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Sonovo - Sound System Design



Supershag Dance Studio Charlestown is a large open space consisting of large flat surfaces, lots of reflective glass, hardwood floors, and Mirrors on the walls. Such a space is usually quite problematic to attain good sonics in. The surfaces cause echo in the upper frequencies which results in unintelligible speech and lots of background noise which makes the environment “fatiguing” to the user. The parallel walls and floor/ceiling surfaces result in “standing waves” in the lower frequencies, causing “boominess” in the bass region and a lack of definition to the music. The studio is also located in a residential building separated by one pane of glass from the hallway. Acoustic isolation from the adjacent areas is of critical importance.



Creation of a controlled sound environment where slap echo and standing sonic waves are kept to a minimum.

Acoustics that provide comfortable speech for the instructors.

Isolation of sound from units adjacent to the dance studio.

Controlled sonic output that allows students to clearly hear and feel the bass notes and rhythm of the music without being loud or intrusive to instruction.


Room treatment:

Sonovo Inc. used the following methods to create desired results in this space. These include:


3” Layers of “Quiet Batt” natural (non toxic) insulation applied to all windows separating the dance studio from the residential hallway.

Empty “cavities” created between glass and studio essentially creating a double-wall for sonic isolation.

“Ultra Touch” natural sound absorption material applied to ceiling above mirrors and around pillars of space.

Acoustical sealant applied to all entrances and exists.

Acoustical diffractors used to break up standing waves.

Sound system:


Twelve Focal 706S speakers:

The use of multiple small speaker sets allows a small travel distance between speaker and listener. This allows a lower overall volume level and a wider stereo coverage area. Use of inverted dome tweeters provides 60 degree sound dispersion; double that of average speaker systems.


Custom built 18” PHL subwoofer system:

Special high output 18” driver in corner loaded 3-piece cabinet constructed of 1” MDF, heavily braced and damped with Black Hole 5  (five-layer damping material). Subwoofer is driven by 750 watt amplifier. Use of large driver in a special cabinet is optimized for music material played at dance studio.


Crossover systems:

Dual electronic 3-way crossovers used for subwoofer system and tactile bass transducer system installed on floors provide tuning capability for sound system to room.


Tactile transducer systems:

Eight “Buttkicker” tactile transducer systems installed on specific locations of the dance floor extend bass response to 8Hz; allow students to “feel” the beat of the music no matter what the volume level of the sound system is set at. The transducers convert the entire wood floor to a natural speaker that can be felt, but not heard once one steps off the floor.



The studio system is driven by twenty two channels of amplification providing a total output of over 9,750 watts of power running on three dedicated twenty amp circuits.



The sources used for music reproduction include a dedicated PC with 4-channel output, CD players and connection for iPod. All sources are handled through a Pioneer Professional DJ mixing board. |  781-894-7424  

SuperShag Mega Dance Complex - 406 Moody Street, Waltham, MA, 02453

SuperShag Charlestown Harbour Side - 42 Eighth Street Suite 100, Charlestown, MA, 02129

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