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Soundproofing Raw space Dynamics Plugins
Old 28th December 2012
Gear interested

Thread Starter
Soundproofing Raw space

Howdy everyone,

I'm new to soundproofing for loud sounds.

I live in midcoast Maine and there is really no place for musicians to practice at loud volumes, so I'm in the process of figuring out the best method of converting a raw industrial space into a rehearsal space using the best quality/most affordable materials. I'm looking at framing out and soundproofing maybe 6 or so rooms.

The space itself is in an industrial park, no neighbors to worry about, so my only soundproofing concerns are from room to room; with a certain amount of bleed thru being acceptable. I'm not looking to build recording studio quiet atmospheres just places where people can get together and play comfortably. Most people up here, including myself, subsist on modest means and the more affordably I can build the space the cheaper I can make it for everyone else. That being said, I'm a carpenter and understand that quality and a job done right to begin with is the way to go.

In doing some research (I just ordered Alton Everest's Sound studio construction on a budget) I've come to some vague conclusions but would love input. Here's what I've got rattling around in my head....

Green Glue and double walls may be over kill for this application????

Maybe blown cellulose is cheaper and better STC wise than cotton batting for in between the studs? Or know any other better ways?

The obvious thing is to deal with flanking and cracks air can get out.

Is a cement floor really gonna be that big a deal? I've been in other spaces with cement floors that seemed fine.

ceilings? I have no idea. Been reading about drop ceilings but the idea of creating an air space above seems to contradict what've read about avoiding air spaces.

Low freqs?

Wonderboard and duroc? worth it? good ?

how useful/practical is a staggered or double wall? I'll be framing everything from scratch so it doesn't seem to be much more work to do that.

MLV seems really expensive to me.

Any help would be great.



Last edited by ionskyon; 28th December 2012 at 02:31 AM.. Reason: grammatical error.
Old 28th December 2012
Lives for gear
gullfo's Avatar

creating a number of adjacent rooms framed with ceilings supported on the freestanding walls (use isolation sway braces and/or sheathing on corners) and with 3x 5/8" type X drywall all around should give a decent level of isolation between rooms. then you need the hard stuff - air. if you can run some duct overhead and drop a flex into a baffle box on top of the room, you can provide air and cooling/heating as needed. 2 ducts - supply and return needed. if you can swing an electric damper @ the duct drop on each room to allow each to have it's own thermostat, that would be nice.
the concrete floor should be ok. put drums and amps on decoupled membrane platforms to reduce impact and vibration going directly into the floor.
seal up the rooms. one option is to put in some windows between a couple of rooms so you can use them for recording if desired.
for treatment - you could angle the room walls and ceiling to reduce flutter, or scatter absorption or panels (more rugged) to reduce reflections. polys are a good choice for LF trapping as well as diffusion.
i'd skip the overpriced drywall and the green glue in this application.
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Old 28th December 2012
Gear interested

Thread Starter
Thanks for the response Glenn,

Very helpful. Using 5/8 rock and framing with 2x's was what I was hoping to hear. hahaha.

As far as insulating the stud bays I'm leaning towards blowing in cellulose myself and foregoing duroc, wonderboard or batting. I read that 4" of cellulose with rock can give you a STC rating of 50 (Also has a decent R value). Any thoughts on that?

Just looking around online I'm finding caveats stating improper construction of decoupling platforms (which I haven't heard of before now) can result in magnifying low freq sounds, Do you know of a correct building methodology?

Forgive my ignorance, but when you say polys are a good choice for LF trapping as well as diffusion, what do you mean by poly's?

And yeah, air exchange is definitely something I've been considering and the drop ceiling seems like a good idea. Would you suggest any different treatment on the ceiling than in the walls?

Thanks again!

Old 29th December 2012
Lives for gear
gullfo's Avatar

the blown insulation can settle and become dense whereas the soft insulation batts tend to stay in place and provide the desired damping and air flow. on the decoupled membrane flooring - instead of making the entire floor in the unit - you make smaller platforms - soft carpet pad, semi-rigid insulation etc under 2 layers of plywood. finish with some carpet (under amps for e.g.) or another layer of 29/32" ply for screwing in drum kit hardware and can be replaced.
poly-cylindrical = polys -- set up 2 vertical 2x2 screw to the wall then bend in a 1/8" plywood sheet. behind the sheet you want soft insulation to dampen the air cavity and the sheet. you can standup insulation batts with twine then put in the panel.
Old 1st January 2013
Gear interested

Thread Starter
Thanks again,
I was looking at wet blown cellulose but talking to a contractor I know he said the same thing as you.
Thinking of a staggered wall with roxol.
what about sound leaking thru the ducts?
Old 1st January 2013
Lives for gear
Rod Gervais's Avatar

The best "bang for the buck" is standard fluffy fiberglass - which has a slight advantage in LF isolation over more dense products. Mid and high frequencies are never the issue.

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