New member
I built my basement studio about 3 years ago and didn't really do a good job of planning the ventilation in both the control and studio rooms. In fact, there is no ventilation at all for these rooms. Heat is supplied with electric heaters. Big mistake. Forget about having more that 2 people in one room because you can barely breathe after only a few hours! Oops.

I'm about to correct this situation soon, but I really have to take soundproofing into account here. I need to eliminate as much sound leakage through the vents as possible and I'd like to bounce my thoughts on you guys to see if they make sense or if you have any other ideas.

I intend to dedicate separate supply and return ducts to each room. There's about a 12' long hallway leading to the entrances of both rooms. My plan is to wind the supply ducts through gridwork constructed of 2x4s and 5/8" drywall about 1' below the normal ceiling drywall.
The ducts would be laid out in kind of a serpentine pattern so that every 2 ft there is a 180 degree turn in the ducts. I think that having the turns in the ductwork will help reduce sound wave transmission. At each turn there will be a 'wall' with 5/8" drywall on it. I may also put foam on the drywall to absorb more sound.

The return ducts I haven't really figured out yet. The studio return duct will go through a crawlspace and I could possibly build a similar structure to what I described above but not nearly as elaborate because of space issues. The control room return will probably be fed over the 'normal' celing in the hall and run down a 2x6" wall ... this one's tough because I have almost no room to work with on this duct, so I can't really construct a box for it to run through.

I guess that's the basic plan.

So what do you guys think?

Is there a better/easier way to provide ventilation that's quiet and that won't cost an arm and leg?

Am I way overkilling the soundproofing here? It's important that the studio doesn't disturb the rest of the house (especially late at night) ... but if this doesn't need to be a complicated solution, I don't want it to be.

Do you think all of these turns in the duct work will overwork my furnace? Can't have that you know :)

Anyway, thanks for your comments.
A while back I was researching a business idea that was similar...

Do some searching on the web for companies that do soundproofing. I was amazed at how much time some of the companies took to help me out. You should be able to get a lot of free literature out of them.

(BTW, I was told that insulated ducts with 2 or 3 90 degree turns was adequate...but that was without forced air which is a bit more complex)

Slackmaster 2000
I installed AC last summer, and
it worked out great. I have found that about 25 feet of flexible 8 in. duct work, with one or two bends (90 degree or other-wise) will quietly move air.

Use more vents than normally recommended, and larger registers to reduce air pressure and lower wind noise.

I can record vocals with a sensitive condensor microphone, and air conditioning on High! With no noise.

I mounted the unit outside on a cement slab, and ran control wires along side of the ductwork to a switch in the studio.

Very Cool (Excuse the pun)


Dom Franco
Dom Franco has it - flex duct is the way to go. Rigid duct will transfer vibration no matter what. Also, with all the 180's you're planning in the ducting, you'll burn out your air handler trying to force supply air into the spaces - and balancing will be iffy, at best.

Up where you live, sufficient venting might suffice in place of conditioned air.

Hope this helps,
audioforgery, I don't think I have seen a post or a reply from you in over 4 or 5 month's at least!!! Where have you been?

Hey A local from "minneesowta" aye?
I have done HVAC work for a few years around minneapolis and st.paul.
You cant use the flexable conduit for a heat run at all according to code, or do you like a burnt down house? that stuff is for cold air returns only.
second you may not want to put so many 90 degree turns in there, it may kill sound but you wont even know you have heat runs at all,
you wont feel any heat at all.

just using my know how for a sugestion or two.

how much sound is acualy gonna bleed through.
you might be ok with a normal run of duct work, and when you install it place fiberglass insulation between points were the metal will conect with, wood or sheetrock or any thing else.

take it easy man and watch out its gonna snow tomarrow.
Thanks all you guys for the good advice. I need to re-think my options here, I think. Especially if it's not up to code!
Nope ... I don't want to burn down my house ... that wouldn't be a very good improvement! :)
Are there any other options with rigid ductwork that would help reduce sound transmission? Or should I just move to Florida and be done with it? You know with this 68º one day and 28º the next ... I just might do that! ;)

Thanks again!