I'm in the very early stages of trying to setup a project studio in my unfinished basement. It's a Philadelphia row home so the basement is long and narrow, concrete floor, stone walls, exposed ceiling with a couple pipes and random wood planks. A previous tenant put up a wall about 2/3 back, so we have an almost-square room that has been rather cold even on the warmest days and is safe from the humidity of the other side of the basement -- it is here where the noise happens.
The problem is that I don't have a big budget so I first want to focus on the areas that will give me the best value for money spent. I'm also renting this place so I'd rather not make a huge investment in things that will be left behind if/when I move out. Additionally, along with things sounding good, I'm concerned for my neighbors and want to limit how much sound escapes, though the two areas certainly overlap.
All that said, what areas deserve the most immediate attention and will provide the most significant results?
If this place is rented then I don't think I would put any money into "sound proofing" as it will cost a ton of money. As far as acoustics inside of the room you can use the following guide as a set up for you. GIK Acoustics: Room Setup
Additionally, along with things sounding good, I'm concerned for my neighbors and want to limit how much sound escapes, though the two areas certainly overlap.
Unfortunately, in the world of acoustics they do not overlap much if at all. They are discreet disciplines with often conflicting goals. One will not help with the other, in other words. I agree with Glenn though...I wouldn't waste any money sound proofing a rented space. Work on making it sound good.
No, sadly acoustic control and sound-proofing overlap very little.
As both Glenn and Frank suggested.. Treat your room the best you can. I suggest that you start with bass trapping first and reflection point absorption second. Once you get that under control you can do some testing to fine tune things.
Thanks guys! Per your suggestions, I focused on cleaning up the sound in the room. I seriously lucked out as a local college kid was selling some bass traps and about 30 or 40 sq ft of sound absorbing foam for next to nothing. Spent an hour last night attaching it to key areas. I also picked up a second area rug from a friend. Between those, I should be in significantly better shape! My neighbors upstairs told me that they couldn't hear me play guitar even before I put any of this stuff in, and that running through my insanely loud Mesa 2x12 with my JCM 900 (100 watt) at 6, which is my standard small club performance volume. Point is, I'm not really concerned about my neighbors and I plan on being respectful anyway, so focusing on improving the sound of my room instead of "sound-proofing" was a good plan.