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Acoustic Treatment Help
Old 9th April 2006
Here for the gear
gnarls's Avatar

Acoustic Treatment Help

Here is a semi-basic layout of my current studio set up in the garage. I have those cheesy auralex 1ft x 1ft foam pads set up in a checkerboard manner (1x1 ft wall space, 1ftx1 ft foam pad) in the tracking room only. I get sort of a boxy tone out of drums especially in here, and i'm not sure if it's due to lack of bass trapping or whatnot.

The studio is carpeted on the floor, with just regular drywall walls, and that cheap home depot particleboard/sound absorber stuff on the walls in the tracking room. Any advice on making this room work a bit better for me? I'm even unsure about my monitors being in the corner of my room with my daw (not very well versed in acoustics or studio design as you can see). Any help would be cool! Thanks.
Old 9th April 2006
Here for the gear

Hello gnarls

Hmmm, you are probably just removing the hi frequencies in the live room, with the acoustic treatment you mention.

If you put your DAW in the middle of the long wall or even the narrow wall your imaging will improve. You should be looking for acoustic and visual symmetry. And you should have the same distance between your monitors as you are to each of them.

If bass is really a problem try packing more absorbant into the corners 'cos that's where the bass is, or should I say where the absorbent will be most effective.

If your room is really dull try to liven it up with a rough copy of an RPG systems skyline diffuser. Take an 8' x 4' sheet of 1'' floorboard or plywood, get a bunch of 2''x2'' or 4''x4'' or anything square and cut various lengths, fix these at their ends with screws and glue so that the whole board resembles a NY skyline or Chicago or where ever... hang from the roof above the drums.... using chain links 'cos it will be heavy and you don't want it to fall on to of some poor drummer... it could also work if you placed it behind the drummer. It could be 4' x4' experiment!
get some open cell foam , about 6'' or 8'' thick and cut it into long square lengths,
place thes in all the corners of the room. Ceiling, walls , floor...

Sometimes it is better to destroy the room acoustic and then rebuild it.... how you want it to be.

I hope this helps a little

Old 9th April 2006
Lives for gear
DirkB's Avatar
No offense, but obviously you haven't done a lot of research on room acoustics.

There are some sites that are a great starting place and once you have spend a couple of evenings researching over there, you'll get a better idea what might fit your desires and budget. great FAQ to start out
www.johnlsayers: great to get some actual layout ideas and the construction forum they have is very good. this is the best of all, but not if you do not have any background in acoustics. One of the moderators is Eric Desart, who designed the complete Galaxy Studios in Belgium. There are some highly knowledgable people cruising on that forum, but it is quite academic. Neverthereless, if you really want to separate wisdom from myth, that is the place to go.

Good luck,
Old 9th April 2006
Gear Guru
Ethan Winer's Avatar



> I get sort of a boxy tone out of drums <

I bet you do. The main problem with a room that small is you're close to all the walls, and to the floor and ceiling. Even if you covered everything completely, thin foam and thin "sound board" affect only the highest frequencies. What you really need is thick, broadband absorption that works well to as low a frequency as possible. Small room ambience is bad ambience, so in small rooms you need to absorb the reflections as much as possible.

I'll also comment on your mixing setup. One problem is you're not centered left and right in the room. The other is the speakers are firing the short way across the room. The drawing below shows the best way to set up for listening and mixing in a small rectangular room.


Old 9th April 2006
Here for the gear
gnarls's Avatar

thanks for all the responses. and dirk, you're right, i should spend a little time reading through this stuff. thanks for the cool links.
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