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Author Topic: Volume for a small live room footprint  (Read 1875 times)

echoboy

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Volume for a small live room footprint
« on: October 24, 2007, 01:57:35 am »

Hi everyone,

First off, I apologize if this has been covered -- I searched for a while and came up empty. If anyone can point me in the proper direction, I'll eagerly read what's already been discussed.

On to the question:

I have a 12'6" x 15'4" space that I want to use as a drum room. Ceiling height can be nearly anything I want within reason, as it would be part of a future addition. Thanks to some luck, this footprint is in line with a 1:1.14:1.39 room ratio with an 11' ceiling.

Ignoring any isolation issues and just talking about the sound of the room itself, would increasing the volume of the space (by going with a taller ceiling) help me avoid the "small room" sound? Can I actually get a room that has pleasant and useful reverberation in that footprint?

Thanks for any help. I've learned so much reading the forum. I like to say I've learned so much that I can't remember it all...

Echoboy
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Ethan Winer

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Re: Volume for a small live room footprint
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2007, 03:06:53 pm »

echoboy wrote on Wed, 24 October 2007 01:57

would increasing the volume of the space (by going with a taller ceiling) help me avoid the "small room" sound?


The "small room sound" we all strive to avoid is caused by reflections that arrive soon and arrive strong (volume). So as I see it this is more a function of the distance to reflecting surfaces than total volume. The distance is relative to both the music instrument sound source and also to the microphones.

Quote:

Can I actually get a room that has pleasant and useful reverberation in that footprint?


I don't think so. The best you can aim for in a small room is a neutral sound. But you can do that easily with absorption and bass traps. If you think about it, a ceiling that is infinitely absorbent is acoustically equal to a ceiling that is infinitely high. Either way the sound goes up and never comes back. Likewise for the walls. I'm not saying to cover every surface in your room with absorption! Just explaining the principles.

--Ethan

gullfo

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Re: Volume for a small live room footprint
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2007, 04:22:26 pm »

that said, if you can get 14' high ceilings thats also very nice...
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Glenn Stanton

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echoboy

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Re: Volume for a small live room footprint
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2007, 04:49:35 pm »

Thanks for the replies. I agree, especially on the 14-foot ceilings! Although I wonder about this:

Ethan Winer wrote on Wed, 24 October 2007 14:06

echoboy wrote on Wed, 24 October 2007 01:57

would increasing the volume of the space (by going with a taller ceiling) help me avoid the "small room" sound?


If you think about it, a ceiling that is infinitely absorbent is acoustically equal to a ceiling that is infinitely high. Either way the sound goes up and never comes back.


I believe I would get a benefit from the possibility of greater distance between the drums and a higher overhead position, even if the taller ceiling was just as absorbent as a lower one. And, of course, nothing is totally absorbent, is it? Wouldn't I still be getting some reflected energy?

I sure hope I'm not appearing argumentative, not the case at all! Just thinking, and curious to see what you all think...

Thanks again!
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gullfo

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Re: Volume for a small live room footprint
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2007, 06:55:26 pm »

yes, the taller ceiling can reflect but you have more room for treatments and your overhead mics. i would prefer to have 6 ft of space over my mics vs. 2 ft... you have to consider potentially turning the room on its side to guage the effective ratio...
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Glenn Stanton

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franman

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Re: Volume for a small live room footprint
« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2007, 11:20:49 pm »

definitely look at the ratios.. the room is too small to not look at ratios. Everything mentioned above is right.. I would always take the height in an effort to install some deeeeep trapping.. don't be affraid to 2-3' of trapping in the ceiling..

don't try to get room ambience out of a room this size.. it doesn't have to be totally dead, but it really can't be a reverberant room unless you turn it into a live chamber.. (anybody read Elec Musician this month??).... but that's not what you want to record in..

Avoid the small room sound, by building a small room that doesn't have 'a sound'.. that sounds as neutral as possible!
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echoboy

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Re: Volume for a small live room footprint
« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2007, 09:47:42 am »

Thank you all Smile
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Ethan Winer

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Re: Volume for a small live room footprint
« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2007, 01:40:47 pm »

echoboy wrote on Wed, 24 October 2007 16:49

And, of course, nothing is totally absorbent, is it? Wouldn't I still be getting some reflected energy?


Yes. It's easy to absorb mid and high frequencies, but nothing absorbs the lowest bass 100 percent unless it's like 6 feet thick. Shocked

--Ethan
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