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Thread: New studio space...considering my options.

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    New studio space...considering my options.

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    I recently mentioned in the Prime "goals" thread that I was possibly going to be doing a studio expansion in the near future.
    Today I met with a contractor, and we kicked around some ideas. This will involve an addition, and also some overall house remodeling...but the addition and the existing space that it's being added on to, at one end of the house, is what I'm thinking about for the new studio space.
    I was initially considering using that for living space, and just keeping my studio where it is, and then expanding into the rooms that would be vacated once I moved into the new living spaces...but I'm pretty decided that my preferred option is to move the studio into that new space. That would be the real "WOW".

    The basics are simple...it's currently a 14'x24' space (it's actually an addition that the previous owner did, that connects to the rest of the house with a foyer in-between)...and I'm looking to add a another 10' to the shorter side...so the whole thing would be a 24'x 24' structure, joined to the rest of the house with the foyer in-between. I would also be adding a full bathroom at one end of that foyer, since the foyer would also be expanded. (It all works nice...we already agreed it was a good spot for the bathroom). I would need to have a bathroom for the studio...but going with a full bathroom instead of a half-bath will be the smarter choice.

    The real options that I'm trying to decide on is how (or if) to divide that 24'x24' space. I can't (well, I don't want to for a few reasons) go out more than the 10'...but I also know that 24'x24' is a prefect square. So...at this point, I'm thinking of leaving it as two rooms...14'x24 and the new 10'x24' space. I would use the bigger space as my main room where the console, monitors and rack gear would go, among other stuff...and then use the 10'x24' as the live room space, with a connecting door, and a small glass window between them.
    Also, both spaces will have vaulted ceilings going up 12'-14' feet...depending on how we decide to do it.

    That said...the idea of having one, big open space with the high ceiling really appeals to me...I just need to consider the "square" thing.
    The ceiling being vaulted will help things a lot...and I can possibly have the contractor change the angles of new walls internally by a few inches and.or just work in a bit more extensive acoustic treatment.
    Also...if I went with the 24'x24' open space, I would most likely want to add a couple of larger iso-booths at one end, like a couple of 5'x 6' booths at one end (though they would only have 8' ceilings, maybe 10') ...which should change the "square" aspect of the bigger open space significantly, I would think...???

    I have some time to kick this around...we're talking about starting the main addition portion of broader remodeling project by June...so I will look at the acoustics stuff and make a decision.
    Of course...going with a 10' x24' and 14'x 24' pair of rooms isn't really a bad option either. I would maybe do one iso booth at the end of the 10'x24' room...or still do two 5'x6' side-by-side booths.

    My other consideration is that I'm still not planning to do a full-tilt commercial studio thing. I want to do more outside recording work, but it will be mostly for my recording projects, and the "outside" work would be more for the people I'm already doing projects with.
    I would like to bring in a baby grand piano which is one reason I would like a bigger open space...though I think it would be OK in the 10' x 24' space considering that there will be the high ceiling.
    Finally, I want to also use the space for some band type rehearsing when needed, and for that, one big space would probably be more comfortable.

    Anyway...this is like the first baby step, just the initial discussion with the contractor...though I am pretty committed to seeing this happen, as I told him. So right now I'm kicking around the ideas, and looking for any suggestions that might help gel them into a final plan.
    One thing is for sure...my current space is jammed up. I have outgrown it, and I'm using every square inch of space, and in need of more. I've got too much gear kinda "stacked" and crammed...so I need to expand.

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    One update...

    So I was doing some web research about the room size options...and as it turns out, my 24'Lx24'Wx14'H single space may actually work out very well...if I include the two 6'x5' iso-booth...because it turns out that a room of 19'x24'x14' is a real good set of dimensions. The 6'x5' iso-booths at one end would effectively shrink one of the dimensions from 24' to 19'......the only thing to consider is what to do with the ceiling height of the booths. Like I said before...I think minimum would be 8' ceiling for the iso-booths...but I think more like 10' ceiling height would be much better, and then the remaining space above the booths could be turned into a giant trap.
    I'm thinking something like open framing above the booths...and then just stuff the shit out of that space with your typical pink insulation or something not so itchy, and then tack some kind of cloth to the face of the framing. So there would be the booths with a massive trap running the full width and height above them.

    I'm also thinking that with the vaulted ceiling...I could add a similar frame, say a foot below the actual top of the ceiling...and then stuff that vaulted space also with trapping material...running the length of the room.
    I think those two options would do a lot to take care of room acoustic issues...plus there would be the more basic type of traps spread around the walls and corners.
    I want to room to have a nice warm but live sound to it.

    If I go with the two room option...my 14'x24'x14' room would be fine...it's a pretty good set of numbers...but the 10'x24'x14' is not as good, and it introduces more nodes, which is to be expected since it's a smaller space. Of course, there are still the two booths, and the option to stuff some of the vaulted ceiling space, same as I mentioned above...it would just be done separately in each of the rooms.

    Lot of food for thought...but this wil be nice no matter which way I go, and certainly a great improvement to my current studio.

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    If I had a potential 24x24 foot space I would kick,scream,bite and pull some fur before I shrank it Mir! Even 24' is not "big", I mean, hardly the RAH is it?

    I am sure with room dividers (can hold gear) and GOBOHs (can be power and audio diss' boards) you can easily beat the squareness.

    Dave.

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    There is heat insulation and there is acoustic insulation. They are different and the acoustic insulation works with sound. The other insulation has a lot less effect on sound.

    It would most likely be cheaper to treat the whole room than start buying sound booths which are reported to be of different effectiveness.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ecc83 View Post
    If I had a potential 24x24 foot space I would kick,scream,bite and pull some fur before I shrank it Mir! Even 24' is not "big", I mean, hardly the RAH is it?

    I am sure with room dividers (can hold gear) and GOBOHs (can be power and audio diss' boards) you can easily beat the squareness.

    Dave.
    Well you're preaching to the choir....since I've always been a big fan of single open spaces for recording purposes...which is really what I prefer to do, but there is some reality that needs to be considered, and a perfectly square room is not something to just ignore...because yes, it's really "not THAT big" at 24'x24'...though I think the high ceiling will help a lot.
    Still it would be better to alter one of the dimensions somewhat, and the idea of some iso-booths at one end accomplishes that. Gobos will not impact nodes in a room, which are primarily dependent on the physical dimensions of the total space.
    I would still have gobos to use in the room, but if I want a cranked guitar amp sound for an electric, and at the same time an acoustic guitar playing another part in the studio...it won't work as well to isolate the two with just gobos. It would be better to stick the guitar amp in an iso-booth and crank the shit out if there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Orson View Post
    There is heat insulation and there is acoustic insulation. They are different and the acoustic insulation works with sound. The other insulation has a lot less effect on sound.

    It would most likely be cheaper to treat the whole room than start buying sound booths which are reported to be of different effectiveness.
    I hope you're not talking about some of the foam acoustic insulation...?
    Most of your broadband traps and bass traps use the same type of insulation internally that are used for heat insulating purposes...it's just a matter of using the more rigid kind, or building frames and using the loose kind. When sound is dampened and trapped...it's all about heat transfer to the insulation.
    Also...I thought I was pretty clear that the whole room would be treated (same as my current studio). I mean...I've been through this before...this isn't my first studio space.

    I also never said anything about "buying" those ready-made sound booths. I'm talking about building them into the space to accomplish both isolation needs which would be more effective than just gobos, and the booths would also indirectly change the physical dimension of the space so as not to have a perfect square room.

    TBH...the only thing I was kinda stuck on was the square room thing...but I was able to quickly sort out that concern by simply changing one of the dimensions, and the idea of adding a couple of 6' wide 5' deep iso booths at one end would solve the square room issue...and maybe I would also add a mic/storage space on that same side, using up the whole wall at one end....so I would effectively have one big open space that would be 24'L x 19'W x 14'H.
    Everything else about this I've already considered...so it's mostly some minor layout decisions.

    [EDIT]

    Oh, I also forgot to mention that the "foyer" space that connects the rest of the house to this addition, is also going to be available as a more live, reflective room, which is 14'L x 12'W x 12"H...and it has a slate floor with hardwood walls and ceiling. I'm sure I will be able to make use of it...and with carpet tossed on the floor and some of my larger "mobile" bass traps that I made a couple of summers ago added to the room...the reflectivity can be adjusted as needed....but right now it has a nice slap-echo sound...not real glassy, thanks to all the wood, and it's a single kind of slap and not the annoying flutter-echo you can get with some typical sheetrock rooms. It will be fun to see what kind of sounds can be recorded in there too. Maybe even try a drum kit in there....hang a couple of mics off the ceiling.
    Last edited by miroslav; 03-16-2019 at 11:44.

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    WAS going to leap to your defence Mr M and say you are NOT one of the noobs we get every week wanting to build a booth for $10 that will keep out the trains! But you have defended yourself, admirably.

    Dave.

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    Quote Originally Posted by miroslav View Post
    I recently mentioned in the Prime "goals" thread that I was possibly going to be doing a studio expansion in the near future.
    Today I met with a contractor, and we kicked around some ideas. This will involve an addition, and also some overall house remodeling...but the addition and the existing space that it's being added on to, at one end of the house, is what I'm thinking about for the new studio space.
    I was initially considering using that for living space, and just keeping my studio where it is, and then expanding into the rooms that would be vacated once I moved into the new living spaces...but I'm pretty decided that my preferred option is to move the studio into that new space. That would be the real "WOW".

    The basics are simple...it's currently a 14'x24' space (it's actually an addition that the previous owner did, that connects to the rest of the house with a foyer in-between)...and I'm looking to add a another 10' to the shorter side...so the whole thing would be a 24'x 24' structure, joined to the rest of the house with the foyer in-between. I would also be adding a full bathroom at one end of that foyer, since the foyer would also be expanded. (It all works nice...we already agreed it was a good spot for the bathroom). I would need to have a bathroom for the studio...but going with a full bathroom instead of a half-bath will be the smarter choice.

    The real options that I'm trying to decide on is how (or if) to divide that 24'x24' space. I can't (well, I don't want to for a few reasons) go out more than the 10'...but I also know that 24'x24' is a prefect square. So...at this point, I'm thinking of leaving it as two rooms...14'x24 and the new 10'x24' space. I would use the bigger space as my main room where the console, monitors and rack gear would go, among other stuff...and then use the 10'x24' as the live room space, with a connecting door, and a small glass window between them.
    Also, both spaces will have vaulted ceilings going up 12'-14' feet...depending on how we decide to do it.

    That said...the idea of having one, big open space with the high ceiling really appeals to me...I just need to consider the "square" thing.
    The ceiling being vaulted will help things a lot...and I can possibly have the contractor change the angles of new walls internally by a few inches and.or just work in a bit more extensive acoustic treatment.
    Also...if I went with the 24'x24' open space, I would most likely want to add a couple of larger iso-booths at one end, like a couple of 5'x 6' booths at one end (though they would only have 8' ceilings, maybe 10') ...which should change the "square" aspect of the bigger open space significantly, I would think...???

    I have some time to kick this around...we're talking about starting the main addition portion of broader remodeling project by June...so I will look at the acoustics stuff and make a decision.
    Of course...going with a 10' x24' and 14'x 24' pair of rooms isn't really a bad option either. I would maybe do one iso booth at the end of the 10'x24' room...or still do two 5'x6' side-by-side booths.

    My other consideration is that I'm still not planning to do a full-tilt commercial studio thing. I want to do more outside recording work, but it will be mostly for my recording projects, and the "outside" work would be more for the people I'm already doing projects with.
    I would like to bring in a baby grand piano which is one reason I would like a bigger open space...though I think it would be OK in the 10' x 24' space considering that there will be the high ceiling.
    Finally, I want to also use the space for some band type rehearsing when needed, and for that, one big space would probably be more comfortable.

    Anyway...this is like the first baby step, just the initial discussion with the contractor...though I am pretty committed to seeing this happen, as I told him. So right now I'm kicking around the ideas, and looking for any suggestions that might help gel them into a final plan.
    One thing is for sure...my current space is jammed up. I have outgrown it, and I'm using every square inch of space, and in need of more. I've got too much gear kinda "stacked" and crammed...so I need to expand.
    how much is all this going to cost? can you afford it?? will it pay for itself?? will it really do what you want or is it GAS to the max?

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    You could put a gash monitor and mic in the foyer and run it as a reverb room. I remember a photo of one (in Abbey rd cellar iirc) and it had ceramic drain pipes stood around to break up the reflections. Tell people they are "Object'art" !!

    Ooo! Jusfort. have you thought about CCTV for communication? Really cheap and easy these days.

    Dave.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr average View Post
    how much is all this going to cost?
    Don't know yet, waiting on the contractor to give me some preliminary numbers, but I'm sure I can cover whatever they end up being.

    can you afford it??
    Yup. I wouldn't even bother if I couldn't pay for it outright. I mean, I wouldn't do this with a loan (unless it was 0% interest )

    will it pay for itself??
    Ahh...that's not the focal point, nor do I care. It's really about me wanting a bigger studio space. If I can make some bucks, cool...I'll just spend it on more gear.

    will it really do what you want or is it GAS to the max?
    Oh trust me, I've already had plenty of GAS to the max, which is kinda why I want/need the bigger studio space. This is a long-time goal/dream/whatever...and while I've had studio spaces for the last 30 years or more...this one would certainly hit a personal high mark, and would most likely be the last one. I mean...the lottery can always change that, but I think this will be my final studio move...'cuz it's a bitch moving all that gear and rewiring everything.

    It will probably take me a couple of months or more just to get all the gear torn down first, and then setup and wired up in the new studio, since I will have to redo most of my patchbay/rack snakes (current ones will be too short) but I already have some 48-channel Mogami cabling that I acquired several years ago, and saved for just this kind of situation.

    The new space will also allow me to work more comfortably and more freely both alone and for any outside recording. I'm not building a commercial studio for the public...but I want a studio where I can also do some recording with the public when so desired.

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    you clearly have more money and energy/time than I have.

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