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  #1  
Old 03-07-2021, 01:09 PM
Raoul23 Raoul23 is offline
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Default Studio build?

Moving house very soon and will be building a studio from the ground up. I need a control room and live room for mainly recording drums. It’s going to be in my garden so needs to be totally sound proof but also quite professional. I’ve spoken to a few studio designers and the 2 designers have both recommended having the mixing desk not right up against the wall but about a quarter of the way into the room. My problem with this is that a lot of the room space will be wasted this way due to the space behind the desk being used for nothing. Anybody here have any advice about this.


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  #2  
Old 03-07-2021, 01:57 PM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Hmmm, I happen to agree and that's because the most accurate listening spot is 38% away from the front wall(maybe more "correct" to call that spot the "least messed up"). Putting the desk at the 25% spot will put you(in your chair) right around that 38% spot. Don't consider it wasted space because it really isn't. Anything that improves your listening accuracy is certainly not a waste

This is very much like my first commercial setup in Nashville in 2008 and I made that empty space into the path to my vocal booth. I also pushed the mix position just slightly off center(left to right). The space worked very well for overdubs and mixing, I just outgrew it for recording(the whole thing was less than 360 sq. ft.). The couch was on top of a risor filled with rockwool and open on the front to aid in trapping. With the bass traps and acoustic panels on any large flat surface, monitoring from the couch was nearly perfect. I did have a null at the chair of around -9db@50Hz. My solution to that was a sub(under the desk) that was tuned with a digital crossover to specifically fill in the null at the mix position. All the walls were double-walls, filled with rock wool and covered in 2 layers of 5/8" sheetrock(all staggered joints, screwed and glued). Doors were all doubled and solid core. Windows were framed so the inner and outer frames were isolated(filled the gap with thick foam weatherstripping) with 1 pane being 1/4" tempered glass and the other pane being 3/8" laminated glass(for different resonant frequencies), Even with the door bottoms not sealed, isolation(sound-proofing) was really good. Back wall of CR was a triple wall as there was another studio right next door with a guitar amp closet in that corner. I never heard it, nor did I ever hear the bathroom that was right behind the vocal booth
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Old 03-07-2021, 02:03 PM
Raoul23 Raoul23 is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Thanks Albee for the floor plan. That looks exactly the kind of thing I’m planning on doing. Nice idea about having the vocal booth where you put it. What were the dimensions of your drum room and how high were the ceilings. Here in the UK we have strict planning permission laws for buildings built in your garden


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Old 03-07-2021, 04:31 PM
AlexLakis AlexLakis is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Bold choice putting the fridge in with the drummer.
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Old 03-07-2021, 05:35 PM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexLakis View Post
Bold choice putting the fridge in with the drummer.
They had to bring their own beer. Control room and drum room were both about 12' x 14'. Ceilings were just under 8' and were acoustic ceiling tiles. Above the tiles was around 5" of space and above that was the concrete slab separating my level from the next floor(of 4 floors). Vocal booth was 5'x 8' with a twist; when I tore down the walls, the end of the vocal booth and the side of the CR(where the Motif sat), the building foundation walls were built of rough stone blocks. Sadly, they were ugly enough that I didn't want to see them, but for that end of the vocal booth, I framed the wall with 2x6 lumber about 10" away from the foundation, filled the stud bays with rock wool and then covered that entire wall with burlap, allowing low frequencies to pass thru and hit the rough stone. That vocal booth sounded amazing Vocals and acoustic instruments always recorded great in there
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Old 03-08-2021, 12:51 AM
Raoul23 Raoul23 is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

How was the overhead sound with ceilings at just 8ft?


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  #7  
Old 03-08-2021, 09:19 AM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raoul23 View Post
How was the overhead sound with ceilings at just 8ft?


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Shockingly, it was decent and I never had an issue. I did a few things to get the best sounding drums I could(good enough, is never good enough). Knowing the room wasn't great, I never bothered putting up "room" mics and instead, created the room sound with an AUX track and a short room reverb(most any room can do, but I really like the IK Classik Room at around 356ms of decay). I would send the entire kit(with less, or no bass drum) to the reverb plugin. Snare and/or toms would sometimes get a separate reverb as called for by the song. I also replaced the toms with my own "one-shots" of the very same toms(the toms sounded great, but I wanted to remove the bleed of cymbals to give me better control of the mix). If you have a drummer that can hit the toms hard, but hit the cymbals light, you could skip this, but most drummers I know hit the cymbals as hard as they can, no matter what you suggest Also, if you track toms with top and bottom mics, you can lean on the bottom mics for tone/sustain(instead of cleaning off the tracks completely). For an example, check this video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdKBcleNLWk
Note that I did not mix it(was mixed by Michael Wagener and Robert Wright). The kit was a Mothertone kit(Schleishman from Australia) with a 20" BD, 10", 12", 14" toms and a Black Beauty snare. IIRC, Cymbals were all Zildjian A's. This song was tracked with only top mics on toms.

One more thing to try re overheads: if you use SDC's, point them up at the ceiling(@45 degrees) and put the capsule as close as you can without touching the ceiling. This recreates the effect of a boundary mic(PZM) and can work really well. I used LDC mics about 10" away from the ceiling with reflexion filters between the mics and the ceiling.
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  #8  
Old 03-08-2021, 10:25 AM
Raoul23 Raoul23 is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Sounds great Albee!!

I’ve got to compromise when it comes to ceiling height, space and budget. My plan is going for a 8x6 meter room split in to 2 rooms, a control room and live room. My main focus is to get a professional sound going in to ProTools as well as the space looking professional. Do you think this is doable in that size of space.


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  #9  
Old 03-08-2021, 05:11 PM
albee1952 albee1952 is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Hmmm, that's tight, but does seem about the same as my old CR and drum room. You might consider making it a 1-room setup as 1 large room might be better than 2 rooms that are too small. Going back to splitting the space in 2, you could make the dividing wall a bit off-square to cut down on parallel surfaces. Draw out the main shape and start messing with it(better to screw up on paper a few times before screwing up the real thing). Sure would be nice to have 1 or 2 amp closets...........
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  #10  
Old 03-09-2021, 10:34 PM
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Emcha_audio Emcha_audio is offline
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Default Re: Studio build?

Good plan, personlly I'd rotate the control room 90 degres to face the live room instead.
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