Post by MorEQsThanAnswers on Dec 16, 2019 1:47:29 GMT -6
A friend of mine is building a mixing studio at home and plans to add a [temporary] partition using drywall so that the windows would be in the center of the front wall. He is not trying to soundproof or build rooms within rooms, simply add a partition and tune the room. We were curious:
1) Does it make sense for this partition to be insulated for the sake of symmetry with the opposing wall (which is on the side of the house and is surely insulated)? There would be about a hallway's worth of an air-gap between the partition and the "actual wall" on the other side of it.
2) Should one be matching the use of wood vs. metal studs with what is in the walls of the house? My research indicates that they way the room "moves" is an important consideration for a control room; metal vs. wood studs could play a role in how the wall takes energy. Maybe using a different material is the ticket because it could help reduce natural resonances (think Tacoma Narrows Bridge)?
3) In regards to thickness, I plan to match what was used in the existing walls for the sake of symmetrical absorption (even though drywall doesn't do much in the first place). This is valid right? Otherwise, we'd use the thickest for the sake of comfort when hanging treatment.
I wouldn't think of it in terms of absorption. There will be very little "absorption" in drywall walls and all of it would be a frequencies so low as to be of no real concern.
Since you mention it's temporary, I would not do this as it doesn't add anything but symmetrical reflections. I would deaden the primary reflection points as much as possible and move on. You also didn't mention the distance between the ears and the side walls. If they're more than 2x-3x the distance of the ear to the monitors, then I wouldn't worry. I have no proof to back that up, just that I've worked in a few small studios over the years and never really had an issue as long as the walls are either dead, or far enough away that they don't cause immediate reflections.
But to answer your questions, I would insulate the wall simply to keep resonances down, but since drywall is quite damped on it's own due to it's weight, (if your studding is normal 16") then you're probably not going to have much issue anyway if you use 5/8 drywall.
Also, drywall walls are not meant to "absorb" sound. They're meant to keep sound from transferring out. This means mass. Heavier weight means lower frequencies being kept from transferring through the material by lowering the resonance point below a reasonable frequency. The less mass a wall has, the easier it is to transfer the energy into the material and cause it to resonate.
On the other hand, this is important for something like a live room where the power of the sound is 120dB, but not really that important in a room where the audio power is only 70dB.
Wait, you want to make the room smaller? Just to have windows in the center of a wall? If it were me, I would want every inch of space I could get.
Plus 1 to that. By making the room smaller you may be making it harder to treat. On paper you may end up with better dimensions, and a better ratio of HxWxD but instead of loosing a "hallway size" space on the other side of the partition it would most likely be better to fill that space with a HUGE floor to ceiling bass trap/wall. Of course I have no idea the layout of the room, but I'd reconsider this plan if it were me.
Post by MorEQsThanAnswers on Dec 18, 2019 1:54:01 GMT -6
Thank you all for the feedback! Seems like he should value the room for the size it's giving him and not mess with it. I'd end up putting gobos in front of windows anyways, so there isn't much to gain from obsessing over this symmetry.