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Old 05-07-2014, 10:40 PM
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Doug Young Doug Young is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Mountain View, CA
Posts: 6,685

The idea of recording before and after room treatment is a great idea. You'll be able to document your progress.

I'd word the word treatment suggestions a little differently than Chris and a few other - I'd say it matters a lot what your room sounds like. That *probably* involves doing some room treatment to correct. But a lot depends on what you have to start with. You might be lucky and happen to have a nice sounding room already. A reasonable furnished living room often is often not all that bad for guitar or voice as long as you're close micing. Or it could be really bad. There are some free tools out (like Room EQ Wizard) there that can help a bit in understanding your room, tho it gets a little geeky. Might be easiest to just try it and see.

As an example of what you *might* accomplish with room treatment, here's the before and after test I did when I set up my studio. Here's my untreated garage, recorded in mono from 18 inches away:

And here's the same mic position after I was about 75% done treating the room:

It got a bit better from there as I tuned the room, and also as I started using closer mic placement, working with different mics, etc.

The funny thing is that I originally built the garage studio in part because I had been recording in a typical 10x10 bedroom and had acoustics issue - boomy notes, distant sound, and so on. It didn't sound nearly as bad as the untreated garage, but it wasn't good. But later on, I ended up using that same room for shooting you tube videos, still untreated, and now it seems acceptable. Here's a fairly recent recording in that room:

I'd chalk the difference between the old bad sound and the current sound to using hypercardiod (very directional) mics, placed fairly close, and just learning about the recording process, maybe even different guitars. Actually another important difference is that tho I may record (video) in an untreated room - I mix in the treated room, so I can hear better than I used to.

In any case, I'd say setting up a home studio is a journey. Part gear, part dealing with acoustics, and a lot of learning curve about everything from how to use the gear to your playing. Have fun!
Doug Young
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Last edited by Doug Young; 05-07-2014 at 10:47 PM.
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