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New Studio Construction/Isolation Advice
Old 15th September 2020
New Studio Construction/Isolation Advice

Hi y'all,
I am currently towards the end stages of building out my studio. I'm looking for a little advice regarding drywall sound isolation solutions.

First, a run down of what we're working with so far (I'm including photo attachments below). We used double walls with studs set 16" apart. Ultratouch Denim Insulation. We will also be spraying K13 spray-on on the ceilings. I'm wondering what sort of acoustic drywall solution you would suggest.

Obviously QuietRock 545 would be my first choice but I don't really have the budget to install that on the entire studio (~$30k). This will be a commercial recording studio that will hopefully be operational 24/7. This obviously depends on how much sound is transferred in and out because I do have neighbors that are fairly close [closest is about 25 yards from the west live room wall (right side wall on the floor plan)].

With insulation and standard dry wall we have an R-rating of about 30. We're shooting for STC rating of at least 55, but I am a layman when it comes to calculating STC rating using the entire structure. Also, none of this includes acoustic treatment for reflections as that will be installed at the end. I would really appreciate any advice y'all have. Thanks!
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Last edited by RSMBSound; 15th September 2020 at 09:10 PM.. Reason: spelling error
Old 16th September 2020
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Kyle P. Gushue's Avatar
Use standard 5/8 firecode drywall, its tested and widely used. A double wall assembly with 2x layers drywall each side is capable of STC 63. Since stc ratings are foccused on vocal frequencies, Music studios are concerned with the TL of the assembly. Transmission loss.

Ive included a standard reference of wall assembly test data.

I would not use any type of spray on the ceiling. Standard r-value insulation is what's most commonly used, and a great performer.

You've got to measure or use test data to determine how loud thr studio will be, and cross reference that with your municipal sound ordinances. Then use an assembly that meets that requirement.

You may need to uninstall the insulation, and add more mass to the outer shell to meet your requirement.

If you do not own it, get rod gervias, build it like the pros, which adresses proper drywall installation, electric and hvac, as well as other necessary plans and details for a well isolated studio.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf ir 761 gypsum walls.pdf (5.67 MB, 10 views)
Old 16th September 2020
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avare's Avatar

Master my tagline. I have been told that the 90% is too low.
Old 16th September 2020 | Show parent
Thanks Kyle! I’ll look through your attachment. I browsed it quickly and looks like there’s a lot of good info in there.

Unfortunately I don’t think removing the insulation is an option since all the staggered studs are already in place. I don’t think they’ll have enough space to get back in there to add mass to the zip boards. I’ll try to think of something else but right now I’m leaning towards 545 on the live room walls and 530 everywhere else. I thought I considered everything but I guess you’re bound to learn something the hard way when you’re building your first studio from the ground up...
Old 19th September 2020
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Aside from drywall, and overall MLM and the quality of the decoupling, the other thing to consider is ventilation (for split systems) or overall HVAC for central ducted.

I didn't see any ducts in the pictures, what's the plan for fresh air? This system will have to have sufficient transmission loss.

Is this commercial zoned property? Within Austin city limits? Definitely pull up the requirements for noise ordinances and maybe test it as is now to see how close you are.
Old 19th September 2020 | Show parent
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avare's Avatar

Originally Posted by RSMBSound View Post
I’ll try to think of something else but right now I’m leaning towards 545 on the live room walls and 530 everywhere else. I thought I considered everything but I guess you’re bound to learn something the hard way when you’re building your first studio from the ground up...
There is no advantage to different insulations in partitions. Use the cheapest you can get.
Old 21st September 2020 | Show parent
It’s all in a sectioned off part of the attic. All mechanical and ducting is suspended from the floor in serpentine formation with duct mufflers. The fan is variable speed so it doesn’t make an audible click when it turns on. The main unit is located outside.
I spoke with a rep from Pabco and he said we are actually very well off as far as design and construction so far. We ended up going with 545 in the live room and ez snap everywhere else. The sound tests if run so far show a good amount of transmission loss so I’m confident we’ll be well under the city sound ordnances. Thanks for the advice everyone!
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