Ikea Chopping Board for Turntable Isolation?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by DJtheAudiophile, Oct 24, 2018.

  1. harby

    harby Forum Resident

    Portland, OR, USA
    The only likely reason that bamboo even enters into the discussion, is when manufacturers are looking for the cheap cut-rate product to slap their name and wild audio claims on, bamboo and China go hand in hand.

    I just sawed a whole bunch of bamboo laminate flooring and it's nothing, saws like butter on a miter saw compared to pergo.
    LarryP, Gumboo, missan and 1 other person like this.
  2. missan

    missan Forum Resident

    IKEA shopping makes me bored
  3. Mike from NYC

    Mike from NYC Forum Resident

    Surprise, AZ
    You need something a lot more than maple and feet can supply if your TT is on a springy floor.

    Walk around the room and see where your floor is least springy like over a joist. Knowing which way the joists run would also help. In my former house I had springy floors and I moved my audio equipment racks to run perpendicular to the joists and close to where the joists are attached to the outer wall where the joists are strongest and where there is the least amount of spring.

    Mounting your TT on a wall may be an option, providing of course your walls don't shake when someone walks in the room.

    The kind of TT you have, whether it it has a suspension or not, also plays a huge part.

    Not a believer in any hard material to be used to isolate any piece of equipment. Granite, maple et al 'sing' when bass nodes/vibrations hit it. Why do you think bass traps are made of soft materials and not MDF, plywood or anything else that is hard. Softer materials absorb vibrations and turn those vibrations into heat and not more vibration. Others here may disagree with me but it doesn't matter. I researched and spoke to sound engineers, including one former forum member, and they agreed with what I read and my thinking.

    Bamboo OTOH is different, so although it may be hard it is made of random fibers pressed together under tremendous pressures and glue but I don't know much about bamboo other than it makes for nice flooring.
    DJtheAudiophile likes this.
  4. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    When we bought our house, it was new. We went to view it, and I noticed that the downstairs was a concrete floor. For me that made purchase a no-brainer. I jumped up and down, and said to my wife "it's a concrete floor - perfect for the hifi, particularly the turntable!!!". My wife knows me well enough to realise that I was perfectly serious :D

    So I have never had any issues with joists or anything like that.

    But a good friend who had a wooden floor cut holes in the floorboards where the feet of the rack were going and built brick piers down the the ground underneath. He finished the top of them nicely so it doesn't look awful.

    If you don't want to do that, or live in an upstairs flat, the other option is to find the joists and put four screws in, left slightly proud, at the spacing of the rack's spikes. Then the rack is coupled solidly to the joists.
  5. HenryH

    HenryH Forum Resident

    When all is said and done, turntable isolation isn’t a simple one-step process.

    The chopping board approach is fine, as long as it’s dense and solid, but you would still need another compliant isolating material, like rubber footings or some similar support under the TT. It’s all about creating a variation of materials to suppress vibration transfer.
    plastico, 4xoddic and Pastafarian like this.
  6. Pastafarian

    Pastafarian Forum Resident

    Well there's something different here then, as cutting through Bamboo is notoriously difficult my friend ruined his Japanese blades when trying to work with Bamboo in his guitar business.

    Certainly the pluses for Bamboo, price, it's more environmentally friendly and it comes from China.

    Do you sell laminated flooring, as I'm not sure you can talk about flooring and apply it to a board.

    I quote "PERGO® is the leader and most recognized consumer brand of laminate flooring. We invented laminate flooring in 1977, and were one of the first companies to sell laminate flooring in the United States."

    Do we have a trade war?
    4xoddic likes this.
  7. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    I've only visited IKEA in the days before they had a remotely useful website. And a royal PITA that was. Now I just order on-line. Armchair rather than hours of grief.
    Wasabi likes this.
  8. missan

    missan Forum Resident

    It also makes me very tired, but the food is cheap and rather OK; and much is very good quality me thinks. But I was really just trying in playing with similar pronunciations, I guess it might not work in English; I didn´t mean I was bored, I was board. :)
    Just Walking likes this.
  9. Pastafarian

    Pastafarian Forum Resident

    The Shopping Chanel, "You need to know the 'escape routes' in IKEA to avoid being the sheep led through every section."
  10. 4xoddic

    4xoddic Forum Resident

    How did we jump from a bamboo cutting board's possible use under a TT to bamboo flooring ?*?*

    When I was Googling bamboo + audio + rack in 2014, there were countless threads on DIYers & flooring contractors using bamboo flooring made with formaldehyde adhesive, coming in from China. The flooring would off-gas into the living space. I checked the usual DIY flooring big box stores & that This Old House Hour sponsor, LL. They were selling bamboo flooring known to contain formaldehyde. Most manufacturers make claims that are not easy to verify.

    The bamboo flooring on display in Menard's was evidently NOT happy with its backside exposed to the humidity in the store & the installation warped within a short period of time.

    Bamboo for an audio rack should have a moisture-proof finish on all sides. That's the only reservation I would have about the cutting board.
  11. 808_state

    808_state I get so promotional baby...

    In full disclosure I've been able to get the maple cutting boards for cheaper than the bamboo ones. So far I am pretty happy with the sound result I get from maple (my table weight 61 lbs) but would love to try bamboo if I found large ones at
    a reasonable price.

    I also realize that no, I'm not really isolating anything but am just creatively dispersing vibrations as best I can to minimize intrusion into music reproduction. So far I've learned that mass is your friend (mass in your table, mass in your rack and mass in your floor) but also realize that something like a Minus K isolation table is what you would need to get your table to truly "float" independent of it's surroundings. I've tried roller blocks, springs and both and so far maybe the roller block alone is the best result but I've acquired another large chopping block and may add springs back in. In my experience the roller blocks have not induce any sort of smear but rather have served to clean up and elucidate the top end. There are many factors that come into play...the weight of your rack, the weight of your table, the type of floor it all sits upon, ambient noise, ambient vibrations. Have fun but don't drive yourself crazy to where you're not even listening to records.
  12. Pastafarian

    Pastafarian Forum Resident

    The one thing I question is your mass statement, certainly not universal due to different approaches to equipment design. I found the best table for my LP12 was very light, around 1 Kilograms.

    And if a concrete floor has more mass than wood then I strongly disagree.
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
  13. swvahokie

    swvahokie Forum Resident

    Yes , mass is definitely not the friend of Rega and Linn. I use the ikea bamboo butcher block sitting on 4 isolation pads sitting on a lack table.
  14. Pastafarian

    Pastafarian Forum Resident

    LP12 abandoned by necessity but I've found my electronics don't like a concrete floor, this is from experience in different homes.
  15. 808_state

    808_state I get so promotional baby...

    Well I certainly don't presume to speak for what works with an LP12, I can only speak from my own experience. My turntable is a Yamaha GT-2000 that weighs 61 lbs and I have found a heavier, more massy rack sounds best (to my ears). I like the nice firm (not bloated) bass that the GT can deliver and it just seems to get better with added mass beneath the table.
  16. jeffmackwood

    jeffmackwood Forum Resident

    Go to your local granite counter top company and ask to buy their sink cutouts - many of which they'll either be scrapping or cutting into smaller samples. For a fee they will trim them to a rectangulat size that matches your turntable's footprint.

    Stack them separated by sheets of that non-stick non-slip pillowed rubber that you can buy at almost any hardware store. The more the merrier but I suggest three sheets of rubber and three slabs of granite. Start with rubber on the bottom, end with granite on top.

    Place turntable on top.

    The combination of mass (granite) and density changes (granite-rubber-granite) makes for very effective acoustic vibration isolation.

    I'm talking of course about vibration caused by speakers that might be transmitted through air or gear stand / racks. Small amplitude stuff. Not from the effects of someone walking across a very springy floor.

    spartree and DJtheAudiophile like this.
  17. Pastafarian

    Pastafarian Forum Resident

    Again I agree, no universal answer and the sandwich approach, which adds more mass can be very effective. But on the other hand people think using a wall shelf must be best as your wall is high mass, again using a stand can be the best option.

    Then there's the question What are the resonant frequencies of your amp, deck etc. As I said before I can't say Bamboo is better than Maple, as I've not tried it and how effective each is will be dependent on the structure of everything in your room.

    I certainly think other should be cautious about others experience, 3 years ago I would have said roller balls under my amp are beneficial.

    Have I just said ignore what I say:confused:.
  18. 808_state

    808_state I get so promotional baby...

    In my mind there are three basic approaches (you can add, modify or cross off as you see fit...no tears will be shed):

    Floating (ie. Minus K where your TT is almost immune to ground travelling ambient vibrations, I suppose the inner tube is next best thing and after that basic springs)
    Balanced on a pin head or "lighter is better" (a combination of balance and rigidity with the idea of reducing the number of contact points)
    Pure Mass (you're simply using a large amount of material matter to disperse energy)

    I think for people with bouncy floors that a wall shelf is a great idea but if you have a train regularly running near by, coupling your table to that wall is really not going to help you much. I also recall
    one of the guys from Swedish Audio Technologies saying that a vacuum mat on your platter made one of the biggest audible differences for sound improvement that he himself had heard.
    Pastafarian likes this.
  19. Pastafarian

    Pastafarian Forum Resident

    I think the idea of low/rigid mass is that mechanical energy migrates towards mass.

    Depending on the type of music you play and if you use a sub, you can generate enough energy in your wall, to be a problem for SQ, probably more likely with a suspended sub-chassis design, due to it's springs moving in the vertical plane. A solid wooden floor with a light table may be a better option, in that situation.
  20. Abbagold

    Abbagold Working class hero

    New Orleans
    Racquet balls cut in half under the base. It’s a cheap and effective way for isolating your cutting board and TT. I picked up a thick maple cutting board from bed bath and beyond and used that with the balls and it cost me a total of $30
  21. HiFi Guy 008

    HiFi Guy 008 Forum Resident

    New England
    I don't understand why buying a wooden board is tantamount to isolate a turntable if it takes some further isolation such as feet to work. And I would NEVER use granite to isolate anything.

    Why not just put the feet/inner tube under the table itself?

    The Ikea Lack tables I bought were not filled with a "wooden honeycomb" but cardboard instead. They did nothing for me. Where can I find these honeycomb Lack tables?
  22. jeffmackwood

    jeffmackwood Forum Resident

  23. action pact

    action pact Music Omnivore

    I read that they changed the construction years ago.
  24. doak

    doak Forum Resident

    New Orleans
    I’ve had the second cited block under my TT for over 10 years. It is situated on several of those inexpensive 2”x2” cork with ribbed rubber covering thingees and works wonderfully. I treat the block with mineral oil once a year or so and no cracking/separation.
    Kyhl and Wasabi like this.
  25. Just Walking

    Just Walking Forum Resident

    Didn't realise that. They must have changed at some point. But why is what is inside important? A honeycomb structure can have any material for the inner layer provided it is bonded to the top and bottom skins. The aim is light weight, weight-bearing, and non-resonant. And the Lack tables are certainly lightweight and non-resonant and support a fearsome weight.

    By comparison, Optical tables have stainless steel skins and hexagonal aluminium honeycomb, and space vehicle structures are carbon fibre skins and hexagonal aluminium honeycomb. Russ Andrews Torlyle is wooden skins and rectangular wooden honeycomb. So many different methods are used dependent on application.

    I don't have a problem with a cardboard honeycomb.

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