how best to treat a room

sleewell

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does anyone have any good resources or recommendations on how best to treat a room to get the best acoustics for recording drums and guitar? there are lots of different products for sale and before spending a good chunk of money on a subject i don't know much about i figured i should ask around.


thanks!!!!
 
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Owens Corning Safe and Sound wrapped in a very breathable, thin fabric makes for good absorbtion panels, or chunked up into corners for bass traps. Hang in front of walls with a few inches gap in between wall and panel.

The idea is that the sound transfers through the fabric and gets mostly "eaten up" by the paneling. What's left hits the wall and comes back through the paneling to get swallowed up more.

I built about 12 4'x2' panels with one case of Safe and Sound and wood frames.

Pictures of my studio room before my son took it over (now the panels are sitting in storage because all my gear is in the mater bedroom - won't bother treating this room because there isn't enough space)

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They definitely help with room reflections, flutter echo and such. Just don't expect them to drown out any noise from accompanying rooms or isolate you from the rest of the world - that involves a lot more construction.

I got a lot of info from the John Sayers Recording Studio Design Forum

 
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Exactly what Alex said. As much as people don’t like him, Glenn Fricker has a few piles of videos on it and if you search for the ones with me and Ethan Winer on them there are some easy hints. I just make 1x1 or 1x2 frames for roxul safe and sound and wrap from the fabric store.

Here’s a bunch at my place using the 16”x48” sizes. Believe it or not even as big of a room as this is and as hard as the surfaces are, and given that these are meant to be low frequency absorbers, even at 20 percent coverage, it takes out any and all bouncing issues usually cared for by foam.
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Exactly what Alex said. As much as people don’t like him, Glenn Fricker has a few piles of videos on it and if you search for the ones with me and Ethan Winer on them there are some easy hints. I just make 1x1 or 1x2 frames for roxul safe and sound and wrap from the fabric store.

Here’s a bunch at my place using the 16”x48” sizes. Believe it or not even as big of a room as this is and as hard as the surfaces are, and given that these are meant to be low frequency absorbers, even at 20 percent coverage, it takes out any and all bouncing issues usually cared for by foam.
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This is true. This is literally the only worthwhile video that f*cking prick has ever made.
 
I think his drums sound better (more lively) before he treated his room. He made his room sound too dead. To my ears.
 
Treat a room like how you would like to be treated... don't come home drunk, crap on the floor and smear shit on the walls or pee in the corner somewhere...
 
I guess the most important thing is to find and set a specific goal for each bit of treatment you introduce into your room.
If you ask in this forum, this room is not purpose-built to be a studio and you don't want to spend the money for a professional make over, which is quite normal, I think.
So, forget all this measurement crap and the general "internet orthodoxy of room treatment" that is designed to make you feel bad about the looks of your room acoustics.
Do what you want to do in this room, get a feeling for what is hindering you to the get results you wanto to get, and go from there.

I have a music room that I teach, write and record in.
While recording and mixing I found it hard to get a perspective on the low mids, as I had a real pronounced room resonance around 130Hz (like, C on guitar and bass were really boomy).
So I made six 4 inch fiberglass panels (from one batch of rock wool) to put in the accessible corners in my room.
That tamed this shit enough that I am pretty sure that my mixes done here translate well into other rooms and other music players.
(I have the rule to not do crazy shit in the low end, though. You won't see me pushing 30 db of 30Hz on a moog taurus. I use P-Basses, Drop D at most, per DI or via miced amp, and I usually leave the low end alone, processing-wise.)
Then I had some flutter echo between parallel walls, so I found large wooden window shutters on my local craigslist that I put on one wall and the flutter echo is gone.
Now I am pretty happy with my room. It lets me make decisions I can trust, and I don't have weird stuff happening
Recording wise, when I listen back to my stuff, it's not that I think "wow, this room surely ruins everything"
(You can form an opinion here: )

I played, recorded, mixed in my room, found things that annoyed me, and did cheap little things to mitigate the annoyance.

Also your mic choices play a big role, here.
Some mics will record the light bub flickering in your neighbors fridge.
Find what works for you in your space, and that might not always the stuff they used on, you know, Pet Sounds.
 
I think his drums sound better (more lively) before he treated his room. He made his room sound too dead. To my ears.
There’s definitely something to be said about a good sounding room and how you want a tracking room controlled but not dead as opposed to your mix position, you want far less wet. Too dead a room and the tracks just die.
 
I've never seen a "too dead" room. Ever. It is like the BBW, it probably exists, but its going to be the massive exception and not the rule

Unless you are talking about a purpose built anechoic chamber, and even then, dead was the intention and it STILL sounds way the hell better than any small room we'd be talking about here. And it can so easily be sent to a reverb to beat the living hell out of nearly any room any mortal has access to.

Usually the rooms that people call "too dead" really just have a large chunk of the upper mid range and highs dampened with foam or something, but still have standing waves from hell and all sorts of reflective low bass reverb leaking into the mics
 
I've never seen a "too dead" room. Ever. It is like the BBW, it probably exists, but its going to be the massive exception and not the rule

Unless you are talking about a purpose built anechoic chamber, and even then, dead was the intention and it STILL sounds way the hell better than any small room we'd be talking about here. And it can so easily be sent to a reverb to beat the living hell out of nearly any room any mortal has access to.

Usually the rooms that people call "too dead" really just have a large chunk of the upper mid range and highs dampened with foam or something, but still have standing waves from hell and all sorts of reflective low bass reverb leaking into the mics

Did you watch/listen to the comparison video above I was referencing in my comment? :idk

Maybe it is hard to tell over Youtube and just video alone.... but I appreciate (like Bruce said) a little
more "bounce" in a room one is tracking in, versus treating that room to the point that there is little
to any duration in the sound of whatever instrument is being used.

I think with some of these Youtubers who are trying to get a small room to be their "stage" for videos
as well as the place they record and interact with their audience is asking a room to be two different
things at the same time. It's a live room and their control room at the same time. What if asking a room
to do that maybe does not actually create the best of both worlds?
 
I've never seen a "too dead" room. Ever. It is like the BBW, it probably exists, but its going to be the massive exception and not the rule

Unless you are talking about a purpose built anechoic chamber, and even then, dead was the intention and it STILL sounds way the hell better than any small room we'd be talking about here. And it can so easily be sent to a reverb to beat the living hell out of nearly any room any mortal has access to.

Usually the rooms that people call "too dead" really just have a large chunk of the upper mid range and highs dampened with foam or something, but still have standing waves from hell and all sorts of reflective low bass reverb leaking into the mics
vocal booths I've recorded in (usually acoustic guitars). Too dead. Sound completely lifeless. Like the air is being sucked out of the sound.
 
And I 100000000000000 trillion percent guarantee, that if you swept that room, you'd see the reflections are absorbed from the highs and the lows are as bouncy as they would be in a water tower. Vocal booths are notorious for being the perfect examples of my counter to the "too dead" argument. They aren't dead at all, except for absorbing some of the highs
 
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