Making a Budget vocal Booth
Old 6th January 2008
  #1
Gear interested
 

Thread Starter
Making a Budget vocal Booth

Hi to all.

I need to make a homemade vocal booth. One that is cheap and can be mobile.

Inexpensive is the main word here. I do not want a bathroom recording sound. I was considering putting some aurelx on a wall and sticking a mic in front of it...

Im lost as of how to get a good vocal in a crap enviroment...

Help me please. What would you do.... any ideas.

thanks to all
Old 6th January 2008
  #2
Lives for gear
I found it easier to do an open booth. Closed booths are harder to make and requires more materials. I attached a few pics to give you an idea of the design I've had great experences with.. Thanks to dfg_MacGyver for the inspiration on it btw.

I used "Rockfon Opal" batts, and the total cost was around the equivalent of 300 USD. Price may be a bit different where you're at though (I'm danish FYI).
Attached Thumbnails
Making a Budget vocal Booth-vox.jpg   Making a Budget vocal Booth-vox2.jpg  

Last edited by T. Gundersen; 6th January 2008 at 06:16 PM.. Reason: Additional info was required
Old 6th January 2008
  #3
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BudgetMC's Avatar
Don't underestimate the power of packing blankets... any number of great vocals have been recorded in "blanket booths." For example, the first Traveling Wilburys album was recordeded in a garage with a vocal space defined by packing blankets. You can make a frame out of something relatively lightweight and then move it around, as needed. A double thickness version is still cheap and light.

Mind you, they work best on high-mids and highs, but that will at least help keep out some of the room's nastiest high-end flutter echos.
Old 6th January 2008
  #4
Gear addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BudgetMC View Post
Don't underestimate the power of packing blankets... any number of great vocals have been recorded in "blanket booths." For example, the first Traveling Wilburys album was recordeded in a garage with a vocal space defined by packing blankets. You can make a frame out of something relatively lightweight and then move it around, as needed. A double thickness version is still cheap and light.

Mind you, they work best on high-mids and highs, but that will at least help keep out some of the room's nastiest high-end flutter echos.
I found this when I was once looking for the same thing you are now.

GarageBand Master: Recording Vocals
Old 6th January 2008
  #5
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enroper's Avatar
 

Once again, my photography skills come to the rescue.

Like somebody else said, packing blankets, and then get one or two of these ::

Da-lite | Da-Lite Background Stand System 42076 | 42076 | B&H

You can get some clamps and use these stands to size your "booth" any height/width you want. Very versatile. I have one sitting in my closet and i'm going to be doing the same thing.

A couple mic stands _may_ be cheaper, but they would have to be pretty sturdy to hold up some heavy blankets. I can vouch for background stands though, they are made to hold up heavy fabrics...
Old 6th January 2008
  #6
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Soundsquatch's Avatar
 

You could just go to Lowes, buy some wood and make frames. If you don't plan on having to change the over-all height of your unit. Fill said frames with your favorite diffusion/sound absorbing material (honestly foam panels might work too... or go steal someone's craftmatic adjustable bed... hahaha) or use packing blankets like other guys suggested.
Old 6th January 2008
  #7
Gear maniac
 

Most of these absolutely great replies are referring to gobo's but is it also an enclosure you are looking for? The most affordable solution for that would be to make a box with the same material and construction they are using for theatre scenery. Fill it with rockwool and close it with another layer of thin multiplex. Use a rail door.
I also saw material that already had insulation encaptured (I believe it was MDF) That cannot be really cheap but a whole lot cheaper then a pre-made VB. Make sure you buy a fan
Old 7th January 2008
  #8
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BudgetMC's Avatar
Old 7th January 2008
  #9
Gear maniac
 

Cheap booth

I snagged a couple of tall narrow office dividers with velcrow on one edge and just do a V shape for a quick booth Singing into the " V "
It aint pretty but works and cheap I got the dividers free when someone tossed them out a few years back

james.ca
Old 7th January 2008
  #10
eor
Gear nut
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BudgetMC View Post
Of Course, you could spring for one of these... not to pricey, and designed to be easy to carry around:

RealTraps - Portable Vocal Booth
thanks for the link. i'm totally going to have to buy one of these at some point. it looks like just the thing to sweeten the atmosphere of the rehersal studio rooms, which are carpeted halfway up the walls, but not "treated". maybe its overkill, but i think i'd rather have it than not. besides, sometimes you get a little bass bleed from other rooms.

i've tried blankies in the past, with little to no effect. maybe i just did it wrong- i once even made a little vocal cocoon by putting a heavy blanket over me and the mic. maybe i needed a better blanket

love,
eor
Old 7th January 2008
  #11
Gear nut
 

Tried to pm you sonicdeath. You have no contact info listed.....
Old 7th January 2008
  #12
Gear addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by eor View Post
thanks for the link. i'm totally going to have to buy one of these at some point. it looks like just the thing to sweeten the atmosphere of the rehersal studio rooms, which are carpeted halfway up the walls, but not "treated". maybe its overkill, but i think i'd rather have it than not. besides, sometimes you get a little bass bleed from other rooms.

i've tried blankies in the past, with little to no effect. maybe i just did it wrong- i once even made a little vocal cocoon by putting a heavy blanket over me and the mic. maybe i needed a better blanket

love,
eor
Carpeting walls is one of the big myths, and just contributes to a room sounding muddy. The acoustic forum has excellent posts on making your own rockwool/rigid fibreglass traps for little money, and these things make a massive difference.
Old 8th November 2010
  #13
Gear maniac
 

Sorry to revive such an old thread (I found it on Google), but I'm really curious to know how this open vocal booth design worked for you. Would it need a bass trap in the corner behind the person as well?

Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by T. Gundersen View Post
I found it easier to do an open booth. Closed booths are harder to make and requires more materials. I attached a few pics to give you an idea of the design I've had great experences with.. Thanks to dfg_MacGyver for the inspiration on it btw.

I used "Rockfon Opal" batts, and the total cost was around the equivalent of 300 USD. Price may be a bit different where you're at though (I'm danish FYI).
Old 8th November 2010
  #14
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by scottstoked View Post
Sorry to revive such an old thread (I found it on Google), but I'm really curious to know how this open vocal booth design worked for you. Would it need a bass trap in the corner behind the person as well?

Thanks!
If you look at the Real Traps 'booth', it is easy to move around. Yea, the more room you have behind it the better, and if there is trapping it is better, and maybe if you are not parallel to the wall behind it could be better, but all in all something like this is small enough and flexible enough to move or spin with ease and try the next idea.

For the more adventurous, I looked at how the Whisper Rooms were constructed and these would not be so hard to do. It would cost quite a bit, but not near as much as buying a Whisper Room and shipping it to your location.
Old 8th November 2010
  #15
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Fizzyhair's Avatar
 

Making a Budget vocal Booth

I've heard awesome vocal takes done in a wardrobe full of clothes with a blanket draped over the open doors. Be inventive. See what works and diy
Old 8th November 2010
  #16
Gear maniac
 

I've been making due with a packing blanket "vocal booth" which hangs from the ceiling. It's not too bad, but I'm interested this design and was wondering how good it is at blocking out room reflections without having to treat the whole room (for now).


Making a Budget vocal Booth-48022d1199643296-making-budget-vocal-booth-vox.jpgMaking a Budget vocal Booth-48023d1199643296-making-budget-vocal-booth-vox2.jpg
Old 8th November 2010
  #17
Lives for gear
 

It won't buy much more for you than the Real Traps product, but it takes up a lot more space and blocks a lot of sight lines and such.

If that is your approach, look for discarded cubicles. That was mentioned earlier in this thread and I made our goboes from them. Free is a great price, and they will look better than something cobbled up and poorly treated with budget foams. I put mine together with loose pin hinges, the other poster used velcro. You might have to extend the legs to use them for vocal work, but that should not be hard. Or you could just put them up on a couple of cement blocks.
Old 9th November 2010
  #18
Gear nut
 

Another option

I have had decent success using a very different approach
than those listed here.

My "gobo" looks very similar to the illustration in the second
post, at the top of the thread. However, the contents of
the panels are neither cellulose, nor fiberglass.

First, using fiberglass can be a health hazard that doesn't
seem remotely worth the risk, especially for a recording
location likely frequented by singers.

EVIDENCE GROWS ON POSSIBLE LINK OF FIBERGLASS AND LUNG ILLNESSES - New York Times

Second, many posts on this topic focus on "mass" as an
essential component for sound dampening, especially at
the low end ("bass traps").

I find this quite odd since one highly effective sound
dampening material (aerogel), is next to massless,
and is particularly effective at the low end.

Kalwall

Third, another neglected topic is the concept of using
viscous materials which actually convert audible energy
(sound waves) into low grade heat.

Sound Damping Products for Automotive, Marine, and Industrial

My panels are made up of layers, using the inexpensive
foams that provide 1/2 the high frequency dampening as
the designer foams, at 1/10th the cost, on the outer
surfaces. Next is to an irregular viscous material in a
very thin layer, with a center layer of the closest thing
to aerogel that I could find in an inexpensive form.

Four 2' X 4' panels, configured as stated above, similar
to the illustration in the second post, with one more
across the top, to block ceiling reflections, make up my
"gobo". All are supported on a simple frame made of PVC
plumbing pipe.

The gobo is my back drop, and my mic is surrounded by
a homemade version of the "Harlan box".

Build a $21 Portable Vocal Booth - O'Reilly Digital Media Blog

My tiny studio apartment is transformed into a recording
studio, with my gobo as 1/2, and the "Harlan box' as the
other. Believe it or not, I can record, sitting inside the gobo,
with a through the wall air conditioner running 6 feet behind
me, and a computer, and refrigerator also running in the same
room, with no significant noise evident in the recording.

HTH,
EmmitSycamore
Old 10th November 2010
  #19
Gear maniac
 

Thanks for your help, guys. I've got a few ideas now. I'll post some pics once it's done.
Old 13th February 2013
  #20
Gear interested
 

Old 13th February 2013
  #21
Gear addict
 
JAZJETSON's Avatar
 

have you tried just recording in the middle of your room?
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