By Wilde Becker. Speaker Stands. At Tuesday, July 30th 2019, 19:07:19 PM.
An isolation platform works in a similar way to a car’s suspension, and comprises three mechanical components: a spring, a mass supported by the spring, and some form of damping to prevent the sprung mass from continuing to bounce around. In a car you have the springs between the axles and the car body: the car body provides the mass and the shock absorbers provide the damping, to stop you having a bouncy ride.
Whether you use stands or platforms depends on what else you have in your system: usually you’ll pick whichever makes it easiest to get your speakers into the right physical position without them being occluded by other equipment, such as computer screens.
It’s physics: for every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction.
Of course, you do still need to attend to room reflections by adding some basic acoustic treatment — but that’s another subject and one that we have covered on numerous occasions in our Studio SOS series.
You may have noticed that some speaker stands are fitted with spikes on the base, which help to make a rigid and stable contact with the floor. As long as the stands are both robust and stable, this strategy works well on solid floors, but you may find that it causes problems on wooden floors, due to vibrations from the speaker cabinet being transferred to the floor via the rigid stand and spikes. The floor will then act as the king of soundboards!
A cheap DIY option is to build a couple of towers by stacking concrete blocks or bricks. This low–cost approach really works — we’ve used it successfully on more than one Studio SOS visit — and because of the high mass, very little vibrational energy makes it through to the floor. Some people like the rugged appearance of bricks, but if it’s not to your taste you can always disguise them with cloth drapes, or even spray them gold if you like that kind of thing!