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Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

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Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby damonbrockmusic » Tue Jun 08, 2021 8:41 pm

Hi all

Thanks for reading.

I'm having a garden studio built next month and want to get it as good as possible.

The room is 2.5m wide * 4m long * 2.4m high externally - equating to roughly 2m wide * 3.6m long * 2m high internally. So pretty small and the build isn't a room within a room.

The build team have a lot of experience soundproofing existing rooms and, due to Covid-19, have moved more into the garden studio new build due to the increased demand.

I'd like to have a fairly live sound in the room. I'll be singing and playing acoustic and electric guitar, plugged straight into an interface initially but might mic up the acoustic later. A rehearsal and recording space.

They're proposing carpet, 1 full wall acoustic panel, and around 6 x scatter panels 1200mm x 600mm on other walls. Nothing on the ceiling.

I've read that hardwood flooring is the best but I'm of the understanding that that's only if the ceiling has acoustic panels on it. Is that correct? I shouldn't have two hard surfaces - so is their proposal of carpet and nothing on the ceiling ok? If I had hardwood, I'd bring a rug(s) in if I wanted.

FYI under the carpet is 25mm rockfloor insulation and also the D B x boards with a Floor Lay 9 rubber.

Ceiling joists will be covered with 18mm O S B.

If you need any more info, let me know.

Thanks so much
Damon
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby Eddy Deegan » Tue Jun 08, 2021 10:28 pm

Hello Damon, welcome to the forum :wave:

Is soundproofing a concern, or only the internal acoustics?
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby damonbrockmusic » Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:06 am

My main concern, and the reason I asked the question, was internal acoustics, but if you think there might be a good point to make about soundproofing, then please do share!
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby Wonks » Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:35 am

I’d suggest a hard floor with rugs, so you can remove one or more rugs as necessary. Having a hard floor can be beneficial when recording an acoustic with a mic.

If you have the head height in the space, an acoustic ‘cloud’ panel hung from the ceiling will normally benefit the sound in the space.

Are the full acoustic wall and ‘the scatter’ panels (are these diffusers or decent broadband absorbers or thin foam panels) being positioned to suit your mixing/monitoring position?

Do you have a specification for the studio’s performance with respect to sound attenuation at different frequencies?

What allowances have been made for ventilating the space?
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby damonbrockmusic » Wed Jun 09, 2021 9:13 am

Thanks Wonks - great stuff.

The height would be c 2m, so a cloud panel would be fine for 5'6" me I reckon but maybe not if someone taller were in the room.

I'm yet to get confirmation of where these scatter panels would be and what they are. I'm gonna have a desk at the opposite wall to the door with monitors so a suitable panels set up there would be ideal. I'll ask.

a specification for the studio’s performance with respect to sound attenuation at different frequencies - as in have I received it from the installer? No.

Ventilation - installing an Acoustic Ventilation System reducing sound by 45dB

Cheers
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby Wonks » Wed Jun 09, 2021 9:50 am

That last bit sounds halfway hopeful to me. There are so many bad installers of acoustic treatment and soundproofing out there, that unless you employ a good acoustic consultant to specify and hopefully oversee the installation, it's very easy to spend a lot of money and end up with something barely better than a standard wooden shed.

The devil is in the details with soundproofing and acoustics, and so often these get overlooked. The way panels are fitted, how the joints between panels are done, the use of sound absorbing products like Green Glue etc. And so often these details get overlooked by the builders who do things the way they've always done.

You could hang a 50mm deep cloud 50mm from the ceiling, giving you 1.9m (6'2") below it. Probably a bit low for the main part of the studio, but maybe you could fit a small one over the DAW location (where you'll be sitting down).

Your wall panels will first need to cover the' mirror' reflection points for your mixing location, and remaining panels can then be distributed around as necessary. Depending on how 'live' you want the space, you may be better off trying for a live end/dead end situation, with most of the panels up near the DAW.

Does the full acoustic wall provide enough bass trapping for the space, as it's very easy to put up a lot of fairly thin wall panels that take out all the treble and upper mids but then leave the space very boomy and uncontrolled at the bass end? I'd be prepared to add some extra corner traps if necessary, so I wouldn't use up all your corner spaces to begin with.

I'd read Blinddrew's shed-studio build if you haven't done so, as it probably covers a lot of the areas of your build.

https://www.soundonsound.com/forum/view ... 24&t=66983

All the best with your studio build.
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby damonbrockmusic » Wed Jun 09, 2021 11:47 am

Thanks again Wonks.

The guys doing the build have been doing soundproofing for years, which includes rooms for all sorts of uses including music rooms, so I'm confident for how they're putting the build together.

A cloud above the monitoring position sounds good - ain't gonna be standing there anyway as the desk'll be there.

Bass traps are an option that I'll discuss with them about whether they can install after the build has been completed if I'm not happy with the sound.

I'll have a read of Blinddrew's thread, cheers!
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby Wonks » Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:10 pm

Bass traps can be DIY or bought from someone like GIK and installed yourself. Cheaper than adding a contractor's percentage on top.
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby blinddrew » Wed Jun 09, 2021 7:59 pm

There's a couple of examples in my build thread where I had to take additional steps (my fault on one occasion) to get something that does the job sufficiently, but it sounds like your chosen company is a bit more mindful of these things.
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Jun 10, 2021 7:12 am

Just add to the excellent advice from Wonky that bass traps need to be big to be effective and you have a tiny room.

A couple of other points. Definitely mirror points for the broadband panels (inc cloud), diffusers may not be particularly helpful in a room that small (they are not usually recommended for that application). I believe most suppliers of acoustic treatment will do a plan for you if you intend to buy from them (Gik certainly do).

FWIW my room is 4 x 4 metres and about 1.8 m high, I have 50mm panels* spaced 40mm off the ceiling and, at 5' 6" I'm fine but tall people have to play sitting down :D

* I have 5 x 1200 x 600 mm panels, 2 x 800 x 600 and three bass traps (all DIY, cost was about £350). I plan to add another 5 panels this year.
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby damonbrockmusic » Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:56 am

Thanks all for the input. A few further points then...

Panels - Having spoken to a supplier I'm gonna get a cloud panel over one end, and 2 side panels installed. And he advised bass traps in all corners. I don't want to kill the sound at the other end of the room though - or am I in cloud cuckoo land thinking I'll be able to have a more live end of such a small room, and a monitoring space at the other end?

Flooring - FYI I'm having underfloor heating installed (to save space), and a flooring supplier tells me I can't have hardwood with underfloor heating due to expansion/contraction issues. Also, there'd almost be no point either way he says as the floor is made up of concrete, 25mm Rockfloor insulation and also the DBx boards with a FloorLay 9 rubber, so no space below the flooring for the sound to travel around.

In that respect, he advised a high quality LVT like Karndean would suffice. Any thoughts on that?
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby blinddrew » Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:59 am

I think I'd take a step-by-step approach. You can never have too much bass trapping but aside from that, start with the mirror points and see how it goes. It might take a little longer but you won't be solving problems you don't have or making compromises you don't need to.
My room is a bit wider than yours but the same length and I've definitely managed to get a difference between the live and dead ends.

Can't help on the carpet suggestions I'm afraid!
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby MOF » Thu Jun 10, 2021 12:40 pm

You can never have too much bass trapping
Well if it’s filled the room then maybe you’ve got too much. :lol:
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby RichardT » Thu Jun 10, 2021 12:45 pm

I think it’s important to experiment with your acoustic treatment - trying out different positions for the traps until you get the best sound you can. And, as Drew says, start with a few traps in the key locations and add more as time goes by. You’ll need quite a lot to get good results and reasonable control of the bass frequencies.
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Re: Garden Studio Set Up - quick help required!

Postby damonbrockmusic » Fri Jun 11, 2021 6:57 pm

Thanks all. Great help.

I’ve a plan now for panels etc.

Anyone have any advice regarding the LVT flooring by any chance?
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