I always thought anaechoic (sp?) rooms were supposed to be not good for music, and pretty odd for speech? No expert, though, on this esoteric stuff.

I believe the term “anechoic chamber” is misused.

An anechoic chamber is a room without echo. Without any echo.

It is something totally different from acoustic treatment applied to a room.

Besides, there are very few truly anechoic chambers in the world. It’s a difficult thing to build.

Is an anechoic chamber good for music?
No, of course not! :laughing:

Is a nicely shaped and treated room good for music?
Oh yes, it is! :smiley:


Yes. Why not? The Naim DR upgrades are expensive and it offers customers an upgrade and is more environmentally friendly to upcycle non DR units.


I wonder if the benefits of an anechoic room have now been overtaken by computers.
Apparantly being in one is a bit unnerving and very unnatural.

I visited an NCR site many years ago and went into one of these chambers. Very strange, whilst fascinating, experience.

Much of what we perceive as our “own voice” disappears when speaking and being in an echo free environment is completely alien to our brains and the way we locate and understand sounds. The experts ran various demos of how our brain gets confused in this environment.

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I don’t think so.

The purpose of an anechoic chamber is precisely to confirm a mathematical model.

There are many possible applications.

Among others, loudspeakers.

Some companies with the financial means and the skills (very few) digitally model their drivers and enclosures.

But these remain digital models. The prototype must then be built and tested to confirm the model. To do this accurately, you need an anechoic chamber. And that too has a cost.

Most speaker manufacturers do not have the means to do that.

As for how it feels like to be in an anechoic chamber, I believe it must be really uncomfortable.

Our brain needs references to locate us in space. We use three main ones: the equilibrium control in the inner ear, sight and hearing.

Hearing is often forgotten.

We need noise/sounds to locate ourselves in space. Especially sounds reflected from the ground.

Making walls and ceilings disappear is not a big problem for our brain. It is disturbing, but you can get used to it. It’s like being outdoors in a silent environment.

But removing the floor is problematic. The brain gets lost and can’t compensate. Hence the massive discomfort one feels in an anechoic room (an effective one!)

Sight and hearing are no longer in coherence with each other.

And that’s important to remember when treating a room: do not over-treat the floor.

For example, covering the whole room with carpeting is not a good idea.

That’s something I won’t do in my room. I placed 15 cubic metres of absorbing material on the walls, but nothing on the floor.

I think we are drifting. Sorry, @Stu299 .
This conversation would be better suited for The Listening Room Reality thread.

No worries Thomas it’s all very interesting reading. Things have calmed down in my room, maybe it’s the 500 settling into my room or maybe it’s my ears settling into the 500. But I still have the same ‘shock and awe’ reaction every time I listen to it, and long may that continue…


That’s really nice to read. I still have the same reaction to the 300DR, so I can only imagine how great it would be with the 500.


I am still impressed by how unimpressive the 500DR is. Just natural, lifelike music.


Sadly, mine has gone off the boil a bit lately. Actually the whole system, even the turntable sounds a bit lifeless. The tuner doesn’t sound too bad, but then that starts with a fair lead over all the other components. I might have to break the whole system down, dust and rebuild to see if that helps. Maybe it’s a psychological thing.

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You could just try switching off and unplugging and replugging the interconnects a few times to clean the contacts. The 500 also benefits from a switch-off for a minute or so every few months


The whole lot was powered down for a few hours earlier this week owing to thunderstorms, but I’d felt it was sounding a bit off before that and hadn’t been aware of any recovery afterwards. I do find the 552 takes a long time to warm up when properly cooled down. Funnily enough, I’m listening to Record Review on BBC Radio 3 just now and it’s sounding really good. I think I will try a bit of unplugging later, since that’s a lot easier than full disassembly. Thanks for the reminder.

Breaking down and rebuilding the system after a long while is a good idea. Breaking and re-making contacts helps too. Some have also reported gains just by a carefully cleaning out the speaker sockets with isopropyl and a cotton bud.


Yes i did that after your last post, well worth doing, cost a few pounds for materials which will last for years👍


I have read the speaker socket cleaning thread, but I cannot erase the thought of the cotton bud getting stuck, which was mentioned there. If I were to do it on the amp, I might be inclined to do it in situ too because trying to reposition a NAP500 on a Fraim glass is fraught with risks and that must, in turn, increase the risk of cotton bud failure too.


Yes, hence I say “carefully”…

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Id never heard of the cleaning speaker sockets with isopropyl alcohol before, I thought it was just plug and unplug a few times every year or so. I may give the proper clean a try later.

I bought some pipe cleaners and iso propyl alcohol……pipe cleaners are ideal for the reason you mention Clive.

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And cotton buds are now made of paper rather than plastic and I can imagine these going soft quite quickly when soaked in isopropyl alcohol.

Can you use regular alcohol like whisky or gin?