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Hi there fellow inmates! First post in many years here. I hope you are all doing well.
I've been researching constrained layer damping systems in order to build three three-shelf racks for my equipment. I have seen the now nearly 15 year-old DIY Symposium thread, but there have been many advancements in polymers since then, and I'm not sure the formula I saw was close to optimal.
Although CLD systems can be constructed to cover a wide range of frequencies, I think one can only achieve a superior solution by knowing the vibration frequency or what he is trying to damp (or get incredibly lucky).
With all that as background, I'm looking to damp a CD player, a turntable and its stand-alone motor, a couple stand-alone power supplies, and a DAC. (See how old I am? I used an Oxford comma behind "supplies!") ;)
Can anyone give me insight in to the vibration frequency of such devices? It would help tremendously my choosing the viscoelastic polymer for my shelves.
Any other advice or experience you are willing to share about CLD systems for audio component shelving is greatly appreciated.
Many thanks for you help!
Edits: 04/14/17Follow Ups:
IMO, constrained layer damping is best kept to damping a wall or another non-audio object that vibrates/resonates within a listening room, rather than severely damping a shelf or vibration control platform by a constrained layer damping method. Even most loudspeaker enclosures don't feature constrained layer damping, of which I think is a telling factor about the matter.
IME, the key to vibration control for an audio shelf is optimized rigidity of the entire rack structure including the supports rather an a compliant aspect of the structure that may do more to store the energy rather than dissipate or nominally drain it. A platform should also not be totally deadened by damping materials, since the more musical notion should be to shift the resonant frequency of the platform to another that simply sounds better to the human ear. This can be done via tonewoods as bartc mentioned, or by carefully designed composite material structures which tend to be propriety in nature. I don't know of any real indicator that points to aggressive vibration damping being ideal for better audio except for getting rid of vibrations/resonances that severely affect audio circuitry or a mechanical device such as a digital transport.
An analogy can be considered in regards to vibration control footers. An example is the very compliant vinyl Vibrapod footer. It was discovered by an industrial vinyl products manufacturer that a CD player located in their factory skipped when vibration generating machinery were operating. When one of their products was placed under the CD player, the skipping ended. This is what I call a brick wall solution, where the baby is thrown-out with the bathwater. I find nothing audiophile in nature as to how audio gear sounds when supported by the highly-compliant design of a Vibrapod footer. It sounds ill-defined and bloated from a sonic signature POV. However, if a CD player skips due to a severe vibration prone environment, it can certainly be addressed with the caveat that a sonic trade-off tends to result when key issues are taken to extremes.
Please be realistic. There are far too many variables involved to isolate a few freq ranges. If you want to "tune" for one, then look up tone woods, etc., but if you're working in a larger general sense, then you might be missing the key to constrained layer damping. That works on each layer dealing with different freqs and the interface between each layer converting that vibration to friction and thereby dissipating it. At least that's my understanding. You can DIY the concept using many different combinations of materials and I frankly don't believe that you can optimize for your preferences in your system without the personal experimentation. I did this with lots of damping schemes mixed over time. For shelves, I found commonly available materials that I would work with at home and were cheap, which materials approximated the commercial product. And it worked well. To experiment I just didn't "fix" them in place; rather leaving them removable and replaceable until I found the combo that seemed to work best for my situation. YMMV
Pretty much all frequencies. Kill the ones that bother you. Prevention is better than cure. Build quality of your system components cant be overcome by sticky/bouncy things.
Real men choose EAR Isodamp C-1002. Michael Percy probably has it. The thicker the better. Take a look at the graph on their web site. T456
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