should I use the same device for speaker and rack?  I just want to avoid shelling out a bundle of money for something that may turn out being a negative.  Thanks in advance for your patience with my naive questions.
chilli42
I'd remove the spikes and install rubber cones in their place! That's all I'd do! 
On a side note, I hope you are using at least one dedicated AC outlet with some type of an upgraded duplex outlet.
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I'm a decouple guy, no matter what. Though that concrete floor is
a good place to help with vibration control. If your a LP guy, Vibration 
control yourself, into oblivion, great idea. I use to be very aware of Vinyl issues.  To many silver disk, streaming, and servers anymore. I have a slough of TT gear here though.. Still the best..

What if there was no vibration? You know, windows, walls, floors, all the boundaries. The more bass you make, the more you have to control. Decouple, and use an Ampa style listening room, open the back up. LOSE the noise, don't make it, or control it with treatment..

What if there was no vibration? It sure would fix a lot of problems, ay?

Regards


Is there a way you can try some floor covering (rug, blankets, etc.) to check how and if the overall sound changes? It may be dependent on some details of your situation, but impact may be more pronounced than coupling/uncoupling/spikes/rubber. Which is not to say you could not play with all possible combinations, of course.

Try and plug EVERY equipment that you have into the SAME power outlet. This will minimize ground loops (which cause humming, buzzing sounds) which will sometimes be EXTREMELY annoying & difficult to get rid of. Keep the power cables as short as possible to help this.  The idea is that ALL the earth connections on ALL your devices be at EXACTLY the same potential.  Even a skew of half a  milivolt will cause humming and buzzing sounds.

Ground loops are not usually a big problem unless you have turntables & associated phono preamplifiers (or any device with very low input signal levels), but it is always good practice.

If the total current requirement of all your devices exceed the capacity of your outlet (which is extremely unlikely unless you have 1000+ watt amplifiers), you can upgrade it to a 20 amp circuit later.

I would add a nice rug and just enjoy the music. As you get much more accustomed to the sound and your hearing becomes more astute, you will then to be able to find flaws or not in your system. I wouldn’t blindly throw money at cones, spikes, better cabling and cleaner AC, etc. until you have lived with the system for a while. I would say a good six months unless something really stands out as very annoying. A rug will definitely help, otherwise the room could be too lively and bright.

Most of us here have our own ideas so you will get probably 20-30 different answers or more. The main thing is to have fun and enjoy the music
Try a large enough rug to place under the speakers and far enough in front of them to address first reflections from the floor.

If a smaller rug is the only option...place this in front of the speakers to address first reflections from the floor. Buy some brass footers for your speaker spikes. These are little saucers with an indentation in the center to cradle the spike. I cut out some leather circles to place under the brass footers to prevent the odd buzz from an uneven wood floor.

The most important thing is just to try stuff on your own. Read a couple of good books on acoustics/speakers etc.. This helped me quite a bit.



I’ve just been thru this. Concrete slab floor is great for vibration control. Rubber feet sounded much better than spikes. Might be because it’s hard to get 4 spikes perfectly balanced on concrete with zero movement. They always rock a bit. So, I put the factory feet in instead of the spikes. Yes.  I tried various isolation feet. No. I even tried springs because some people here think that they are the ultimate isolation medium- capable of isolation below 5 hz I was told.  No.  Loss of bass definition.  For acoustic control purposes I decided to put down carpet and pad along with other room treatments. Yes. Huge improvement.  But, I felt the bass definition could improve. Back to spikes thru the carpet and pad. Yes! I’m very happy.  And they don’t rock at all. I can’t explain that part. Carpet shouldn’t make a difference when I know the spikes go all the way thru. That has been my experience in my room. I’m not saying I think my way is what you should do. I think every room and system is unique. I had fun trying things and seeing what worked. I hope you do too. If I spend too much more time isolated in my house I might go crazy and try bolting the speakers to the floor.  🙃
I wouldn’t spike anything to concrete/tile. I use Herbie’s Audio Lab sliders under my speakers on ceramic tile they work great and you can tweak your speaker position much more easily. 
vinylfan62
I even tried springs because some people here think that they are the ultimate isolation medium- capable of isolation below 5 hz I was told. No. Loss of bass definition

>>>I actually don’t believe you. Springs would only work directly under relatively lightweight speakers due to center of gravity issue. And you would have had to match the spring rates to the load which I doubt you did. For speakers you don’t need to get down below 5 Hz because the speakers don’t produce any frequencies below 20 Hz. The objectives of speaker isolation are different than for components - for speakers you’re preventing mechanical feedback. If you tried to achieve a Fr of 3 Hz for speakers the springs would have to be so “floppy“ the speakers would fall over. And if the springs are too stiff they won’t isolate effectively. I suggest we write this off as operator error.
Fortunately I experienced it first hand, and therefore there was no scepticism in my way to overcome.

Opinions vary, however I will attest to correct spring rates for the mass they are isolating absolutely do work in effectively cleaning up unwanted distortion and vibration to and from each loudspeakers, and into equipment.

If someone interested here cannot source well designed isolation springs, [ I thought someone here on Agon was selling some cryoed springs? ].
Otherwise I have a source, you will need to supply the weight of the device/s to get the appropriate spring rates etc. They are inexpensive.

Compression springs isolate on both vertical and horizontal directions simultaneously.
Actually, as a designer of iso systems, I can say without fear of contradiction that compression springs actually do not provide any isolation in the horizontal plane, which defines an infinite number of directions. Depending on how one sets up the system, however, springs can provide isolation in 2 of the 3 rotational directions. Value added! 🤗

The reason compression springs are excellent at isolating moderate to heavy components is because they are very stiff in the horizontal directions, providing much needed lateral support.

Machina Dynamica
Advanced Audio Conceits
Baby Cryo Isolators 🤗
Imagine no vibrations
I wonder if you can 

Good luck with all that. 

Am I picking up bad vibrations? 😳
No, just a bridge too far. Make sure it's flat and stable and experiment to your heart's content. But there will always be a solar flare and that inconvenient superstring theory. 
Maybe you didn’t get my memo. Stability is the enemy of isolation. Isolation effectiveness occurs with the great ease of motion, not with the inability to move. Yes, I know what you’re thinking, “But aren’t audio components and speakers like musical instruments?”
Room acoustics is pretty well established and accesible, making going from bad to at least decent not all too difficult. Vibration management, on the other hand is poorly described in audio both by manufacturers and hobbyists. I give credit to GK and some others for actually explaining the physics normally, though.

If I were you, looking for direction, I would seek advice from Jim Smith, who is a setup professional and former Avantgarde expert and importer.

http://getbettersound.com/index.php
Darn, all I want to do is play in my sandbox with my horny toads and not worry about Zoonoses. 
More power and isolation to all so inclined. 
I have some mag Lev feet on the way for my subwoofers. Everything should be here Monday. Are you able to post pictures on this forum? Anyways I think isolation is the only way. There’s a company from England that does it with magnets

https://solidairaudio.com

Google a guy named Max Townsend. He’s got some really good videos on YouTube about how his products work and the benefits of isolating your speakers from the rest of your home
geoffkait21,851 posts05-16-2020 7:19amActually, as a designer of iso systems, I can say without fear of contradiction that compression springs actually do not provide any isolation in the horizontal plane, which defines an infinite number of directions. Depending on how one sets up the system, however, springs can provide isolation in 2 of the 3 rotational directions. Value added! 🤗

The reason compression springs are excellent at isolating moderate to heavy components is because they are very stiff in the horizontal directions, providing much needed lateral support.

Add air suspension, inside the coil and  underneath via a cantilever.
The vertical becomes very stable and very isolated, With a single bag for all 4 corners.  It can be adjusted with a simple nitrogen charge.  Close to zero, harmonics, then.  The bag could be centered under the cabinet, henged X 4. Silicone mount the four fulcrum points.
Spring work/help, you just have to dampen them too, along with henge points..
OR
Hang it like a heavy bag on an inverted, spring, they are adjustable too.

Regards..
Cakyol, he asked about isolation / decoupling... how is your response about ground loop hums even applicable?? Like, you didn’t even attempt to answer his question, lol.

Check out Isoacoustics and Black Diamond Racing Cones...


oldhvmech
My first effort was a 6 degree-of-freedom inverted pendulum 🔜 single airspring 🔚 iso platform that employed heavy ballast mounted below the airspring plus extra large auxiliary air canister and lateral support spring system. Cryod steel rods and hardware. Below 1.0 Hz performance. Repeat, single airspring. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.
Geoffy, how about them rhodium plated cryogenic banana peels?
Talk to the hand, sleep stalker! 🖐 Did they finally cut you loose from Subway? Is 65 in your moniker your birth year or IQ?
Lol . . You guys are a trip!

I have a concrete slab with foam pad and medium pile carpet over it.  When I got my towers speakers, I tried them with just the tiny rubbery-button feet they came with, but the speakers would be too easy to tip and fall over.  So I put on the spikes and they are more stable now.  

I don’t know a final position for each item yet, so the two subs with rubber feet . . one sits on the carpet, and there isn’t space on the floor for the other sub, so it is sitting on a folded towel (to prevent scratching it) about 16 inches up from the floor on a brick shelf that is part of the fireplace.  

I have no idea what I’m doing but hope to move things around once my roommate leaves (delayed by COVID-19) and I can swap the smaller furniture (in his TV room) into my listening room, which currently has a large sectional taking up a lot of room.  Then I can consider room treatments.  We all got problems.
You're not really confused until you feel like a baby in a topless bar.
Hi.  Good luck!  This is a difficult question.  Unfortunately in this forum every man and his dog has 'expert advice.'  Best wishes from New Zealand.
GK optical bench performance with one bag :-)
Act chew ally much better than optical bench performance. Optical bench performance is generally 3 Hz due to multiple air springs. No way around it. That’s the advantage of a single air spring. Good luck trying to make one, it’s almost impossible.
Rubber isolates vibration. A hole in the wall for speaker wire, allows equipment to be in the next room.
Wear headphones and smoke a j ,and chill out .