Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Setting up a band practice room...

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by MascisMan, May 6, 2004.


  1. MascisMan

    MascisMan

    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    Was wondering if there was a "best" way to set up a rectangular room for a band practice room. We are a 4 piece band with keys, guitar, bass, and drums. The pianist plays through a 1x15 300 watt bass amp. We also have a weak PA system for the two vocals (pianist and guitarist).

    As far as room acoustics go is there a best way to set up a square/rectangular room so that the frequencies dont get lost or too severely mixed to where it sounds like garbage?
     
  2. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    If you can get large sheets of egg crate foam you can put that on the ceiling.

    Old rugs, blankets or any other insulating material can be placed on three of the walls.

    I would not recommend putting any material on all four walls. There needs to be some reverberation in the room. But doing the ceiling helps the most.

    Where you set up is not that important, but if the drummer sets his kit up facing away from the blank wall that is best, as the cymbals will not ring as much and the kick will not be too boomy.
     
  3. mr e

    mr e

    Nov 17, 2003
    nyc
    REALTRAPS Graphical Mode Calculator

    ModeCalc is a Graphical Room Mode Calculator you can download for free (only 56 KB). It runs on all DOS and Windows computers, and graphically displays the first ten axial modes for any rectangular room using dimensions you enter as either feet or meters. ModeCalc can help you design a new room that sounds as good as possible, or predict the low frequency behavior of an existing room.
     
  4. MascisMan

    MascisMan

    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    Hey Sun- thanks for the reply. We currently have the drummer set up kind of in the corner and not up against a flat wall per se. Would it be better for him to be parallel to a wall? We do have some egg crate up on the walls as well as blankets. I will have to look into egg crating the ceiling. I guess a lot of sound bounces off of the ceiling.
     
  5. MascisMan

    MascisMan

    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    Hey Mr E thats interesting but I have no idea what Im looking at or what all the numbers mean as far as 'axial modes'.
     
  6. Sundogue

    Sundogue

    Apr 26, 2001
    Wausau, WI
    It works best if you have the drummer's back to a flat wall (not in the corner) and have his kit facing some kind of insulated wall.

    The kick drum will have some of it's boomy low end sucked up by the insulation (it also helps if the bass cab is facing the same way as the drummer, for the same reason).

    Also, put a pillow or a folded up blanket into the kick drum (next to the head). It is not that important for the kick in a practice room to have perfect sound. Cymbals (especially ride and crash) tend to be irritatingly loud in an uninsulated, small room.

    The ceiling is often overlooked as a source of reverberation...but that is why they make acoustical ceiling tiles.
     
  7. MascisMan

    MascisMan

    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    Thanks Sun I will definitely try that out!

    Mr E I read the explanation of the 10 axial modes for that program...very interesting. that may be something I can work with!
     
  8. mr e

    mr e

    Nov 17, 2003
    nyc
    enter your room dimensions into the program
    it will then tell you which frequencies will be 'hot' in your practice space
    eq to taste!
     
  9. MascisMan

    MascisMan

    Nov 21, 2003
    Dallas, Tx
    Those MiniTraps look pretty cool also as far controlling some of the bass frequencies..
     
  10. RicPlaya

    RicPlaya

    Apr 22, 2003
    Whitmoretucky MI
    Is it practice room of a recording studio? For practice we set up like a stage, because when we gig we are on a stage. We have a smallish room 14x12 or something like that, about the size of your average bar stage. We stapled some heavy duty carpet padding all over the walls and ceiling for sound damping. Our drummers back is against the back wall in the middle of the room, I am to one side, the guitarist is to the other, the singer is in the middle with the monitor facing him just like we are all on stage facing an audiance (we even act like we are playing on stage this way when we practice). We side wash the drummer a little with our guitar cabs from both sides and jam out. There is no surpises when we play live, we set up like we practice, everyone can hear everything it's a good mix. Now a recording room we would set up different. But this way works for us.