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View Full Version : Another Womb Warming!


Drummerboy
February 22nd, 2011, 02:58 PM
Dear Wombats and Wombettes!

We're finally done with our own Studio after 6 Months of Lumber, Drywall, Rockwool and NOT being able to properly play drums.

It's gonna be a HUGE first post in this thread, so kick back and give those images some time to load. I COULD have done a realtime documentation on the whole fiasco but it would have been too long to keep my attention posting everyday. Also, I'm a strong proponent of doing first, talking afterwards. So, here it is, all at once.

Ever since I began with this whole recording stuff, I dreamed of a proper place. Doesn't everyone? Last june we finally found the place that should be our future studio - a 120m2 industrial room, 5 minutes from my house. Here's how it looked when we first saw it:

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/raw.jpg

I quickly got to the drawing board, learned some Sketchup and came up with this:

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/plan.png

End of July we started. 3 friends, totally motivated and completely unaware of the whole clusterfuck that would spread over the next 6 months. We planned "2 months and $20k maximum". Multiply by 3 to get a more realistic idea.

Here are my 2 buddies Oli and Roberto with the first piece of wood:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-001.jpg

It eventually became the frame for our storage/workshop room.
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-003.jpg

On the 3rd day a massive amount of insulation and drywall arrived. Took us half a day to drag the stuff down to our room.
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-004.jpg

Here you can see the frame for the control room take shape:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-005.jpg
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-006.jpg

After the frames were up (2 frames per wall, not touching anywhere) and filled up with insulation, drywalling begun. I almost got carpal tunnel syndrome from plastering that stuff.

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-007.jpg
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-008.jpg

What a fucking mess!
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-009.jpg
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-010.jpg

We did more or less everything ourselves, but NOT the electricity. Here's two of the electrician's work:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-011.jpg
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-012.jpg

After about 2 months, my 2 friends slowly got tired and we kinda slowed down. That's when another friend named Romolo jumped aboard. That's him on the right:

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-013.jpg
Without him, most of the lighting and electrical ideas wouldn't have come to be. He even explained Pythagoras to me :Wink:

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-014.jpg

Eventually, the control room bass traps got into shape. I went with John Sayer's advice and used a lot of hangers instead of solid-state superchunks. The 2 cables hanging out of the wall are DVI connections into the vocal booth and to the live room.

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-015.jpg

Liveroom in progress:

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-016.jpg
Here's the panel where all the tie-lines from liveroom and vocal booth come together:

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-017.jpg

After the wall insulation was all there, we coverd it up with cloth. Then we installed some wood to give it back some reflectivity.

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-019.jpg
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-020.jpg

After that, we installed an AC and put in the floors. We went with a mix of laminate and carpet. Carpet in the Vocal Booth, Carpet/Laminate mix in the live room and dark laminate in the control room.

Here's how it looks finished :very happy:
Note the blue slipperesque appearance of the control room.

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-021.jpg

Controlroom Ceiling (LED backlights rock):
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-022.jpg

Backwall of the Controlroom with hilarious orange sofa (it's dubbed the easyjet by our singers girlfriend who's a stewardess):
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-023.jpg

One side of the liveroom:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-024.jpg

And the other side with my trusty dee-dubs:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-025.jpg

Liveroom ceiling lights:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-026.jpg

Here's a shot to the vocal-booth door from the liveroom:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-027.jpg

Vocal Booth:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-028.jpg

Aaaand my little soldering workshop:
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/Studio-029.jpg

Yeah, that's about it, picture-wise :)
I hope I didn't overload with pictures here, sorry if I did!

Now for the sound in those rooms. Of course I read through many books before even drawing one single line on the planning board. Not that this means shit, but it actually turned out very pleasing to the ear. The liveroom sounds open but still controlled. The drums sound great in there, never heard them that way. Warm yet punchy :Roll eyes:

The Vocal booth is very dry and that's on purpose. The plan is to more or less only use it to isolate the singer from the band during drum tracking. We can still check by a case-to-case scenario if the liveroom or vocal booth sounds better for vocal keeper takes.

I measured the control room with Room EQ Wizard and will post those graphs too. We're +/- 10dB from flat. Just from listening to CDs that I know very well (ZZ Tops Rhythmeen is my favourite to check monitors/rooms) it sounds controlled but not too dry. It's the first time that I can listen to stuff and it sounds like Mixerman describes it in his book: Highs seem to come from above the mids and the lows are really down there. I didn't do a lot of mixing since we finished, but it surely is much much better than the room I mixed in before.

I'm totally happy and it still feels a little unreal to enter the room :icon_eek: . As soon as I get the innernets in there, I will not be found outside until I don't know... August maybe.

Gotta go to MY SHOP now :grin:

Cheers,
Frank

Knastratt
February 22nd, 2011, 03:38 PM
That's freaking great! Is that a Brauner Valvet case? Looks exactly same as mine.

Bryt ett ben - Pär

Drummerboy
February 22nd, 2011, 03:41 PM
Yep, that's a Valvet in the Case :) I call it Dirk.

Knastratt
February 22nd, 2011, 03:48 PM
Yep, that's a Valvet in the Case :) I call it Dirk.

I called Dirk. He's great! :weedstore:

PS Mine is no 295. I specifically ordered to have it stamped in the new casing

Drummerboy
February 22nd, 2011, 03:50 PM
No 122 here. Got it off eBay from a Dutch seller :weedstore:

Where are they now? 5 digits already?

Knastratt
February 22nd, 2011, 04:02 PM
No 122 here. Got it off eBay from a Dutch seller :weedstore:

Where are they now? 5 digits already?

From the beginning rumour has there should be no more than 500. But the current picture on his web page show a no 917. :icon_eek:

MacGregor
February 22nd, 2011, 05:23 PM
...Last june we finally found the place that should be our future studio - a 120m2 industrial room, 5 minutes from my house.

Looks nice :Thumbsup::Coolio:

With $60K investment I hope you now OWN the room (instead of renting it)?

Mac
.

Bob Olhsson
February 22nd, 2011, 05:58 PM
A SHOP! :Thumbsup:

MacGregor
February 22nd, 2011, 06:07 PM
A SHOP! :Thumbsup:

To me it looks more like a recording studio, but I could be wrong of course.

Mac
.

Drummerboy
February 22nd, 2011, 07:06 PM
With $60K investment I hope you now OWN the room (instead of renting it)?

I knew that would come :grin:
Nope, I don't own it. I'm renting.
However, of course the owner and me have gone through this. All the tenants in the building are doing crazy shit like this, one has a fully equipped motor shop, one is doing insulation, there's a bar in there etc. The owner even does financially assist people in the building who don't have enough money to start up their own business. It's an old building that they have bought and it's not like they're planning to do anything else with it. I did have my concerns in the beginning, as I'm a landlord myself. But after that talk with them I really am sure that this 1) is the right place and 2) we can stay in there as long as we want.

Besides, anything else than renting a place would be out of the question, I can't just go buy a house for this stuff :Wink:

I just got home quick to get some tools and got the Room-EQ Wizard files with me. Here's the frequency graph (smoothed 1/3 octave) and the waterfall of the control room.

http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/freq.jpg
http://www.cruelnoise.ch/studiobuild/waterfall.jpg

Back to der Shop!
Frank

Tim Halligan
February 22nd, 2011, 07:43 PM
Congrats!

Now...when's the beer and pizza night?

:D

Cheers,
Tim

nobby
February 22nd, 2011, 09:21 PM
Sweet!

I like the bold colors -- reminds me a bit of Peter Max. And the lighting. That is a vibey environment.

I hope you bring in a lot of work :Thumbsup:

Dr. Bob
February 22nd, 2011, 10:28 PM
Nice digs!

Congrats... I know it was a long haul... and you came out the other end reasonably alive!!!

Can't wait to hear some toonz!

Mixerman
February 22nd, 2011, 10:53 PM
Very nice Frank!

Thanks for sharing that. It looks like a great shop. :grin:

Now go make some killer records.

Enjoy,

Mixerman

Drummerboy
February 23rd, 2011, 01:06 AM
Now go make some killer records.

Your will is my order! :grin:

Thanx for all the nice comments folks!

I need to get to know my rooms. So, if any of you guys are looking for real drums for your track, send me a pm :Wink:

It's good to "be back". I didn't do any music related stuff for the last 6 months. Finally arriving with a finished shop is a dream come true!

Frank

Mo Facta
February 23rd, 2011, 07:45 AM
A belated congrats, Frank! All the best and happy record making!

Cheers :)

imagin
February 23rd, 2011, 08:00 AM
Great stuff Frank! Looking forwards to hearing some sound bytes!

Did you get that tingle sorted yet?


Iain

MKZ
February 23rd, 2011, 09:22 AM
nice.

Drummerboy
February 23rd, 2011, 11:40 AM
Did you get that tingle sorted yet?

Yep!
We installed an earth wire from the controller spdif-input (which is unused, but touches its casing) to the back of the patchbay. Works :grin:

imagin
February 23rd, 2011, 12:34 PM
Yep!
We installed an earth wire from the controller spdif-input (which is unused, but touches its casing) to the back of the patchbay. Works :grin:

Hehe!

Glad to hear that.

We wouldn't want your singer to have numb lips! Could lead to all kinds of sibilance problems, not to mention the dribbling!


Iain

sqkychair
February 23rd, 2011, 06:43 PM
Nice going!

That looks like a sweet place. I bet you guys feel very inspired working in there.

ivmike
February 24th, 2011, 03:00 AM
It looks seriously sweet....congratulations!



Now all you need is Ethan to show up, treat the place and set you up with butthorns, a Rane and a Mackie and you'll be ready for the big time!

:vuvu::vuvu::vuvu::vuvu::vuvu::vuvu:

IK Obi
February 27th, 2011, 04:50 AM
That looks great! I bet it even sounds better than it looks! Love the colors in there too!:grin:

Dave Perry
February 27th, 2011, 07:37 AM
To me it looks more like a recording studio, but I could be wrong of course.

Mac
.

Look again at some of the middle pictures in the series. :grin:

RE: the finished product, looks real nice. I love the floor. Now, of course, you will owe us some pics of some of the first sessions there, in exchange for all our lavish compliments.

John Eppstein
February 27th, 2011, 07:45 AM
But DOOD - it ALREADY had egg crates on the walls!:grin:

Seriously though, it looks great! I'm jealous.....

Drummerboy
March 2nd, 2011, 03:08 PM
Thanks again for all the nice comments :grin:

I just had my first client here (actually a friend who plays in a metal band, doing some acoustic stuff with another guy). We recorded a song live (ac guit and vocals) and MAN the Brauner is unbelievable! Even through my oh-so-utterly-bad fireface pre-amps (thanks Knas for absolutely RUINING them for me :lol: ). They're not that bad actually. Better than my old M-Audios. Still gonna save up for a Pendulum Quartet :vuvu:

Anyhoo. The 90hz valley at my mix position scares the crap out of me now that I know it's there. Wouldn't mind if I didn't know it's there. Couldn't yet determine where it comes from. One possibility I can think of right now:

SBIR from front wall.

Those bass traps behind the speakers are superchunk-stylee from the floor to about 1m height. From there to the ceiling it's hangers. I hear 90hz just fine when my head's level in height with the table (75cm). When I go back to the couch it's fine too. But when I sit (114cm), it disappears. Could be that I should have made the whole bass trap a superchunk and that the hangers simply don't work that well or are too small. Hope that's not the reason - would be a PITA to fix (tear the nice cloth down again and fill with insulation).

When I move the speakers towards me, the dip moves down in frequency. Pretty sure sign for SBIR as far as my investigative senses tell me. But the fact that the dip disappears closer to the floor might also be a sign that it has something to do with the ceiling (2.70m = 127hz, so I think that's unlikely)

Now, you say: "Why don't you just move the speakers closer to you until the dip goes so low in frequency that it's not a problem anymore?" I tried it. Put those focals on the desk (the massive walnut board where the screens sit) and then I can't hear shit under 100hz. Sitting too close to them probably. Put them there and add a properly placed sub?

If y'all are up for some acoustic research, I'll add some pictures and frequency plots of different placements. As I said before: the 90hz dip is not a BIG problem, I'm sure I will adjust over time. But if I can correct it somehow (without tearing the whole cloth down and rethinking my basstraps) I will choose that option.

Tracking in the new rooms is a breeze :Coolio:
It's all the difference when you have a separate control room! First time I could really judge what's coming in and what it sounds like :)

Frank

Slipperman
March 28th, 2011, 06:10 PM
Awesome job Drummerboy!!!

The color scheme is mindbending!!!

I love it!!!

XOXOXO

Slippy