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What's Up with Ceilings? (Need help fast!)
Old 17th May 2006
Lives for gear
timtoonz's Avatar
๐ŸŽง 15 years
What's Up with Ceilings? (Need help fast!)

Hey y'all,

I'm already mid-construction with my vocal/drum booth. It's a decent little non-square room, roughly 15' x 14', with 8 foot ceilings - and that's the tricky part.

I have to figure out what to do with these ceilings, and fast! The floor is cement, therefore it's 'live'. As it stands now, the ceiling is just open joists with lots o' wires and pipes and stuff running through'em. Heres' what I'm thinking:

option 1) just stuff the joists with rockwool/703 type insulation, then cover with some kind of fabric, and thus maintain ceiling height, and make it pretty dead/absorbent. If I go this route, do I need to worry about lots of fibers and other junk getting airborne after all my drum bashing? (I admit to being a bit of a nut about health issues. I have enough sinus trouble as it is...)

option 2) some kind of insulation/drywall layer thing, perhaps suspended an inch or two with resilient channel. Then hang a readytrap or GK absorber type panel off the ceiling above the drum kit.

option 3) as above, only no absorbent panels, just angle the drywall ceiling a bit so it's not parallel and thus reduce some of the comb filtering effect on drum overheads???

I realize the john sayers' forum is the best place for this sort of thing, but I did a search for ceiling treatments and didn't find much. And I like Gearslutz better... But I need to make a decision soon. Any first hand experience? Horror stories? Words o' encouragement?

I'll try to take a picture and post it later if that helps.


Old 17th May 2006
Gear Guru
Glenn Kuras's Avatar
๐ŸŽง 15 years
Stay away from option 3, that will not work..

Either 1 or 2 will work fine.. Ok pick 2 because I have to eat!!

Ok all kidding aside option 1 will work just fine. Option 2 you are paying for a proven product. Either way you go you should be pretty happy.

Old 17th May 2006 | Show parent
Gear Addict
Waylon's Avatar
๐ŸŽง 15 years
the real difference between option #1 and #2 is sound transmission... do you need to reduce the amount of noise going upstairs? if so, drywall then sound absorbition.. if it is not so much an issue, just go with #1. I have done this in basemnet rooms and it works great, IMHO, any reflection off an 8' or less ceiling is a bad thing when recording.

If you are worried about fibers, just cover the rockwool with a very thin ( 1-2 mil) sheet of plastic before you put up the fabric covering. If you use velour ( or a similar fabric ) it will absorb more high freq itself than the plastic reflects..)

Have fun!
Old 17th May 2006 | Show parent
Lives for gear
๐ŸŽง 15 years
My uneducated advice would be #1.

You have a concrete floor, so I would kill the ceiling. Kind of mimic a large room - early reflections from the floor - not much from anywhere else.
Old 17th May 2006 | Show parent
Lives for gear
CompEq's Avatar
๐ŸŽง 15 years
I'm currently working with a friend on converting his garage that was poorly converted to a studio into a less-poorly converted garage into a studio (for mixing and vocal overdubbs).

We're going with option 1. It's a low-budget affair, so we're using the existing insulation between the ceiling beams and covering that with plastic (could be 1 mil, don't recall). For about half of the ceiling square footage we're using ceiling tiles placed at random so the absorbtion won't be completely even across the ceiling. This is not going to help for soundproofing, but we're fairly confident that we can get away with just doing the walls and keep the ceiling height for acoustical reasons. For over the mix position we're probably going to build a cloud using 705 in a wood frame.* On the walls at the first reflection point I'm thinking of doing 2' x 2' diffusers.*

For your floor, I would suggest a throw rug. That way you can roll it up for a more "concrete" sound. Maybe you can hang some plants when it's time for a more "organic" sound.

* These concepts, ideas etc. are not my own and I do not claim responsibliity for them. I will, however be using them for inspiration, frustration and pure copycat enjoyment. Of course, my hand won't be that close to the saw 'cause I'm a pu**y. Both the Absorber and Diffuser descriptions can be found in the thread "Treating Studio Rooms - pictures added," courtesy of Jason Poulin. Thanks Jason!
Old 18th May 2006 | Show parent
Gear Guru
tINY's Avatar
1 Review written
๐ŸŽง 15 years

The drywall will give you better isolation and some bass trapping.

Use the insulation up there either way.


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