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Thread: New studio, large room, recording booth

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    New studio, large room, recording booth

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    Greetings to everybody.
    I just recently rented a big house and want to build a studio in itīs largest room downstairs. Itīs quite large - about 35-40 m2 (long room, not square), about 3 metres to the ceeling.
    The main problem is that the floor is sandstone/hone and I am not allowed to modify it, so the only solution right now is carpet.

    What I was thinking about doing is to split the room in two using a wall of a couple layers of acoustic foam, drywalls and padding, so as to create a large recording environment/booth of sorts (half the room) and a control room - isolating the booth as much as possible and treating the control room acoustically.

    Iīve had a couple of people giving me different advice. Some said I should leave the room as it, treat it acoustically and placing the mic in the middle, others said I should not carpet the room at all etc.

    Now I am humbly asking for your advice. What do you guys think I should do?

    Thanks

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    Carpet - no, but you may find, after doing some experimenting that a few throw rugs would be good.
    "Acoustic foam" - NO!! You need to do some reading about room acoustic treatments.

    Are you going to be recording others, or just yourself/your band/mates? Unless you are trying to make a business out of this, keep everything in one room.
    Mike B My new album on CD Baby: Fact and Fiction
    My Bandcamp site: http://mikebirchmusic.bandcamp.com

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    The 'acoustical' peeps here will want to know the length and width of the room since that is critical to the difficulty or otherwise of 'taming' it. You do not for instance want L/W to be an integer number, 5 by 8 would not be too good e.g.

    What you do to the room depends IMHO to an extent on the sort of forces you will be recording? Up to say a 4 piece rock band yes, you could partition off a section of the room but if you are going to entertain the Luton Girls Choir you need the space!

    Personally I would build some gobos to hide behind when you record so that you can enjoy the whole room when mixing (suitable 'trapped' of course)
    Also I would build a 'dias' to put a drum kit on out of 18mm ply and timber and cover it with HD carpet. Tends to improve the sound I understand? Make it about 200mm high, it will also protect the floor which I guess is an issue?

    Dave.

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    I would suggest to not split the room unless you need isolation while recording two instruments at once or for isolating yourself from an instrument being recorded. In basic theory, a larger room will be better for anything. But that does depend on the exact size and how room modes happen in any given space. Carpet does basically nothing other than maybe slightly alter the high end reflections. Not even sure that is audible/measurable. I have carpet in my mixing room. Concrete floors in my drum and guitar isolation rooms. But all have appropriate acoustic treatments in ceiling and walls.

    There are many variables here. Your best option on the cheap is to try things and see how it works. Otherwise contact a professional studio builder. Start by forgetting about anything made of foam or egg cartons and see what happens.
    Last edited by jimmys69; 1 Week Ago at 18:30.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ARTonic View Post
    Greetings to everybody.
    Itīs quite large - about 35-40 m2 (long room, not square), about 3 metres to the ceeling.
    Is that 35-40 meters long...?

    That's pretty long.
    How wide is it?

    I also think you get more mileage out of a larger single space...but it depends on how you track things, and what it is you are recording and how much you need to isolate individual elements, etc.

    I think the bigger question is how much are you willing to invest in time and money to build a proper studio space in a rented house.
    When you leave...it will all stay behind.

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    Quote Originally Posted by miroslav View Post
    Is that 35-40 meters long...?
    35-40 m2 would be 35-40 Square Meters. Roughly 360 square feel, but that could be 18'x20', or 36'x 10'....
    Mike B My new album on CD Baby: Fact and Fiction
    My Bandcamp site: http://mikebirchmusic.bandcamp.com

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    Oh...I see.
    I didn't quite pick up on the notation...I thought it was a typo.

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    Thanks for the replies

    Understood...

    Ok... letīs say - for arguments sake - that I would like to create a soundproof room for vocal recordings, or at least in the case of splitting the room, making one part (around 15 m2) as soundproof/dry as possible.

    1/ Iīve recorded vocals in "dead"/soundproof rooms and I prefer it like that.

    2/ itīs more professional - or at least it looks more professional - I will be dealing with a lot of clients, whoīs first impression of the studio itself is very important.

    3/ The noise factor: I do have some neighbours and three windows facing a yard. So I donīt want to disturb anybody in the case of recording "louder" singers, nor do I want any disturbances on the recordings.
    In certain cases I might also record audio and video with bands, it doesnīt have to be perfect, just promotional/marketing material.

    I know in these conditions it canīt be perfect, so I am seeking the best sollution for my needs. I am willing to spend 2000-3000 euros on the whole thing, which in my country can get you far, if I find the right materials and some people who can help me.

    What do you guys think?

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    Splitting the area for a recording studio and control room would be ideal, but you want to really read on how to isolate the spaces. Tons of information about using more dense materials (e.g. "rockwool") instead of foam, as well as adding treatment to the studio part. With a 3m ceiling and that much space for primarily vocals, building a "room in a room" would be my goal, so you can decouple the studio space from the outer walls, as well as the control room. It will take more materials, but should still be doable for that budget I'd think (assuming your budget is not including the recording equipment?).
    "... I know in the mornin' that it's gonna be good
    when I stick out my elbows and they don't bump wood." - Bill Kirchen

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    Quote Originally Posted by ARTonic View Post
    Understood...

    Ok... letīs say - for arguments sake - that I would like to create a soundproof room for vocal recordings, or at least in the case of splitting the room, making one part (around 15 m2) as soundproof/dry as possible.

    1/ Iīve recorded vocals in "dead"/soundproof rooms and I prefer it like that.

    2/ itīs more professional - or at least it looks more professional - I will be dealing with a lot of clients, whoīs first impression of the studio itself is very important.

    3/ The noise factor: I do have some neighbours and three windows facing a yard. So I donīt want to disturb anybody in the case of recording "louder" singers, nor do I want any disturbances on the recordings.
    In certain cases I might also record audio and video with bands, it doesnīt have to be perfect, just promotional/marketing material.

    I know in these conditions it canīt be perfect, so I am seeking the best sollution for my needs. I am willing to spend 2000-3000 euros on the whole thing, which in my country can get you far, if I find the right materials and some people who can help me.

    What do you guys think?
    Still don't know length and width? I am still of the opinion that it would be shame to reduce the room size. Yes, having a 'soundproof' control room looking onto the recording area LOOKS cool and jetsetty but if the resultant sound is compromised, both in the music making area AND for subsequent mixing/editing, ('mastering'?) what have you gained?

    The windows will need some form of 'mass' against them to keep sound in/out. If you want the light you need double/triple glazing units on top of the existing windows. If not, MUCH cheaper to slap plasterboard in there and seal it up. Often recording takes place at night and in the wee smalls so nothing to see anyway!

    'We' need to know the forces you intend to work with? You mentioned 'singers'. If one or two voices at a time a two mic input AI and a couple of decent mics would suit. Say Ģ2-300* for an interface and about the same each for mics. Add stands and cables and you have about Ģ1000 left for acoustic works and my take on that would be, as I mentioned before. Make some acoustic dividers (aka 'gobos') One side reflective, ply, chipboard, MDF. The other a goodly layer of absorbent, say 200mm of GF or similar. These, in addition to trapping and other absorbent on the walls (I hesitate to say 'foam'!) and you should be able to contain a singer and keep out room effects and noise to a decent degree (people here do record at locations where you have to sit and be VERY quiet!) Of course, if you are recording a drum kit + 100W gitstack you can chat amongst yourselves!

    If your room is a decent shape you will have the envy of many here since you should have a very good space for monitoring and mixing, distant walls means nearfield monitors will give a very solid stereo image (if they are any good of course ! Ģ500 per pair is a starter price)

    Lastly, DO hunt up the 'studio SoS' articles from soundonsound.com and even ask on their forum as well.

    *No good me quoting Euros at ya now. Thomann will give up to date price comparisons.

    Dave.

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