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One Stone Wall in Home Studio - Keep or Cover Studio Monitors
Old 15th February 2012
  #1
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One Stone Wall in Home Studio - Keep or Cover

I've got a rectangular room that will be my little home studio. 11' X 14' (7' Ceiling). One of the long walls is made of uneven stone bricks. I'm not sure whether to cover it with sheetrock and start with that OR treat it with panels on the attached to the stone. I'm hoping to not make the room so dead that it has not life to the sound. Thoughts?
Old 15th February 2012
  #2
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touch's Avatar
 

Usually a nice, uneven stone wall offers some good reflection and diffusion. Can you make it your rear wall? You might experience asymmetry if it's a side.

I would probably think about paneling the flat walls with absorption and installing some sound clouds on the ceiling. What is you floor material? ...carpet, hardwood?
Old 15th February 2012
  #3
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Jens Eklund's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by touch View Post
Usually a nice, uneven stone wall offers some good reflection and diffusion.
Scattering; yes, maybe at higher frequencies. Diffusion; not very likely.
Old 16th February 2012
  #4
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It really has to be a side wall, as it makes the most sense. The opposing wall is drywall with a large 4' X 2' window. I'd like to keep it and just place some panels interspersed which would look good and probably match the other wall (who really knows until I do it and listen). The floor is wood over concrete. The ceiling is rather low but will be treated. Currently it is 8" beams running across which are being filled with a insulation. I believe I will also add 2" rigid 705 and possible leave an inch of the beam out for aesthetics (If I can get away with it and it sounds good). If not, I'll sheetrock over that and treat the ceiling to interspersed 1" rigid rectangles. Note: I'm new at this, just reading and learning. The studio will be for me, not a professional workspace, but I do want it to sound good. Thanks.
Old 16th February 2012
  #5
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Dange's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by touch View Post
Can you make it your rear wall? You might experience asymmetry if it's a side
It can be a side wall if you're trapping high frequency first reflections from the side walls because the sound wont reach the wall. The roughness of the surface will have little effect at lower frequencies in terms of scattering and diffusion (the dimensions are too small). As it's a solid wall it will reflect the low frequencies more though..... but you need two walls to make a standing wave. As the opposing wall isn't solid then that may not be much of an issue.

In summary, you will still need to bass trap, but if you're putting panels at first reflection points too, the surface of the wall behind won't matter much
Old 16th February 2012
  #6
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Keep in mind this will be an all-around studio for recording and some rough mixing (I think any 'real' tracks would get mixed by someone who 'lives and breathes mixing"). So an all around room treatment is in order not just for what I hear at the desk. Does this make sense? I'm drawing this assumption by your last comment which seems to refer to what I'd be hearing at the desk...
Old 16th February 2012
  #7
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Dange's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dervishmusic View Post
Keep in mind this will be an all-around studio for recording and some rough mixing (I think any 'real' tracks would get mixed by someone who 'lives and breathes mixing"). So an all around room treatment is in order not just for what I hear at the desk. Does this make sense? I'm drawing this assumption by your last comment which seems to refer to what I'd be hearing at the desk...
... so if you are doing any mixing then you need to have what you 'hear at the desk' to be accurate. Treat for that first, then see how the room sounds for recording. How the room functions for recording use is much more subjective (unless you want it completely dead?)... in fact, how does it sound now? You could even have treatment that you put up just for when you're mixing.

Going back to your original post, if the first reflection panels are in the right place for mixing then it doesn't make much odds what the wall is behind, rough or smooth.
Old 17th February 2012
  #8
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DanDan's Avatar
Sheetrock

Are you trying to increase sound isolation or to make the room sound good or both?
If you are not involved in soundproofing I see no reason to put sheetrock over the probably attractive stone wall. Even more so the very useful 8 inches of absorbption in the ceiling. Just put a fabric or foam face on it. Fabric with light laths to prevent sagging can look good.

DD
Old 17th February 2012
  #9
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Both isolation and for good sound. There are no neighbors to the sides ( its a basement), the people above me are doing pretty extensive soundproofing as well. I want it to be a good sounding room. I will practice, compose and record in it. This will be mostly acoustic music.
Old 17th February 2012
  #10
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DanDan's Avatar
Choose

Well derv, you may have to choose. Eight inches of fibre overhead is a real boon. Add sheetrock and your room will be like hell. One inch traps will make it a slightly duller hell. The sheetrock will bounce sound back down at the floor which will oblige in kind. Flutter echo, harsh clatter.
DD
Old 27th February 2012
  #11
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Ok. Let me get this clear. The eight inches of insulation in between the beams is a good thing but covering it with sheet rock is bad due to reflections? I instinctually feel that sheetrock is an absorber not a reflector but perhaps that's just plain wrong. I guess I could add some 1" rectangles to the ceiling over the sheetrock....
Old 27th February 2012
  #12
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DanDan's Avatar
Clear

Sheetrock is very reflective. This is very audible with handclaps and such.
An eight inch deep absorbtive ceiling/cloud is to die for.
Don't cover it with sheetrock unless you have to. If you do, for soundproofing reasons, one inch of absorbent is piddly. Most of us recommend a minimum of 4 inches fibre with a 4 inch airgap.

DD
Old 27th February 2012
  #13
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Thread Starter
I mean 1" panels, spread out, to keep the reflections to a nice live vs dead...sound. Neither too live or too dead...
Old 27th February 2012
  #14
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DanDan's Avatar
Flutter

derv, the ceiling and floor are usually the two biggest surfaces in a room. If both are hard there will be horrendous flutter echo. A scattering of 1 inch panels may remove some of the extreme HF from this but you will be left a honky harsh mess I believe.
Given your low height the 8 inches up there is a godsend.
I recommend you cherish it. Just cover with fabric. If you wish to add some liveness use Space Couplers or add a random pattern of Laths. Boggy has some fine examples of this. Newell's simple 345 pattern is easily done too.
This is easily done later and to taste using thin light laths.
DD
Old 27th February 2012
  #15
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Thread Starter
Cherish I will, thanks....
Old 28th February 2012
  #16
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Thread Starter
See, this is what the guy wants to put on my ceiling. The beams I mentioned are 10" spaced at about 18" or so. He is putting fluffly insulation in between but that would still leave quite a bit of space. But wait, then he wants to cover it with this 440 Sound barrier Homasote Sound specs

I agreed to allow him to soundproof the space as his bedroom is right above me but I feel like this is overkill and will cause me a lot of grief and extra cost down the road trying to deal with this low, reflective ceiling. I'm not looking for a world class sound space but I'd like it to not be a total mess.... Any suggestions?
Old 28th February 2012
  #17
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I should have posted a photo in the beginning. This is what I've got to work with...



IMG_1523 by mingusbeat, on Flickr
Old 28th February 2012
  #18
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DanDan's Avatar
Nonsense

I can't see the purpose of the Homasote. On their site the ceiling soundproofing involves homasote + sheetrock and resilient channels.
I would bet money that two layers of sheetrock would be cheaper and better than including the Homasote.
The only way to have your cake and eat it would be to do the soundproofing at the neighbours floor side. Some layers of sheetrock or MDF attached to the underside would add some mass. It would need to be caulked and carefully done and the benefit is unpredictable.
A second layer of flooring on top of his existing one would be much easier to do.
Soundproofing isn't easy and is often the opposite to acoustic treatment.
It would be very useful to find out how much sound is currently getting through.
Even a very simple reading would be useful. e.g. A loudspeaker playing pink noise at 90dB and an SLM reading the difference.
DD
Old 28th February 2012
  #19
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Thread Starter
He is doing extensive soundproofing above, on the floor. I'm thinking of asking him to do it in stages and add sheetrock or homasote or whatever as a last resort if he still finds it too noisy upstairs. Funny thing is, I'm only really practicing my upright bass and only in the daytime when they will be gone anyway. The previous tenant had no problem with me with absolutely no soundproofing whatsoever. I think he is being paranoid and hopefully I can keep the beams the way they are with the insulation between them. We'll see.
Old 28th February 2012
  #20
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DanDan's Avatar
Soundproofing

Great. Perhaps you can help with the soundproofing upstairs.
Again Homasote? The guys with experience that I respect seem to all use common building materials. For mass, sheetrock or MDF, or cement board which is a bit of both.
Take a look at the recommended resilient materials in the third post here
Floating floors: how to avoid common mistakes.

And the floor part of this. DIY Domestic floor Soundproofing
I would try to get a layer of cement board on a resilient layer (Regufoam or such) on his floor. The edge details, caulking and gluing are all vital.
One small gap and ye will be conversing through that floor!

DD
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