Sweet Notes Animation Real World Solutions
For Real World Studios

By Kenny Bergle/Sweetwater Sales Engineer

Have you ever wondered what your room would sound like if you paid big bucks to a qualified professional acoustician for a consultation? Do you have a sneaking suspicion that the next piece of expensive gear you buy might not sound as good as it really should because your listening environment doesn't sound as good as it could?

Here at Sweetwater, our concept has always been to provide the most value for our customers' money. And sometimes money is better spent on the room itself instead of on the electronic signal path or even new monitors. Knowing the value of an accurate, pleasing listening room, we have joined forces with acoustics expert Dr. Peter D'Antonio, President and CEO of RPG Diffusor Systems, Inc., in spreading the wealth of information about acoustics to musicians everywhere and making the physics of acoustics actually work to your advantage! Dr. D'Antonio recently published a White Paper on Acoustics that discusses in detail the critical aspects of sound and acoustic imaging as it relates directly to the listening room. The complete report is available exclusively online as part of Sweetwater University on our web site and we urge all studio owners to download a copy. In this article, we will be discussing some specific findings and how they may apply to every musician and their listening environment through the RPG AcousticTools line.

"Once (a person) gets the scientific principles down, the actual application of controlling sound in a given room is quite simple," says Dr. D'Antonio. After personally listening to many hours of his explanations and lectures, I believe him! You learn to list the problems and then list the solutions for your specific situation. You learn about the tools that help to shape and control the sound in your room.

Studio with RPG Actually, the ideal situation is to completely erase any effect the room has on the sound. In Dr. D'Antonio's own words, "The music you hear in your studio is distorted by interfering reflections and the room's low frequency modal response. Even the most sophisticated electronic equipment cannot overcome these acoustic problems. Listen to the music, not the room." Sounds good to me!

We strongly suggest you access our Web Site and read Dr. D'Antonio's Paper. When you see how dramatically listening room problems can degrade audio performance, you'll probably be thinking twice before starting any critical mix in a totally untreated studio. Aside from that, the concepts presented are interesting and important for all of us who make our livings in music business or even if you just want to make sure that the music you're making sounds the best it possibly can.

AcousticTools from RPG is the first truly affordable, integrated system that lets you realize the full potential of your hardware investment. RPG has been recognized worldwide as the acoustical reference of the music industry with tens of thousands of diffuser systems already installed at prestigious facilities such as the Hit Factory, Sony Music, Real World Studios and Gateway Mastering. AcousticTools packages now bring the proven performance of this cutting-edge technology within reach of every single musician with a home or project studio. It's a difference everyone can hear, not just those folks with "golden ears."

There are actually so many performance packages available that we couldn't even begin to describe them all here, but what is important is that there are listening room solutions for musicians starting at a shockingly low list price of just $279! This particular package, which is geared towards listening rooms of about 8 feet x 11 feet (about the size of your average bedroom studio) consists of six Soundwaves, two Soundrounds and two Soundcorners. Frankly, this is an insignificant investment compared to the improvement you will immediately hear.

The AcousticTools room treatment packages are split into three room sizes: 8 x 11, 12 x 16 and 16 x 22 (these are approximate). Then there are three levels of treatment designated Control Room A, B and C, with A being your best level of acoustic treatment. The RPG Silver Package ($1999 list) is a perfect way to start seriously treating your listening room while still staying within a fixed budget. It consists of four each of the proprietary RPG RFZ Abflectors, B.A.S.S. Traps and Skylines which will allow you to really experience what this technology can do by hearing exactly how much better this package will make your room sound (for way less than the cost of a new multitrack or high end monitors), while allowing for your future expansion.

Imagine, you've spent thousands of dollars - maybe even tens of thousands of dollars - on your equipment from mixers and multitracks to high quality monitors and some great mics. That's a lot of money, but by spending just a fraction of that on your room, you'll unlock every bit of the sonic potential of that expensive gear.

So before you spend another dime on equipment, contact us here at Sweetwater. We can help you choose from AcousticTools packages in just about any price range. We can even custom design a studio treatment specifically for your room (you can even send us a fax of your studio). We'll work with you to make sure it sounds like a million bucks for, well, a heck of a lot less.