My first house Just how bad of a room? 12Wx14Lx8H

Hello all,

Just bought my first house, most excited! Just looking for input on how bad of a room this will be. I think all my gear can physically fit, with no place to sit, see "system" link for details. House built in 1985, MN suburbs. Basement room of a 3 level split. Rectangle @ 12Wx14Lx8H.

I'll set things up and see what happens; the dual subs might not work too well.

I can make the room longer by knocking down a wall, 15L/17L? I'll crunch the numbers and see what might be best in theory. Can't make the room wider due to load bearing walls. No WAF here, just making a small bedroom/office smaller.

Let me know what I can expect, or if making the room longer will really help at all. Standard carpet/sheet rock construction. No drop ceiling, just the "normal" ceiling (sheet rock?).


Marty, I have a very similiar size basement room and for me the JM Lab Chorus 705 w/very high quality 80's Sony components sounds superb. Be sure to use floor spikes which will rest the spks. on the concrete floor. I tried a few combinations of spks. gefore hitting it just right. You might have to do the same. Good Luck and Congratulations! Bill
OOPS! The Jm Lab Chorus 705 (which sounded very good) is the previous spk. which I used in this room. It was replaced by the JM Lab Chorus 710 which was a far better choice and it sounds superb. I tried my beloved Snell J/IV's (8" woofer) in this room and it was just too boomy. After looking over your system, you might have to simplify! Hope it works out for you!
Wow, lot of stuff for a small room. I suspect you may want to revisit your expectations as well as the type of speakers that you use. You will probably find that lengthening the room to 17ft will help the bass response. You will probably also conclude that small speakers with rolled off bass and a sub woofer (which you have) will work better than full range speakers. I have recently been thinking of setting up a second room with somewhat smaller than ideal dimensions. In looking at small speakers I found some medium sized sealed (not ported) speakers with a rolloff at 80hz which when combined with a sub could work quite well, in theory at least. If this interests you at all, look up the Veritas speakers by ACI which were designed to work with subs (they also make and are highly regarded).
I'm sure Meadowlark would object to their Heron-I
's being called small speakers.... :)

Always wanted to do a sub/sat system, good time to start I guess.

Wadda you want for free - English is my 4th language (so it seems)! :-)
Sounds like my room But I got it to work great! Just email me after next week. I'm on a work trip now.
This room for 2 channel or HT?
There are many "room mode calculators" on the net(, etc) if you look.
For fast reference, see the July issue of Stereophile Guide to HT (I think?)'s "home Theater ARchitect section" (otherwise, maybe it's June...not sure). Anyway, this should help your thinking greatly!
Basically you want smoothest bass bellow 300hz you can get, sepecailly in the lower registers. No "stacked up peakes" is a major help.
Basically, you want to move that back wall only if it helps smooth the bass. So you need to find which exact dimmension is best from what you have to work with.
If I were you, I'd consult(for a few hundred bucks it's well worth it) for room dimmensions, seating and speaker placment, as well as acoustical treatments.
Your other problem will be "too much bass reverb, and lack of absorbtion "down low"! Too much bass energy needs to really be "absorbed" with large bass traps in that room. If you can't do it in the ceiling, then probabaly a large absober in the back of the room (properly designed to allow diffusion for midrang/trebble) is what you need.
There are many acoustics books, articles, and helps if you research. OTherwise, pay the few EXTREMELY VALUABLE DOLLARS on the single biggest investment/improvement you can get!
A couple of the big players are PMI, Rivesaudio, maybe RPG or ASC, etc. These companies could easily(I do this work personally) engineer your room quickly and maximize sonics. (figure cheeply at $750 or so for basic consulting, yet effective as heck).
The difference between improper dimmensions is "stacked room modes" and "gaps", making seating and speaker locations that much more unmanageable for perfection. The difference in "not enough bass absorbtion" in that tiny(yes, acoustically dinky) basement room is you have a thick, overly warm, extended reverbing bass response, that's slow, lingering, and dominating the upper frequencies. Bass is slower, less impactful, clean, accurate, etc in this case. Compared to a large acoustic space (like commercial theater)or well engineered room is potentailly world class bass, due to massive surface absorbtion, multiple seats/boddies, floor construction(also surface), and absorbers(which theaters offer). In short, most peoles small rooms sound like "pressure boxes of boomy bass with no speed, impact, articulation, definition, or balance.
Pay the bucks and get teh best...that's my recommendation. Otherwise you'll end up with mediocre with lack of knowledge/experience
This is about the size of the room where my main system resides, and I am pretty happy. However, in my situation, the room opens up into another 14' X 25' room. I would definitely give it a shot, and try to make the most of it. Making sure the room and system are optimized will go a long way towards you achieving great results.

Since it is a basement, you might want to check out this new product I began hearing advertised on the radio this month from Owens Corning(?), specifically made for finishing basements. It is an acoustic treatment material that is supposedly a lot cheaper and faster to install than sheetrock. It resists moisture, mold, and mildew.

It may be a boon to audiophiles in general. My only concern is that it would leave a room "too dead", but I have no experience with it, so am hoping that audiophiles begin to share their insights as the product becomes more established.