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Re: OT: DIY Music Room sound-proofing

sofas = great bass traps
books on the whole back wall, mattresses, Owens Corning 704 or Roxul Safe and Sound covered with fabric
Polycylindrical diffusors (half moons - vertical - like cylinders standing on end) made of masonite and stuffed with fiberglass/rockwool. fairly easy to make if you are crafty. They're diffusors
carpet on floor
a cloud suspended from ceiling filled with soft stuff to absorb sound ABOVE the sound source
lots of human bodies are great
big stuffed chairs
random stuff that disperses/diffuses the sound - racks, furniture, keyboards, amps etc. Stuff that is higher than your ears is good.

try to make it symmetrical as far as random stuff around the room

rugs on wall

If it's sound getting out, density is the best. 20' thick concrete walls and Blue Cheer or Metallica could rehearse next to a Tibetan meditation temple and no one would blink. It sounded to me like sound WITHIN the room was your concern

If you wanna spend money and look cool, there's all that foam stuff. Cut it with an electric knife.

That Weiner guy who makes the Real Traps has a good site with info on how to build bass traps.

Sometimes just leaving doors open is a good bass trap.

Round all corners or fill em with soft stuff like Owens Corning 704 or the Roxul or foam

Roxul Safe & Sound is made in Canada and I have 22 two foot by four foot panels in my recording room. 4" thick. Worked GREAT for subduing room reverb. Don't wanna kill all of it except for vocals. A totally dead room is NO FUN to play in. Drums sound much better in more live rooms.

High ceilings are glorious. Mine are 12' now. NO ceilings or walls would be best.

Most rooms have problems with bass. I still haven't solved that one but have learned to live with it and mix around it.

There's lots online about bass traps etc. I built a bunch and hope to put them up maybe this winter. I'm fearful of changing anything in my control room because it's working so well now. But I think I'm gonna have to because I'm drastically revising my whole setup this winter (I think). And because record companies etc are so thoroughly submerged in hype and old husband's tales about sound and what works and doesn't work.

I spent a fortune on my old studio on the east coast. Hired designer etc. It was like working in a coffin. I hated it. And it didn't sound all that much better either and my mixes were strange.

So, stay out of coffins until your choices expire

It's not really rocket science. Just put up temporary stuff and see how it works... and FEELS.

Probably the very best advice is, if you're MIXING, get the best monitors you can afford and mix at VERY LOW volumes. You can turn it up now and then to make sure the details are there. But don't forget to turn it back down. And leave the low level alone. It's better for your mixes AND the longevity of your ears.

Listening at low volume's done more for me than all the money I've spent on room treatment a million times over. Turn it down and give it time.

I have ZERO treatment on the walls in my control room now. They say it can't work. But one record we mixed here was on the Canadian chart last year for nearly a year. Most of that time in the top ten. Songs featured on TV shows etc. One record got glowing reviews in Spin Magazine a few months ago. So... it can work. Just takes a little longer. AND... lower levels.

Listen to lots of different kinds of records in your mix room so you can know what it's doing.

I use Quested monitors. Love 'em. I hear Adams are good too.

I hope this helps and isn't too stupid

good luck!

richard sales
glassWing farm and studio
vancouver island, b.c.
www.glassWing.com www.richardsales.com
www.hayleysales.com www.joannesales.com

On 16-Aug-08, at 12:08 AM, Dave Gallaher wrote:

In several different dwellings, I've conducted amplified band rehearsals and
recorded one album, mixed another. In each location, I went to all the
neighbors well in advance of the first event with my business card and told
them to call if the noise bothered them, and that we would stop immediately.

No one ever called. I kept rehearsals to 90 minutes, usually in the late
afternoon before many are home from work. Mixing required some volume at
times (and I confess to liking to test a mix by walking around the outside
of the house with all the doors and windows shut), but no one ever
complained. Offering consideration and cooperation up front may not work
with everyone in every situation, but it is a good investment.


But usually we don't need disco level in our studio, maybe
worrying about the neighbours is better done with knowing them and
asking for hours you can make noise without disturbing them too much...