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Author Topic: Bass trap ideas?  (Read 7438 times)

Rob Darling

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Re: Bass trap ideas?
« Reply #15 on: May 06, 2004, 02:42:12 pm »

A live room is not a control room.  Using the principles of creating a control room when trying to sculpt a live room will give you a very boring room.  You have to use your ears and experiment.

To that end, take 4 or 5 pieces of 4x8 half inch plywood, and cut them in half.  Buy a bag of r-11 fiberglass, stretch it and staple it down, and screw in eyes at each corner.  Now begin hanging them around the ceiling and walls with more eyes and a bunch of s-hooks.  Experiment with angles, one end vs the other, etc.  

Once you are happy, cover them with some kind of cloth that you like, and call it a day.  100$ and you'll get what you need.
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brandondrury

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Re: Bass trap ideas?
« Reply #16 on: May 06, 2004, 03:30:21 pm »

Plywood and R-11: Sounds like the perfect solution for my mid and high end absorbsion needs.  Assuming I can get the low end right, the next step is diffusion.

I read on Ethan's site that a room with proper diffusion will actual reduce bleed into other microphones.  At first, I thought this was nuts, but after thinking about it for a minute it made total sense.

Is the random plywood with R-11 placement applicable to diffusion as well?  I saw 4x8 sheets of lattice at the local hardward store for $6.  I figured I would just purchase 10 or 15 of these and put them in crazy concoctions all over the room.

I kind of want to make this particular room very live.  I want to record drums in it, toss in a few room mics and not have to worry about using plugins too much. I hate messing with reverb plugins!  I'd like to be able to use the same room for vocals and let the ambience of the room be enough.

I've got a smaller room that could be easily converted to a dead room for voiceover work, etc.

Brandon

josh

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Re: Bass trap ideas?
« Reply #17 on: May 06, 2004, 04:19:55 pm »

I don't think the R-11 on plywood is going to do what you want at all.  It will absorb high frequencies and that's it.  You'll end up with a dead-sounding, boomy room.

I also don't think that lattice is going to do what you want for a diffuser, but I'm not really very knowledgeable about diffusers.  There are ways you can make poor-man's diffusion devices, probably the cheapest and easiest of which is to take a piece of 1/8" masonite and bend it with a little bit of radius, attach it to the wall this way, voila you now have a diffusor (whether it sounds good is yet another question).  Diffusion can get extremely complicated when you begin to talk about broadband and 2D, 3D etc...  it makes my head spin.

If you want a live-ish room, then don't stick R-11 everywhere.  Realtraps Minitraps seem to have mostly reflective surfaces on them to preserve a bit of the reflective ambience at the top end, and hanging a couple of these at varying angles (particularly in the corners, where they are most effective anyway), can give you *some* diffusion.  Of course a book shelf with some books, CDs, other junk on it can work as a decent diffusor as well, just not really fine-tuned.

Ethan Winer

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Re: Bass trap ideas?
« Reply #18 on: May 07, 2004, 12:32:53 pm »

Brandon,

> Never have I received that much information in a language that I can understand when it comes to acoustics. <

Thanks very much!

> my logic says that getting to instruments to hard disk as best as possible is more important than hearing them more accurately during mixing. <

I'd argue the opposite - hearing accurately while mixing is important because it's your last chance to fix whatever may be wrong with the tracks.

> Do I want to make the room sound really live or should I go a subtle route? <

It depends entirely on how large the room is, and large rooms can get away with being more live sounding. But the same amount of reflectivity in a small room is a problem because the reflecting surfaces are all close to the performer and to the mikes. This creates problems with comb filtering and short, muddying echoes.

> I'm ready to start chopping up 2"x4"'s into triangles <

I'm not a diffusion expert, but I believe the best ones use a math sequence. As opposed to randomly sticking stuff on the walls.

--Ethan

Ethan Winer

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Re: Bass trap ideas?
« Reply #19 on: May 07, 2004, 12:40:27 pm »

Josh,

> I'm now very curious about your "mini traps" ... How (technically) do they differ from the membrane-type traps? <

MiniTraps are a sort of hybrid between a rigid fiberglass panel and a membrane trap. That is, they're based on rigid fiberglass, but we also add a membrane to enhance their absorption quite a bit at low frequencies. So they have the best features of both designs, absorbing even more and to a lower frequency than wood panel traps. They also absorb mid and high frequencies too, and the balance between the frequency ranges is intentional and part of the design.

> the recommendations for use of membrane traps are to nearly completely line the room with them, while the info page on your mini traps page refers to a much more "sparse" application of traps. <

Yes, that too. MiniTraps absorb low frequencies about twice as much as wood panel membrane traps, so fewer are needed.

> if I have a very small budget, then would I be better off buying a small number of mini traps <

I can't really answer that because I don't know how good you are with power tools nor do I know how much your time is worth to build them. I will say that four MiniTraps is a practical minimum for most rooms.

--Ethan

josh

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Re: Bass trap ideas?
« Reply #20 on: May 07, 2004, 03:28:12 pm »

Thanks, Ethan.  You're incredibly helpful as usual.

I'm pretty good with power tools but my time is also very sparse.  Particularly since my wife has recently become hooked on "Trading Spaces" and has lots of projects lined up for me.

I'll see if I can scam some Minitraps.  They certainly would reduce the whole "fuss" factor compared with DIY.

Thanks,
josh
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