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Possible Bass Trap? Temporary Drum Set in Mixing Room
Old 9th February 2013
  #1
Here for the gear
 
RSMITHPTP's Avatar
Possible Bass Trap? Temporary Drum Set in Mixing Room

Hi Everyone,

I currently live in a townhouse with my girlfriend and I have converted the extra bedroom into my temporary "studio." I have done a pretty decent job of treating the acoustics with a combination of Low Bass, Mid/High Bass, and mid/High Frequency absorbers/deflectors, which are either panels or various pieces of furniture. Obviously I am not able to destroy the walls (since we are renting) so everything utilized is screwed, nailed, tacked etc, rather than sealed (this is the best it's going to be until we get a house).

Here's my question:

I have a real drum set that has no other place to be stored in, other than this room. I live in Denver, Therefore, I don't want to put it into a storage unit or the garage, due to the drastic temperature fluctuations that often occur. I do not plan on playing the drum set while I am sharing one of my walls with a neighbor so I have it stacked in the corner for now. I love this drum set though and I will play it again in the future.

I have noticed that when I put my ear close to the stacked drums, they act like (subtle) mini echo chambers. I know a decent amount of material about sound frequency transmission through objects, however, I am unsure about how the shape, cavities, wood densities etc could actually affect the peaks/nulls and overall sound from my studio monitors. As far as their current location goes, when I sit at my mixing desk, the drums are stacked on their sides (in a tower) in the rear left corner of the room (over my left shoulder on the rear wall). They are about 8 to 9 feet behind me, and I assumed that having them on their sides (stacked) would act as a much better deflector, rather than if they were set-up as a kit and the face of the kick drum was pointing at the monitors. Other than the dampening pad in the kick drum (which is currently a rolled up - 2 (1/2)" thick 'egg crate' mattress pad), I do not have any other dampening objects in the Toms.

I was planning on putting some dampening objects in them to decrease reverb and echoic effects and I wanted some more knowledgeable opinions on this. I have done some reading about 'tube' bass traps, and I was thinking that maybe I could use these as temporary bass traps (all probably with different frequency dampening capabilities due to their different shell thicknesses, sizes etc). I could do this by possibly removing the heads and lining the inside of them with a combination of rock wool/rigid fiberglass and/or high density foam. I do not know how effective this will be however since I will be unable to adhere the rock wool to the inside surfaces of the toms. I also didn't know if keeping the heads on both sides of each drum would be effective with this treatment, or if opening some/all of them up might help at all... I don't know

Drum Specs(I'll include depths for those that may know more about required functional tube trap sizes than drum dimensions):

Drum Set: dw pdp's - all birch shells -
Toms: (about) 10" Diam x 7" Depth / 12" Diam x 8" Depth / 14" Diam x 10.5" depth
Snare: (about) 14" Diam; 4.5" Depth
Kick: (about) 22" Diam; 17" Depth

Any and all opinions would be awesome at this point and I look forward to hearing from you guys.
Old 9th February 2013
  #2
Gear Nut
 

I think the best option would be to shove some pillows in the drums and just cover them with a bass trap and a blanket or something.

I suppose you could fill it with custom cut 703...but the idea is just kind of off putting to me. I could just be very biased since I play an electronic kit and long for an acoustic
Old 9th February 2013
  #3
Lives for gear
 
takman's Avatar
 

run some sweeps with Room Eq Wizard with the drums in the room, and with the drums not in the room...then compare. You should be analyzing your room regardless when treating it, otherwise you will not know if your treatment has improved or worsened the room acoustics.
Old 9th February 2013
  #4
Audio X
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by SirEarl View Post
I think the best option would be to shove some pillows in the drums and just cover them with a bass trap and a blanket or something.
This seems like a good idea too, using whatever to fill them so they do not resonate.

I would also split them up and put them in both back corners instead of one, so that you maintain some room symmetry.
Old 9th February 2013
  #5
Here for the gear
 
RSMITHPTP's Avatar
Cool, thanks everyone. I was planning on keeping them from resonating by just shoving some blankets or pillows in them from the beginning. I just got to thinking that since I cannot use the drums right now, maybe they could be a functional decoration. Especially since the left wall (my left when sitting at the desk) is shared by some neighbors. Anything that could help absorb some of the bass reverberating through the drywall/studs/floor would be great.

Note* (SirEarl), it kills me that I cannot play these drums right now. Playing the drums is one of my all time passions. Probably one of the most physically - stress relieving instruments you can play.

I'll be honest with you all of you though. I have never ran a room sweep before and I don't know which program to use. I would also like to try and save some money by not buying the Ferrari of programs; I am completely open to suggestion. I use ableton live and I know that I could run a series of sine waves between 40/60 - 300Hz. I assumed that the test results that it produced would be based off of my own judgement however, rather than any type of detailed analysis that a program could create.

oh, and Audio X, I am unable to put anything in the other corner or the room because both conjoining walls have a doorway right there. I will try to create a quick diagram of the room to show all of you.
Old 11th February 2013
  #6
Lives for gear
Room Equalization Wizard (REW) is free and works fine.

Welcome to REW
Old 11th February 2013
  #7
Gear Addict
 

Why not store them without the heads on them?
Old 11th February 2013
  #8
Here for the gear
and don't forget to put cymbals in a case! cymbals reflect a lot of high frequencies, specially in a small room.
Old 11th February 2013
  #9
Here for the gear
 
RSMITHPTP's Avatar
I have two of the symbols on the wall right now as decorations but I spaced out several small felt discs on them to help with the reflections. I also have pieces of foam between the back of the symbol and the wall to keep them from reverberating.

X_25 - I could definitely store them. However, I would prefer to have them set up for looks sake. If storing them is the far better option then I will.
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