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Cheap studio building materials...
Old 18th August 2002
Lives for gear

Cheap studio building materials...

SO i think i FINALLY found a place to move my studio into for the next couple years. Its perfect for what I want now. I'll have about 1200 square feet of space, a good location, for very cheap.

I'm going to have to build the rooms because the place is basically just a shell (it used to be a club, so its all one big room). The ceilings are around 15 ft tall so ill have plenty of space.

My questions are in what type of wall materials sound good? I hate the sound of drywall rooms, but its way cheap so ill be using a ton. Does the cheap wood paneling stuff sound decent? There's a studio around here with oak plank walls and it sounds killer.

I know the size/shape of the room and the amount of diffusion/absorption has more to do with the sound of the room, but I hate the resonance sheetrock seems to add. So anyone have any suggestions? I cant afford to pay someone to draw me plans, and dont plan on staying in this space forever. I just want something very usable that wont cost me too much.

For now I'm planning on staggered stud walls with sheetrock on both sides, filled with regular pink insulation. The floor will be half industrial carpet and half wood parquet (sp?). For a ceiling I want to build some diffusors from the alton everest book and hang some cheap acoustic ceiling tiles in a way thats not parellel to the floor. The room will most likely be sort of a pentagon shape, and hopefully around 650 square feet. But I'm just wanting some ideas of cheap stuff for the walls. I want the room fairly live and aggresive sounding without sounding too out of control.

I'm basically thinking out loud as I write this, and figured someone could throw in some tips. Either way I'll be super excited if my application is approved. Wish me luck!
Old 18th August 2002
Moderator emeritus

Originally posted by LiquidStrat

What it was for me, was stagering the floor joists - so that the space between the joists didn't resonate sympathetically. The room woked but some wierd low-freq resonancecs had to be worked around.
In the building phase of the floor and walls, you really want the studs to be on consistent 12" or 16" centers (it makes the buiding go so much better), what I did here was to stagger the crossbraces on the floor joists so that each space was a slightly different size. Then the spaces were filled with fiberglass. The floor joists were floated on neoprene. Then two layers of 1" OSB and the hardwood floor, which are 3/4" thick. It works well here.
Old 19th August 2002
Gear Addict

Drywall board is the way to go for the density vs cost factor, then you can treat the surface anyway you want. One good trick is to go out of town and find a sawmill and get a load of slab wood , or rough planks. I've done some great treatment of rooms that I want live by putting up a random pattern of this type of stuff.
If you can afford it, use the resiliant channel (RC channel) and, like Liquid Strat says, decouple it from the walls with some neoprene. It really helps. You can get 6" wide by 1/4 inch thick rolls of neoprene that is sold as sill gasket at building supply places. Or there is that black rubber stuff that comes in sheets that is really great for this type of isolation, look on the foam sound treatment sites for it, the name is gone from my feeble brain at the moment. Use two layers of board, 5/8 fire code if you can afford it, put one horizontal and the other vertical and use pl2000 or similar type construction glue to attach the top layer, with a few screws to to hold it while the glue sets. Then remove the screws and you'll have less transmission through the wall. Also don't take the board right to the floor leave a small gap that can be filled with a good silicone caulking, same for when the board butts up to doors or windows, mind the gap as our british friends are want to say. You can use wood or metal studs and decouple them from the floor with neoprene, and put a slight angle on them to help with the standing waves. I wouldn't change the standard stud spacing or joist spacing though as it will be hell to attach most standard building products, take care of those cavities with your blocking and bridging. I have used tires cut with a metal saw to decouple floor joists but there are commercial pucks and u channels available, and there is such a thing as going overboard with the do it yourself home spun solutions. Put your blocking in at random intervals so you don't have a bunch of the same sized cavities to resonate at a certain frequency and do the same for the floor
Do you have Roxul where you are, it's a green mineral wool product that I find has better qualities than pink fiberglass for damping and it's way easier to cut and place, I also find it less itchy to work with. Take care Logan
Old 19th August 2002
Lives for gear

One good trick is to go out of town and find a sawmill and get a load of slab wood , or rough planks. I've done some great treatment of rooms that I want live by putting up a random pattern of this type of stuff.

Yeah thats what I've been thinking about. How expensive is that stuff?

One good thing about the space is I only have one small wall to worry about when it comes to isolation because all the other walls are solid concrete, because the place was a club before that had very loud bands playing there. So everything else is just making the room sound and look good. The place is nasty looking right now.
Old 19th August 2002
Lives for gear
Fibes's Avatar

If the walls are solid concrete you may want to add treatments here and there rather than cover them up. A light sand blasting/ sealer or some paint may be all you need. Build your diffusion and bass traps where you need them and make them demountable for when you leave.
Old 19th August 2002
Gear Addict

Originally posted by planet red

Yeah thats what I've been thinking about. How expensive is that stuff?
You should be able to get a pickup truck load of slab wood, which will be flat on one side and round on another for 30-40 bucks, or a load of # 3-4 pine in the rough for 50-60 cents a square foot. Just spend a day looking around or see if you can find someone who has a portable mill and you may be able to score a load of slabs for the labour of getting it out of the way. take care Logan
Old 20th August 2002
Lives for gear

The walls are just in a nasty shape.... and building new ones to cover them up seems like the easiest thing to do. My family has several contractors, so we can frame and sheetrock the place VERY cheaply and quickly.

The concrete floor is also messed up and not flat with carpet and tile chunks still glued down. So after the walls are built we're going to pour 4 inches more concrete into the rooms, to even everything out and so we dont have to clean all the stuff thats stuck to the floor. We're also gutting the bathrooms and replacing the sinks and toilets. And the best thing is its not costing me much at all. So after the room is done, ill slowly start aquiring some diffusors and bass traps.

One thing I am going to do is pay someone to do the wiring and patchbays. I spent close to a month soldering all the connections for my trident and dont want to repeat that. I think id actually save money if I payed someone that was quick, then take all the time off to do it myself. Luckily I have about 1000 feet of canare 8 pair cables still sitting around.
Old 21st August 2002
Lives for gear
subspace's Avatar
If you're planning on framing new walls all the way around and pouring a new 4" slab, then you're doing everything you'd need to build a floated room. You just have to change your order of operations a bit and add one extra step at the beginning.
Instead of pouring directly on top of the old slab, lay down a new 2x4 frame floor that rests on spaced rubber isolators. The 2x4s can be laid flat so you only lose 2" of additional height rather than 4", and cover the whole thing with plywood. Make sure to seal all the seams, and that the new floor stops 2" or so short of touching the walls. Put a lip on the edge and pour your new 4" slab on top of this floating floor. Now build the rest of the walls on your new floor so they don't touch the existing walls either.
It's not much more involved than what you're already planning on doing, and it's a major step up in isolation to decouple your room from the foundation born rumble of trucks driving a block away, etc...
Old 22nd August 2002
Lives for gear

I thought about floating the floor, but since the place is fairly well isolated and im on a limited budget and dont plan on staying for more then a couple years its not worth all the extra effort. Even if I wanted to stay the buiding is owned by a university and they've been known tear down entire blocks and build new buildings, but its been promised it wont be for at least 2 years at this location.

My dream is to build a room from ground up out in the country somewhere. Then I'll make sure to pay someone for designs, and do it right from the ground up.
Old 23rd August 2002
Gear Nut
jagarinec's Avatar

bass traps

i think this is quite cool

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