The Affinity Corner Controller model ACC-448, measuring 4" wide by 4" deep by 47" tall, is identical in construction and mounting procedure to the Wall Controller. Halo Audio's acoustical treatment design calls for mounting one of these units in each corner of the room centered vertically. The use of this product, when properly placed, minimizes standing sound waves in the corners where acoustical energy builds up waiting for more sound to come crashing into the corners. The use of the Corner Controllers greatly improves sound clarity and perceived sound source direction.
The model ATC-16 Affinity TriPlex Controller is a lightweight triangular-shaped unit that measures 16" triangular by 4" deep. Manufacturer recommended application of these units is to place one in each upper corner of the room to minimize sound energy build up in those areas. Each unit comes with an easy to install wall mount bracket and a rear-panel-mounted attachment device. The company suggests the TriPlex Controller mounting bracket be placed approximately 3" below ceiling height for best results.
The model ABC-724 BiPlex Controller measures 4" by 4" by 24" and is a mini-version of the Corner Controller. The purpose of this unit is to control standing wave energy that builds along the corner area between the wall and ceiling. Design recommendations are to mount at least one of these units horizontally where each wall meets the ceiling with placement being centered left to right. For longer walls, multiple BiPlex Controller units may be required.
The published noise reduction coefficient (NRC) for the Wall Controller is 1.15, for the Corner Controller; 1.11, for the TriPlex Controller, 1.08, and for the BiPlex controller; 1.05. NRC frequency specific product test results are available from Halo Audio as are frequency specific absorption specifications using the Sabin measurement reference for acoustical designers who prefer to use that design technique. The products are available in a variety of fabric colors, wood stain and painted finishes - or custom color matches when stringent architectural designs demand such. Halo Acoustics has various pre-packaged Room Paks available and also offers an accurate acoustical design service.
Overall, the assembled quality of the products in the 15 box Room-Pak kit that was provided for my examination and review appears to be top notch. The product designs use a nice combination of reflection and absorption to achieve a powerful sound control that keeps the listening zone free of stray audio energy. In my opinion, when the correct mix of Affinity Acoustic product is chosen and properly applied to a specific situation, the end results can be outstanding. Listening tests in a pre-treated room yielded less than desirable sound quality with the sound appearing to be coming from multiple locations throughout the room because of uncontrolled reflections and standing waves. There was an obvious reduction in music definition, and an apparent clouding of spectral reproduction. Post Room-Pak installation tightened the room sound and made the room come alive without a feeling of acoustical dampening. The system greatly improved perceived directionality, spectral harmonic balance and imaging. The clarity and definition of the music came to life just like one would expect from the stage of a well-designed and tuned concert hall.
Bartlebaugh is director of broadcast engineering, WKSU-FM/Kent State University, Kent, OH.
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