The apartment is modern and gorgeous, but the acoustics are horrendous. It's an open concept living room and kitchen with exposed brick on all sides, a concrete floor, and metal plumbing hanging from the ceiling. It used to be an industrial plant I believe. I have already added many thick rugs across the space and it hasn't helped much at all. I got the television off the wall and placed it on a cabinet instead, but things are still a mess. How can I make the acoustics better? Would removing the home theater speakers make a difference? We're renting the apartment on a short-term lease of six months, so I can't making any wild changes. I can't imagine dealing with this for the next five or so months though. The walls are thick and it's nice to not hear my neighbors at all, but everything vibrates and I have to shout in order for Alexa to hear me.
You need sound damping material and directional speakers.
Thank you for responding, Wayne! I thought about adding damping material, but I can't really do anything with the walls. I can hang things like acoustic blankets from the metal pipes though. I guess I'll try that next. I can also set up a clothesline of sorts and drape dampening materials off of that. That's sure going to look tacky when company comes over though. Johnnycamp5 had a thread with a picture of his setup. I think the walls were brick, there was a small window, a rug or maybe carpet, and some nice speakers (I think Pi). His area looked comfortable and lived-in but it was still classy. I've searched for that thread to see if I could copy some of his techniques as I believe our rooms are somewhat similar, but I can't find the darn thing. I just don't want our main room to look like a DIY Pinterest fail. Then again, none of us can stand the acoustics right now so we can't be too choosy.
I can definitely get some directional speakers. Our home theater system needs updated anyway. Thanks again for your help!
Many speaker manufacturers let you choose the speaker's finishing so at least there's that. You could also try one of those freestanding acoustic partitions. Some of them look nice. I don't know that I would spend a lot of time and money changing up a place that I was only going to be in for a short period.
I don't know that I would spend a lot of time and money changing up a place that I was only going to be in for a short period.
Six months is not that long unless you extend your stay there. Find a better place first and then you can think of improving your home theater audio system. You might spend a lot on things you don't need after moving out.