High-End Audio Mission

Acoustic Frontiers designs and creates acoustically optimized listening rooms for audiophiles. Working from the speaker outward, we’re specialists in analysis, treatment, and set-up. We’ll manage the acoustics, you’ll appreciate the music.

The Acoustic Frontiers Service

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    Hign End Audio Design

    Determining the best combination of speakers, amplifiers, subwoofers, and room correction electronics for the listening environment.

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    Acoustic Design

    Specifying the number, type, and location of acoustic treatments to meet targets for sound decay and frequency response.

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    Low Frequency Optimization

    Fine-tuning low bass through speaker, listener, and subwoofer placement techniques.

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    Installation

    Providing and installing acoustic treatment and audio equipment such as subwoofers and room correction electronics.

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    Audio Set-up

    Positioning the speakers for best balance of imaging, soundstaging, and bass performance, integrating subwoofers, and setting up equalization.

“I highly recommend Acoustic Frontiers’ advisory services for any audiophile who truly wants to extract the last bit of performance from one of the most overlooked aspects of system performance: the room/speaker/listening-position interface.”

Chris VenHaus, VH Audio, Milwaukee, WI.

Listening Room Acoustic Design

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Ask any experienced audiophile about the two most important factors in sound quality, and you’ll hear a consensus—loudspeaker and room. Listening room design is fundamentally about acoustics: choosing the right speakers for your room, placing them so they interact favorably with standing waves, and optimizing reflected sounds through acoustic treatment.

Listening Room Acoustics—The Difference Between Average and Amazing

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    Poor Speaker/Room Match

    Many enthusiasts are constantly switching equipment in the hope of reaching musical nirvana. Most never get there because they haven’t properly matched the most important components–the speakers and the room. Panels, cone/dome boxes, and omnis all need different room acoustic environments to deliver their best sound.

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    Generic Acoustic Treatment Design

    At the seating position, 85% of what you hear is reflected sound, created by off-axis radiation from the speaker bouncing off one or more surfaces in the room. Simple rules of thumb found online, such as placing absorbers at all reflection points, are not true high-performance solutions, because they fail to consider that every speaker interacts with the room differently.

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    Speaker and Listeners Placed Where They Fit

    Bass is the hardest thing to get right in any room. That’s because all rooms have natural resonant frequencies that cause peaks and dips in the frequency response. Most enthusiasts put their speakers and listening seat where they fit, without considering these room modes, and then try to fix the resulting bass issues through endless equipment changes. More knowledgeable folks might use a placement rule of thumb–such as the rule of thirds, or fifths–but still get lackluster results because theory and reality seldom agree.

  • Listening Room Design with Acoustic Frontiers

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    Speakers Perfect For Your Room

    Acoustic Frontiers’ Audio Design service helps you choose the right speakers for your room. A room that can be heavily treated can support a wider range of speaker types than a sparsely furnished living space designed around minimalist aesthetics. Once you’ve chosen the right speakers, we optimize the speaker/room interface through our Acoustic Treatment Design service.

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    Acoustic Treatment Optimized For Your Speakers

    Acoustic Frontiers’ approach to Acoustic Treatment Design starts at the speaker and explicitly considers the psychoacoustic effect of reflections and reverberation. We use ray tracing and speaker off-axis measurements to compare the amplitude and spectral relationship of direct and reflected sounds. The result is an acoustic treatment plan custom-designed to your speakers and your room.

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    Optimized Speaker and Listener Placement

    The only real way to get smooth, tight bass in your listening room is to use science. Acoustic Frontiers’ Low Frequency Optimization service determines the frequency, severity, and spatial distribution of room modes using high-resolution acoustic measurements and modeling. Then we solve the problems through speaker/listener placement and, with your approval, custom bass traps and advanced techniques such as multi-sub arrays and room correction.

“Our room has never sounded better and is now able to achieve a level of clarity, focus, and depth that was previously unattainable.”

Josh, Store Manager at Music Lovers Audio, San Francisco, CA.

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    Audio Installation

    Need help installing acoustic treatments? Acoustic Frontiers’ experienced team of installers safely and quickly hangs acoustic panels, stretches fabric walls, and builds custom bass traps.

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    Audio Equipment

    Our current offerings for high-end audio design focus on optimization of the speaker/room interface. We’ve got the best room correction processors and subwoofers out there, together with a variety of room acoustic treatments to cover every need.

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    RPG

    The gold standard in room acoustic treatment.

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    Vicoustic

    Finally, high-performance acoustical treatment that looks great!

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    Primacoustic

    High-value acoustic treatment from Canada.

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    DEQX

    Superb sounding Swiss army knife digital speaker correction, crossover, and room correction processsors.

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    Trinnov

    State-of-the-art digital processor that corrects room acoustics in three dimensions.

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    JL Audio

    No contest, the best performing home audio subwoofers out there.

“The sound after calibration has changed considerably. The soundstage is much wider and more encompassing and the center image stronger. The subs are integrated perfectly and have illuminated the pace and rhythmic quality of the music. I was missing much more than I had ever imagined.”

Cesar Rubio of Cesar Rubio Photography, San Francisco, CA.

Audio Set-Up

Set-up is the process of fine tuning speaker and listener positioning for the best balance of imaging, soundstaging and bass performance. If you have them, it’s also about integrating subs and calibrating room correction systems. We’ve developed a unique set-up process that fuses high resolution acoustic measurements with critical listening to ensure that your high end audio system performs to its potential.

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Set-Up —The Acoustic Frontiers Difference

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    Generic Set-Up Rules of Thumb

    For many enthusiasts and dealers, set-up consists of short-lived and semi-random tweaking of speaker and listener placement. The more advanced may try a ‘set-up rule’ or speaker placement guidelines found online. These pseudo-scientific routines can sometimes lead to modest results but rarely result in the best sound quality.

  • Acoustic Frontiers Set-Up

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    Scientific Measurement-Based Set-Up

    Acoustic Frontiers’ rigorous Audio Set-up methodology fuses traditional critical listening with state-of-the-art room acoustic measurements. Professional grade microphones and thousands of dollars of equipment are used to measure your system and calibrate it to our quantitative targets for frequency response and sound decay.

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