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 Post subject: dealing with low ceiling
PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2018 10:26 am 
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Hi! First post here, have been looking through many posts on low ceiling. I can see much has been said on the subject, but still got some doubts on the best way to proceed.

I’m building a studio located in a building full of art/music/workshops studios etc. The isolation has not to be perfect, neighbours are quite tolerant. But I like the idea of having as much isolation as I can. Also because I’m less ‘tolerant’ as I’ve got next to me (not above) another studio recording a lot of heavy very loud distorted instrumental music.

I will use the space as one room studio. My focus is in isolating and control especially the low frequencies as much as possible.

Size of the room 8.30m x 4.20m x 2.09m height (from the bottom end of the ceiling joists to floor).

I’m not going to go into details on the various parts of the build as I think I’ve got my head around there. But that low height is slightly worrying. So focusing on ceiling: is made of wood slabs on top (no good) and 22 cm joists coming down. My floor is concrete (not going to touch it) so I think having the ceiling completely absorbent would help balancing things out.

I need to find a compromise between isolation and absorption (treatment) with this height space. I'm using green glue between drywall layers and all sealed with tons of acoustic sealant.

I’m putting 2 layers of of 15mm drywall underneath the ceiling top, in between the joists. Then for now the 2 options are

option1 : fill with 20cm mineral fluffy wool and then below joists close ceiling with 1x 11mm osb + 1x 12mm drywall (without RC or iso-clips as I really want to avoid loosing more height).
my concern is that the ceiling will be then all mostly reflective, so will have to put clouds etc loosing again ceiling height which will be already as low as 2.06 m.

other option: more sandwich inside the ceiling joist
I would gain 5cm of mineral wool internal absorption and maybe possibilities to build sone membrane absorbers on the perimeter/rear of the ceiling, within the joists airtight sealed inside.
- concerns…the cavity of the MSM will be 10cm only so not sure how effective the isolation would be at low freq, as I seem to understand that 20cm air cavity is generally more advised for the ceiling, in terms of lowering the resonance of the MSM. Also the joists would be exposed creating more flanking transmission.

The question is: as the amount of mass used in the 2 cases is similar, would the option 2 be drastically less performing in terms of isolation?
Any suggestion on how to have better overall performance with that height restriction?

Attachment:
ceiling joists.jpg


Many thanks in advance already for all the knowledge I found in this forum

Jacopo


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2018 10:55 am 
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Hi there Jacopo, and welcome! :)

Quote:
have been looking through many posts on low ceiling. I can see much has been said on the subject, but still got some doubts on the best way to proceed.
You should spend more time looking! :) Low ceilings is a major and common problem with home studio building. There are various ways of dealing with it, depending on the specifics of each situation.


Quote:
I will use the space as one room studio. My focus is in isolating and control especially the low frequencies as much as possible
You didn't mention the purpose of this room: is it going to be a control room? a tracking room? A rehearsal room? Something else?

Quote:
Size of the room 8.30m x 4.20m x 2.09m height (from the bottom end of the ceiling joists to floor).
OK, so decent sized space, but low ceiling.

Quote:
My floor is concrete (not going to touch it)
:thu: Excellent! You already have the best possible floor.

Quote:
so I think having the ceiling completely absorbent would help balancing things out.
Probably, but it depends on what you plan to use the room for! The acoustic requirements for a control room are VERY different from the acoustic requirements for a tracking room for drums, and those are different again from the acoustic requirements for a tracking room for vocals, or acoustic guitar.

Quote:
I'm using green glue between drywall layers and all sealed with tons of acoustic sealant.
Sounds good, but WHERE are you doing that? Is that for the walls? The ceiling? Both? Something else?

Quote:
I’m putting 2 layers of of 15mm drywall underneath the ceiling top, in between the joists.
Did you check that with a structural engineer? You only have 22cm joists up there, and they seem to be spanning at least 4.2m (perhaps 8.3m), so they might not be able to take much more dead load. You need to hire a structural engineer to check that for you, and tell you exactly how much extra mass you can hang on there. This is VERY important! You don't want that collapsing on top of you, because you overloaded it.... You will be adding nearly a thousand kg of extra weight to that .... :shock:

Quote:
(without RC or iso-clips as I really want to avoid loosing more height).
In other words: "I really want to avoid having good isolation". ... :) It is that simple. If you do not decouple your inner-leaf from the joists, you will have pretty much no isolation at all, especially with regard to "impact noise". That's the sound of everything that is sitting on the floor above you, such as drums, bass cabs, electric guitar cabs, people tapping their feet as they play... All of that will get through to your room, loud and clear, because your ceiling will be directly coupled to their floor, and all your time and money invested in beefing up that floor above you, will have been wasted.
Quote:
my concern is that the ceiling will be then all mostly reflective, so will have to put clouds etc loosing again ceiling height
Correct. You have no choice.

Quote:
other option: more sandwich inside the ceiling joist
Same problems, but even worse. The MSM cavity is smaller, thus the tuning will be higher, and therefore you will have less isolation in the low frequency and mid-range frequencies, as well as problems with impact noise.

Quote:
the cavity of the MSM will be 10cm only so not sure how effective the isolation would be at low freq,
Worse than with the full depth of the joists.

Quote:
Also the joists would be exposed creating more flanking transmission.
The flanking is there in BOTH cases! If you do not decouple the inner-leaf ceiling from the joists above you, then y u Cannot get food isolation.

Quote:
The question is: as the amount of mass used in the 2 cases is similar, would the option 2 be drastically less performing in terms of isolation?
Isolation will be poor in BOTH cases, because you are not decoupling your inner-leaf mass from the outer-leaf. Until you do that, you won't get good isolation. RC would be a slight improvement, RSIC clips plus hat channel would be a bit better, but if you really want good isolation in that situation, the best is to build a new, fully decoupled ceiling just a little below the existing joists. Yes, that's a lot more work, and yes you lose more ceiling height, but if your primary goal is "good isolation", then that's your best option. There are ways of doing that while minimizing the loss of ceiling height, but you WILL need to lose some. You can't beat the laws of physics.

- Stuart -

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2018 12:03 am 
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Hi Stuart,

Firstly, thank you for your detailed reply..I'll indeed look further on the forum.

The space will be used as one room studio - control room/tracking room one space. Tracking with headphones. A space to record and produce music, mostly overdubs, maybe sometimes drums, bass cabs, but not to use as a commercial studio for recording rock bands everyday, and not rehearsal etc

Having a very low ceiling and floor completely reflective, I think the ceiling will have to be as absorbent as possible, if not I'm going to have problems for both purposes tracking and mixing. Thats why I considered reserving some space in the joist for internal treatment, but yes now I understand the isolation will be even weaker

Luckily though they don't make music at the floor above me, there are more like art/design studios so in regards of impact noise from above all I can hear now are some footsteps and not much more, so thats not a real issue for me. Ceiling wise is more about my sound coming out too loud. Still it doesn't have to be 'perfect' isolation, as they can live with some levels (as they already do with the studio next to me), but would like achieve a quite drastic improvement from what is now as bare ceiling.

Picture

Attachment:
IMG_0252.jpg


The ceiling is a bit irregular, there are those columnes and white beams which are structural and keep the ceiling together, those white structural beams are below the heigh level of the ceiling joists of 2.09m. In term of structural load I felt safe with those and didn't see the issue in loading with some layers of drywall.
To drop a floating ceiling I'd need to go below that height of those white beams, and I'm going to have 1.95m height remaining floor to ceiling, to treat with clouds etc. not doable for me, too claustrophobic, prefer to have less isolation.

In terms of walls, 2 are with bad old drywall, the other 2 walls are made of concrete 45cm deep, with 3 windows on there (lovely!-good light). It would be too expensive and work load to build walls for isolation on those sides of concrete, with 3 extra windows, especially because not necessary. Is not a residential area so the sound going out of the windows is not an issue. This is the main reason I wasn't planning in going full room in the room and fully decoupled ceiling.

The other music recording studio there is in a room next to me on the same floor where I am. Going to build 2 MSM partitions on the other 2 walls remove internal layer of drywall, reinforcing mass and insulating existing partition, then extra stud wall, just where the 2 columns are (so that they will be hided within the partition, with with that air gap, insulated and then drywall sandwiches.

Also have this huge door in that wall, think I'm going to close one side of it with softboard+drywall, reinforcing the mass a bit, and create a second door on the other side, within the partition wall.

Attachment:
IMG_0253.jpg


After reading your very helpful post I have been thinking seriously in decoupling or floating ceiling possibilities, but for this situation I'd like to think that adding those 3/4 layers of drywall mass (around 1000kg?) in a sealed MSM system, even if not decoupled, would be quite of a drastic improvement in STC and also low frequency transmission. But yes is not an ideal solution. It is something I can maybe think in the future if see that I really have problems and can't live with it, but why not to keep room for enjoying the space a bit more, to be creative with, still having improved considerably the isolation, probably adequate for the needs?

This will not be built to the highest standards but a lot has been invested in for where I am at, and want to work as best as possible within resources and limitations I have.

Just wanted to give you a bit more details to see if my conclusions and plans were completely wrong way!

Jacopo


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2018 7:50 am 
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Quote:
The space will be used as one room studio - control room/tracking room one space.
It can't be both at once! As I mentioned above, he acoustic requirements for a tracking room are very different from those for a control room. There's a document called ITU BS.1116-3 that clearly defines exactly what the acoustic characteristics of a control room should be (google it), but basically it has to be neutral. Meaning that it has no sound of its own: it does not "color" the sound in any way, and the time-domain response is rather short. It has to be. But a tracking room is rather different: it is supposed to enhance the sound of the instruments. It is supposed to be warm, vibrant, pleasant, etc. acoustically. So you can't have it both ways! If you treat your room so that it can be used as a tracking room, then it will fail dismally as a control room, and your mixes will be terrible: engineers will hate it, and not want to mix there. On the other hand, if you treat it to be perfect for mixing, then it will sound awful for tracking: musicians will hate it, and not want to play there.

There is one solution: you can make the treatment devices in your room "variable": with parts that open, close, slide, flip, rotate or otherwise move in some fashion, exposing different parts of the device to the room, and achieving different response. It is possible, and I have done a few rooms like that, but it isn't easy, and it is expensive.

Quote:
A space to record and produce music, mostly overdubs, maybe sometimes drums, bass cabs,
So quite a broad range of very different instruments and purposes....

Quote:
Having a very low ceiling and floor completely reflective, I think the ceiling will have to be as absorbent as possible,
The ceiling will have to be absorbent, yes, but NOT "as absorbent as possible"! That would sound really bad for instruments, and not so good for a control room either. If your entire ceiling is major thick absorption, the room will be very dead, dull, lifeless and unbalanced. It will not be good for tracking, and especially not for drums. You will need SOME sections of the room ceiling that are highly absorptive, yes, but NOT all of it. The rest will likely need to be partly absorptive, partly reflective, and partly diffuse.

Quote:
if not I'm going to have problems for both purposes tracking and mixing.
No you're not! :) If you DO make the entire ceiling highly absorptive, THEN going to have problems for both tracking and mixing. Rooms should be balanced and tuned for the specific purpose.

Here's a link to a thread for a control room that we are in the process of tuning right now. It shows you how that process should work: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=21368 . And here's a thread for a control room that is finished, showing the final outcome: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=20471 Both of those have large amounts of absorption in the ceilings, yes, but in both cases it is carefully calculated and placed in the specific spots where it is needed. In some places it is several feet thick, while in others, it is just an inch or so thick, or none at all. And both of those are control rooms, which need much more absorption than live rooms.

Quote:
all I can hear now are some footsteps
And you will still hear that, if you don't decouple your inner leaf! Plus a lot of stomping, yelling and screaming, when you are tracking drums, as they get really angry at your noise! :)

Quote:
Ceiling wise is more about my sound coming out too loud.
Right! And it's the same thing: isolation works equally in both directions. If the ceiling transmits their sounds to you, it also transmits your sounds to them. And since your sounds are ten thousand times stronger, it will be many times worse for them...

Quote:
The ceiling is a bit irregular, there are those columnes and white beams which are structural and keep the ceiling together, those white structural beams are below the heigh level of the ceiling joists of 2.09m.
That's fine. There are methods for working around that type of problem.

Quote:
In term of structural load I felt safe with those and didn't see the issue in loading with some layers of drywall.
I'm pretty sure that these guys "felt" their ceilings were perfectly safe, too...

Attachment:
structural-ceiling-failure-03.jpg


Attachment:
structural-ceiling-failure-07.jpg


"feeling" has no place in construction. The only valid opinion is that of a qualified expert. As I mentioned, you will be adding about a ton of extra weight to that floor above you, IN ADDITION to what it is already supporting. If it does fail, and you did not get it approved by a qualified structural engineer and passed by inspectors, then YOU are legally liable for everything: Both criminally and civilly. Are you SURE you are prepared to take on that responsibility?

Quote:
To drop a floating ceiling I'd need to go below that height of those white beams, and I'm going to have 1.95m height remaining floor to ceiling, to treat with clouds etc. not doable for me, too claustrophobic, prefer to have less isolation.
So that's solved then! If you reject having a slightly lower ceiling, then you reject having isolation. So what you have now is all that you will ever get. It's that simple. End of story. (Although you are wrong about it being 1.95m, but that's another story, since you already rejected isolation).

OK, so since you have already decided that you do NOT want any additional isolation, and you are fine with what you have right now, that takes us on to the question of treatment:

Do you want to design and build variable treatment devices, so that you can use your room successfully for both tracking and mixing? Or do you want to dedicate the treatment for only one of those, and to the other in a different location? For example, if you decide to use this room for mixing only, then that's great: we can show you how to make it usable for that, and then you can find another room, some other place, to use for tracking. That would be the best option, since there's no way that this will be any use for tracking, regardless of treatment. The ceiling is just way too low for that. It doesn't matter how much insulation you put up there, it will never be possible to get usable sound from your overhead mics, due to the powerful comb filtering created by the ceiling. So your best option is to turn this into a mixing room only (control room), which is barely doable, and track elsewhere.

Quote:
In terms of walls, 2 are with bad old drywall, the other 2 walls are made of concrete 45cm deep, with 3 windows on there (lovely!-good light). It would be too expensive and work load to build walls for isolation on those sides of concrete, with 3 extra windows, especially because not necessary. Is not a residential area so the sound going out of the windows is not an issue. This is the main reason I wasn't planning in going full room in the room and fully decoupled ceiling.
OK. No problem. We have already established that you do not need isolation for this room, and you are fine with the way it isolates right now, so there's no need to build any walls at all: it's never going to be better than the way it is now, and trying to do that without also isolating the ceiling would just be a huge waste of time and money. So just do whatever you feel like with the walls to make them look pretty, because there's nothing you can do to them to substantially improve isolation unless you also isolate the ceiling. So that's already figured out, and the next step is treatment.

Quote:
The other music recording studio there is in a room next to me on the same floor where I am. Going to build 2 MSM partitions on the other 2 walls remove internal layer of drywall, reinforcing mass and insulating existing partition, then extra stud wall, just where the 2 columns are (so that they will be hided within the partition, with with that air gap, insulated and then drywall sandwiches.
Sorry, but the won't work.

Have you ever seen an aquarium? A fish tank? They are simple metal frames, with glass on all sides, filled with water. Sound behaves a lot like water, in many ways. Now, what you are saying here is the same as if someone said he was going to build an aquarium in his living room, but decided that he only wanted to see the fish from the front and one side, so he only put glass in those two sides.... How well do you think his tank will hold water? Exactly as well as a studio that is isolated on only two sides! It's that simple. With the fish tank, unless you put glass on ALL sides, the water will simply splash out all over the place, totally ignoring the sides that do have glass, and exiting through the sides that don't. Same with your room: if you don't isolate it the same on ALL sides (including the ceiling) the sound will simply ignore the walsl that you did build, and "splash out all over", bypassing them through the ceiling which you did not build.

It's that simple.

Unless you isolate your ceiling too, you will be wasting money by isolating your walls.

Quote:
To drop a floating ceiling I'd need to go below that height of those white beams,
You don't have a CHOICE! No matter WHAT ceiling you do, the height of those beams is the lowest point of your ceiling! But there are methods for working AROUND those, so that there will be low points ONLY where those beams are, but not the rest of the ceiling.

But you already rejected isolation as an option for your room, so that's a moot point, and you should be thinking only about your treatment options at this point, since isolation cannot improve if you do not isolate the ceiling.

Quote:
Going to build 2 MSM partitions on the other 2 walls
MSM doesn't work like that. It is a SYSTEM that involves the entire room, not just a single wall. Saying that you will build two MSM walls is the same as saying you will put glass on two sides of the fish tank. You can build the best MSM wall on the planet, but it will have no effect unless you build the entire room to the same level.

Quote:
but for this situation I'd like to think that adding those 3/4 layers of drywall mass (around 1000kg?) in a sealed MSM system, even if not decoupled,
Then you have completely mis-understood how MSM works! If it is not decoupled, then it is not MSM. Period! Sorry to be so harsh, but you are not understanding the basics here, which is why you are assuming that your plan will work, when in fact it won't.

Here's how it really works: MSM stands for "Mass-Spring-Mass" It is a principle of physics that also works for acoustics. It is a resonant system, and it works because you have the "mass" on one side and the "mass" on the other side, with a spring joining them. If you nudge one of the masses, then it will bounce back and forth on the spring at a fixed frequency, and it will transmit energy to the other mass, through the spring, AT THAT SPECIFIC FREQUENCY. But at all other frequencies, it will NOT transmit energy to the other side. ONLY at the resonant frequency. That's why you have to tune your walls to the correct frequency. In a wall or ceiling, the two "masses" are the sheathing on either side (usually drywall, but it could also be concrete, glass, wood, etc.), and the "spring" is the air in between the two masses. It is a tuned system, and you tune it by changing the amount of mass and the depth of the air cavity.

But that's not what you are planning to do. You want to build a ceiling where there is no spring! Instead, you want to replace the spring with a solid wood bar, that completely joins the mass on one side to the mass on the other side, and therefore it will transmit sound at ALL frequencies! Every single frequency will get through your ceiling, because you have a hard, slid, rigid direct path between the two masses. Any sound striking the drywall below will be directly transmitted through the joists and into the floor above. That floor will act just like the cone of a loudspeaker, transmitting the sound waves into the entire room, very efficiently.

If you do NOT decouple, then you do NOT have an MSM system. There is some MSM effect in the gaps between the joists, sure, but that is completely overwhelmed by the solid transmission of sound through the joists.

By directly attaching your drywall to your joists, you are allowing sound to get into the actual building structure, and once that has happened, it can go anywhere it wants. Once you have vibration in the joists and studs, it will not just go "anywhere": rather, it will go "everywhere", including other walls in the building, and other floors, and other ceilings.... thus bypassing your attempts to stop it.

Thus, if you do not decouple, then you do not isolate. Period. End of story. An MSM wall that has solid mechanical connections across it, is not an MSM wall: it is just a fully-coupled two-leaf wall. Period. End of story.

Quote:
in a sealed MSM system, even if not decoupled, would be quite of a drastic improvement in STC
No it would not. Sorry. And STC is not a valid measurement of isolation for studios anyway. Here's why:

Forget STC. It is no use at all for telling you how well your studio will be isolated. STC was never meant to measure such things. Here's an excerpt from the actual ASTM test procedure (E413) that explains the use of STC.

“These single-number ratings correlate in a general way with subjective impressions of sound transmission for speech, radio, television and similar sources of noise in offices and buildings. This classification method is not appropriate for sound sources with spectra significantly different from those sources listed above. Such sources include machinery, industrial processes, bowling alleys, power transformers, musical instruments, many music systems and transportation noises such as motor vehicles, aircraft and trains. For these sources, accurate assessment of sound transmission requires a detailed analysis in frequency bands.”

It's a common misconception that you can use STC ratings to decide if a particular wall, window, door, or building material will be of any use in a studio. As you can see above, in the statement from the people who designed the STC rating system and the method for calculating it, STC is simply not applicable.

Here's how it works:

To determine the STC rating for a wall, door, window, or whatever, you start by measuring the actual transmission loss at 16 specific frequencies between 125 Hz and 4kHz. You do not measure anything above or below that range, and you do not measure anything in between those 16 points. Just those 16, and nothing else. Then you plot those 16 points on a graph, and do some fudging and nudging with the numbers and the curve, until it fits in below one of the standard STC curves. Then you read off the number of that specific curve, and that number is your STC rating. There is no relationship to real-world decibels: it is just the index number of the reference curve that is closest to your curve.

When you measure the isolation of a studio wall, you want to be sure that it is isolating ALL frequencies, across the entire spectrum from 20 Hz up to 20,000 Hz, not just 16 specific points that somebody chose 50 years ago, because he thought they were a good representation of human speech. STC does not take into account the bottom two and a half octaves of the musical spectrum (nothing below 125Hz), nor does it take into account the top two and a quarter octaves (nothing above 4k). Of the ten octaves that our hearing range covers, STC ignores five of them (or nearly five). So STC tells you nothing useful about how well a wall, door or window will work in a studio. The ONLY way to determine that, is by look at the Transmission Loss curve for it, or by estimating with a sound level meter set to "C" weighting (or even "Z"), and slow response, then measuring the levels on each side. That will give you a true indication of the number of decibels that the wall/door/window is blocking, across the full audible range.

Consider this: It is quite possible to have a door rated at STC-30 that does not provide even 20 decibels of actual isolation, and I can build you a wall rated at STC-20 that provides much better than 30 dB of isolation. There simply is no relationship between STC rating and the ability of a barrier to stop full-spectrum sound, such as music. STC was never designed for that, and cannot be used for that.

Then there's the issue of installation. You can buy a door that really does provide 40 dB of isolation, but unless you install it correctly, it will not provide that level! If you install it in a wall that provides only 20 dB, then the total isolation of that wall+door is 20 dB: isolation is only as good as the worst part. Even if you put a door rated at 90 dB in that wall, it would STILL only give you 20 dB. The total is only as good as the weakest part of the system.

So forget STC as a useful indicator, and just use the actual TL graphs to judge if a wall, door, window, floor, roof, or whatever will meet your needs.

Quote:
would be quite of a drastic improvement in STC and also low frequency transmission
Wrong again! It would be WORSE for low frequency isolation, because the resonant frequency of the cavities between the joists will be in the low frequency range, and therefore the isolation would be DEGRADED at low frequencies, NOT improved.
Quote:
It is something I can maybe think in the future
That's not a good plan. If you do all this effort and construction, then find that it does not work (and it won't) you will have to tear it all down again and start over, doing it correctly the next time. So you spend double the money, double the time, and double the effort. TO me, that doesn't seem like a smart way of building a studio. It is far better to learn the principles, do the math, design it right, and get it correct the first time.
Quote:
still having improved considerably the isolation,
That's the problem: what you are proposing will NOT improve the isolation considerably. It won't improve it at all, in fact, and will likely make it worse at some frequencies, due to uncontrolled resonance.

Quote:
and want to work as best as possible within resources and limitations I have.
... perhaps, but that's not what you are actually doing. You might think you are, but you aren't. You are trying to fight against the laws of physics, hoping and wishing that you can win, but you can't.

OK, so maybe I'm being a bit harsh here with my comments, but that's only because I need to grab your attention, and point you at the things you are planing to do wrong, hopefully so you will realize that your plan is seriously flawed, then you can learn how to fix it.

So here's the bottom line: I can't tell you what to do, and I can only point you in the right direction. But if that were my room, I would make it into ONLY a control room, fully isolating the ceiling and walls, with inside-out construction all around, and live with the slightly lower ceiling, since it can still be usable (borderline) for a control room, but not for a live room. I would tune the hell out of that room to get it as good as it possibly can be (withing the laws of physics), then I would then find a different room to use for tracking live, or switch to purely electronic instruments.

But that's just me. Other people might have different opinions...


- Stuart -


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:05 am 
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Well...I'll definitely review the plans then! :idea:

The direction is the one of a control room. But generally the space will be used a lot to create stuff, and to mix it too. Lets say some overdubs with close mics but not really drums/strings/pianos and instruments which require more air. Many electric and digital instruments too yes. I have access to another space I can use for tracking drums properly.

I'll hire a structural engineer to check the ceiling load...

In regards to the fish tank example, would you consider a 45cm concrete wall as a side of the glass? I would think that would provide good isolation and not much water would splash in or out of that.

I'll get on with isolating the ceiling then, so I need to find a way of decoupling it loosing less height possible.
This is the most attractive solution I could think of...
Attachment:
hatchanneldiag.jpg


Or you have in mind a better method?

In terms of getting around those beams, what would be the best solution? Placing clips and hat channel on it and cut the drywall so it goes around it?

THANKS Stuart for pointing this out!!


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2018 11:15 am 
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These clips would do the trick too (less work)...something on that line anyway

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 10:11 am 
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Stuart I can’t thank you enough for helping me taking steps forward in the right direction...!

Sorry for multiple messages but wanted to clarify my questions better and give an update of the situation

Ceiling:
Those RSIC-1 LOW PROFILE clips seems a good way of lowering the ceiling of just half inch, decoupling it from the joists.
Attachment:
rsic-1-low-profile-data.png

Doubt: what could be a good solution for the ceiling irregularities and get around those white beams, keeping the ceiling decoupled?
Other doubt: I'm not a professional builder, but as far as I know I'd screw the top beam of the new inner partition wall to the ceiling joist, for stability (actually like in this image of the RSIC-1 clips..the partition wall is in contact with the ceiling joist). Will use foam/neoprene in the middle to reduce transmission. In that case I would need to use clips and hat channel also for the inner walls, so they are decoupled from the structure (again like in the image). Is there a better way of doing this? or is a good way to go

Walls:
In the back of the room I have this little area already partitioned with possible vocal booth and small kitchen/storage. I’m planning to keep it and build the inner wall in front of it (2-leaf MSM) also to keep a symmetrical room. So I’ll have to make 2 doors, 1 to enter in the studio, 1 for access to vocal booth.

Here picture and sketch
Attachment:
IMG_0254.JPG

Attachment:
inner partitions.jpg


I was considering the concrete wall (45cm thick) as a 1 of the 4 glass faces of the fish tank, as my assumption is that it doesn't transmit much vibration...is very thick and solid. Also because I want to be able to access and open the 2 windows for air circulation. I'm not going to install a full HVAC system for now. I can then install an air conditioning device that goes through the window, if I'll need to.
As mentioned before, sound going out of the windows is not a real concern as the are only warehouses outside and is not a residential area, and this also might help dissipating a little bit of sound energy out of the room.

I am aware it would be better to build also a partition on that side, so all the surfaces are the same for the fish tank, but installing two extra studio grade openable windows is a considerable amount of work time and money to add, and I'm not sure is essential, because as I said is already a wall with good isolating properties.

I have the suspect you'll say I'm wrong here...but I thought I would give this idea a chance.. :)

Floor
Will keep it as is bare concrete and use few rugs around and not much else.

This is the whole picture for now - in terms of isolation stage. How does that sound??

Jacopo


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2018 8:41 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 15, 2018 8:41 am
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Location: Bristol, United Kingdom
I realise I have rushed asking more questions while I could have taken more time to look into details and use better the ‘search' tool…I apologise for that! :oops:

Yes, of course, the inner stud wall partition will be decoupled from the existing structure, kept together with standard OSB sheeting over it, before the drywall. If concerns over stability could use some WIC clips or similar sort.
Will get around the lower supporting beams boxing them with wood not touching them and then drywall box around, with hat channel on the wood boxing.
I don't think would be possible to build an indipendend ceiling with inner joists parallel inside the existing joists. As the ceiling is very far from regular and got all sorts of complications, joist going in two different directions. So will go for the hat channel.

Attachment:
ceiling studs.jpg

Yes ideally I should install HVAC system, 4 inner walls and 2 windows not operable, with indipendent ceiling.

I have been for 3 years in a studio room in the room sealed airtight without airflow HVAC or window..anything, and it has been truly a terrible experience. So I completely understand the importance of air flow (and I would say daylight too...at least for me), to be able to breathe, and also I believe fresh air certainly helps with creativity.
Thats why I escaped from there and then found a place with 3 windows...! Have chosen this even if aware of low ceiling, especially because of the location, and the vibe in general, being surrounded with people that makes all sort of creative stuff, and of course a rent affordable for my pockets.

Now, due to very tight budget I need to consider only the essential necessities. Thick old building block, without resident neighbours in the area, I'm on the 2nd floor. Out on my side only a large parking area with two warehouses 25-30m distant. No any real loud or bassy sound coming from the outside and 2 good windows to be shut when recording sounds good to me. On the other hand I have no real concern with the sound leaking out the windows, as it would be, at this point, the only place were sound energy could splash out. I guess once the sound is in open air needs quite a lot of energy to being transmitted very far. The level of transmission happening in that 45cm thick concrete/stone wall I reckon would be pretty low and tolerable. Everything around that wall will be sealed and decoupled so again the only point of escape of the sound are the windows, going outside...and thats fine with me. On occasions, if a window is open, this might even help a bit with low frequency control. Having 2 windows in the room, when 2 are open there will be some slight air pressure movement, so a bit of air circulation. In addition to that there are quite a few cooling/dehumidifying/conditioning/airflow systems, fixed or portable, that can be installed more or less easily having access to a wall to the outside or window. Thats why I think I'll not go for the full HVAC system here.

But yes I would hope that my humble reasoning about this specific situation makes a little bit of sense, and I'm not completely wasting the money and time I've invested in, as you pointed out before when I was about to go for a fully coupled ceiling. So a considerable improvement with isolation (even if not the greatest) within the other internal studios (not within the outside) might be achieved.

I hope I have not repeated myself too much...just writing down this helps me giving it another thought. I have read your replies more times carefully, Stuart, they helped me clarifying some important points. Have to say thank you again for taking the time to go through it!

Jacopo


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