Studio Design | Room Acoustics

The Room Acoustics Management System

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The Home Studio Journey:

The greatest challenge that a musician has when the decision has been made to build a “Home Studio” is: “Why am I building this thing and how committed am I to the quality of the recordings I make?”

There are basically three answers to that question:
1. I just want to create simple recordings of my music to play for friends and family
2. I want to create recordings that represent my creative thoughts well enough to take into a better studio: “Demo Recordings”
3. I want to create professional music, and possibly video, productions that are “Radio Quality”

Answer 1: A room that can record layered tracks, possible a looping pedal as your main recording device, and play them back on a good sounding pair of speakers though your computer, tablet, or phone.

You will need a subscription to a Web music hosting site such as Sound Cloud to post you music so you can give the Web links to friends and family.

Answer 2: A room that can record layered tracks using a Digital Audio Workstation, a DAW recording program for your computer, tablet, or phone, using a low-cost DAW interface.
It needs to be able record at least two channels play them back on a good sounding pair of speakers.
This will require a minimum collection of studio gear: A low-cost mic, powered studio speakers, and a DAW computer application.

You will also need a subscription to a Web music hosting site such as Sound Cloud to post you music so you can give the Web links to friends and family.

Answer 3: A major commitment to the “Home Studio Money Pit”.
This includes upgraded hardware and software from option 2.
Option 3 requires skills that, if you do not currently possess, you must learn or partner with some one who has professional skills.

A good start is to build option 2 and graduate to option 3, over time.

The Cave Studio Room Acoustics:

The most important commitments for Option 3 is the financial and knowledge commitment to acoustic engineering: The management of the acoustic challenges of a room not designed to be a professional Control Room and Recording Studio room.

This section shows how the Muse Cave Professional Home Studio addressed an apartment 2nd, rather large, bedroom: A 11’ 9” x 18’ 0” room.

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The Muse Cave combined Studio and Control Room room acoustics is controlled by the placement of Primacoustic London 10 Acoustic Room Kit and two Primacoustic GoTrap Studio Gobo and Bass Traps.

The room uses Twelve Scatter 12" square blocks behind the Studio Console desk and eight 48" Acoustic columns that are 12" wide. These columns are strategically places in the room.

The three guitar "Tone" amps are used separated using the Gobos from the Wet/Dry/Wet Stereo Strymon and Hughes & Kettner

The Gobos:

The room is acoustically divided into a 12" by 12" Control Room and a 6' by 12' Guitar Amp room using the two Primacoustic GoTrap Studio Gobo and Bass Traps.

The Gobos can create:
- Two 2' x 3' walls
- One 4' by 3' wall
- One 3' x 4'wall

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The Studio Monitor Room Treatments:

The Home Studio Control Room/Tracking Room is treated with professional room tuning columns, scatter block squares, Free Standing and stackable Gobos, and Spot Panels.

Primacoustic London 10 Acoustic Room Kit:
- Eight Control Columns - 12" x 48" x 2", w/Beveled Edges
- Twelve Scatter Blocks - 12" x 12" x 1", w/Beveled Edges

The Primacoustic GoTrap Studio Gobo and Bass Traps:
- Three 2’ x 3’ x 6” Gobos for Control Room isolation from the guitar amps

The GIK Acoustics Free Standing Acoustic Gobo Panels and Acoustic Absorption Panels:
- Two movable Acoustic Panels: 24” x 60” X 2” for the mic table Acoustic Guitar and Vocals
- Four Spot Panel Acoustic Panels: 24” x 24” x 3.625” final wall reflection control

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The Primacoustic and GIK Acoustic Components:

The room acoustic treatments are NOT used as “Sound Proofing”.

The room acoustic treatments are used to manage the physical characteristics of sound frequencies in a small space.
The Acoustic Room Components roles:

- Primacoustic Control Columns: Eight panels strategically placed to absorb mid and high frequencies to prevent “Standing Waves”, reflected frequencies caused by parallel adjacent walls with hard surfaces.

- Primacoustic Scatter Blocks: Twelve 12” x 12” square panels arranged behind the Studio Control Desk to manage Studio Speaker Monitor’s reflected mid and high frequencies.

- Primacoustic Gobo Bass Traps: Three “Portable 3’ x 4’ Walls” for Control Room isolation from the guitar amps.
The Gobos are low-end “Bass Traps” and mid and high frequency absorbers to lower the sound pressure levels of the Stage and Bedroom amps during performance micing sessions.
This allows for better understanding of the eight mic mixes during the tracking stage of Musical Portrait productions.

- GIK Acoustics Standing Acoustic Gobo & Absorption Panels: Two movable 5’ x 2’ Acoustic Panels: 24” x 60” X 2” for Acoustic Guitar and Vocal dual mic tracking

- GIK Acoustics Spot Panel Acoustic Panels: Four 2’ square, 3.625" thickness panels for selected room reflection control