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Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

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Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby benadrian on Mon Oct 24, 2016 5:51 pm

Forward: please Kerble me. I know we've talked about this a lot, but I can't seem to find directly relevant information. I encourage being pointed in the right direction, even at my own expense.

The story:
In the upcoming year my wife and I will be building a detached garage behind our house. In this garage one of the parking spaces will be my "studio". My first thought was to build a room within a room. I began to do research and study soundproof construction. There are a lot of resources, but very few really address my specific case. My main concerns are to keep noise inside and also fit the dimensions of a parking bay. Also, since this will be in a detached garage, it doesn't need to be perfect. It just needs to hold in the level of a medium volume band.

So after doing some research, I remembered that we have a "Whisper Room" at my work. I live in L.A. there are lots of production houses, studios, and similar businesses. I began to look for second hand, prefab isolation rooms. So far I've had no luck, though I have seen ads for rooms that sold in the last four years for way below new prices. These prices are about half of what construction would cost for a permanent room.

What do I need? Why am I posting here?
1. Do any of you have experiences with larger, prefab isolation rooms? Most Whisper Room setups are like 4' x 4' or smaller. I'm looking for 8' x 10' or so.

2. Where are some places to look for second-hand production gear like this? I've checked TapeOp, Gearslutz, Craigslist, etc. Any other ideas?

3. Has anyone here built unattractive, soundproof rooms? If so, is there a blog or journal of your experience that I can check out?

And so on.

Thanks!
Ben
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby bishopdante on Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:00 pm

I thought that the shipping container studio that got figured out on the John Sayers forum was proper cunning, since they can be transported easily.

http://containerstudios.com/

However, especially with the required thickness of soundproof walls, a 20ft container ends up pretty small inside, and $50,000 is not a totally trivial sum. However, a huge advantage is that if you move, you can take it with you!

Would not be that difficult to design something pre-fabbed / commercial based on containers which could be delivered in a finished format, constructed to order anywhere in the world then sent to its location. Potentially with expanding bits like an outside broadcast lorry, or even better the ability to snap them together like lego bricks to form different sized soundproof rooms.

Shipping containers are rather exciting as an architectural unit, and are a surprisingly recent invention.

Certainly building a structure on the flat / with a modest foundation is much easier than soundproofing something that already exists.

Shipping containers are not necessarily very pretty, depends if you like that sort of thing, but the idea of applying soundproofing / weatherproofing to the *outside* of them is also pretty intriguing. The outside cladding pieces could, for delivery and transportation ...be stored on the inside of the container...

This is, of course, assuming that one is placing such a thing outdoors, in a freestanding fashion.

_____

There are many and various sorts of industrial soundproof booths and rooms which are designed for sound-isolating industrial machinery. Some of which are modular, and could make a decent starting point for a soundproof space, either freestanding or inside an existing architectural structure.

eg: http://www.industrialnoisecontrol.com/p ... cal-panels

Image

Many of those are not weatherproof, some are, but most are designed for running inside factories, but there's *loads* of different companies with different designs & properties, many of which are mass produced as panels in a modular format.

If your aim is to hide a structure inside a garage, weatherproof is presumably not a concern.

One can probably assume that such items could be procured second hand or from receivership auctions. However, they might well be covered in all sorts of heavy-machinery-residues.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby 154 on Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:39 pm

FM alexmaiolo's home studio is a half garage setup, maybe write him up if you keep in touch. I've seen it in person a couple times and from what I can tell it's just made up of materials found at hardware stores. Sounds like a similar situation to you: just needs to be soundproofed enough for non-sleepy hour band practices and personal recording.
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Last edited by 154 on Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby eliya on Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:44 pm

FM Justin Foley did something similar. I believe his studio is detached (bigger than a garage) and soundproof enough so it doesn't bother the neighbors and his family in the house. He documented everything in The Austerity Program's website.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby bishopdante on Mon Oct 24, 2016 6:52 pm

Also, depending upon your garage and its proximity to the neighbours, you might even be able to get away with some configuration of acoustic blanketing...

Image

Again, the stuff is used for quietening industrial machinery.

Image

Have used that to solve spill problems for venues and it's pretty effective. Not sound-isolated, but significantly sound-reducing, and also kills off reverb.

It is *not* light stuff, though, but with its own scaffolding frame it can be installed anywhere.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby TylerSavage on Mon Oct 24, 2016 9:18 pm

Currently doing something similar in my basement. I'm framing in Roxul Safe 'N' Sound due to some comparisons of transmission vs. $$$. In testing it in just the windows it made a massive reduction.(no didn't measure, yes I'm aware there's iphone apps.)

definitely didn't think about how much the roof would factor into things... like, as much as the walls of course.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby Justin Foley on Tue Oct 25, 2016 12:16 am

benadrian wrote:Forward: please Kerble me. I know we've talked about this a lot, but I can't seem to find directly relevant information. I encourage being pointed in the right direction, even at my own expense.

The story:
In the upcoming year my wife and I will be building a detached garage behind our house. In this garage one of the parking spaces will be my "studio". My first thought was to build a room within a room. I began to do research and study soundproof construction. There are a lot of resources, but very few really address my specific case. My main concerns are to keep noise inside and also fit the dimensions of a parking bay. Also, since this will be in a detached garage, it doesn't need to be perfect. It just needs to hold in the level of a medium volume band.

So after doing some research, I remembered that we have a "Whisper Room" at my work. I live in L.A. there are lots of production houses, studios, and similar businesses. I began to look for second hand, prefab isolation rooms. So far I've had no luck, though I have seen ads for rooms that sold in the last four years for way below new prices. These prices are about half of what construction would cost for a permanent room.

What do I need? Why am I posting here?
1. Do any of you have experiences with larger, prefab isolation rooms? Most Whisper Room setups are like 4' x 4' or smaller. I'm looking for 8' x 10' or so.

2. Where are some places to look for second-hand production gear like this? I've checked TapeOp, Gearslutz, Craigslist, etc. Any other ideas?

3. Has anyone here built unattractive, soundproof rooms? If so, is there a blog or journal of your experience that I can check out?

And so on.

Thanks!
Ben


What's the main intended use - rehearsing together or recording?

= Justin
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby numberthirty on Tue Oct 25, 2016 12:24 am

154 wrote:Are you in Voivod or something?
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby benadrian on Tue Oct 25, 2016 1:45 am

Justin Foley wrote:What's the main intended use - rehearsing together or recording?

= Justin


Mainly rehearsing. I might do some recording there, but no full band tracking.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby regular username on Tue Oct 25, 2016 2:15 am

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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby bishopdante on Tue Oct 25, 2016 3:30 am

^ ra... he is running it off a lithium battery!

That's unusual!

Concrete block on neoprene, it'll make a structure fairly isolated. Lots of mass... but... concrete block is not what I would recommend, sounds pretty much worse than anything but steel reinforced cast concrete, good way to achieve a car park acoustic, plus neoprene is bloody expensive stuff (good news is it does not get ozone rot). Full marks for the amount of labour & investment, and good luck to him, but there are many ways to skin a cat, and that wouldn't be my method (not that I use only one method... there are many!). But sure with lots of decoupled mass it'll end up soundproof, and concrete is not flammable.

One fabulous material I have only recently discovered the existence of is lead-lined drywall, which is mandatory for radiation-proofing hospital x-ray suites, but is also a potent soundproofing material. If you want mass with a minimal thickness, lead simply cannot be beaten.

http://www.nelcoworldwide.com/medical-s ... d-drywall/

Well... there are denser materials than lead... would rather people did depleted uranium soundproofing products than making bullets out of the stuff, and sealing/cladding the DU with lead could in theory prevent the radiation hazard... but doubt that one is happening any time soon or could easily be made safe. Lead is the best practically available source of dense mass.

_____________

Those door catches could be very dangerous in a fire. As could that battery. Bit scary.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby the finger genius on Tue Oct 25, 2016 7:08 am

I built a room to keep in noise so I can play drums in our apartment in the city (2 adjoining neighbors.) How close is the garage to other properties (how noiseproof does it need to be?) If there's a standard garage door it's not going to keep much in, so you will want to do as much as is reasonable with the framing of you room.

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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby twelvepoint on Tue Oct 25, 2016 8:02 am

bishopdante wrote:One fabulous material I have only recently discovered the existence of is lead-lined drywall, which is mandatory for radiation-proofing hospital x-ray suites, but is also a potent soundproofing material. If you want mass with a minimal thickness, lead simply cannot be beaten.


Hopefully this isn't legal for residential construction, but if it were, I would not feel good about knowingly introducing lead into my home. At some point, maybe sooner than you think, those walls will be torn out or repaired and it's gonna take a hazmat crew to remove it, if the new owners are even aware of the lead. I do take some comfort in the fact that no one here has a chance in hell of taking this suggestion, but really, you should think before saying stuff like this.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby Adam P on Tue Oct 25, 2016 8:03 am

You might be able to do the room-in-a-room idea and save a few inches in each dimension by using resilient channel instead of building separate stud walls. Since you're not really concerned about isolation between rooms I don't think you need to worry about the floor.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby bishopdante on Tue Oct 25, 2016 10:20 am

twelvepoint wrote:
bishopdante wrote:One fabulous material I have only recently discovered the existence of is lead-lined drywall, which is mandatory for radiation-proofing hospital x-ray suites, but is also a potent soundproofing material. If you want mass with a minimal thickness, lead simply cannot be beaten.


Hopefully this isn't legal for residential construction, but if it were, I would not feel good about knowingly introducing lead into my home. At some point, maybe sooner than you think, those walls will be torn out or repaired and it's gonna take a hazmat crew to remove it, if the new owners are even aware of the lead. I do take some comfort in the fact that no one here has a chance in hell of taking this suggestion, but really, you should think before saying stuff like this.


All depends how it is done. The BBC lead-lined door is a classic good bit of kit, and lead flashing is often found on roofs.

A flat I lived in had a victorian lead drinking pipe. Whole place got done over after I left. It is still there.

When I was a little kid there was lead in the petrol and a whacking great motorway called "the westway" running down my neighbourhood. Skate parks underneath. One of my studios had that thing as a roof. Grimy. The amount of lead in me when I was born was studied by Birmingham university and was part of the evidence behind why lead was banned as a petrol additive. I had some lead soldiers painted with enamel, and I to this day have a secret stash of lead-containing solder.

I agree that it has been proven that lead and autism spectrum disorders were shown conclusively to correlate in 2014, and that it has been proven that there is basically no safe exposure level.

However, sorry to say that the food you buy from the supermarket, when lab tested, is very unlikely to have a reading of "0.000mg".

In terms of using in a sounfproofing scenario, the stuff is used in contemporary office soundproofing and also in music studios.

I would suggest that having the stuff correctly installed with the correct hazard sticker markings should be sufficient, and that it is pretty hard to turn big slabs of metallic lead into dust. No need for some paranoid lunatic method of "hazmat suit" to handle it. Gloves is fine.

It is airborne dust or organic compound stuff that is hazardous, especially if inhaled, ingested, licked, or in direct contact with the skin.

Yes, lead has a safety profile. But as far as hazardous materials, I could find plenty worse on most building sites.

As for stuff like asbestos, well, did you notice what the guy's garage roof was made of? In the above video?

Sure I'd be worried. We had a huge warehouse in the east end that was bloody full of the stuff, impregnated concrete roof tiles, and I GTFO'd fast as soon as I figured out what it was. Shedding of invisible airborne particles brr.

But I am not like obsessing over safety, I do have a liver and kidneys. Certainly I make sure to eat organic, but am not paranoid about using lead in a soundproofing job.

Obviously treat with caution. Same with

PLASTIC HARDENERS

Those are scary as f*ck. Way scarier than most give them credit for. More scared of those than a sheet of metallic lead.

As for DU, that aerosolises on impact turning into extremely fine dust when used as bullets. That is a *baaad* idea. Tonnes of the stuff being chain-gunned into places where the hospitals have people being operated on for severe trauma just on the floor.

Lead sheeting in doors or inside a wall panel? Not hugely worried myself.

YMMV. Am all for using non toxic and natural materials, but sometimes hazardous stuff really works, and can be handled and installed safely. A lead lined panel half an inch thick can kill a *lot* of sound.

You have had cadmium batteries, and strontium ferrite speaker magnets. Yes those should be disposed of correctly, and in many cases simply aren't.

I am already full of lead anyway, and might be slightly crazy as a result. Am in good company, beethoven was very heavy metal.
Last edited by bishopdante on Tue Oct 25, 2016 10:44 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby Tommy on Tue Oct 25, 2016 10:31 am

benadrian wrote:3. Has anyone here built unattractive, soundproof rooms? If so, is there a blog or journal of your experience that I can check out?


Didn't FM evanrowe build a practice shed? I seem to remember posts on that. Also FM kerble has soundproofed a couple of basements. Both of those dudes might have info and/or can point to info.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby 154 on Tue Oct 25, 2016 10:38 am

Evan's project is documented on page 3 of that thread numberthirty linked. Pretty cool, but pretty hardcore.

Adam P wrote:You might be able to do the room-in-a-room idea and save a few inches in each dimension by using resilient channel instead of building separate stud walls. Since you're not really concerned about isolation between rooms I don't think you need to worry about the floor.


I had to look that up but that's a cool option for an open framed space (like a garage, attic, etc.). Yeah, since it is just a concrete slab at most I'd build a 'floating' platform for drums and just set the amps on crates (I suppose you could build mini platforms for those too).
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby Adam P on Tue Oct 25, 2016 10:55 am

I'm hoping to build a rehearsal/recording space when we buy a new house so I've spent some time reading about it (including picking up a copy of Rod Gervais' book on the matter).

Biggest takeaways I've read regarding resilient channel: don't short it out (by driving the drywall screws through the channel and into the studs), and isolate the walls from one another.

A two-leaf mass-air-mass system with no breaks in the seal seems to be the best method of preventing sound leakage, regardless of method (provided it's implemented properly, of course).
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby twelvepoint on Tue Oct 25, 2016 11:09 am

BD, I'm not going to go into some pointless discussion of why lead lined drywall is a lot safer for benadrian than making a jam room out of depleted uranium and toxic sludge from Bayer. Drywall frequently gets torn down and cut with saws and handheld routers and guess what happens to your nice intact sheet of lead then? "It's fine, just don't fuck with it" - people say that about asbestos, too, but it's still not right to introduce bad hombes into your home with some tacit assumption no one will ever fuck with it.
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Re: Building/Acquiring a "Noise-Tight" Room

Postby Pure L on Tue Oct 25, 2016 11:42 am

I too have done just this, BA. In fact, I'll be out there practicing in 10 or so hours...

You simply need drywall. And depending on your volume to neighbor/wife ratio, you either need a shit ton or just a lot.

And because one of my neighbors ratted me out to the city upon my first delivery of supplies, I also had to pull permits. Truth be told, I'm actually happy (now) that I was forced to go through that but at the time...not so much. I was foolish in my younger days though.

But because I have neighbors on both sides of me I used a shit ton of drywall. The outer leaf (layer) has 2 layers of 5/8" stuffed in the exposed stud bays. There is then about 12" or so of space (which has been filled with fluffy, pink insulation) and then the main room. This room has 3 layers of 5/8" drywall. The amount of volume I can contain is still staggering to me. No shit. There are few days that go by where I don't appreciate this though. Ferreal.

You will also need ventilation of some sort. If you neglect this, you might have a hard time convincing friends to play with you. The only regret I have is that we're forced to go out back behind the garage to pee. So that's something you might want to think about too.

More often than not though, while I'm out back draining the radiator in the dark, wet night the clouds seem to dance across the moon to the soft, rumbling murmur of what would normally be, what...110dB(?) happening just a few scant feet from my makeshift outhouse and I think to myself life is good.
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