Some common acoustic myths.

Maybe you've heard of "Fake News"? The same happens in the world of acoustics! Here's a place for discussing acoustic myths, legends, mysteries, "questionable" treatment, scams, hoaxes, and just plain old bad information about acoustics, sound, and audio.
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Soundman2020
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Some common acoustic myths.

#1

Postby Soundman2020 » Sun, 2020-Jan-12, 20:36

Here's an article from "Broadcast Engineering" magazine that I came across quite a few years ago (1992, to be exact), but it is still very valid today. It deals with a few of the most common myths about recording studio design, such as the "need" for angled glass in studio windows, as well as trying to use absorption for "soundproofing", the three-leaf isolation wall, and a few other good ones.

All of what it says was valid 30 years ago, and is still valid today:

Acoustical_Myths (1).pdf
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Acoustical_Myths (1).pdf
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"Exposing acoustical myths" (from Broadcast Engineering magazine, 1992)



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bert stoltenborg
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Re: Some common acoustic myths and legends....

#2

Postby bert stoltenborg » Wed, 2020-Jan-15, 14:26

1992! I was just born then! Well.....
And still we have to debunk these topics day in day out.



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Re: Some common acoustic myths and legends....

#3

Postby Soundman2020 » Wed, 2020-Jan-15, 15:48

And still we have to debunk these topics day in day out.
:thu: And the myth machine never stops! It just keeps on running... :) :lol:

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Re: Some common acoustic myths and legends....

#4

Postby Starlight » Wed, 2020-Jan-15, 21:12

What would you like to do here, Stuart: create a list of all the common myths and mistaken ideas (eg. egg boxes, 2cm pyramid foam, soundproof curtains) so that internet searches bring people here? Or, because you so far have attracted more methodical amateurs and a handful of professionals, perhaps a list of less obvious myths (eg. understanding NRC, RT60 in small rooms, decoupling v. dampening)? Or both?



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Re: Some common acoustic myths and legends....

#5

Postby Soundman2020 » Wed, 2020-Jan-15, 21:57

Both! :)

Feel free to add whatever myths and "magical materials" that you come across, or already know of, each in it's own thread, so we can then discuss them if necessary. This includes all the things you mentioned as common myths, but also products that are equally mythical, such as ten-thousand dollar speaker cables, or tiny little wooden cubes that you set on your window sill to completely "fix" the room acoustics (yes, the really do exist!), or exotic wooden "cradles" that you absolutely must have to lift your power cables off the floor, so they don't pick up bad vibes. Even including the infamous "trapagon" that doesn't actually exist... and that famous plastic strip bubble vocal "booth"... All of that should be mentioned here, to help unsuspecting folks who are just starting out to stay clear of scams, hoaxes, and myths.

Ditto with "mysteries", such as the ones you mentioned (RT60, NRC, etc.). Even though the second set of subjects you mentioned are not really "myths", they certainly are "mysteries" to many people, so it makes sense to discuss them here too.

I'm also working on expanding the reference area to cover some of those (starting with "room in a room"), and what I might do later is, if there's a good explanation here about NRC, for example, then I might move it to the reference area, or maybe just cross-link it, so it can be found from both.

In fact, I'm going to update the forum info to add "mysteries" as well. It makes sense.

I'd like to keep each "myth" in it's own thread, directly under the "Fake Acoustics" forum header page, with a clear title, to make it easier to find them. So if you have half a dozen that you'd like to add, put each on in its own topic.


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Re: Some common acoustic myths and legends....

#6

Postby Starlight » Sun, 2020-Jan-26, 20:03

Soundman2020 wrote:I'm going to update the forum info to add "mysteries" as well. It makes sense.

Soundman2020 wrote:YOU CANNOT FLOAT A FLOOR WITH A LIGHT-WEIGHT WOODEN DECK, ON RUBBER PADS. IT IS IMPOSSIBLE.

Full stop. End. Fin. Finito. That's it.

A explanation of methods of increasing transmission loss of airborne and/or flanking sounds, possibly including Endorka's amp riser, which sometimes gets used as (or called) a poor man's floating floor.

Another useful myth buster explanation could be to explain the difference between damping and decoupling as they seem to get confused often enough.

By the way, Stuart, I am beginning to see now the value of your forum. I thought at first that you might be wanting to compete with long-established acoustics fora whereas now I see you are building a first-class reference and resource centre, with topics, articles and documents as having your own forum. Maybe I was slow to comprehend your thinking but I am impressed and wish you great success with it.



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Re: Some common acoustic myths and legends....

#7

Postby Soundman2020 » Sun, 2020-Jan-26, 20:30

Starlight wrote:A explanation of methods of increasing transmission loss of airborne and/or flanking sounds, possibly including Endorka's amp riser, which sometimes gets used as (or called) a poor man's floating floor.
Thanks for the suggestion! Good idea.

Another useful myth buster explanation could be to explain the difference between damping and decoupling as they seem to get confused often enough.
Excellent idea! I'll put that on the list of articles I plan to write.

By the way, Stuart, I am beginning to see now the value of your forum. I thought at first that you might be wanting to compete with long-established acoustics fora whereas now I see you are building a first-class reference and resource centre, with topics, articles and documents as having your own forum. Maybe I was slow to comprehend your thinking but I am impressed and wish you great success with it.
Yes, yes, yes! That's exactly what I aim to do! I want to this forum to be a place where it is easy to find useful valid, correct, detailed information about acoustics, studio design, studio construction, studio tuning, and also improving the acoustics of other places, such as churches, restaurants, offices, schools, board rooms, etc.. I also want it to be a place where people can document their designs and builds, ask questions, offer suggestions, and participate in discussions, absolutely! In that second sense, it is similar to other forums, but primarily I'd like this forum to become the "go-to" resource for solid information on acoustics, and how to do it right.

Thanks for the kind words, and I'm really pleased that someone figured it out already, without me saying that explicitly! I was hoping to just quietly build it up in the background, but you caught me out early on! :thu: :yahoo:

I didn't want to do it as a daily or weekly blog, either, because of all the drawbacks of doing that: I feel it would be better to just post individual articles as the subjects come up, as well as editing previous ones to make them better. Example: the reference library page is getting to be long and cumbersome, so I'm working on a way to make it easier to follow by grouping similar resources together in sub-sections (one part on design criteria, one on isolation, one on construction methods, etc.). Stay tuned....

If you have more suggestions on articles you'd like to see, then feel free to let me know, like you did here! And if you have anything you yourself found elsewhere, and you thought it provided good information about acoustics, then feel free to post it here, or post a link with an explanation.

- Stuart -




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