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New Studio Build for Non-Profit Music Education Program

Hi All! Thanks for being here, thanks for having me and thanks for taking a look at this.

I'm working on starting a music education project here in Athens GA and I'm building out a studio for it.
(you can find more details at https://www.thrilla… )

First off I need to say that isolation is not a problem here. Not that there aren't issues, but I can get around them and my neighbors are super cool. Plus the building itself is set way off the road on the end of a dead end street.

I've posted diagrams of the two rooms involved, but for now I'm focusing on the control room (Room B in the diagrams).

I've also posted the SPL results from REW for the room - it's an average of three tests. I'm new to REW and room acoustics, so I'm spending a lot of time in YouTube learning how to read the results. But if any more experienced folks want to give me some tips on how to make the room more neutral and appropriate for mixing/mastering/control that would be greatly appreciated!

You can also download the mdat file for the tests here: https:///… (you might have to right-click and select "save as" to get that to work).

I'm sure I left a lot of stuff out of this but please feel free to unload with any questions you might have!

Thanks again,


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Recording gear help!

Hello, I am an aspiring audio engineer that has been mixing & recording for about 6 months. I only do Rap/Hip hop , I've been wanting to upgrade my current setup to something better. I currently own a Bluebird spark SL & a cheap $99 M-Audio interface. I want a little more of a professional, cleaner, & overall better sound, So I decided to create a interface chain instead of purchasing an interface alone. To start my chain I've decided to pick the Audio-Technica 4050 Microphone, because of the great reviews especially for rap vocals.

I have been advised to go with the Focusrite ISA One preamp or a Golden Age Pre-73?

I was leaning towards the Focusrite ISA One though but which do you guys recommend?

I'm going to add a compressor in the chain later on but for right now I will complete it with a solid interface. I was either thinking of the Audient ID14 or Audient ID22, I don't know which is better or even if there is any cheaper alteratives? Am I able to stop the gain coming in from these and just use the preamp gain, If so how do I go about it. I apologize for so many questions, but I am passionate about this and I want to do well! Thank You so much if you have any more advice or tips around building a better studio or rap vocals let me know! Thank yall again!

New Studio in NYC

@Kurt Foster @audiokid

I received this month's issue of ProSound News; on page 20 is a neat article about a new studio that has opened in Mid-town Manhattan, GSI Studios.
While not strictly analog, the analog gear they have is the main draw for clients. The centerpiece is an API 1608 Console, and a Studer A827 Tape Machine.
Daniel Robin, a co-founder of the studio, says that, "Here in New York, a lot of the hipper, younger bands want to record analog". Rovin goes on to mention that he's working with a label who has booked sessions exclusively because they are analog; "they don't even want us to turn the computer on".

You can read more about this studio in this month's issue of ProSound.


New Studio Planning

Hi all. So much great information. I am on my second read of Rod Gervais’s book. It has been a dream of mine to have my own studio and the time has come. Here is some information and my plan. I am completely open to suggestions. I do not have my designs drafted on yet partly because I haven’t had the time to learn the a program, and I was hoping for some feedback prior to meeting with my contractor who would draft the design that I can post later.

Background information: I teach percussion (Western classical and Non-Western world) at our State University and I have a six-piece Afro-Cuban Timba band consisting of electric bass, drum set, keyboards/guitar, steel pan, congas/timbales, and bongos/various other percussion. I also play a fair amount of samba percussion instruments from large surdos to small tamborims and much more. I occasionally teach groups of drummers and drum set in addition to my university job. I live with my wife and eleven year old son in our three bedrooom 1800 sq. ft home. I mostly practice at the university, when I can fit it in. If I can build a soundproof detached space, I know I will practice more, and be able to teach both private and group lessons. Plus my band can rehearse there if needed. By the way, my wife has very sensitive hearing and my practicing often drives her crazy. She loves working outside, maintaining her gardens and fruit trees, so soundproofing is essential to keeping the peace and staying married. My son is playing drum kit, so I can see him using the studio more as he gets older.

Location: Northern California, Humboldt County, 6 miles east of Pacific Ocean, 270 miles north of San Francisco -USA
Rural. 2/3 of an acre parcel. I have a corner lot. The “main” road borders one side and the road adjacent to it is where we turn to get into our driveway. Both are pretty quiet. The location of the studio would be about 60 ft. from our house and main road, and about 25 ft. from my closest neighbor’s house, but only 6 ft. from the fence separating our properties.

Estimated Studio DB & TL Levels: The band peaked at about 90db. A drum class I taught at our local elementary school gym peaked at 108db. So I would assume 100db. The lowest frequencies would come from the electric bass, kick drum, and floor tom.

Noise Issues: Typical neighborhood noises around 60 db. However, our volunteer fire station is about 200 ft. away with a siren that blows whenever there is a need. Not very often. Siren measured 90 db at our house. Otherwise normal stuff like cars, motorcycles (occasionally), barking dogs and geese, riding mowers, and weed whackers.

Weather: It is pretty temperate all year long here. Average low of 41 degrees Fahrenheit and high of 64 degrees Fahrenheit. Record low was 20 degrees and record high was 87 degrees. Rains on average 45 inches per year. Rarely snows.

Goals of project:

To make the most sound-proof and energy-efficient room/building possible on a reasonable budget. The space would be mainly for practicing/rehearsing, teaching individual and group lessons, and recording occasionally. I envision an open one-room space set up for band rehearsals with a PA, cabinets and shelving for percussion instruments, desk for computer and monitor speakers.

Project Status: I met with one contractor friend of mine and we mainly discussed the mass-air-mass concept and drew some pictures of room within room ideas. I am planning on meeting with another contractor friend who has done a number of ICF buildings. His company will work on a design, but I am not sure if they will actually have time do anything other than the ICF. So I am just in the beginning planning stages trying to get a design I can furnish to this and other forums for feedback. My goal would be to have a studio done in one year from now.

Project Description: Build room within a room from scratch. ICF construction for shell. What do people think of ICF?
· Studio Dimensions 12’ height x 19’ width x 26’ length. I got a positive reading from BBC calculator. Shell would be larger by 18 inches all around and 4’ attic. My contractor suggested 10’ walls and my wife is worried about the building being too tall. For my application of mainly rehearsal studio, would lowering the ceiling to 10’ and adjust to 18.5” width with the same 26’ length be compromising the sound too much? With this lower wall height, would a vaulted ceiling help with room modes?

· Floor – Monolithic concrete slab with radiant heating.

· Walls - From outside to inside would be siding over a 6” core ICF. Then a 2” air gap followed by a 2x4 framed wall o.c 24 filled with R13 insulation, and two layers of 5/8 drywall, the first one screwed in, and the second green glued on top of it. Total wall thickness would be 18 inches. All measures would be taken to isolate the inner wall from the shell.

· Roof/Ceiling - The roof would be vaulted or tent like with plywood sheathing and shingles resting on the ICF walls. The studio ceiling would be flat (or possibly vaulted if wall height is 10’), using joists/trusses (not sure of correct term) resting on the 2x4 studio walls with 2 layers of 5/8 drywall, then insulation, 1B-1 clips with hat channel and 2 more layers of 5/8 drywall on the truss bottoms. This allows for a vented attic and the studio ceiling would be isolated from the shell roof.

· I would attach a mud room entry (it rains a lot here) around 8’x8’x8’ with a small sink, counter, and small refrigerator, leading to a super door for entrance into the studio.

· HVAC – Not sure. Will discuss with contractor or local HVAC company. Mostly I will be alone in studio, but I need to have plan for band rehearsals and occasional class. So I am thinking of 8 people max in room at one time. I won’t have a lot of heat producing gear. Perhaps that will change over time though. Definitely separate systems with heat from radiant floor. The attic dimensions would be 22’ x 29’ x 4’ (unless I vault the studio ceiling, which would reduce the gap between shell roof and studio ceiling). I believe I could use insulated flexible ducting with bends and s-shapes in attic and then drop intake and exhaust through ceiling. How would I isolate the ducts going through ceiling? Or is it better to build a decoupled soffit in studio room? Any advice? According to ASHRAE journal, Arcata, the closest city has 0.1 + 0.0 tons-hours per scfm per year. I think that means I don’t need much in dehumidification and cooling. Again fuzzy on this.

· Electricity – I will follow Rod’s and others’ suggestions and have lights and non-gear electricity on a separate circuit than the outlets that amps etc. would be plugged into. I will wire from above and down walls for lighting circuit and wire from floor for gear to keep them perpendicular and not parallel.

Known Construction Challenges:
Not much. The land would need to be prepared for the slab. Our property naturally slopes towards my neighbors property, so we don’t get much standing water, even with all the rain we have. That said, I would rely on my contractor’s advice. If need be we could put a French drain in. I have about eight trees some of which are dying, so they will need to be cut down. Finally, my wife works at home. She has a schoolroom she teaches in, so finding an appropriate time to do the construction so it does not interfere with her classes poses another challenge.

I have read Rod's book, and I've spoke a few times with John Hile of He sent me some nice sims for ventilation, wall & ceiling construction, and more. I have been reading posts here at, and at John Sayers' and Gearslutz forums, all of which I am now a member.

My new studio

After what seemed like never ending renovations, here are some pictures of my new studio. I am happy with the outcome, although I am still waiting for my door and door frame to arrive so I cannot measure the sound proofing yet. Although now my wife can watch TV right above my studio which she could not do before.

I kept testing my room while I was adding the acoustic treatment and was surprised to see what difference the treatment made with respect to nulls and peaks. The response is much flatter in the room when compared to my old room which was a disaster zone for low frequencies.

I was also happy with the wire management system I purchased. I actually spent a while looking at studio pictures to see what people to to organize cables. I found a lot of people just use milk crates, or nails in the walls or so on. I happen to swing by target as the store was closing and purchased 2 end-cap display racks with hooks. It is very solid and works like a charm. I included a picture of that. I also wanted something interesting for my mics where they would be easy to access. I have not found the ideal solution but the ikea shelf is working fine for now. If you have any ideas or feedback, please do not hesitate. Oh, and those ugly speaker next to my monitors are NOT for mixing. they are only used for live rehearsals with my band.

I am not necessarily looking for feedback with this post, just proud of my work and wanted to share it. haha

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New Studio Design. To go with option A or option B?

I'm building a new studio in my basement and have the option between having one big room for tracking and mixing or a separate smallish room for mixing and decent size room for tracking. What option would you guys do?
It would be nice to have a separate control room but for the space I have to work with, the control room width would only allow about one foot on
each sides of the monitors, even though there would be absorption at the reflective points, I would think it would be much better for mixing to have
the width be 18ft wide instead of 12ft wide, and the depth be 33ft instead of 18ft. Or will the uneven back of the room be a problem?

My budget? I work at a local hardware store one night a week to get discounts, so I can get a drywall for cheap and whatever else I need.
Right now I have about $3000 to start with but thats just for drywall, outlet box's, lighting, and whatever framing I'll need.
Labor wise, I've done drywall, framing, electricity many times, so It will be all DIY.

The current construction is a framed (but tangible) unfinished basement, cement floors, 10 ft ceilings in a large part of the space (measured from cement to bottom of trusses).
There are other erea where the heating ducts hang down to about 8ft. The wall that is in photo "B" is a main support wall for the house, so if I decided to not have that there I would
replace it with a wood ceiling beam that would hang down about 1 ft.

Option A "One Big Room"

Option B "Separate Rooms"
I realize the control room window is not placed correctly, I'd change that.

My New Studio Page!

Hello everyone. I haven't been around here much lately as I've been very busy with lots of stuff going on, but our new studio page is up and I'm proud of that! Anyway thought I'd check in and shoot an update, hope everyone here is well.

http://www.FrozenSu…"]Frozen Sun Audio | Professional guitar tone Reamping, Custom IRs, Premium IR packs, Mixing services and more…[/]="http://www.FrozenSu…"]Frozen Sun Audio | Professional guitar tone Reamping, Custom IRs, Premium IR packs, Mixing services and more…[/]


Thoughts and Opinions on upgrading to new studio

hey all, my boss is a berkley graduate (audio production), has been recording professionally for over 20 years, full time. i recently built i studio for him in my hometown, with the idea of tapping in to a new market. so he's running 2 studios. the one i built came out better than we expected, and much better than the first location, which was not built from the ground up, and is located in a noisy, band rehearsal facility.

having grown understandably frustrated, with the conditions, he's thinking about moving out. The opportunity has come up to lease a studio that has been closed for 3 years. it's is in it's own comercial building, and was re-built 3 times, in the heyday of the late 80's early 90's. it has been in mix magazine, and was professionally designed by an acoustician. this was a no expense spared built, for a grammy winning engineer.

the lease would increase current rent to about $1500 per month. it has living accommodations for 6, a faraday cage, 2 large booths, reception area, and an office. My question is in this current state of the art, what are you guy's feelings on this move.?

there is no way we could afford to build a place to that extent, but to me this seems like a very good opportunity to have a high end professional recording studio, in a relatively affordable way. our hope is that we'll be able to attract higher level clients, and do more label work. there have been numerous top ten hits recorded at this studio, and the engineer/producer who recorded them is onboard to work there if this goes thru.

is this a bad idea? what other options should i be considering? i'm going friday w/ my boss, to see what kind of construction repairs need to be made, and put together a budget.

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