Holy Floating Subwoofers Batman!

AR-sub1.jpgLike bass? Who doesn't? I'll tell you who - your poor neighbor downstairs. Sure you can always turn down or turn off your subwoofer between say 7:00 PM to 6:59 PM, or you can try "floating" your subwoofer. Before you start visualizing a subwoofer hanging from wires from the ceiling, stop. I have a better way.

The goal is to set up a subwoofer so it doesn't transfer energy into the floor or walls. We can do this by placing it on a platform that will decouple it from the floor. Auralex Acoustics makes something they call the SubDude HD. Or you can DIY it if you have the right kind of foam. That white soft crushable stuff isn't going to work. What you need it the high-density closed cell foam such as what you find inside a well-packed new component. Both Meridian and Oppo use this foam. I used a piece I scavenged from my box stash. It's 16 inches square and 3 ½ inches thick. It can support a Velodyne DD+ subwoofer, a Brightstar Airbase and Perreaux E110 power amplifier with no sag or settling.

Using the isolation bass has an added sonic advantage besides making nice with the neighbors. It also reduces resonances and sympathetic vibrations caused when a subwoofer is coupled to a room. Decoupling the subwoofer by floating it on foam puts more bass in your room instead of syphoning it through your floor. As a result of reducing room resonances you also get cleaner and more easily integrated low bass from your subwoofer regardless of its size or power rating. 

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