Christmas 2015 has passed. My oldest son headed to Las Vegas with his girlfriend and her family on the 25th, which meant the Waldrep family and some friends celebrated on Christmas Eve with a wonderful meal, drinks, and a great game of “Dictionary”. That left the morning of Christmas open to see the new Star Wars movie in IMAX 3D (which I thoroughly enjoyed!) and to spend a couple of hours in the afternoon clearing out the last remaining stuff from the 1000 square feet in the front of the building, which will become the new studios.
A few weeks ago, I mentioned that I would be designing and building some new recording and production rooms for a new tenant. I posted a picture of the room packed to the hilt with AIX Records products, packing supplies, and lots of other boxes. It took a lot more effort to clear the room, but it has actually been done. See the before and after pictures below:
Figure 1 – Yes, it really is the same room from roughly the same viewpoint. I won’t show you the area where all of the stuff got moved. I’m still working on that. [Click to enlarge]
With the room emptied and the plans roughed out, it’s time to start constructing walls and enclosing three new spaces. There will be two control rooms/production rooms flanking a central live room. This configuration will provide maximum flexibility as well as make the space attractive to any future tenants. These three rooms will be shared by three producer/engineers. Each will have their own dedicated space for writing and working “in-the-box” but they will also be able to take advantage of the live room when they need to record an acoustic instrument such as a drum kit or vocalist.
Here’s the layout of the new rooms:
Figure 2 – The floor plan for the new studios. [Click to enlarge]
The red walls are new and form the space within the raw space provided by the building. That’s one of the main design considerations when you’re trying to isolate the spaces from each other AND to prevent leakage from other studios intruding on these new studios. Low frequencies are very troublesome for a multi-room facility. With the use of sub octave generators and the “big bass” on pop/commercial tunes, it’s very difficult to design proper isolation in sound facilities.
The approach that we’re taking involves physically isolating the rooms from each other by avoiding any common walls, using 50 durometer rubber underneath each wall, elevating the floors with additional rubber, and making sure that none of the new construction is in physical contact with any of the existing walls.
So we’ll have double walls throughout the new space. And on each of the new walls will be multiple layers of materials of different densities. We’ll use cotton insulation inside the walls then a layer of drywall, a layer of sound board, and a layer of drywall before the surface gets covered with “704”, one inch insulation covered with fabric. A simple 2×4 based vertical wall gets another 6-10 inches by creating multiple layers on both sides. And there must also be a small air gap in between the walls. It’s expensive but it does the job.
When I left the room yesterday, we had finished one wall. Construction has begun.