Like everything else in life, the space where we listen to music is subject to compromises. If even those who have a room exclusively dedicated to listening to music face constraints, what about all of us who have to find a way to “fit” devices and, above all, speakers in a room shared with the other inhabitants of the house? This task is challenging, difficult and often inglorious.
Available space, type of floor and wall coverings, area, ceiling height are physical parameters that determine the acoustics of the space. If to these we add others of a different nature, such as the limitations imposed by the decoration and the arrangement of the furniture in the room, which conditions the placement of the columns, the challenge is great.
Nothing replaces the acoustic treatment of the space and a good placement of the columns, with space in relation to the walls, but it is often not possible to change the physical arrangement of the furniture in the room or the coverings of the walls and ceilings.
Aware of this problem, the Hi-Fi industry began to provide digital room correction solutions that allow to mitigate or, at least, mitigate the negative impact of acoustic conditions and the commitment to the positioning of the speakers in the rooms where we listen to music.
These solutions can come already integrated into the devices, as active speakers, DACs or “all-in-one” systems, or be available independently of the devices. In the first case, they are more user-friendly solutions that are easier and more intuitive to use, even if they are limited to the device in which they are integrated. On the other hand, autonomous digital correction solutions based on measured frequency response equalization software, imply more work and some knowledge of signals and systems, to get an idea of what is being done, but they are more versatile, cheaper and allow correct any sound system, in any room and perfect the desired response.
The result of acoustic corrections is usually revealing and very positive. Even if we think it's okay, it's worth a try. Normally, the sound is clearer, less “messy”, with more defined bass.
Before changing equipment, to try to correct resonances or “an unsatisfactory sound”, it is highly recommended to try acoustically correcting the room. Ideally, this would be done through a physical intervention. If this is not possible, digital correction can bring obvious benefits, improving the sound that our system produces, which is, in the end, what we all want.
Author: Our client and friend, Carlos Sousa .