London | DIY STUDIO
Listen as Stuart walks us through the build process using our DIY plans and design consultation system. We sent him our foam and carbon technology. He builds the carbon units himself and does the installation for the control room. He also installs our new vocal room carbon panels for smooth vocals,that stay purer longer in the mix and adds diffuser technology. Foam, carbon, and quadratic diffusion in a vocal room. Now, that’s a first. You must see this.
Mix Room / Noise issues
What is your usage for your room going to be? Is it a control or mixing room? Are you going to master in your room? Is it a live room? Are you doing just vocals? How many vocalists will you have in the room at one time? Are they male or female? This project in England was a control or mix and a vocal room. It was in a house and was confined to an existing foot print. The owner was also a carpenter and a music engineer. Two great talents for a DIY studio build. The owner was a master carpenter and a recording engineer. He could run a table saw and a recording console. Two great talents that we can use in our DIY studio build.
Building a studio is expensive. First, we must measure the noise levels in and out of the room and then design and build a structure that has the correct mass or density to deal with the frequency and amplitude of the noise we have measured. This is called the shell. The shell can be wood frame, block, or poured concrete. What type to use depends entirely on the noise strength and frequency. Noise frequencies above 125 Hz. are different than noise below 125 Hz. We can stop noise above 125 Hz. with wood and frame. Noise below 125 Hz. requires block or concrete.
Large Low Frequency Issues
It was a small foot print that we had to work with. Remember that the smaller the room, the more low frequency issues we must treat. How do we treat those issues? We make the room smaller by adding the appropriate technology to address the frequency and amplitude of the issues. Our Carbon Absorption Wall technology was installed in the front and rear walls. Due to small room width, we could not place it in the side walls. The ceiling dimension was not available, so we were limited to the front and rear wall surfaces for our carbon technology. This was not ideal but with this small room size and volume some low frequency management is better than none.
Diffusion and absorption is next on the list. For mix or control rooms, absorption for the front and side wall surface areas gives you detail and definition. These are two main ingredients for hearing everything in your mixes. Our foam technology was developed for voice and music. Its absorption curves are more suited to music and the way we hear both voice and music. The panels with the green fabric are our DIY acoustic panels and contain our foam technology. Diffusion on the rear wall is based upon prime number 13. These diffusion systems were built using our DIY diffuser build plans. Soft woods were chosen to maximize sound quality.
Every stud space in your framed wall is a diaphragmatic absorber. Make sure you have the correct depth for every stud space. Make sure you have the correct carbon filter thickness. Make sure you place the carbon filter in the correct position to maximize low frequency absorption in that wall area of the room. Make sure you seal the wall with the correct material density.
Carbon Vocal Room
The vocal room is unique in treatment and design. It uses a blend of three technologies to achieve a new standard for vocal sound quality. We have our proprietary foam technology coupled with our carbon technology for the vocals. We are also using quadratic diffusion on the front wall of the vocal room. The foam technology has an absorption curve that is more conducive for voice and music. The different thicknesses of carbon filters that are on the side walls have different rates and levels to absorb reflections at a rate and level that compliments voice. The front wall prime 13 quadratic diffusion opens the signal up and adds air, separation and definition that is unique to this vocal room design. Once you have experienced this new vocal sound, you will never go back to traditional methods of just using absorption.
All of the technologies you see used in this design are available in our DIY series. We offer build plans for the Carbon Absorption Wall technology, Acoustic Panel, which is our foam technology encased within a fabric covered cabinet, and quadratic diffusion. Our vocal booth design is unique to Acoustic Fields. You will need our assistance with choosing the correct prime number sequence to maximize the impact at the microphone position and selecting the correct thickness of carbon filters to use. Placement of both our carbon technology along with our foam will require our design assistance. Here is the link to our DIY series of products: https://www.acousticfields.com/product-category/d-i-y-acoustic-treatment/
About Stuart Mckeith-Wellington
Comprising brothers Ian and Stuart McKeith, Bryn Downing, Shola Finni and Selina Charlier, Scottish pop group Optimystic made their debut in September 1994 with ‘Caught Up In My Heart’, which peaked at number 49 in the UK charts. It was followed in December by ‘Nothing But Love’ which broke into the Top 40. Their third single, ‘Best Thing In The World’, which saw them team up with producer Nigel Lowis (Dina Carroll, Eternal), was released in April 1995. They had previously worked with producers such as John Reid of the Nightcrawlers.