Obsessed with room acoustics

I've been involved in audio for perhaps twenty five years now, could be described as an audiophool for the last ten. In all these years I have never had an issue that has consumed me more than the room acoustics in my present dedicated listening room.
Specifically, a number of years ago I became aware of a channel inbalance, essentially more air and spaciousness in one channel vs. the other. I determined this channel inbalance was due to room asymetry after both trying different equipment and reversing channels.
Over the years I tried to adjust for this asymetry through endless experimentation with acoustic treatments (RPG, Echobusters), both diffusion and absorption. While there was definite improvement, I only became more frustrated and obsessed with the remaining inbalance, at least part of every listening session involved readjusting acoustic treatments.
Finally, the frustration drove me over the edge, I determined the only way to rid myself of the inbalance was to treat the source, in other words, redesign the room. I recently tore out all the walls that created the room aysmetry, I even went to the extreme of perfectly balancing out room furnishings. Of course, the acoustic treatments are perfectly balanced as well!
Finally, I have nearly perfectly balanced soundstaging and imaging. Nearly perfect I say, there still remains some asymetry on the rear wall :-)
I guess the point I'm trying to make is how amazed I am by this obession, no other parameter of sound (perhaps bass boom) has managed to obsess me so. I guess I'm jealous of those who can listen contendly in environments much less conducive to the perfect soundstaging and imaging I now require.
I too, listened contendly for years in much lesser rooms, it seems the psycholgical needs of a perfectionist audiophool displaced normal listening behavior. While I am now content with my listening, perhaps another issue may arise, any audiophile doctors in the house?
Now that I think of it, has anyone ever heard of psychologists that treat audiophilia :-)
you sound perfectly normal to me. i can't see what your problem is.

You're still a long way from rock bottom. Nothing to worry about yet.

The first step is admitting you have a problem.
Swap the speakers from side to side. You might find that you prefer them in one position or the other. I did. In fact, I think one of my speakers is slightly more sensitive than the other.
The only real thing you have (left) to worry about is that a person's hearing changes (asymmetrically with respect to left and right) as he ages and brain scans show that brain processing of sounds, especially music, goes through what some neurologists have called 'random decay' at the same time. This plus the fact that a person rarely is aware of these changes until they have been taking place for a while, and then only of the present state, not of possible future states, COULD (I say could) induce trauma in people who are less stable than you.
Officer Krupke, you're really a square;
This boy don't need a judge, he needs an analyst's care!
It's just his neurosis that oughta be curbed.
He's psychologic'ly disturbed! I'm disturbed
We're disturbed, we're disturbed,
We're the most disturbed,
Like we're psychologic'ly disturbed. We are sick, we are sick,
We are sick, sick, sick,
Like we're sociologically sick!
Krupke, we got troubles of our own!

Gee, Officer Krupke,
We're down on our knees,
'Cause no one wants a fellow with a social disease.
Gee, Officer Krupke,
What are we to do?
Gee, Officer Krupke,
Krup you!
I'm obsessed with room acoustics--what's wrong with that? I wish more people were obsessed with it.
Yeah,but you don't want to hear how much they charge.(smile)

I'm not obsessed with it,but the more I'm around this stuff,the more important it seems to me.

For me,and perhaps I'm fortunate to not have the ears to tell the difference,I use carpets,drapes,tapestries,and plants,untill the room is dead enough that I can't hear a sharp(percussive) handclap's echo.

I know the guys into physics will think that is primitive,and they will be right.

But it makes a difference to me,with modestly priced stuff,with expensive stuff,with all different styles of music.
You used the word perfect (in one form or another) six times :-)
Reminds of someone I know who kept blaming all his problems on the room and its acoustics. Were you very very sure that it was/is the room thats the source of your woes?
I wish I could do what you have done, rebuild the room but that's not an option. I can't even get rid of some of furniture (bookshelves) as the little woman would throw me out rather than her collection of books. There are things you have to learn to live with and sometimes you need to bend a little and not be so picky and just enjoy the music. I could ask if you are so concerned with the rooms acoustics why you did not try Room EQ. I am sure it would probably get you a lot closer to what you want at the expense of some purity.
Hello, take a look at my room, I am obsessed also. You should be! This was the biggest improvement I have done to my system. If you are really serious about good sound and hearing your components this it the final frontier. I would say though that if I had to do it over again I would have done the room first, before buying any equipment! I was never on the component merry-go-round which is perhaps even more telling. I have owned Acoustats for over twenty years and have heard them in my various houses and rooms with different equipment. I know what they sound like with and without room treatment and in different sounding rooms and different equipment. While the overall sonic signature of the speakers is a constant, the vast majority of improvement was from room treatment. It improved the bass reproduction, imaging, clarity and including high freq response. All of these improvement and others, are simply not obtainable through equipment changes. Bob
After assembling a modest system - room acoustics probably has the biggest impact on sound quality.

I agree with those that say careful selection of furnishings can really help.

I drew the line at a custom designed soffit mounted main speaker and equipment cabinetry with 2 1/2" thick mdf and 3" acoustic fibreglass around mains, four corner bass traps, a custom massive log pile fire place (esthetic rear wall bass trap) a sub (even though main speakers have 12" woofers) and a PEQ to control extreme LF. I count myself fortunate not to be obsessive!
You say it like it's a bad thing. :)
Seeing some of the beautiful systems in the dreadful rooms always reminds me that this is an equipment and not a music hobby to many here.

Best bang for buck tweek you'll ever find is to send diagram of your room to Auralex (auralex.com), and have them make some suggestions. They have everything from standard panels to WAF friendly pieces, and you can do a quick-and-dirty experiment on the cheap by picking up panels at Guitar Center for $20 for a 2 x 4 sheet.
so, did the fireplace get filled in finally?

Did you go to the LP and turn your back to the speakers then listen? If the issue moves... it's you and not the rig or room.

If all is well with you audiologywise, I'm sure the problem will not escape your attention to detail... or perhaps paying less attention to detail is a path.

Good luck, Scott.
Thanks Jim, no, the fireplace didn't get filled it, it got the old heave ho, the walls I spoke of removing were those surrounding the fireplace, a 3'D x 6'W monolith stuck out into the room. I still find it mind boggling that I actually removed a fireplace with it's brick, mantle and chimney, can you say loss of esthetics and home devaluation! Part of the stack remains until I get around to removing later in summer :-)
Tarsando, yes I thought it was my hearing until doing channel reversal, this determined it to be room.
I'm also happy to report this bout of audiophilia nervosa ended on a happy note, I think :-) Soundstage is now nearly perfectly (there's that word again) symetrical, none of that pesky phasiness associated with the channel inbalance.
I suppose obsession was a virtue in this case, for without that obsession the fireplace would still be standing and I would be probably be going into audiophilia nervosa ward of the local nuthouse :-)
I'm also somewhat comforted that so many of you are understanding of an audiophile's obsessiveness, I'm not alone :-) At the same time, even if the whole world thought me nuts, I would do the same thing again. Perhaps one could say I was doggedly compelled, just as Pavlov's dog. Just thinking about it recalls the saliva dripping at every listening session, sopping wet every time :-)
Didn't Pav's pooch also need a bell? ...and then wasn't dinner being served? Least ways for a time?

God knows I've had my go 'rounds with my system and now working on a different one with a different take (for me) i will try to keep in mind the experiences of others... and take a ride, mow the grass, anything if the "hobby" looms too large... or I begin to salivate profusely.