Room treatments behind or between speakers?


Just wondering where people feel is the best place for room treatments on the front wall. I've seen people place panels on the wall between the speakers while others have placed them directly behind the speakers.
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'Tuning' the room can provide significant improvement in your sound. I use both wall units and free standing ones, at first reflection points. They have provided 'better sound'.
Always start with primary reflection points on walls based on listening location/sweet spot, for biggest bang for the buck, and add from there or not with secondary or lower reflection points if needed.
Thanks guys. I have already treated my first reflection points on the sidewalls and it made a big difference. I have Realtraps bass traps too. Now I am just wondering about front wall absorption, directly behind speaker, in between speaker, or both?
A lot of people put diffusers on the wall in between speakers.
I put mine behind the speakers. Why? Because I had two of them.

But seriously, I understand absorption directly behind and diffusion between. I can't remember where I read that but the explanation made sense at the time.
Tboooe,
If you have already purchased the room treatments, then I think you should try it out in both the places:
1. between the speakers on the wall behind
2. directly behind the speakers on the wall behind

Chances are you will most likely choose option 1. This is what "locked" down the center image in my case. My room being small, the center of the wall behind the speakers was reflecting a hell lot of sound. Once I put the absorption panels in there the images became very stable.

So indirectly, I guess, the answer is - it depends a lot on your room. Good luck!
What are you trying to deal with, what is bothering you when you listen.
Thanks Milpai. I look at your system page a lot. I love the simplicity of it. If you think your room is small you will think mine is tiny. It's only 9x10 but the rear is open to my family room.

Samhar, I am not sure what I am trying the achieve. I don't know what I don't know right? :). Like all audiophiles I am always looking to improve my system.
Nothing should go between your speakers except for the amp on the floor.
GIK told me put mine either side of the flat screen (they were working from a schematic I sent). The panels ended up directly behind (and mostly above) the speakers. These were the first panels I installed and they definitely made a difference. BTW - a while ago, came across a thread here on A'gon where a poster was citing an audio expert who claimed benefit to having a somewhat reflective/not fully damped surface behind/between the speakers. Don't recall the details well enough to explain the rationale. It's a school of thought that didn't seem particularly "intuitive" to me.
Use mirror method along the wall to locate position of the treatments.
Since your room is small, you will most likely get a reflection off the back wall which then bounces off the front wall and then back to you. I would think absorption on the front wall between your speakers and maybe try some diffusion on the back wall behind you. You could try that and also reversing the combination to see which works best.

I have no treatment on my front wall since my 31 foot long room is a long enough distance that the rear to front wall and back to me reflection isn't an issue. I've been told that at that distance the time delay of that reflected sound is great enough to become a non issue.
If your room is small, you will most likely get a reflection off the back wall behind you, which then bounces off the front wall and then back to you. I would think absorption on the front wall between your speakers and maybe try some diffusion on the back wall behind you. You could try that and also reversing the combination to see which works best.

I have no treatment on my front wall since my 31 foot long room is a long enough distance that the rear to front wall and back to me reflection isn't an issue. I've been told that at that distance the time delay of that reflected sound is great enough to become a non issue.
It's room dependent, and Milpai's treatments are a good example of absorbing bass then getting better imaging by using a middle panel.
Most acoustic products are made with fiberglass. If you're on a budget, you can buy fiberglass panels (not the big rolls), and use them for room treatments. If they work out, you can cover them with fabric so they look nice
Tboooe,
You are welcome.
If your rear is open to the family room, then reflections on the wall behind your speakers should not be as big a concern as it was in my case. You probably also want to think of speaker re-positioning or nearfield listening.

Ghousthouse,
I know what discussion you are talking about. That discussion was based on the Floyd Toole's book - "Sound Reproduction: The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and Rooms".
So, a lot depends on the room. What worked for me, might not work for others. I purchased the panels and played with the positioning. That is how I arrived at the current setup. When I started this system, I used to have a tube TV between the speakers. That was the worst setup. Someone suggested a blanket on the TV. It was a big improvement in imaging. Further reading indicated that anything flat and smooth between speakers is horrendous for the sound. With my current setup, there is nothing really flat. Sound breaks up on the equipment stand and gets absorbed because of the panel. I am pretty happy with the setup.
I am thinking of moving my equipment to the basement downstairs after re-doing an area specifically for this hobby.
Nothing between the speakers? I don't think so. It should not be your components, including a TV. Some years ago I added a free standing Furtech Room Diffuser to fill the void. Does wonders. Plenty of stuff on the net about that product. Behind the speakers? Depends, its complicated. With out knowing how your speakers are 'ported', if at all, can't provide advice.
Tboooe are you still in OC ?
Samhar...yes I am still behind the Orange Curtain in south OC.
I'm still in the process of deciding which room will be "The" listening space. I'm not currently using many of the treatments from my last house and was wondering if you'd be interested in using them for the purpose of evaluating your space/needs. I'm not offering this to sell them only as a short term loan and the Phonics Real Time Analyzer and test CDs, if I can find them !!!!! I'm in Torrance three one zero four nine zero zero eight eight eight. Using the RTA you can install, move or remove traps and view the results. If you go to my system and open the Real Traps and ACS Tube Traps every thing I have is listed. I'm currently using the ASC 16" in my front room. I've been recovering from a surgery and haven't been able sit and "tune" my system.
Bucanero....instead of thinking, remove anything between your speakers except the amp on the floor, and hear the speakers open up with added clarity. I never heard a system that sounds better with something between the 2 speakers.
Samhar, thank you for the generous offer. Let me check my schedule to see when i have some free time. Thank you again!
I use diffusion (RPG Modffractal)between the speakers and absorption/diffusion (RPG ARC BAD Panels) behind the speakers. On the back wall I have absorption/diffusion. In the corners I use absorption (RealTraps Mondo Traps) and on the front and back wall/ceiling corner I use absorption/diffusion.

I had the room measured to place the panels. it sounds great!
Bigby, your room must sound great! I am going to add ceiling treatments next, a combo of absorption and diffusion. I am very curious to hear what that does.
I have often fretted about the various ways to treat a room,especially in between the speakers. There are several methods such as live end dead end, mass diffussion and absorption, adding mass (double drywall, concrete) to mitigate bass anomalies and trap sound better in the room, skyline diffusers (ceiling mount city looking diffusers), and on and on, to include the golden rule.

What has worked for me and for my own listening tastes is the following.

1. No equipment between speakers unless amps on the floor. This prevents erratic stereo information placement which could be caused by towers and racks sitting in between speakers causing a form of diffussion and dispersion of sound relevant to the stereo signal.

2. Yes, mass in ceilings and walls, adds more to the containment of bass and sound leaving the room and prevents room modes from vibrating walls at certain frequencies when playing music loud. The resonances of walls and floors that occur why music plays loud is normally associated to lack of mass. Caveat here is to add some form of absorbers, and spikes to mitigate physical and airborne disturbances due to pressurization of these modes on the floors and walls.

3. Using a combination of side wall absorption and diffussion, starting from directly on the side of speakers to the listening chair position.

4. On back wall behind listening position sparingly use diffusion. Perhaps between the top if couch or chair and ceiling, about 3-4 feet wide cube.

5. Corner bass traps, all corners.

6. Wall behind speakers, use dry stack stone or similar type with same characteristic patterns as dry stack stone. This adds a natural element of diffusion to the whole room. If needed, add spot placed absorbers in center. This is probably a page out of the live end dead end book.

7. Lastly, if using a sub, for music, use a room compensation EQ such as the Velodyne SMS1 sub EQ or equivalent to tame bass modes.

This seems to work for me the best.

Good luck.
Audioquest4life