reducing the echo in practice room

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by therex, Jan 6, 2009.

  1. therex

    therex Guest

    Jun 24, 2007
    not sure if this belongs here but i hope if not some mod moves it to the right forum
    the practice room for my band is a small room with lots and lost of echo, what can i do to reduce it? i am going to put lots of sponge in the walls to see what happens. i heard thats a cheap solution, but other ideas? i dont have much money for this, in fact i dont have any money right now
    EDIT: i did not get to buy the sponge yet, i'll do more research
  2. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    You need to out some kind of sound absorbing material at least on 2 walls that touch each other - probably behind the drummer. It can be carpeting, heavy drapes or foam rubber. The floor should also be treated with a heavy carpet if it is hard as there can be a lot of refection between floor and ceiling. Also - if the room has a lot of echo, don't play too loud.
  3. Timbo

    Timbo Guest

    Jun 14, 2004
    eggcarton glued to particle board.
  4. Beyer160


    Dec 20, 2008
    Dumpster-diving behind carpet stores is a rock band rite of passage- you shouldn't have to look hard to find a dumpster overflowing with scrap rolls of old carpet. The trick is not to deaden the room too much- you need some reflections, or everything will sound muddy and indistinct. I wouldn't cover more than 50% of your wall surface.
  5. debassr


    Jan 23, 2008
    Just don't use the soundproofing they used here!
  6. Blankets, mattresses, egg cartons, whatever you can put in for mass and non parallel surfaces.

    Purists might decry you for non proper sound absorbing methods, but what can you do? It's a jam room and you have no money. Blankets on all the walls worked fine for us when we used to jam in the basement.
  7. therex

    therex Guest

    Jun 24, 2007
    thanks for the advice guys
    i`ll try with some blankets in the next practice
  8. therex

    therex Guest

    Jun 24, 2007
  9. A lot of these suggestions are a really bad idea.

    The problem with mattresses, foam, egg cartons, carpet, etc. is that it will absorb high frequencies and do nothing at all for low frequencies. This gives you an unnaturally muted sounding room, sucking out all of the cues that our brains use to differentiate and localize sounds without doing much of anything to the frequencies where most of the power in the sound actually lies. Net result: muddy, crappy sounding room and you end up turning up all the amps to hear yourself better, resulting in a muddier, crappier sound etc. Bad news.

    Good information on how to deal with acoustics in a more systematic and effective manner here:
  10. chjohnst

    chjohnst Guest

    Nov 24, 2008
    The doors recorded their first album with moving blankets on the walls.. the album is a classic now.. go figure.
  11. I think most of us realize this, but the fact is that you can't convince people into having a budget. He has no money, we've all been there, so we're just trying to advise on what kinda works for cheap.

    Carpet and blankets are better than nothing, you just have to be careful with your bass frequencies.
  12. therex

    therex Guest

    Jun 24, 2007
    woah, you guys really can be helpfull
    what do you think of 2" thick sponges in 2 walls? i heard it should work but any feedback is great
    also the main problem is that the sound inside the studio is damn muddy, nothing is clear
    the drumset sound twice as loud in this room because of the echo and reverb
    the guitar sounds like you put lots and lots of reverbs pedals in the chain pedal, and bass is pure mud, i am really annoyed at this, this is really ruining band rehearsals
  13. amistybleu

    amistybleu Guest

    Jan 15, 2006
    Thornton, CO
    Carpet under the drums will help, hang a blanket over the drums, drums tend to overpower and the blanket although very minimally will give you the sense of a higher ceiling. deadening sound at first point of reflection will help on walls, add a couch in the room if you have one and pack corners of the room to deal with bass frequencies.

    In my Studio/jamspace we have done all of these principals using OC 703 which has excellent sound conditioning properties, work with what you have until you can afford better.
  14. derrico1

    derrico1 Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    Charlottesville, VA
    If your room's a sonic mess and money's tight, you could monitor via a headphone amp at rehearsals.
  15. BillyIVbass


    Sep 24, 2008
    Gear Reviews Guitar World Online
    Blankets are great. Covering a wall helps. Those carpet cubicles are great and can also be made cheap. Just also take note, most makeshift sound-proofing increases fire hazards, so also make sure gear is turned off, unplugged and be careful with smoking etc.
  16. nemo


    Mar 19, 2004
    For cheap - heavy drapes, carpet, and mostly - some old sofa or two.
    Besides other uses, it is a great bass freq. (boom) absorber.

    Egg cartons are useless. Skip that.
  17. couches make good bass traps. parallel walls cause a lot of reflections. try to pad the corners of the walls the most, as a mess can hang out in there.

    there are many sites for building DIY bass traps.

    ive heard that plants make great high frequency sound defusers. apparently sound bounces around the leaves and then dissipates.
  18. therex

    therex Guest

    Jun 24, 2007
    fiiting a sofa in my practice room? yeah right, this room is tiny for that so saddly it cant be done, but i`try with 4 heavy blankets i have in no use
  19. hbarcat

    hbarcat Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2006
    Rochelle, Illinois
    If you have no budget, then scrap carpeting works the best at absorbing mid to high frequencies. (get shag carpet if you can).

    The only way to absorb bass frequencies it with properly constructed bass traps set in the corners of the room. If you have no budget, then you need to search for DIY bass traps.

    This book includes information on sound treatment for many types of rooms including a small project room with a live band.
    Sound Studio Construction on a Budget - F. Alton Everest