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"Moving Blanket Vocal Booth"- a "V" behind the singer or in front?
View Poll Results: Blankets behind the singer OR in front of the singer (sing 'into the blanket'?)
Blankets BEHIND the singer
12 Votes - 80.00%
Blankets in FRONT of singer
3 Votes - 20.00%
Voters: 15. You may not vote on this poll

Old 3rd October 2013
Lives for gear
"Moving Blanket Vocal Booth"- a "V" behind the singer or in front?

I'm moving into a very small apartment soon. Still need to track vocals in a pretty meager space, bedroom sized perhaps. Planning on making a V-shaped 'gobo/shield' thingy to cut down on some crappy little room sound. Does it go BEHIND the singer (with the mic facing toward the absorbing material), or in FRONT of the singer (with the singer singing "into" the absorbing material)?

So through all my research, all I've discovered is that there is not a consensus answer for this. Tons of people say behind. Ethan Winer and a couple other acoustic experts say the shield should go in front. A Dr. Luke video on youtube shows him recording freaking Britney Spears, Avril Lavigne, and Katy Perry with a "Blanket Cave" that is mostly BEHIND the singer.

So....yea, which is it?!
Old 3rd October 2013
Gear Maniac
dans595's Avatar
Definitely behind if the mic is cardiod. Maybe a reflection filter in front, or something..

Edit: if Winer disagrees.. I take it back! I'd trust him over me any day.
Old 3rd October 2013
Gear Addict
emeline-rec's Avatar

A cardioid mic will pick up what's in front of it, so the singer and any reflections from walls. I've always had best results with absorption behind the singer. Testing I did on the reflection filter found that it's main influence was stopping/reducing the vocal from getting out into the room to be reflected back rather than letting room sound into the mic from behind unless you are using anything other than a cardioid pattern.
Old 3rd October 2013
When you see Dr Luke making these caves hes in a nice room and just trying to cut down on the reverb time. If you're recording in a bedroom, I'd recommend behind, in front and above. Your goal is to make the recording as dead as possible so you can add back some pleasing reverb later. Nothing is worse than the sound of bedroom.
Old 3rd October 2013
Gear Nut
Tom Hicks's Avatar

I agree with the other posters. A cardi mic rejects sounds coming from behind it (the direction the singer faces). So put the V behind the singer to best damp reflections coming from that direction (mic pointing into the open part of the V).

< singer o=== (mic)
Old 3rd October 2013
I have personally gotten very good results by putting my makeshift booth in front of the singer, contrary to what a lot of people seem to say. Not saying my method is better, but I always figured I wanted to catch the initial sound so there is less sound going into the room in the first place and will keep a lot of reflections from happening at all. That said, I do use a couple bass traps from GIK acoustics, which are probably more absorptive than moving blankets.
Old 3rd October 2013
Lives for gear
Joe_K's Avatar
It really depends. Instead of trying to figure out a single answer or consensus, accept the fact that you will just need to test. And you may need to test more than once as other variables change, giving you a different outcome.
Old 3rd October 2013
Lives for gear
Originally Posted by Joe_K View Post
It really depends. Instead of trying to figure out a single answer or consensus, accept the fact that you will just need to test. And you may need to test more than once as other variables change, giving you a different outcome.
Fair enough. Good point.

I'm even considering snagging one of these sliding tracks for the ceiling at I've recorded vocals in a lot of different environments, so I'm no amateur, but this new space may be my most challenging in terms of needing something that can easily be used and then removed when not in use.

I've made bass traps and broadband absorbers before for other rooms, but this will be the first time that I will literally be recording in my living room (that still needs to function as a living room!).

My gf has been totally cool with the proposition, but we'll certainly see how that goes depending on my best solution!
Old 3rd October 2013
Lives for gear
guitarboy94's Avatar

I'm with in front of the singer as well. That's what SE Relfexion vocal booths are based on as well. Seems best to stop the sound before it starts bouncing all over the room. Putting it behind the singer seems secondary to me.
Old 3rd October 2013
Lives for gear
e3p0's Avatar

You could put grommets in some moving blankets and hang hooks in various places on the ceiling. A modular multi-purpose solution.
Old 3rd October 2013
Gear Guru
FFTT's Avatar

These guys obviously had no problem converting a room into a vocal booth or recording
acoustic guitars next to the refrigerator in the kitchen.

Old 4 weeks ago
Here for the gear

Having a small space can be problematic but it is doable. All you need to do is be intelligent with positioning everything to produce the sound that you want. Also, you have to be smart where you position your microphone, you might need a portable vocal booth to help you lessen the echo and noise in a small place.
Old 4 weeks ago
Gear Maniac
Thread rises from dead!
I'll leave this here:
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