Sealed vs. Vented Cabs in boomy rooms
Lately I've been playing more and more boomy rooms with hollow stages in the corners with either glass or masonry walls. Overall room acoustics have very little sound damping; no bass in PA and either a quiet group in a large room or 100 seater with a rock band; PA is only for vocals and sax.
I use either a vented 1x15 or 2x12 - 90% of the time and the last sealed cabinet owned was an SVT 20 years ago.
Would a sealed cabinet help tighten up the boomy low end?
The onstage sound is worse than out front even with the cabinet tilted although neither if it is great.
The irony is that these cabinets sound great at home and in our smallish treated rehearsal space.
Last thought was getting the cabinet off the ground 2' to 3'.
I don't think a sealed cab makes much difference in this situation.
I play a cuppla similar stages/rooms. Getting ur cab up close to ear level & , if you're going thru FOH, turning down as much as possible onstage helps.
If your rig's supplying room sound..... :confused::banghead:
Hmmm, difficult. I s'pose getting it off the ground as much as possible.
Yeah, I also don't think cab type is going to make any difference correcting a bad sounding room. You'll be much better off twisting knobs on your rig. Obviously, try cutting lows & boosting mids for starters.
Changing cabinet location is probably your best tool.
What you might be hearing as "boom" could also be suckouts.
Some notes are accentuated, others are cancelled (sucked out).
This is controllable (somewhat) by cabinet position in the room.
Try a corner, and see if this makes a change.
^ good answer, bummer for my situation is- we're a 8 piece band & we only fit one way on the dang stage.
Hope Jim fares better
Actually a sealed cab would be easier to control in a live room. I have a regular gig that has the worse room reflections in town. All tile floors, plaster walls with no acoustic treatment and a "hole" the drummer sits in. This room requires me to cut the bass and be very careful with the low-mids. I don't care much for the sound on stage but it sounds wonderful out front.
Elevating the cab will lessen floor coupling and might help the on stage sound some (allow more low end) but out front is still a problem so be careful.
Just read the corner placement idea, in a very "live" room this will help on stage but increase the problem out front. It is just my opinion that out front matters more than what I hear next to me. This is not true for everyone so that is a decision every player needs to make at some point.
Search for the "Roy Allison effect" or "Boundary effect"
The above is right - move the speaker.
The difference between sealed, and vented, or any two cabs is EQ curves. EQ can equal things out, but it can be a lot of work.
The SPL meter method can work. If you have time before a gig, put a cab in the audience section, and play pink noise. Move the meter on stage to find the best place to put your cab. It's where the meter curve doesn't have a peak or null.
Arrangement can help-sounds like you're tight for space with an 8-piece, but if your cab is currently set at the outer edge of the backline edge, from my experience I'd suggest getting your cab tight next to the drummer and turning down, and positioning your body at the outer edge of the backline.
Thanks for these suggestions.
We are a 5 piece band on tight stages; ironically I usually am against the rear corner wall.
+1 to hard parallel surfaces often times with plaster or glass walls, ceramic tile flooring, and either drywall or acoustic tile ceilings with humans and table cloths as the only damping material.
I will try elevating the cabinet next although am not against the idea of a sealed box if there was some certainty of a fix. The attenuated low bass with a greater than normal boost in mids has been the best alternative although not great. I need to not be so distracted by poor stage sound especially when out front sounds OK during sound checks.
OTOH, it sure isn't about the money and if the on stage sound is too much of a compromise the entire night is not that rewarding.
I wish there was a "magic bullet" for these situations. I know full well it is not as fun. The only thing that could bring you satisfaction of some sort is IEM (In Ear Monitors), but no pant flapping there!
I've got plenty of great gear.
Back in the day I played real clubs / venues.
The last few years have been neighborhood bars and smaller clubs with some pals from 20 years ago.
I hate crappy stage sound when the mud affects my playing.
I really don't have the patience or time to experiment anymore and really am looking for the magic bullet (which certainly does not exist for all applications).
OTOH, I'd dropped $500 - $750 in a heartbeat if gear could make the problem go away.
Stupid crappy venues; in the DC area, we're thankful to have any places to play anymore.
Magic bullet may be a Schroeder 1212.
I'm a big fan of sealed cabs but I mainly go through PA systems with plenty of 18 inch subs. From my experience in that situation the low end from the PA subs that you can hear from the stage makes ported cabs sound extremely muddy. Even without a PA I prefer sealed cabs. One of the big misconceptions with ported cabs is frequency range. I find frequency range to be completely worthless so don't buy a cab based on them. My 810e and 410he produce a really tight low b where the ported hlf I used to have was extremely boomy and muddy. The other nice thing about sealed cabs is because they aren't as boomy you can play louder without your bandmates complaining about you being to loud because often what guitar players think is to loud is that boomy low end.
imo a sealed cabinet is a much better option for a boomy room.. the bass in a sealed cabinet rolls off with a gentler second order response and such bass is *usually* more tightly controlled. A vented or ported cab has a 4th order response, so steeper in falloff, but is generally more extended and less well controlled at the limits..if room resonance is in a freq range where the port is assisting extension then thats not gonna be good.
Additionally, to prevent room excitations, certainly dont end up with your cab in a corner, pull it away from a wall, and you can even lift it up off the floor a bit.. all of these things will help...as can being sensitive with the eq.. but definitely tailor the positioning and eq to the audience so you will need help
Subs, far too close to the "hollow" wooden stage & too effin loud- is the main problem at a couple of "venues" I play.:mad:
Sealed cabs might work a touch better, but basically it's a boom time!
I use the TH500 Aguilar & it's drive control cuts both hi's & lows & at the worst boomy room I put this control on & also cut the bass control. Best of a bad situation:banghead:
I can see a sealed box being perceived as less boom.. but that is because it generates less bass than a vented box.
The boom is a node (or multiples) excited by the cabinet.
Move the cabinet, change the nodes.
You apply Finnegan's Finagling Factor to cab location until you are happy with it. :D
I've done the pink noise in the room thing... wow does that torque off the owners and other humans in the room...
OP, move your cab as close to corner as you can get.
If necessary put a g*itar cab on top, as they will get him to turn down.. a benefit.
The worst place for you cab is the middle of a wall, and some feet away from that wall.
my advice, in a boomy room, turn the bass knob down. play under everyone else
in volume & keep it tight. the lower the volume, the tighter the sound.
ever played a gig in a wine cellar? haha
I've played in a wine cellar (half-circle profile, floor and wall/celing made of stone, narrow and long room) and am thankfull for this. I have experienced sonic hell, and any other room I play in my life will be better.
Only thing that mildly helped was cutting bass and general volume down.
For me, as far as having less problems from room to room, a good sealed cab has been the magic bullet. Everytime I've gigged with a ported cab just to see if Im imagining things, I run screaming back to my nv610 and the headaches go away. Not all sealed cabs are awsome though.
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