Need help with drum room build decisions. Soundproofing, or acoustics and gear?

NYDRUMMA

Senior Member
I am going to be building a drum/music room in my basement and was going to soundproof it. I was going to use green glue resilient hat channel and clips fiber wool and maybe some underlayment.

After thinking out the costs I began to wonder what I am looking to accomplish. I don't need to reduce the sound all that much. The room is in my basement and the neighbors said they can only hear it if they are outside and then they barely hear it. (I live on a corner lot so I really only have one neighbor).

I originally set a budget of about $2000. The basement is finished and all I needed was to put up one wall and tear out the drop ceiling and install a drywall ceiling. The project was going to cost right around that much for everything including some labor from a friend.

I could cut the budget by using standard wall construction and adding fiber wool and hat channel and cutting out clips ($7 each) green glue and 2nd layer of drywall. That would save me about $600-$700 in materials and more on labor.

I guess what I am asking is should I cut the budget and use the extra money for some equipment or interior sound treatment like foam?
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
If your neighbor(s) can't really hear it, what about the rest of the people in your house? My wife loves my drumming but after a while it's assault on her ears and she needs a break from it. If you're single, I say do just a scoche and sink the rest of the money into gear.
 

NYDRUMMA

Senior Member
If your neighbor(s) can't really hear it, what about the rest of the people in your house? My wife loves my drumming but after a while it's assault on her ears and she needs a break from it. If you're single, I say do just a scoche and sink the rest of the money into gear.
Yeah, my wife could care less about drumming I figured drywall and insulation would help especially with the ceiling. I also have a Roland electronic kit that I was going to sell, but I figured in order to get the kit quiet enough to play at night I would have to at least double my budget. So I can keep the electronic kit to play at night.
 

mikeg

Senior Member
Yeah, my wife could care less about drumming I figured drywall and insulation would help especially with the ceiling. I also have a Roland electronic kit that I was going to sell, but I figured in order to get the kit quiet enough to play at night I would have to at least double my budget. So I can keep the electronic kit to play at night.
I built a drum room in my basement, but it wasn't cheap. I sold my Roland TD-20 kit to help off set the expense. The upside is that I can play as late as I want and my wife can still sleep while I play. I used a double wall, split plate, off-set stud design and it works really well. The wall board was sandwiched with Green Glue. I don't miss the Rolands at all.

http://www.outawhack.net/drumming/Site/Drum_Booth_Blog/Entries/2009/12/2_Getting_Started.html
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
I found through hard experience that cutting the budget = regret later on.

Cutting corners in sound proofing usually means you end up with a room that isn't the least bit sound proof.
 

KBadd

Silver Member
The reason you "sound proof" a room is so others don't hear (are bothered) by the sound. Dude, don't spend too much in sound proofing UNTIL after the neighbors tell you it's too loud. At that point you can do what is necessary. In the meantime.....get some new drum stuff with your extra cash!!
 
A

audiotech

Guest
The reason you "sound proof" a room is so others don't hear (are bothered) by the sound. Dude, don't spend too much in sound proofing UNTIL after the neighbors tell you it's too loud. At that point you can do what is necessary. In the meantime.....get some new drum stuff with your extra cash!!
There's another time that people soundproof, to limit noise and keep unwanted sound out of your studio or musical space.

Dennis
 

NYDRUMMA

Senior Member
I built a drum room in my basement, but it wasn't cheap. I sold my Roland TD-20 kit to help off set the expense. The upside is that I can play as late as I want and my wife can still sleep while I play. I used a double wall, split plate, off-set stud design and it works really well. The wall board was sandwiched with Green Glue. I don't miss the Rolands at all.

http://www.outawhack.net/drumming/Site/Drum_Booth_Blog/Entries/2009/12/2_Getting_Started.html
Wow! A ton of great information in that blog. Makes me realize that I haven't thought of everything and that labor could cost me more than I thought. You also went further than I was planning on going. Offset stud would add some cost especially because I would like to use steel. Then what you did with the ceiling was also different than I was planning. You basically made the ceiling a room inside of a room. Did you use double drywall on both the ceiling and the sub ceiling? Yeah I could see that being very expensive.

There's another time that people soundproof, to limit noise and keep unwanted sound out of your studio or musical space.

Dennis
I agree I would like to eventually get some mics and play around with recording so with 5 kids running around, that might be tough for me to do.


Boy this might not be finished until December.....
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
Cut and pasted from the last time this topic came up:

My 1st studio didn't end up very sound proof.

Before my 2nd attempt, I read these two books:

Home Recording Studio: Build it Like the Pros by Rod Gervais
It's long, lots of technical jargon, and some of it will go over your head, but it's full of good info.

and
KEEP THE PEACE! THE MUSICIAN'S GUIDE TO SOUNDPROOFING by Mark Parsons, which is more straightforward, and also written geared to drummers.

Some of the info in the two books contradicts each other, and neither book accommodates every circumstance you might encounter, but none the less, I read both books several times over when building my studio.

I ended up using products made by Quite Solution, which are expensive, but do the job really well.
http://www.quietsolution.com/

The wall you see in my studio are 1-3/8" special "dry wall" that is composed of 11 layers of materials. The floors and ceilings are the 5/8" version.

Every electrical outlet was covered with quiet putty, and every pipe in the bathroom was coated with QuietCoat prior to the drywall being hung.

It's not 100% sound proof, but I can pump my PA up to ear shattering volume inside the room, and walk outside, and barely hear anything.

In my prior studio I made numerous mistakes in attempt to cut corners.
I didn't take into account the outter wall of the detached garage was just stucco with no wood backing, which meant the outter wall was really thin.
I insulated, and then put up one layer of fiber sound board, and a layer of drywall. Which was simply not enough mass to be the least bit sound proof.
For the inside, I found a "cheap" acoustic foam from a place in NY. And I covered every single inch of wall with it, but sound still bounced around inside as if there was no foam.

My current room has far less foam, but I paid for the good Auralex stuff, and it controls the sound 100x better, despite having less of it.
 

mikeg

Senior Member
Wow! A ton of great information in that blog. Makes me realize that I haven't thought of everything and that labor could cost me more than I thought. You also went further than I was planning on going. Offset stud would add some cost especially because I would like to use steel. Then what you did with the ceiling was also different than I was planning. You basically made the ceiling a room inside of a room. Did you use double drywall on both the ceiling and the sub ceiling? Yeah I could see that being very expensive.
I used a single layer 5/8" on the first (outer) ceiling and a double layer 5/8" w/green glue for the inside ceiling.
 

NYDRUMMA

Senior Member
Cut and pasted from the last time this topic came up:

My 1st studio didn't end up very sound proof.

Before my 2nd attempt, I read these two books:

Home Recording Studio: Build it Like the Pros by Rod Gervais
It's long, lots of technical jargon, and some of it will go over your head, but it's full of good info.

and
KEEP THE PEACE! THE MUSICIAN'S GUIDE TO SOUNDPROOFING by Mark Parsons, which is more straightforward, and also written geared to drummers.

Some of the info in the two books contradicts each other, and neither book accommodates every circumstance you might encounter, but none the less, I read both books several times over when building my studio.

I ended up using products made by Quite Solution, which are expensive, but do the job really well.
http://www.quietsolution.com/

The wall you see in my studio are 1-3/8" special "dry wall" that is composed of 11 layers of materials. The floors and ceilings are the 5/8" version.

Every electrical outlet was covered with quiet putty, and every pipe in the bathroom was coated with QuietCoat prior to the drywall being hung.

It's not 100% sound proof, but I can pump my PA up to ear shattering volume inside the room, and walk outside, and barely hear anything.

In my prior studio I made numerous mistakes in attempt to cut corners.
I didn't take into account the outter wall of the detached garage was just stucco with no wood backing, which meant the outter wall was really thin.
I insulated, and then put up one layer of fiber sound board, and a layer of drywall. Which was simply not enough mass to be the least bit sound proof.
For the inside, I found a "cheap" acoustic foam from a place in NY. And I covered every single inch of wall with it, but sound still bounced around inside as if there was no foam.

My current room has far less foam, but I paid for the good Auralex stuff, and it controls the sound 100x better, despite having less of it.
Thanks for the Info. It's clear I need to research a little more before I make my final decision. However quietrock won't be part of it. Waaaay to expensive to justify it to my wife. Hey if you make a living drumming or can afford it then its a no brainer. For me I need more economical solutions. Maybe in the future.
 

campbellsoup

Junior Member
NYDRUMMA, Homedepot has 1/2 inch to 2 inch foam boards , plyboard sized Im in the proggress of insulating and sound proffing a metal shed , and I know its not gonna be a 100% sound proof , . just to see if I could help out.
 

Brundlefly

Senior Member
If you're sound proofing a basement (which I think is a good idea, regardless of whether anyone has complained yet), then you your priorities should look something like this.

Focus expensive materials on ceiling. Your walls don't need nearly as much as the ceiling. Basements are good rooms for conversion because of this reason.

Consider dropping mineral wool outright or dropping back to something less expensive. In terms of making any wall better, insulation is good for about a 1-5% difference. Common sense tells you that stuffing heavy crap in your walls will make it more sound proof, but sound proofing generally runs counter to common sense. You might even make your walls worse. Air gaps = good. Not air gaps = bad. If you do put something in there, cotton batting works best, costs little and is easy to install.

Focus your money on cheap materials that you can layer to great effect. The largest contributing material is actually going to be sheet rock. And sheet rock is cheap. This is because it is dense and heavy. Adding more of this will always be a better move than adding just about anything else (unless you are tight on build out space).

Double stud or offset stud = +20/10 STC respectively. And all you're looking at there is lumber. Lumber isn't the cheapest, but it ain't Green Glue or MLV expensive either.

Green Glue is expensive. But you need it, and it doesn't pay to short cut it. Two tubes per 4x8 sandwich. And don't bother with the larger tubs. You don't save much but the tubs are a giant pain in the ass to work with.

Sound board vs Green Glue vs sheet rock. Adding sound board is nice, but only if you aren't dropping something else like sheet rock or Green Glue. Trading sound board for one of those things isn't a fair trade. Remember: sound board isn't good at stopping sound on it's own, just like Green Glue isn't. It's really a viscoelastic layer that works best between other things.

MLV: almost ditto for Sound Board. MLV, however, is very heavy so MLV > sound board. Making your walls heavy should be your primary goal.

Finally, clips and hat channels. Clips can be a little pricy. The trick here is to order the right amount. And to focus them where they are needed most. Hat channel is cheap.

Avoid pre-built drywall (i.e., Quiet Solutions). ALL OF IT, and I mean all of it, is just someone else doing the work of building some kind of sheet rock with a viscoelastic layer sandwich. You can do that yourself for a fraction of the cost with sheet rock and Green Glue. I used some of it myself and while it does work, it should be reserved for people who have no construction capability or are willing to pay a premium for meager time saved. You know, it takes about 15 minutes for two people to build a sandwich, and I swear I could train monkeys to do it right.

Lastly, keep in mind the triad of effectiveness: air tightness, mass and isolation. Your best approach is to find a way to include all three.

Good luck and show us pics of your progress.

PS: leave the sound treatment for later. You can always add that to your room, but making anything you build more sound proof pretty much means throwing it away and starting over.
 
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Adam6890

Junior Member
Me and my dad converted a kids wendy house into my current drum room. We extended it by 1ft in each direction (including upwards). Stripped the whole thing bare, put acoustic foam (the type used for houses on busy roads, so nothing professional) in the walls, then put MDF wood boards on either side of the foam to make the walls. Painted it all, sealed up all the holes using some sort of clear industry glue (can't remember the name of it), and made the door using exactly the same method, but used two wooden beams to barracade it from the inside to press it up against the door frame edges. Unfortunately it doesn't do lots. We did it on the cheap, and while it did enough to give me a space that has enough room and enough quieting ability for me to practice and the neighbours to care a little less, it hasn't done enough to allow me to call it soundproof.

I thought that because the room was so small and the walls were solid flat mdf, the ear piercing noise of the drums was just echoing around the room many many times, giving it more chance to escape. So we found some carpet, stuck it on 3 of the walls and the floor (ran out after a bit), and it did seem to do a bit in terms of reducing the echo - It didn't make me blink when I hit the snare any more put it that way :p

So that's my story. All in all, as I tried to explain to my dad before we started the project, we should NOT do it on the cheap. I read my research, found out what had to be done, read other stories that would turn out to be like mine, and I tried telling him what we had to do to make this a success. He refused and now the room isn't anywhere near what it could've been, but I do understand we were on a tight budget, so a few hundred $$$'s had to cut it.

One other thing I did read which will help you enormously: Think of sound like water - If you fill your drum room with water it'll find every single hole to escape from. You can plug up hundreds of holes, but miss one and it'll be just as loud as when you started.

Good luck and keep us posted! :)
 

NYDRUMMA

Senior Member
Thanks guys.

I did a lot more research and found out a few things. First is if I use double or offset stud design, then I don't need hat channel and clips. Second that MLV doesn't work nearly as well as the cost would indicate.

What I have decided to do is use hat channel, clips and double drywall green glue sandwich on the ceiling with R-19 insulation.

On the walls I decided to use double stud design as the cost vs. sound suppression is worth the extra money for the lumber over the hat channel and clips. I will also use r-19 in the walls.

I will also use communicating solid core doors. The project starts this weekend with removal of the drop ceiling and prepping the room. I will take pictures and make a thread to show the process.
 

Brundlefly

Senior Member
Thanks guys.

I did a lot more research and found out a few things. First is if I use double or offset stud design, then I don't need hat channel and clips. Second that MLV doesn't work nearly as well as the cost would indicate.

What I have decided to do is use hat channel, clips and double drywall green glue sandwich on the ceiling with R-19 insulation.

On the walls I decided to use double stud design as the cost vs. sound suppression is worth the extra money for the lumber over the hat channel and clips. I will also use r-19 in the walls.

I will also use communicating solid core doors. The project starts this weekend with removal of the drop ceiling and prepping the room. I will take pictures and make a thread to show the process.
Well, yes and no to some of that.

First, I wouldn't consider offset or double stud walls as a replacement for hat channels. It is one kind of isolation and it might make some economical sense to pick one over the other if you are tight on cash. Generally speaking, hat channels with clips > offset stud. Combining those two with a multi-sandwich inner is going to get you the biggest bang for the buck. After that, it starts to cost 4x as much for every 20% worth of improvement you try to make.

Second, if you want to cut corners, I would look at substituting more drywall in place MLV for sure. Drywall is reasonably heavy, cheap and easy to install. MLV is heavier, but expensive and a bit of a pain to install. That said, MLV has a sound deadening profile like no other material short of lead. It also offers the greatest amount of sound reduction relative to it's build-out impact. Only lead beats it for the amount of effect within so little space. Where some people get it wrong about MLV is that they tend to look at the material on it's own. The value in MLV comes from hanging it on something else to make it heavier. For that, it is almost impossible to beat.
 
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