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Gym/Multi Function Hall Sound System

Discussion in 'Sound, Music, and Intercom' started by kmkonline, Apr 17, 2008.

  1. kmkonline

    kmkonline Member

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    I need to help in a school which their sound system is having a strange setting.

    The Hall could be used for about 1,000 audience, the system is comes with the building.

    The front part is covered by x4 ceiling speaker, back is covered by x5 12" tile down to the audience seats. two sub-low is hanged in the two side of the gym...

    Now the gym is having a very large reverb, is there anything i can do to reduce the reverb of enhance the audience experience?

    Thanks.
     
  2. howlingwolf487

    howlingwolf487 Active Member

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    I would recommend you recommend to the school that they get an acoustical consultant in there and see what they/their firm feel needs to be done. They will do it properly and you will benefit most from it. Just make sure you do your homework on which company you use - as in every industry, there are those waiting to scam others.

    Until that happens, hanging heavy velour curtains will help keep the sound from bouncing off of the walls as much. Is this room able to be temporarily carpeted when used for concerts, etc.? That would help with reflections from the floor.

    You'll need to give us more specifics on the in-house system and the dimensions of the room for other advice and suggestions, though. Layout, ceiling height, length, width, etc. All of these, and more, need to be considered.

    I'm sure I'll be corrected if anything is incorrect...
     
  3. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Sound proof the walls, nothing else will really help. There exist a fairly inexpensive blue foam panels made from old cut up blue jeans that glues to walls pretty well. I have actually installed this in a gym before and it killed the reverb. Had to do square sets in the ceiling and panels on the walls, but it worked non the less.
     
  4. avkid

    avkid Not a New User Fight Leukemia

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    The only true solution involves a general contractor, sledge hammer and a few pallets of drywall.
     
  5. museav

    museav CBMod CB Mods Departed Member

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    "Sound proof" typically refers to sound isolation and is actually a misnomer even then. Just clarifying as some people may take this to mean addressing the sound isolation of the walls.

    Please be careful with the materials used in such spaces! A gym is a public assembly space and has very specific requirements for the flame spread and smoke ratings of the materials used. Using materials not properly rated for a space is almost certainly a code violation and even worse, a very unsafe practice. People have died from just such issues, it is an overused example but think Great White and The Station.

    Also consider the durability and damage resistance of the materials used, there are many options for acoustical materials made just for gym type applications from impact resistant fabric covered acoustical wall panels to wall panels with plastic or metal facings to vinyl covered baffles to hanging catenary 'wave' absorbers. For many facilities, spray on applications of special acoustical materials on the ceiling may not only be a very cost effective acoustical solution, but can sometimes provide thermal insulation and even light reflection benefits as well.

    Selecting the right types, quantities and locations for these materials is what an acoustical consultant would/should do.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2008
  6. herr_highbrau

    herr_highbrau Member

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    I also suggest consultant. But in short term, if you can manage it theatrical drape works wonders. I always bring in shedloads when I'm working in gyms.
     
  7. soundop

    soundop Active Member

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    this way sounds like more fun.

    they make panels that you can hang from the celling to kill the reverb
     
  8. silverbullet761

    silverbullet761 Member

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    We had the EXACT same problem when my high school did productions. Our stage is actually in a gym - so the hardwood basketball floor SUCKS for audio. Also, the sound system on the stage was built to be a PA system, not for shows. There are a few things we did to overcome this:

    One, study where your speakers are, and where your mics are. Where is the majority of the sound going to focus? Make SURE the mics have something between them and the sound focus (foam works VERY well)-- this is for house mics. As far as body mics go, those are a little harder to work with. We just decorated the gym with mobile wall panels we borrowed from the library. These had a steel frame, with a cloth-covered foam interior. stuff like this does WONDERS.

    The best thing I learned though, was just thinking about where the sound was being projected to. Take a string, and attach it to the front of the speaker, then walk out to where the string is pointing you RIGHT where the sound is directed. If it lands in the audience, you will probably be fine-- remember your acoustics CHANGE when you have a full house. If the speakers are going to hit an aisle or a wall, put a 'decorative' there. We had some kindergardeners paint on cloth and hung it on the walls where the back-of-house speakers hit. For aisles, we put plush red carpet down that we borrowed from the prom committee.

    One more thing we learned, instead of trying to put the body mic elements over ears, we put the elements in the player's hair. It only works for larger-haired actors, but it does a decent job at dampening reverb. Only drawback- you have to turn up the gain on the mics if you do this, and with that- if you get reverb, it hits HARD AND FAST.

    Good luck!
     
  9. David Ashton

    David Ashton Active Member

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    I do heaps of these venues and second the use of curtains, I usually fit eye bolts around the gym, run wire through them then s hook the curtains to the wire, the difference is astounding.
     
  10. museav

    museav CBMod CB Mods Departed Member

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    Curtains can be very helpful in temporary applications but be careful with their use in permanent installations. There are practical considerations such as fire ratings and durability as well as acoustical considerations. It is quite possible to put in materials that provide a lot of mid and high frequency absorption but that provide little low frequency absorption and thus create an unbalanced room response. It is also easy to make a room too dead for some applications, it may be great for a concert that depends on the sound system but is it a problem if the orchestra tries to play there or does it lose the desired audience noise for sporting events?

    Silverbullet is right that where you put acoustical treatments can be just as important as how much and what.

    There is also a lot more to room acoustics than just reverb and that tends to become a catch all term for any acoustical problems, so you might want to verify that the overall reverberation of the space is really the problem. It is quite possible that if you reduce the overall reverberation you may then note other problems that were 'masked' by the overall reverb. It is common for concerns like flutter echo, room modes and discrete reflections to also be problems and possibly masked by reverb.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2008
  11. David Ashton

    David Ashton Active Member

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    You certainly wouldn't leave curtains in a gym, they would be destoyed, however good acoustics lie in the ear of the listener, good yodelling venues may not be much use for any other sounds but a really dead acoustic is not good for acoustic music.Its a case of horses for courses.
     

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