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R/E/P => R/E/P Archives => Acoustics in Motion => Topic started by: DarinK on March 24, 2010, 09:41:40 PM

Title: Possible studio spaces question
Post by: DarinK on March 24, 2010, 09:41:40 PM
Hi all.  I recently purchased a house.  My original plan was to build a garage/studio in the back, but the combination of all repairs coming in farther over budget than expected & ridiculous city design-review standards for my neighborhood means that's no longer an option.  I may just sell the house for a slight profit & start over, but if I can use some of the existing space instead, that would be nice.
I greatly prefer recording full bands (drums, bass, 2 gtrs, for example) all at once, and don't mind some leakage between instruments.

Room 1 is approx. 14' x 17' with 10' ceiling.   (All dimensions are as it exists now, with no treatment or room-within-a-room construction.)  Could this space be usable for a live room or combo live/control room?  This room is at the back of the house so I could even conceivably push it out another 10 or more feet (to 14' x 27', for example) but I'm not absolutely certain if I can afford to do that.
Room 2 (adjacent to 1) is 12' x 12.5' with 10' ceiling, which seems unusable for much of anything, but maybe I'm wrong?
Room 3 (also adjacent to 1) is approx. 16' x 12' w/ 10' ceiling and a bay window area on one of the narrow sides that protrudes out a couple feet.  This may be usable only as a CR as I couldn't soundproof as well as the other spaces.
Room 4 (adjacent only to 2) is 10.5' x 13', but the back 4' or so of one of the long sides is an addition with the ceiling sloping from 10' to 7.5'.  

(I can't use both Room 1 & Room 4 as studio space as one of them has to be my kitchen, but any other combination of rooms could be used.)

Sorry I can't get sketches up at the moment - I'll get to that as soon as I can.  (Is Google sketch good enough for this sort of thing?)
There is attic space & basement space above & below all rooms for acoustic/isolation treatment, storage or even machine room use, but the ceilings are too low (6' or less) for actual recording use.
Sorry about the long post, and thanks in advance for any ideas.
Title: Re: Possible studio spaces question
Post by: franman on March 25, 2010, 10:12:05 PM

Practically, existing plumbing conditions will most likely dictate which space(s) are 'good' locations for a kitchen. The first space sounds like a likely candidate for the control room to me based on the proportions.

Would it be possible to combine two of these other spaces (or join with a large slider maybe) to create the largest recording room possible?? just an idea.

Remember, anything is possible, it just costs money.. Cool

Title: Re: Possible studio spaces question
Post by: DarinK on March 26, 2010, 01:40:51 PM
Because all the pipes are in the basement & come up through the floor, it would be fairly easy to move the plumbing.
The easiest rooms to join would be the two worst ones, numbers 2 & 4, unfortunately.
It would also be possible to join 1 & 2 but I'd end up with a weird little isolated kitchen in the back of the house that could only be accessed by walking through the joined room.
I've got a decent-not-great budget ($40k - $60k absolute maximum).
I'll try to get some sketches up this weekend.
Title: Re: Possible studio spaces question
Post by: DarinK on March 28, 2010, 07:58:38 PM
Okay, let's see if this works.

Either room ONE or room FOUR has to be used as a kitchen.
All rooms have 10' ceilings except room FOUR, which has 7.5' ceilings.  However, this ceiling could slope upward from the right end as only the far right five feet are an addition that must stay this low.
I'd really like to keep the bay windows in room THREE, which means that soundproofing enough for a live room is not possible.
That odd space between rooms ONE & THREE contains the utility chimney at the top end, and just empty space otherwise.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

- Darin

Title: Re: Possible studio spaces question
Post by: franman on April 01, 2010, 07:34:00 PM
ROom 2 kinda sucks because of it's very similar plan dimensions.. This will be a low frequency black hole.. (or at least a nightmare).. I guess that leaves room three. It's possible to do something decent in there, but the windows will be the challenge. I'd imagine that I would consider orienting my setup facing the windows on the bottom of the drawing...  12x16x10 could work (without doing the calcs)... you can lookup the modal calculators that are available and check it out yourself... The 'irregularities' of this space will make the modal calcs colored at least, but it's a start.

Title: Re: Possible studio spaces question
Post by: DarinK on April 02, 2010, 06:12:13 PM
Thanks, Fran.  That was kind of my thinking, too - have my desk facing the windows (so that the monitors are facing back out into the room).  It's tough 'cause the neighbor's house on that side is fairly close, like less than 20 feet away.  I was considering using that room (3) as the "control room" and trying to do my best to soundproof/treat room (1) to use as the "live room", and maybe put a window in between.  
I may be able to afford to push out the back wall of room (1) a few to several feet. (The back yard is very long so there's no issue with length except for the cost & getting approval from the city, which should be doable if I match the existing structure architecturally. I couldn't push out the other half of the back - room (4) - as easily due to trees in the way.)
I'm concerned about putting a lot of time, money & effort into this only to have it not really work out and be left w/ a house too 'altered' to easily re-sell.
Title: Re: Possible studio spaces question
Post by: franman on April 03, 2010, 08:37:49 AM

I seems to me that the extending your house option is going to run into your budget and beyond. Maybe you should consider spending the money on upgrading your sound proofing (windows, doors, walls, etc) and interior treatments. This way you can take a lot of it with you should you decide to move on, and the improvements to the house are valid improvements without affecting it's resell-ability.

I would recommend working with a (local?) professional to ensure you get the best bang for your buck... Just don't think you're going to record a rock band in there and your neighbors aren't going to hear anything. That would require a complete, heavy floating room solution for sure and this is beyond the scope of your budget.