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Attic or Basement for Studio??
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Anthem
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#1
22nd May 2010
Old 22nd May 2010
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Attic or Basement for Studio??

I have a choice to make about where to put a studio in the home I'm moving to. There is a finished attic that is about 16 x 10 ft with a vaulted ceiling but it's almost like the ceiling is a giant corner! I can bass trap the ceiling and to room corners although the slope starts at about 6 feet or less. The problem is the attic has no air conditioning so I'd have to try to have vents installed to get the cold air up and the hot air down so the room can be temp controlled.

Or I can build a studio in the basement. It only has about 7 ft. ceilings but I could make a little bit bigger room than in the attic. I would really only need to make some minor plumbing changes to move the washer and dryer to another part of the basement so they won't be in the studio.

Which would be a better space??

A third option which is the cheapest is to just use an existing bedroom which is only about 11 x 11 but I have plenty of bass traps and denim insulation to make some superchunk bass traps.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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22nd May 2010
Old 22nd May 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthem View Post
I have a choice to make about where to put a studio in the home I'm moving to. There is a finished attic that is about 16 x 10 ft with a vaulted ceiling but it's almost like the ceiling is a giant corner! I can bass trap the ceiling and to room corners although the slope starts at about 6 feet or less. The problem is the attic has no air conditioning so I'd have to try to have vents installed to get the cold air up and the hot air down so the room can be temp controlled.

Or I can build a studio in the basement. It only has about 7 ft. ceilings but I could make a little bit bigger room than in the attic. I would really only need to make some minor plumbing changes to move the washer and dryer to another part of the basement so they won't be in the studio.

Which would be a better space??

A third option which is the cheapest is to just use an existing bedroom which is only about 11 x 11 but I have plenty of bass traps and denim insulation to make some superchunk bass traps.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
I would go to the basement....cooler in the summer, and bigger space.
Sure, 7 ft. ceilings are not ideal, but I have a good sounding basement studio with 7 ft ceilings. I treated the ceiling with auralex diffusors(pic attached)

Good luck Brotha!
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Attic or Basement for Studio??-9_10-004.jpg  
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22nd May 2010
Old 22nd May 2010
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Another vote for basement. It'll help keep sounds from outdoors out as well!
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22nd May 2010
Old 22nd May 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MMski View Post
Another vote for basement. It'll help keep sounds from outdoors out as well!
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I would go to the basement....cooler in the summer, and bigger space...
Agreed.

Basement, hands down. Indeed it will be way more easy to keep cool or warm, and it's the only one of your choices that will allow you to achieve a decent degree of sound isolation.

The only real downside to the basement, you'll likely have to run a dehumidifier, but perhaps you'd be running a dehumidifier down there anyway... keep the RH at around 50% or less.

Your attic space seems pretty neat, but any noise you make up there is going to travel throughout the entire house plus likely leak out to the neighbors. Unless you're living in the house all by yourself and have no neighbors, the attic will soon prove to be a problem. Also, it will be VERY hard or impossible to keep the attic cool without a dedicated AC unit, you'll likely need a ductless mini-split which will run you another $3k+ or more... etc.
Anthem
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22nd May 2010
Old 22nd May 2010
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Any idea what length and width I should shoot for in the basement studio?

Also, would a 11 x 11 bedroom work if I use really good bass traps and also make a portable isolation wall to put behind the mic when I record acoustic guitars or vocals? I was think I could build a wall out of a cheap wood frame and attach denim insulation to it to absorb sound and also keep the rest of the room sound from reaching the mic from the rear. Any ideas if this will work?

The bedroom is a lot easier if it will work. Thanks for input!
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22nd May 2010
Old 22nd May 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthem View Post
Any idea what length and width I should shoot for in the basement studio?

Also, would a 11 x 11 bedroom work if I use really good bass traps and also make a portable isolation wall to put behind the mic when I record acoustic guitars or vocals? I was think I could build a wall out of a cheap wood frame and attach denim insulation to it to absorb sound and also keep the rest of the room sound from reaching the mic from the rear. Any ideas if this will work?

The bedroom is a lot easier if it will work. Thanks for input!
An 11' x 11' room would work fine if that is enough space for your needs.
Of course in a space that small, and equal dimension will make the the acoustics mathmaticians buttholes pucker and their faces will look like they just stepped into an outhouse on a 100 degree day.
Just use common sense.....you will need those Bass traps.
Although you could just deaden the hell out of the space, you might want to go with a combination of absorbsion and a lot of diffusion panels.
When you frame that wall make sure it is not parallel to the opposite wall.

Good luck again Brotha!
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23rd May 2010
Old 23rd May 2010
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Do you mean when I frame the isolation panels? I would just have them facing me and I'd be sitting with my back to a bass trapped corner.

Will that work well using some isolation panels to set behind the mic and then having the mic facing me with my back to a corner treated with superchunk bass traps and a cloud overhead??
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23rd May 2010
Old 23rd May 2010
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Quote:
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Do you mean when I frame the isolation panels?...
Just in case there is confusion here...as two separate terms and the topics they represent seem to be employed as if they are interchangeable...

Isolation refers to mitigating the transmission of sound from inside the structure to the outside, or from outside to the inside.

Absorptive panels, LF/bass absorbers/traps and diffusors condition ('treat') the response within the room and have nothing to do with isolation.
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29th May 2010
Old 29th May 2010
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So if I use lots of good bass traps and some free standing baffles (made of rockwool) behind the microphone, I should be able to get a good acoustic guitar sound even though the room is small and boxy?

I'm going to superchunk at least 2 corners and put a cloud over where I sit and treat the area behind where I sit.

Will this work as well as if I used a bigger room?
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29th May 2010
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Quote:
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So if I use lots of good bass traps and some free standing baffles (made of rockwool) behind the microphone, I should be able to get a good acoustic guitar sound even though the room is small and boxy?
Yes.

The room sounds boxy now due to resonances (modes / standing waves). Once the room is trapped properly, it will not sound 'boxy' anymore.

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I'm going to superchunk at least 2 corners and put a cloud over where I sit and treat the area behind where I sit.
Excellent.

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Originally Posted by Anthem View Post
Will this work as well as if I used a bigger room?
Yes. This is standard practice. I cannot overemphasize the need for proper bass trapping.

Cheers,
John
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