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Help on home studio treatment
Old 19th November 2009
Gear Nut
🎧 15 years
Help on home studio treatment

Hi all,

I used to be a full time engineer but due to finances and kids I'm now in dental school. I've recently been getting back in the game a little doing some work for my local church. Until now I've been using one of the rooms that they have there, but in the next few weeks I have to move my setup home. The only room I've got to work with is a 9.5'(W) x 14'(L) x 8'(H) room that we've been using as an office / storage room. Here are some pictures of the room.


Front wall

Back wall

As you can see, both the front and back walls have built-in shelves. On the front wall, they're about 1 foot depth and on the back they're about the same, but that lower desk comes out to about a 2 foot depth to fill out that cut-out space.

Here's my rough plan:

I'm a little unsure what to do with the front and back corners since they already have shelving put in. I was thinking of placing two 2"x2'x4' 703 bass traps slanted against the front top corners with one end anchored to the shelves and the other end anchored to the ceiling. I would also fill each of the top 4 empty shelves with fiberglass batting (probably fluffy pink R30 stuff) and seal them up with fabric. Is that about right? The bottom shelves have doors to close them and I could stuff those as well.

I'm planning to place a cloud over me and two panels off the wall on each side to serve as bass traps and to create a RFZ. I could seal up the corner behind me on the right from the floor to ceiling with a 3"x2'x8' 703 bass trap and place fluffy pink stuff behind that. For the back wall, I was going to stuff the space under that desk with R30 and seal it off with 2" 703. I could possible also hang another 2" trap in the corner behind me on the left.

Other possibilities would be slanted traps over the doors on each side. The floor is entirely carpeted, so not much I can do about that.

Any suggestions or criticisms?

Old 20th November 2009
Gear Addict
🎧 10 years
You're very much on right track. Annexing the closet top four shelves is right point. I like UltraTouch for this application better performance below 200 Hz, still cost-effective.

Keep the carpet...more predictable in such tight space.

Be prepared to add additional treatment front wall center. Might be fine, but depending on speaker type (edge diffraction differences) and the final set-up with desk/display monitor, you could get some image skewing. May be non-issue, just keep ears open.
Old 20th November 2009 | Show parent
Lives for gear
jhbrandt's Avatar
🎧 10 years
Yes, and also let me reiterate that with such a small room you will need all the trapping you can get. With the length at 14 ft, the mode response is not too bad, but with a length of 12 ft. you have several double incidences and at least one triple that will cause you problems in the low end. So, trap the heck out of it, but try not to make it anechoic. BTW, simply having an airspace behind absorbent lowers it's effective bandwidth and, of course, improves it's LF absorption. - For broadband absorbers... the bigger they are - the lower they go. If you need absorption lower than 100 Hz, I suggest you make some resonant type traps.

Like Jeff said: "just keep ears open"
Old 20th November 2009 | Show parent
Gear Nut
🎧 15 years
Thanks for the advice Jeff and John.

Jeff: Good catch! I was indeed planning to hang a 2x4 sheet in front of the window horizontally. I forgot to add it. I'm using a pair of ADAM A7's with a JBL sub, I think those should be suitable for this size of a room. I do also have some extra ultratouch lying around from a past installation I did, that will indeed be perfect! I don't know why I didn't think of that...

John: Try to trap the heck out of the room, eh? I think I'll add a couple more bass traps around the ceiling-wall junctions.

EDIT: I also had another question: The walls surrounding the room are mostly if not all drywall. Wouldn't the very low frequencies like sub 80Hz or so just make their way through the walls and not really be an issue? So my problem area is really the 100-500Hz region?
Old 20th November 2009 | Show parent
Gear Addict
🎧 10 years
Regarding below 80 Hz passing through walls...doesn't work that way completely. Yes, the walls are a major part of the Low Freq Response of your room & Yes...more energy below 80 Hz will pass through single layer of typical wallboard than brick/block...but you still have modes.

Follow the plan...John is right on point...not too dead is so true. You can over time tweak with diffusion or strategic reflectors even in small room. Not a first phase priority though.

...as for sub placement/integration it actually can be the make or break point of getting accurate LF Response. I little while ago I offered a fairly detailed sub integration protocol...search my posts as I think it will help.

You'll be in the game from the start from the given info.
Old 20th November 2009 | Show parent
Lives for gear
Weasel9992's Avatar
🎧 15 years
Man...you just got advice from two of the biggest acoustics guys on these forums. Nothing like Gearslutz!

Old 20th November 2009 | Show parent
Gear Nut
🎧 15 years
It is indeed awesome to have a place to get advice from the pros! I'll check back in on this thread with some updates as I get going on the room. Thanks all!

Old 23rd November 2009 | Show parent
Gear Guru
Glenn Kuras's Avatar
🎧 15 years
Looks like your covered pretty well. Just let us know if you have any questions.
Old 16th July 2010 | Show parent
Gear Nut
🎧 15 years
Just wanted to update this old thread with some pics to show what I did.

The ceiling cloud above the mix position is 4" 703 w/ foam tacked on, slanted from an 8" space between the foam and ceiling in the front to a 4" space at the back. The trap in the top front is the same. The two top front bookshelves are filled with Ultratouch insulation and then sealed off with 2" 703. The shelves under that have a 'door' made of 4" 703. My wife complained about losing too much shelf space, so I framed the back of the trap and made it into a door that can swing open. The sides are also 4" 703 held 3" off the wall with a wood frame, and I also placed two more traps above them. There are some LENRDs on the floor in the front corner areas. I know they don't do much, but I got 'em free and they add to 'the look' for those who don't know. Haha...

The trap in the corner is 5" 703 from floor to ceiling. I couldn't seal up that back (again, to save shelf space) so I made a 7 foot free-standing trap and placed it right in front of the shelf. The difference with it there and not there is NOT subtle.

I used the 38% guideline to place myself in the room. Had to experiment a little with the sub placement to get it right, but I think I've got it now.

Gratuitous gearslutz pic....

The room overall sounds great! I mean, it's no high end room, but I wouldn't be able to blame my surroundings for a crappy mix. I've actually finished a couple projects in the room already and they've turned out very well.

Thanks for all the advice!
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