Enhancing My Basement for Recording & Practice

xb2003

New member
I'm trying to find a place to start with all of this, but I really need a couple of suggestions to get going. I have been reading around on this forum and others, and I just need some ideas. Basically I'm a spoiled high school kid with a band and a dream(the band is not the dream..). I have a basement, with a room attached to it, all to myself and I'm pretty much free to do whatever with it. I'll describe it in a moment. My goal is to get a nicer sounding room for my band to practice in, as well as for recording. I have a decent setup of recording equipment, now I just need a good place for it. I am really interested in a good place to record my drums. I'm not worried about keeping the noise down so much. I live in a rural area and so its not a problem.

Here's my rooms: The main room is considered a family room I guess. You walk down the stairs, and your in it, there's no door. Which really sucks. The room only has one wall that is exterior, and only about the top 2 feet are above ground. All ceilings are 7.5ft, except where a duct runs through that is 6.5ft. It has a very short crappy carpet as floor covering. The walls are a textured drywall I assume. And the ceiling is like drywall with the popcorny stuff. Sorry I'm construction illiterate. The room is kind of a T shape. It has a main part that is 25' x 10'. And then a "wing" on one side that is 12' x 2', and one on the other side that is 16' x 10'. Then, my back room is an L shape. Its a 10' x 15', with a 4' x 5.5' entrance area.

I'm kind of stuck, because I'd like to make the main room be the one that I do sound treatment on, for the fact that its Bigger, Where my band practices, and so I don't have to clean out the back room and sell a bunch of crap. But on the other hand, it would probably be cheaper to treat the small room, and it would probably end up being better treated. Less bleed from whatever the rest of my family does while I play guitar for hours straight... This is one thing I'm not sure on, and would like suggestions on which room I should use.

After that, I'm not sure where to go with treatment. I would only like to spend a couple hundred bucks, tops. Between me and my dad, we could handle a DIY project like this. I'm just not sure where to start. Diffusers, Bass Traps, panels, etc...I don't know where to start and would love a little direction.

I've attached a couple pictures of the main room to give a better idea. The back room I think is pretty straight forward, doesn't need any pictures. Like I said I'm just looking for a nice sounding room. A better way of tracking my drums, my 100w tube amp too I suppose. Id love some suggestions/ideas on what I should do, or point me towards some articals elsewhere.

Thanks in advance for the help,
Jesse

IMG_3504_zpsce2890ce.jpg
IMG_3505_zpsb6b37402.jpg
 

mjbphotos

What?!?
When I read your room descriptions, I immedately thought 'lucky guy' - then I saw the pictures! It's not really a 10'x25' room with large alcoves when it's all filled up with furniture!
Your 'back room', at 10'x15', is barely big enough for recording drums - and you woudl need plenty of bass traps in there. At one point you are saying you don't have to worry about soundproofing, but the next you talk about bleed from the family - that stuff is going to happen no matter what you do for sound treatment - you are not soundproofiing the room.

I'd recommend getting rid of as much of the furniture as you can in the big room and building some bass traps.
 

xb2003

New member
Well I would be getting rid of some of the furniture yes, and then the big stack of speakers and what not would probably be in the backroom or setup for practicing one. Its a freaking mess right now, as I'm not actually living here now. I would be starting this project here in about a month and just wanted to get an idea of what was needed.

I'm not worried about them hearing me. Me hearing them isn't usually a problem either, I was just saying that if I did it in the back room that might be a plus.

So I guess them I'm looking at using the main room. Its my understanding that putting something on the wall behind the drums would help keep the mics from picking up the kick bouncing off the wall behind it. Is this true? And if so what would I go about obtaining to stop this. Then I would like to do something to try and deaden the room(at least I think) because the drums sound so harsh. I cant hardly play the drums without headphones on. I assume that's caused by the low ceilings, because usually that's not a problem. Those are the main things I would like to accomplish. But I suppose if I could also make my mixing area sound a little better too with bass traps and what not, I probably should.
 

mjbphotos

What?!?
Bass traps will help tame lots of the reflections, not just the bass notes. Build a whole bunch of 4" thick 2'x4' traps - for each 'corner' of the room, and to place at reflection points on the walls and ceiling. Manslick's Chameleon link might be a little expensive for you, but you can see how they place the traps. You're going to have another problem spot with the ceiling 'corner' created from the beam - maybe build some 1 ft wide traps to go up along it (facing at an angle towards where the drums are).
 

jhbrandt

Acoustic Design
+1

and to add: You will need to build 'cloud' traps OVER the kit. It is the near ceiling that is causing the harsh sound due to comb filtering.

Cheers,
John
 
Top