What's Your Sound Proofing Setup for Your Recording Space?

Discussion in 'Recording Studio' started by Mark Lykkos, Aug 30, 2017.

  1. Mark Lykkos

    Mark Lykkos SS.org Regular

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    The subject line says it all. What's your sound proofing setup like in your recording studio? I'm thinking of converting my closet into a little recording space. A friend of mine has uses the foam-like insulation that you often find in microphone cases. He's got the bumpy stuff along the walls and the door, and when I was recording something for him at his place, it seemed to soak up the sound pretty well.

    What does everyone else use?
     
  2. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    my practice space is completely covered with this stuff -

    [​IMG]

    Wood Fiber Acoustic tiles. Works great
     
  3. NickLAudio

    NickLAudio Audio/Video Engineer

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    Closets are touchy. So many people turning closets into "vocal booths" don't realize that when you cover your closet with foam, you're essentially stripping any and all natural feel to the room and basically eliminating any chance of your recording having an organic sound. Cue the verb buss, i'll just add reverb to the track and boom, sense of space, right? Well sort of. Your source audio is already stricken with Sahara Desert dryness and is now drenched in reverb to make it sound more "real". No, it sounds fake.

    On the other hand, picking a room and mildly treating it with the right products, then recording in it, will have significantly better outcomes quality wise.

    Sidenote: Light fixtures in closets, when powered on to see in said closet, almost always come through the mic. It's a fixable problem but who wants to fight that fight?

    I use the eggcrate foam in certain spots in my mix room and framed rockwool hangers for the trouble areas. I say go for it man, experiment until you find something that sounds good.

    If you're looking for treatment at reasonable prices check out this site...http://www.thefoamfactory.com/acousticfoam/acousticfoam.html

    They also show absorption coefficients for each material and thickness if you care about numbers.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2017
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  4. cw2908

    cw2908 SS.org Regular

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    I use the same foam insulation and also inherited an army parachute draped from the ceiling
     
  5. schwiz

    schwiz Lefty

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    Egg carton or small foam panels attached to walls literally do not do anything. They are a complete waste of money if all you're doing is taking a bedroom, putting the foam panels up, and calling it a studio. There's plenty of research available online to back this up and from what I remember, those foam panels will only slightly effect frequencies above 12khz. If you see this foam in a professional studio, its likely 1 of multiple points of sound proofing and they've probably already accounted for insulation and double sheets of drywall.

    What you need are acoustic panels that are at least 3 inches thick and contain a dense type of insulation, and that have fabric over them that is breathable. I built mine using RockWool insulation (Owens Corning also makes a good one for this) which I bought at Home Depot and 8' foot furlings. I used my miter saw to cut the wood pieces to fit an insulation bat, then used black breathable fabric and a staple gun to assemble.

    I'm all for the closet to vocal booth transformation, and have had good results doing so in my own studio, using my home made acoustic panels.

    If you need some help with materials to buy, I'd be more than willing to help.
     
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  6. TonyFlyingSquirrel

    TonyFlyingSquirrel Cherokee Warrior

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    Soundproofing requires construction with that purpose in mind.
    Don't mistake that for acoustically treating or "tuning" the room, which involves treatment and spectrum analysis.
     
  7. Mark Lykkos

    Mark Lykkos SS.org Regular

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    This is all excellent! Thanks everyone!
     
  8. billinder33

    billinder33 SS.org Regular

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    My vocal booth is covered with Audiomute acoustic blankets. Ugly but cheap for how much dampening they do. Control room are the common 2x2 and 2x4 wood-framed/cloth-covered panels you find everywhere.

    Not a big fan of foam... that stuff works ok, but I hate the way it looks.
     
  9. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    This, so much. Sound treatment is tricky enough, but actual sound proofing is extremely expensive, and basically involves a combination of decoupling of vibrational surfaces and space/mass.
     
  10. Tirmu

    Tirmu SS.org Regular

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    Definitely skip the foam if you're serious about it and build/buy decent acoustic panels if acoustic treatment is indeed what you're after :)
     
  11. fob

    fob SS.org Regular

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    I'm going to hijack this since it's the same topic.

    I am at a point where I want to acoustically treat my room. I have like a triangle smallish kinda attic set up home studio. The floors are all carpeted. half the ceiling is actually at an angle because of the shape of the house, but they are parallel.

    What's the best approach? It's a pretty small room and with it being carpet I don't imagine I be much, but I know it will make a big difference.
     
  12. TonyFlyingSquirrel

    TonyFlyingSquirrel Cherokee Warrior

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    Contact Sweetwater and have them submit a free Auralex Room Analysis in order to get the best recommendation on absorption materials & appropriate placement. It's free, very valuable information.
    I then sourced similar products on Ebay for a fraction of the price.

    Also, using https://www.roomeqwizard.com will help you to "tune the room" so that you are hearing your mixes objectively without the room itself subjectively influencing them.
     
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  13. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    Yeah, I’ve got a friend who basically built a shed inside a shed as a practice room, and now rents it out to bands. So it’s got a normal wall (2x4 with drywall on the inside and plywood on the outside) and then a few inches, and then plywood and then 2x4, then plywood. It’s orobably 20’ x 15’. It works pretty well, and is way better than my sound proofing method, which consists of waiting for everyone to leave the house, hitting record, and crossing my fingers that no cars drive down the street. :lol:
     
  14. LiveOVErdrive

    LiveOVErdrive SS.org Regular

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    Assuming we're talking about sound treatment:

    BASS TRAPS

    Put them in every corner of the room and along the edges if you can swing it. That will make the most difference of anything.
     
  15. JohnIce

    JohnIce Singlecoils = tr00

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    Sound proofing isn't gonna happen without rebuilding the room. The only other way to get the neighbors to hear you less is to turn down the volume.

    If you're doing this in a closet, I assume the space is quite tiny? In that case, much of the advice in this thread is probably overkill. A little bit of foam will honestly do you well. In a small space there's a danger of over-dampening and losing too much high-end frequencies, so I'd recommend focusing on killing the reverb and flutter echo with just a bit of foam (the thicker kind, not the really thin stuff) and then just get to making music. Bass traps are neat if you mix loud or want to really step it up, but for what it's worth I have 24-hour access to a studio that's very carefully treated with bass traps, panels and diffusors everywhere at all the calculated spots and I'd still just as happily mix in my bedroom. I have six 1x1m foam panels, a bed and a well-stocked bookcase in there and it sounds great. A home studio is a home studio, it's not a professional mastering facility after all.
     
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