The acoustic treatment guys from Benton Brothers in Atlanta were up today. While our auditorium acoustics aren’t in terrible shape, there are a few issues that needed fixing:

  1. 1.) Our balcony faces. In early ’04, they blew out a couple walls to add some balconies to the room. The walls they knocked down were originally acoustically treated, but the treatment got moved to the back walls of the balconies and a rather large flat surface was left as a result. Now there is a terrible slap from the house system reflecting back to the stage. Drummers can play in time with themselves; it is that clear. It’s also creating weird late reflections into the seating area. The balcony face surfaces are going to get coated with treatment.
  2. 2.) The stage wall. The stage wall is made of cinder blocks. It’s getting treated to stop sound from the stage reverberating off the backwall.
  3. 3.) Low frequency buildup. There isn’t any treatment in the room to help deal with low frequencies. Our room is “tilted”. We have long reverb times in the lower frequencies.

Unfortunately it is most likely not economically feasible to fix the low end problems so we’re going to hold off for now and see what happens when the new system is in place. CPM doesn’t seem too concerned about it otherwise they would have pushed hard for it. But we are going to fix items 1 & 2. Today they installed about 85% of the new acoustic panels on the stage wall. They’ll be back in a couple weeks to finish up all the treatments. Tomorrow night I’ll get to see if they’ve made a dent in the room when we rehearse for Sunday morning.

David Stagl

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