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Putting curtains to record drums?
Old 23rd January 2009
  #1
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Putting curtains to record drums?

Hi all,

sorry to start a new thread for this, but I couldn't really find one that answered my questions.

I'm going to start to record acoustic drums pretty soon, and I wanted to treat an old room specifically for that purpose - albeit without buying expensive wall-to-wall bass absorbing material.

The room in itself it very simple: a rectangular beam with dimensions of about 5m (L) x 4m (B) x 3m (H). There's a door and a window (one on each end) which can easily be covered up with wall-sized boards.

I wanted to try and cover walls, ceiling and floor with curtains and carpet, and putting rolls of old carpet in all corners by way of bass traps.

My question is simple: is this a good idea?

Am I at risk of killing off my highs, or will this setup simply make the room sound dead? Will those bass traps work?

Thanks in advance for any and all replies!
Old 23rd January 2009
  #2
Gear Guru
 
Glenn Kuras's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
I wanted to try and cover walls, ceiling and floor with curtains and carpet, and putting rolls of old carpet in all corners by way of bass traps.

My question is simple: is this a good idea?

Am I at risk of killing off my highs, or will this setup simply make the room sound dead? Will those bass traps work?
First up rolls of carpet in the corners is not going to provide bass trapping. If you short on funds you can buy the bags of fluffy fiberglass and stack it floor to ceiling in each corner. It is going to look pretty ghetto but will work.
For the side walls, keep in mind that curtains are only going to absorb high end so if you cover with it you are going to end up with a pretty unbalanced room. Everything around 700hz and down (or much higher) will still be reflecting in the room to give a pretty bad "tone" to it. I myself would not do it.

Glenn
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
  #3
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Ah. Then, what would you suggest I do? Get the fiberglass, stack it in the four corners and leave the walls, ceiling and floor as they are (although boarding up the window)?
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
  #4
Gear Guru
 
Glenn Kuras's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Shadow ➑️
Ah. Then, what would you suggest I do? Get the fiberglass, stack it in the four corners and leave the walls, ceiling and floor as they are (although boarding up the window)?
I would recommend the fluffy stuff in the corners and use the fluffy stuff to make panels for the side walls. For the side wall just press it in a 4" frame and cover with fabric or pin/staple/nail the stuff up on the walls. At that point you could then hand curtains in front of it.

Glenn
Old 23rd January 2009 | Show parent
  #5
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
... but by making absorbing/reflecting panels, curtains would become kinda superfluous. Got it. Guess I'm off to the DIY shop tomorrow!

That leaves me with the floor and the ceiling. Is carpet on the floor ok, or will this also negatively affect the high end? The budget studios I've been in all had fixed carpeting.

Secondly, I haven't got the carpentry skills to securely attach an absorbing/reflecting panel to the ceiling, so I'm going to have to make a choice between the two and make it stick. My brain is telling me to choose a reflective ceiling surface. Correct?
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #6
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
... not correct, I guess.

I now put down carpet everywhere and am installing bass traps, in this case big stacks (from floor to ceiling) of rockwool, cut in triangular shapes to fit in the four corners and covered in fabric.

Next up are eight wall-high acoustic panels consisting of a rockwool interior, a fabric front and a plywood back, which will be placed against the remaining free wall space (also covering door and window). After having installed those, there will be no more visible wall. At this point, the only thing left untreated is the ceiling.

I'm still unsure about the ceiling. Should I try to cover every inch of it with rockwool as well? In combination with the fabric, it'll be a pain in the ass to put up. Glueing is less than ideal, nails won't stop it from sagging down (unless I put one in every square inch)...
Old 24th January 2009 | Show parent
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Its not too complex. just build a regular wood framed absorber and secure to the ceiling using hooks.

This will have the added benefit of leaving a gap between the ceiling and the absorber, which will make it more broadband.
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #8
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Phew. One absorber/reflector down, seven to go. I made the first one to cover the window, so I can already hear a change in the room's acoustics.

paul101, thanks for your your reply. But won't the weight of the rockwool be too great to be supported by fabric alone? Or is a layer of 1 or 2 inches (2,5 to 5 cm) of rockwool sufficient for a ceiling cloud?
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #9
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
No, the way I did it was to make a frame that gave support to the rockwool.

Make the basic frame to the overall size you want, then add additional supports that are slightly smaller than the width of rockwool. You should then be able to wedge the rockwool into place. Once a cloth front is put on, their will be plenty of support.

Have just read through this and realized in makes little sense.

Will try and take some photos, which will hopefully give you a better idea
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #10
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Acoustic cloud in my garage heh,should give you the idea. There are more slat supports that you can't see, which add strength to the frame and hold the roockwool in place.

[IMG][/IMG]
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #11
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Looks very "redish" heh

*monitor placement is not very optimal,turn to the A7 manual.
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #12
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
That looks pretty nice, paul101! Thanks for the tip, I understand perfectly now.

Doesn't the red fabric make you crazy after a while? I deliberately chose white to keep the room as light and neutral-looking as possible. "De gustibus", eh?
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomer1 ➑️
Looks very "redish" heh

*monitor placement is not very optimal,turn to the A7 manual.
Yeah your right, monitor stands are too tall to place them vertically. Kind of a temporary measure that I still haven't remedied over a year laterheh
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Shadow ➑️
That looks pretty nice, paul101! Thanks for the tip, I understand perfectly now.

Doesn't the red fabric make you crazy after a while? I deliberately chose white to keep the room as light and neutral-looking as possible. "De gustibus", eh?
No its honestly not as red as it seems. The back half of the room has less traps, so is mainly white.
I have to keep my house neutral to please my girlfriend, so i guess I took all my colour cravings out in the garageheh
Old 25th January 2009 | Show parent
  #15
80425
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Talking

dig the vibe on that pic! But yeah,Glenn is the man and knows his stuff! Carpet isn't going to do much except make your room sound like a dead covered box.
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #16
Gear Guru
 
Glenn Kuras's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Next up are eight wall-high acoustic panels consisting of a rockwool interior, a fabric front and a plywood back, which will be placed against the remaining free wall space (also covering door and window). After having installed those, there will be no more visible wall. At this point, the only thing left untreated is the ceiling.
You are also going to need some bass traps in that room. Those panels should be 4" or thicker (NO PLYWOOD ON THE BACKS) an should straddle as many corners as possible. Also for the back wall use 6" or more thickness to tame the nulls and peaks coming from that area.

Glenn
Old 27th January 2009 | Show parent
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Weasel9992's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by paul101 ➑️
Acoustic cloud in my garage heh,should give you the idea. There are more slat supports that you can't see, which add strength to the frame and hold the roockwool in place.

[IMG][/IMG]
Man..those look great. Love the cut-in for the duct.

Frank
Old 28th January 2009 | Show parent
  #18
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glenn Kuras ➑️
You are also going to need some bass traps in that room. Those panels should be 4" or more thick (NO PLYWOOD ON THE BACKS) an should straddle as many corners as possible. Also for the back wall use 6" or more thickness to tame the nulls and peaks coming from that area.

Glenn
Yeah, I've already installed bass traps (triangular rockwool "cushions" sowed in mattress covers) in the four vertical corners, from floor to ceiling.

I'm going to build more wall panels than I will strictly need, so I might try to put specific panels (without the plywood back, point taken!) across those corners, so there'll be a "double" system of bass traps at work there. I know there's probably little difference between having empty space behind corner-bass trap panels and having those rockwool "cushions" to absorb even more, but it won't hurt to try.
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #19
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Etch-A-Sketch's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Shadow ➑️
Yeah, I've already installed bass traps (triangular rockwool "cushions" sowed in mattress covers) in the four vertical corners, from floor to ceiling.

I'm going to build more wall panels than I will strictly need, so I might try to put specific panels (without the plywood back, point taken!) across those corners, so there'll be a "double" system of bass traps at work there. I know there's probably little difference between having empty space behind corner-bass trap panels and having those rockwool "cushions" to absorb even more, but it won't hurt to try.
I think someone (maybe glen?) disagreed with me on this a couple days ago, but I've always learned that filling behind the corner trap is a good thing. It helps to absorb a wider range of frequencies (like widening the Q on an EQ).
Old 30th January 2009 | Show parent
  #20
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Weasel9992's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Etch-A-Sketch ➑️
I think someone (maybe glen?) disagreed with me on this a couple days ago, but I've always learned that filling behind the corner trap is a good thing. It helps to absorb a wider range of frequencies (like widening the Q on an EQ).
Glenn definitely would NOT disagree with that, nor would I. If you can fill the corner, you should.

Frank
Old 9th February 2009 | Show parent
  #21
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
I'm done! I'll post some pictures as soon as my sister gives me my camera back.

I think I'll call it the "Studio Slaapkamer", which is Dutch for "bedroom studio". The acoustic panels are dressed in mattress covers, the bass traps are sown into various bedsheets and the ceiling clouds are stuffed pillowcases. It looks cosy and mildly surrealistic.

Technical details:


- rockwool was used for all the fillings.
- the 8 acoustic panels (2m-H x 1m-W x 0,1m-D) have an absorbing (rockwool covered in fabric) and a reflecting side (plywood), are mobile and can be attached to each other or to the wall with hooks.
- the 12 corner bass traps are wedge-shaped and stacked from floor to ceiling.
- the 8 ceiling clouds are nailed to the ceiling, which was the most destructive thing I've done to the room.

I'm gonna do some acoustical testing next weekend.
Old 21st February 2009 | Show parent
  #22
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
It took some time, but here are some pictures.
Attached Thumbnails
Putting curtains to record drums?-dsci0008.jpg   Putting curtains to record drums?-dsci0027.jpg   Putting curtains to record drums?-dsci0048.jpg   Putting curtains to record drums?-dsci0056.jpg   Putting curtains to record drums?-dsci0060.jpg  

Putting curtains to record drums?-dsci0061.jpg  
Old 23rd February 2009 | Show parent
  #23
Gear Guru
 
Glenn Kuras's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
The panels for the corners (bass trapping) should not have any kind of wood facing on them.

Glenn
Old 23rd February 2009 | Show parent
  #24
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Don't worry Glenn, I know. The wooden panels you're seeing on the pics are for the walls only; the corner bass traps behind them are pure rockwool covered in fabric - no wood there.

I guess I should have put up clearer pics of the corner bass traps, they're not very visible in these...
Old 24th February 2009 | Show parent
  #25
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
You should create some portable/hangable traps/absorbers using 703 fiberglass.

They are websites that sell bags etc to do this with easily. Then put some hang points on the walls all around where you'll do drums, and tune the room to your liking depending on the player and the kit for each session.
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