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DIY Speaker Isolation Solutions
Old 22nd September 2012
  #1
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
DIY Speaker Isolation Solutions

Just to let you know, I am a complete noob when it comes to gear!

I am looking for DIY solutions for isolating my speakers. For my center speaker I was planning on using some neoprene mouse pads for the corners. However I wasn't sure if that would work in the first place, or work for my floor standing mains, which are 54 lbs.

I have not finished my acoustic traps yet, but I will probably have enough 2" 703 left over to use under the speakers. I also have been considering the primacoutics approach, foam with a steel plate and neoprene to top it off. However I don't know how easy those material will be to obtain or cost (I live in a small town with limited store resources.)

I am open to any and all solutions! I also appreciate any help you can provide me.
Old 22nd September 2012
  #2
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bambony's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by NAM ➑️
Just to let you know, I am a complete noob when it comes to gear!

I am looking for DIY solutions for isolating my speakers. For my center speaker I was planning on using some neoprene mouse pads for the corners. However I wasn't sure if that would work in the first place, or work for my floor standing mains, which are 54 lbs.

I have not finished my acoustic traps yet, but I will probably have enough 2" 703 left over to use under the speakers. I also have been considering the primacoutics approach, foam with a steel plate and neoprene to top it off. However I don't know how easy those material will be to obtain or cost (I live in a small town with limited store resources.)

I am open to any and all solutions! I also appreciate any help you can provide me.
Sorbothane or Blu-tac are just as useful as any other approach - try these cheaper options first.

Sorbothane is particularly easy and Blu-tac particularly cheap.

Tony
Old 1st October 2012
  #3
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
My home theater setup is on a hard wood floor. Would I need both isolation and decoupling? I'm not really sure what the difference is between the two. But I would like to have a solution that does not a present a tradeoff. From what I have been reading it sounds like I would need to isolate the speakers with a hard surface incorporated to get the best sound quality.

Sorry if I am asking dumb questions, I am a noob!
Old 1st October 2012
  #4
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Lotus 7's Avatar
Sorbothane pads work very well for heavy speakers. They will absorb any cabinet-born vibration and decouple it from your floor. A 4 inch by 4 inch piece can be cut into (4) 2 inch X 2 inch pads to be placed under each corner of your cabinet or speaker stand. If on a stand, place the Sorbothane pads between the speaker and the stand.

One-half inch thick Sorbothane will support 60 lbs./square inch, so even four 1 inch pads will easily support one of your speakers.

A low cost alternate is a thick felt typewriter pad. When compressed with the speaker's weight, those also will do a decent job of de-coupling (not as good as Sorbothane). One typewriter pad will make a lot of speaker isolators.

Finally, if your cabinets are thin-walled and prone to excessive vibration, using a combination (sandwich) of dissimilar materials (Sorbothane and felt) will create an acoustic transmission "mismatch" that will become a better isolator than either material alone. However it's highly unlikely that you will need that much isolation.
Old 2nd October 2012
  #5
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
Thank you for the tips guys! I have read that sorbothane will cause discoloration of wood. What would you recommend I use to avoid this?

My ears and my roommates will appreciate the advice.
Old 2nd October 2012 | Show parent
  #6
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Lotus 7's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by NAM ➑️
Thank you for the tips guys! I have read that sorbothane will cause discoloration of wood. What would you recommend I use to avoid this?....
Haven't ever noticed that, but probably depends on the wood finish. A piece of polyethylene film cut from a Freezer grade (heavy film) food storage bag (Ziplock) should prevent any dye or stain migration from the Sorbothane to the wood, BUT I would not use it because it will make the surface slippery making it easier to accidentally knock over the monitor, and will reduce the coupling from the cabinet to the Sorbothane. One of the reasons it works so well is that it "sticks" to the surface which allows the acoustic vibrations to couple into the Sorbothane where they are absorbed and dissipated. If that's a major concern, add a layer of thick wool felt above the Sorbothane.
Old 2nd October 2012
  #7
Here for the gear
 
🎧 5 years
I think the problem with discoloration is from removing the Sorbothane, with the adhesive being the culprit. But I am only speculating, as I have never used the stuff myself.

To properly decouple the speaker would I have to remove the feet/legs from the cabinet? If so this would be an issue, the speakers are too narrow and top heavy without the widened bass the legs provide.
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