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New rooms in Portugal
Old 12th August 2010
New rooms in Portugal

Hi everyone,

My post-production company is preparing a new facility in Lisbon. I imagined it as a small studio complex, where I'll be able to record, edit and mix sound for features, TV and commercials.
It took us almost a year to find an appropriate place - acceptable dimensions, location and rental fee - way longer than I could imagine. Walking around the city, we saw hundreds of places that seemed to be good candidates, but every time we approached the landlord, something went wrong. I'm not sure if this place is the best one, but I'm tired of waiting...
Anyway, as I was saying, the idea is to build one recording room, with a decent control room that can be used for some pre-dubbing and TV mixing, one mixing theatre, Dolby approved, and two editing rooms which would be used both for picture and sound, depending on requests.
Here are some pictures of the space, to begin with:
Attached Thumbnails
New rooms in Portugal-empty-warehouse-1.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-empty-warehouse-2.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-outside.jpg  
Old 13th August 2010
Lives for gear
Colonel Blues's Avatar
At least, you've got a laaaaaarge place to make up your ideas !!!
Old 13th August 2010
No place is large enough!

I'll also keep the updated info (probably with some more pictures) here: my blog
Old 16th August 2010
I'll try to explain some problems we had to sort out while designing the whole facility.
The first (and probably the biggest) problem is that we had to place two very different rooms next to each other - the Dubbing Theatre and the Recording Studio. In the Dubbing Theatre, we intend to produce peaks of 130 dB SPL, while in the Recording Studio we intend to keep the noise below NC10-15. Of course, there's a quick solution for this problem: just build these two rooms far away from each other, but that's something we can't afford, so we had to look for a different solution.
I have to say here that I'm a lucky person (at least when it comes to acoustic design issues), because I'm a good friend with Philip Newell and he was kind enough to accept the role of the designer in this project. Unfortunately, he's stuck with other studio construction (which he is supervising) in Spain, and can't get here to help me directly. Anyway, we keep exchanging drawings and photos. and we discuss all the problems and doubts in long phone conversations.
Phil has built hundreds of rooms in his career. That is extremely helpful, as there are practically no problems he hasn't already been through - and he remembers all of them and has them documented in his archive.
In order to reduce the transmission between these two rooms, we decided to fully float them, and even to separately float some isolation walls around them. As a consequence, the Recording Studio will be built as a bunker, with a triple shell around it. The first two walls will be made out of concrete blocks, filled with sand, and one of them will be floated on Sylomer (it's a rubber strip with excellent anti-vibration behavior), while the third wall, the inner one, will be a classical double plasterboard wall.
Both studios will be built on a separate steel-reinforced concrete slab, floated on 10cm of mid-density Rockwool.
Rockwool will also be used between walls, to prevent any direct contact through eventual cement dripping while laying down the concrete blocks.

Here are some pictures of today's activity:
Attached Thumbnails
New rooms in Portugal-truck.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-scaffold.jpg  
Old 17th August 2010
Day two. Scaffolds and other tools were delivered and organized. Rockwool's being stored. Sylomer's been delivered, too.
We spent the afternoon measuring the space and drawing marks on the floor. Needless to say, some measures were adjusted to real conditions, most of them due to curvatures and shapes of existing structural floors and walls. We actually gained some 10cm of width to the Dubbing Theatre. At the same time, we lost some 30cm of height, but that won't be a problem, as we can comfortably reduce the space between the inner and outer ceiling to recover the lost space.
Later this afternoon, Murfor, a special wire reinforcement for masonry arrived. We will use it to increase the rigidity of all separation/isolation walls, and to prevent cracks that may appear later, due to their weight.
Attached Thumbnails
New rooms in Portugal-organization-2.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-floor-marks.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-door-marks.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-murfor.jpg  
Old 17th August 2010
Lives for gear

Congratulations on the new venture, Branko; looking forward to watching the build!

Old 17th August 2010
Thanks, Joe. Watch this space: just a few (!) months from now, we'll announce the opening party! I'll provide the beer for everyone.
Old 19th August 2010
Here are some new pictures, showing first concrete blocks being laid. We fill them with dry sand, to increase the mass.
In the next few days, these walls will keep growing up to 5,30m, which will be the height of the Dubbing Theatre outer shell.
Attached Thumbnails
New rooms in Portugal-sylomer-strip.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-corner-detail.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-bricklaying-1.jpg   New rooms in Portugal-sand-fill.jpg  
Old 20th August 2010
Last day of the first week!

Four rows in place and filled with sand.
Old 20th August 2010
Gear Addict
Johnny Paez's Avatar

Old 20th August 2010
Thanks, Johnny!
Old 22nd August 2010
Gear Maniac
dmitri's Avatar
Congratulations, Branko! It's great when your dreams come true. Wish best luck to you and your team!
Old 22nd August 2010
Lives for gear
Joao B.'s Avatar

Boa sorte para o projecto
Old 22nd August 2010
Thanks, Dmitri, obrigado JoΓ£o!
Old 24th August 2010
Gear Head
J1mbaFr0sty's Avatar

and since you are in Portugal the build will be superior cos apparently we make good construction workers lol i might be visiting portugal soon. do you have msn or aim good sir? if so PM me please and thanks. place should look good when its done cant wait !
Old 24th August 2010
Thanks j1mbafr0sty, you're welcome!
Old 24th August 2010
Day 7, walls growing...
After each 4 layers of blocks, a Murfor wire reinforcement is added.
Attached Thumbnails
New rooms in Portugal-day7.jpg  
Old 25th August 2010
day 8

You can see the shape of the Recording Studio, limited by a floated wall.
New rooms in Portugal-rec-studio-wall1.jpgNew rooms in Portugal-rec-studio-wall2.jpg
On the other picture, Ze Luis is leveling the scaffold. We'll raise the walls to 5,30m in the next few days.
New rooms in Portugal-ze-luis-leveling-scaffolds.jpg
We also opened a door in the existing wall.
New rooms in Portugal-studio-door.jpg
Old 27th August 2010
You can see the second wall laid next to the floated rec. studio wall. This second floor will divide the space in two main areas: Recording Studio and Dubbing Theatre. It is a non-floated wall, connected directly to the building structure.
New rooms in Portugal-separation-wall-begins-here.jpg
There's a new opening in the control room wall - this time it's a window.
New rooms in Portugal-door-window.jpgNew rooms in Portugal-window.jpg

On Monday, we'll have more bricklayers, so I expect things to speed up a little bit.
Old 30th August 2010
Lives for gear
Originally Posted by Branko View Post
In the Dubbing Theatre, we intend to produce peaks of 130 dB SPL

Looking great so far!
Old 1st September 2010
Nice work Branko!

I'm very curious to see the outcome of this project. I'll be closely following the updates that's for sure!

By the way, I'm also from Portugal, so as you promissed, I advise you to start filling the fridge with those beers!

Good luck!


Old 1st September 2010
Gear Head

Triple-wall? Rock On! This is looking very nice, Branko!
Time to brush up on my copy of "Recording Studio Design" (by Phil himself).

Are you going to float the slabs on springs or elastomers?
Old 1st September 2010
Gear Head


I would like to ask what is the reason for the rockwool behind the bricks or in some cases behind gypsum walls I would like someone to share his opinion

is it for sound insulation or sound isolation and is it necessary to make gypsum(or bricks) and rockwool for acoustics ?


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Old 1st September 2010
There are many reasons why would you put Rockwool between walls.
In this case, Rockwool behind the walls has a very simple task - to prevent cement from falling down, piling up at the bottom of the wall and creating a "short circuit" between walls and/or structural floor. Once it hardens, cement can seriously reduce the isolation characteristics of the floated wall. The distance between walls is only 5cm, and it is absolutely necessary to keep them completely separated.

Syncamorea, Tiago and adassumpcao, thanks, counting with you guys for the opening party!
Old 2nd September 2010
By the way Branko,

Where is it located?


Old 2nd September 2010
It is near the Expo zone, in Av. Infante D. Henrique.
Old 2nd September 2010
Nice spot you pick! There's a lot of good spaces out there!
Old 3rd September 2010
Approaching the end of week 3, here's the actual situation:
walls are now 2,5 m high and we'll be pouring one horizontal beam, to reinforce the structure of every wall. A smaller beam was placed above the window opening, and tomorrow we'll do the same for the door between the corridor and the Recording Studio.
New rooms in Portugal-_mg_9631.jpgNew rooms in Portugal-_mg_9630.jpgNew rooms in Portugal-_mg_9639.jpg
I measured the dimensions of the rooms once again, to confirm we're on the right track and to fine tune the drawings of the acoustical shell, which we're going to start as soon as slabs are finished.
New rooms in Portugal-_mg_9635.jpg
Old 6th September 2010
General situation as of today September 6th:

Walls keep growing.
Horizontal concrete beams are dry.
We'll reach the 5m30 wall height in a week or so. Only after that we'll close the Dubbing Theatre with rear wall and build the projection and equipment Machine Room.
After that, we'll pour the concrete slabs and, while these are drying, begin the demolition of some existing walls on the first floor.
Some pictures of today's situation.
New rooms in Portugal-angled-low-pov.jpg
New rooms in Portugal-rec-studio-0609.jpg
New rooms in Portugal-wide-pov.jpg
New rooms in Portugal-low-wide-pov.jpg
Old 8th September 2010
Here for the gear

Very nice, Keep up the pics
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