My wife, my 4 year old son and I moved into a new apartment last year and I have problems with excessive reflections and with bass build up in the corner where my Steinway Piano stands. I would be very grateful for tips for acoustic treatment with a very high wife coefficient.
One problem is the hallway that connects all rooms with the entrance. It's very reflective. It wouldn't be a problem if it would be my wife and I. But just one loud kid and I need to put my earplugs in.IMG_4153.HEIC (824.85 KB) Carpet is a no go. Is there something that I can put on the walls or the ceiling that is unobtrusive but effective?
Second problem is the living room. Although there is furniture in the room it is also very reflective. I think mainly owing to a big wall without anything on it. My wife is just working on a 18000 piece puzzle. So maybe we can glue the puzzle to something that is useful in absorbing some of the reflections.
Third problem is the sound of my piano in the living room. Because there is no other place for it I had to put it in a corner. There is a large build up of frequencies in the first, second and third octave of the piano. Mainly the second. It really stays there in the room if you hit a chord down there. There is about half a meter between the piano and the actual corner where I have a bookcase with my sheet music. So there is a space behind where I can stuff some rock wool. Would that help? IMG_4154.HEIC (1.02 MB)
First off, I'm glad you're interested in treating your space. It's an investment you won't regret.
Secondly, I'm on Windows 10 and can't find an app which opens .heic. If you can convert to .jpg and upload the smallest useful file, that'd be best.
Third, we need to quantify 'unobtrusive' and 'effective'. Like Ethan has said, even a washcloth will absorb something. If you want to get down to the second octave, which begins at C2/~65.5Hz then you will need something perhaps more substantial than what those qualifiers typically imply.
If you put a puzzle, which is likely made of rigid pieces, in front of an absorber then it will make the absorber reflective above 1kHz yet it's bass-mitigating properties should remain intact.
If you place 1.5' of rockwool behind a bookcase then it will do something but I hypothesize that you will be disappointed with the result. The reason is that broadband treatment, such as rockwool, is incident-dependent. In other words, you want to have the face of the material directly available to the energy you intend to absorb.
Here's my advice: create squares about 2" thick of rockwool and cover them with an artistic print. Maybe a mosaic/composite pattern where several pieces make up one image. That will be for general 'reflectiveness'. For the piano, you'll need thicker and larger panels - like a standard 2x4'x4" panel or up to 8" thick. That can surround the instrument to great effect forming what's called a recording zone. Basically, you want full absorption 4' in every direction from the source of the sound. For a piano, you'll want to extend the treatment 4' out from where you'd place the microphone. This should help a lot.
Hope that helps, let me know if you have further questions.