Howdy fellow audio nerds. Thanks for having me. I'm considering a studio build in the coming year. In my standard operating procedure, it will be complicated and confusing.
Here's the current plan... We've bought a chunk of north Georgia mountains with the intention of building a hobbit house-type structure as a guest house or AirBnB. I've had way too much time to think about this, so we're now considering the same structure but custom built for immersive mixing. I'm feeling like more tours might jump on that bandwagon and it might be good to have a room to practice live immersive mixing in. Ultimately, it's a fancy mixing room with an epic monitoring system. Plug in a desk or laptop and build a mix. That's where it all is in my head right now.
So, aside from the complex monitoring system, properly treating a concrete dome is the big issue. Nothing is set in stone yet so we're just talking at this point. I guess the big question I am asking is this: How would you treat a 10 to 12-foot dome to be acoustically accurate for Grammy-level or arena tour-level immersive mixes. I'm not new to studio construction, but I'm not a designer. Looking for suggestions so I don't make more mistakes than necessary.
Thanks in advance. Much respect for Ethan and this community.
Sounds like a very cool project... but from what I have gathered along the way is "stick with rectangular rooms." If you want to get "crazy", experiment with splayed walls and ceilings...But from what I have learned, avoid domes, peaked "cathedral" ceilings, round rooms and above all spherical rooms. IMHO, you're just asking for trouble.
Right. My understanding is the same as rock's. Concrete = lots of decay; Dome = crazy acoustics. If you have your heart set on it then just plan on using at least 3' thick fluffy insulation on much of the surface. Again, rectangular small rooms is what I know a bit about but I don't see why you couldn't make the space usable as long as you don't expect the unique shape to help.
Post by Michael Lawrence on Jun 20, 2019 14:57:55 GMT
The Venetian Theater in Vegas (where Phantom ran for years) has a gigantic dome that looks like it would be immensely problematic but was in reality so well treated that they actually had to add in a good deal of electronic reverb into the mix to get the room to "sound like it looked." That's a fringe case, though. And far different than a small room. But interesting
Thanks for the input. I'm fully aware that it's going to be a challenge, but the dome isn't really optional for this build. Has anyone in here experimented with or built a room specifically designed for immersive mixing? Not planning to bring full bands in, just build mixes for immersive tours or mix album projects.
Funny thing and somewhat related but I was setting up in a fairly large ballroom/banquet hall last year. There were these large circles on the ceiling spaced in a pattern about 30' or so from each other; I hardly noticed them. One of the guys who had apparently been there before told me to stand under one and say something to him. I uttered a couple words and started laughing as the echo was so hilariously intense right under what was a dome but no one else could hear the echo except persons directly under the dome. I guess it was kind of a novelty maybe inspired by "Get Smart's" "cone of silence" www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWtPPWi6OMQ
I don't know what this does for your project except you might have some crazy echoes. So... now that I think about it, if you build your dome out of thick (4" to 1 foot)porous absorber material instead of concrete you'll probably eliminate echoes. Alternately, build a rectangular room, treat it with thick absorbers and build a wire frame a dome shape inside the rectangle and cover it with fabric imitating the look of concrete.
There was something like that at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. You could just whisper and the person about 70' away could hear you clearly, though I'm not sure how it was constructed - could've been concave shapes of some sort.
Now since you're locked into this dome thing, maybe by studying dome acoustics you can locate the dead or null spots in your dome as opposed to the crazy echoey, reverberant spots and set up your speaker and monitoring positions that way. Of course treatment will help too.
So I've read through the posted links and comments and concluded we're just going to have to compromise. The dome still happens, but we'll attach a separate mix room. I found this, www.asc-studio-acoustics.com/gallery/bruce-swedien-westviking-studio/ and had to weigh that simple design against our options. I'm discussing acoustical floors and various AirCrete structures, but even if we got it close it would likely be twice as expensive to build. I greatly appreciate the input and will update this as it progresses. If Bruce Swedien likes his box that much I'll just quit trying to reinvent the wheel, this time.
While I've got you here, let's consider the end use. I'm basically a mountain hermit working 8-10 hours a day in the same room. My room is still a work in progress but it's getting close. I'm presently working from, and converting. an old 12x24 portable storage building into a functional office/mixing room with less than $2k in it so far. I'll shoot some current photos this week and see if anyone has a suggestion or two for that one.
Here's what it boils down to: I like to mix and I love listening to good music through a great system inside a properly treated room. I have to spend so many hours each day in the same seat facing the same spot five or six days a week. I needed my office to sound like a studio or I'd have lost it by now. I figured I'd use a building I already had and see what happens. Pictures soon, honestly.
Here's where I could use some fresh eyes and ears on the industry. I see the immersive wave forming on the horizon. From here, it looks like the demand for immersive mix engineers is growing but not many folks understand how to mix it, including me. I'm talking to a few manufacturers about the possibility of scaling an immersive arena system down into a reasonably accurate mixing room for building show files, in less than 600 square feet. I'll get back to that when I have more info.
The next monkey wrench is Atmos. It almost seems silly to plan a room like this and not plan for Atmos. Can one system provide plug and play action that translates to multiple formats or would I literally have to install independent systems? I'm perpetually skeptical of my "good ideas" but this hasn't been shot down completely yet. I just want to be able to walk in with my laptop or console and mix to reasonably accurate acoustics whether it's stereo, immersive or Atmos. Again, I'll post relevant updates.
Wide open to ideas and ridicule. Tell me if it's all stupid before I throw any real money at this. Thanks.