Oct 24

How to Improve Your Home Studio to Be the Best It Can Be

Wed, 10/24/2012 - 21:00 — julie
Kontramax's home studio

I’ve been struck by the number of marketplace authors who have home studios. I’ve noticed it in our Featured Workspace photos, and I’ve read about it in our author interviews. And it’s not just AudioJungle authors. The video guys and girls, game developers, musicians and audio hobbyists among us also have some great sound gear in their home offices.

Home do you make the most of your home office for audio? Here are fourteen helpful tutorials from Audiotuts+ and Tuts+ Premium that show you how to improve the sound of your room, do some basic acoustic treatment, and record decent vocals from home. Dive in and enjoy better sounding audio!

Audiotuts+

Beginner’s Guide to Acoustic TreatmentBeginner’s Guide to Acoustic Treatment

After touching on the critical subject of acoustics and room treatment in a few recent tutorials, I felt it was fitting to create a basic guide to acoustically treating your work space. I get asked about this subject a lot so I’m hoping a run down of the essential technique and kit needed will be of some help to readers.

Of course this is an extremely technical subject and this tutorial in no way claims to be the definitive guide to acoustic treatment, but these tips and guidelines should get beginners up and running and generally help to clarify the whole subject of room acoustics.

I’ll run through the basics of choosing the right space, positioning your kit and then look at different types of treatment techniques and materials.
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Soundproofing and Acoustic Treatment for Home StudiosSoundproofing and Acoustic Treatment for Home Studios

Soundproofing and acoustic treatment are important topics to tackle when setting up a home studio. Even if all of your sounds are electronic, the room you are in will strongly affect the sound you are hearing through your monitors. In this article we get to grips with the issues and some common ways of dealing with them.

A few weeks ago I asked Audiotuts+ readers for their hints and tips about soundproofing in an Open Mic. A huge thanks to everyone who responded. You’ll find many of the suggestions in this article. An article like this is never finished—you can add your experiences to the comments too. Which acoustic treatment techniques did you find effective? Are there any products you would like to recommend? Did you learn some lessons the hard way that you can warn the readers about?

Bobby Owsinski’s excellent Premium tutorial Build an Effective Room Treatment on the Cheap (borrowed liberally from Chapter 2 of his book “The Drum Recording Handbook” ) gives a great overview. It explains the why as well as the how, and is worth the small amount of money required to read it.

We’ll start with an overview of the issues that need to be tackled.
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4 Foolproof Ways to Make Your Home Studio Sound Better4 Foolproof Ways to Make Your Home Studio Sound Better

It’s easy to make music at your home today. However, you can’t put up low budget monitors and a microphone and call yourself a studio. There is a difference between a nice home recording studio – even if it’s just one spare room – and a low-cost corner in your bedroom, especially if you want to make money with it. We all start somewhere, even if it is in the corner of our bedroom but what separates the men from the boys is being able to take it to the next level. What follows are some of the foolproof ideas to make your home recording studio sound better.
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Quick Tip: DIY Basic Room Acoustic MeasurementQuick Tip: DIY Basic Room Acoustic Measurement

If you are serious about your own career as a musician, DJ, or producer, or just like good sounding environment, here’s something worth learning. A room with good acoustics is essential for recording and mixing your music. If you make music in a room with great acoustics, it has the best chance of sounding good in other rooms too.
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10 Best Affordable Microphones for the Home Studio10 Best Affordable Microphones for the Home Studio

Making music is perhaps one of the most expensive hobbies in the world—that is, aside from tasting truffles. When you’re looking to set up a decent home studio, it’s hard to find a way to stay within budget without ending up with a terrible sound. Here are ten options to minimize expenditure while still getting a decent sound out of your system at the end of the day, by buying smart when it comes to one of the most important types of studio equipment: microphones.
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How to Record Vocals in a BedroomHow to Record Vocals in a Bedroom

Recording vocals can be one of the more challenging tracking phase processes you may run into. If it wasn’t enough of a tough cookie in the studio, you can be sure it’s a daunting task in a bedroom (or a home office or any other room you’ve set aside for recording fun that wasn’t purpose-built for it).

The sad truth is that you can’t get pro quality vocals happening at home. But you can improve the sound by a mile if you’re armed with a few tricks and tips, and that’s what I intend to give you.
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How to Process and Improve Home Recorded VocalsHow to Process and Improve Home Recorded Vocals

So, you’ve recorded a vocal, and now you want to mix it and process it so it sounds great in your mix. We’re not going to look at tracking vocals in this tutorial. Instead, we’re going to focus on how to process vocals once you’ve recorded them. Depending on your room, your mic and placements, your pre-amps and inputs and, above all, your skill-level, the quality of your recorded vocal sound is going vary.

Vocal processing can seem like a bit of a dark art when you’re just trying to get by recording your material at home with budget equipment. But, no matter how bad your initial sound is, you can improve it.
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What Is the Best DAW for Beginners?What Is the Best DAW for Beginners?

If you’re getting started with audio production, it won’t be long before you have to start making decisions. These decisions will potentially cost you lots of time and money. And one of the first of these decisions is about software – which digital audio workstation (DAW) software should you choose?

We asked the question a few months ago in an Open Mic, and the community were generous with their advice. We’ll sum it up here, along with a few thoughts of our own.

But before we get started with your options, let’s talk about a few issues first. Just like the shoes I wear may not fit you, there isn’t one beginners’ DAW that will suit everyone. Here are some questions that will help clarify which app to start with.
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Tuts+ Premium

Are you a Tuts+ Premium member? Here are some additional tutorials you can access.

How to Go About Planning Your Home StudioHow to Go About Planning Your Home Studio

I think it is safe to say most everyone wishes they had their own studio. But alas the amount of money required to invest in a commercial recording studio is out of reach for many. However, most of us would be satisfied and if not elated to have our own personal home studio and that my friends is perfectly in reach. But without careful forethought and planning, it can easily become a disaster. Come with me as we analyze the different kinds of home studios, what their needs are, and how to effectively plan out these studios out so that you can easily upgrade them as your acquire more pieces to the puzzle. Ready? I thought so!
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DIY Professional Acoustical PanelsDIY Professional Acoustical Panels

Renovating your studio over the holidays? In this week’s Audio Premium content, Jonah Guelzo shows you how to make inexpensive acoustical panels for your studio wall. Check out the video after the break.
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Build an Effective Room Treatment on the CheapBuild an Effective Room Treatment on the Cheap

With more and more musicians and engineers able to have their own personal studio, many times the last thing considered is the acoustics of the recording space. This is understandable, since if you don’t have the recording gear in the first place, a great acoustic environment isn’t going to do you much good. But I think that one of the major reasons that the recording environment isn’t given a higher priority in a personal or non-commercial recording space are the perceived costs in attaining something acoustically reasonable.

It’s true that designing a commercial facility with a great designer/architect is going to cost you anywhere from $300 to 500 USD per square foot (or more) to build, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t improve your present recording environment for much, much less. All it takes is a bit of knowledge about some really basic acoustics principles and some time, and you can improve your studio more than you could’ve imagined in most cases (with no math involved unless you want to go another step).
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Improving The Sound Of Your Room – Part 1Improving The Sound Of Your Room – Part 1

These days it seems that nearly everyone has some sort of recording ability in their home, but that doesn’t mean the space you use actually sounds good. In this series, we’ll look at how to improve your listening environment for a lot less money that you’d think was possible. In Part 1, we’ll look at the major considerations and concerns that everyone building a studio faces, and sometimes overlooks.

Before you begin to swing a hammer or set your credit card down to buy materials, it’s a good idea to take a look at what you’re trying to do and analyze your needs. It’s very easy to overlook a number of critical items that at the very least can bug you later, or at most impair your ability to mix or record music.
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Improving The Sound Of Your Room – Part 2Improving The Sound Of Your Room – Part 2

These days it seems that nearly everyone has some sort of recording ability in their home, but that doesn’t mean the space you use actually sounds good. In this series, we’ll look at how to improve your listening environment for a lot less money that you’d think was possible. In Part 2, we’ll look at the principles of isolation.

If you’re building any kind of studio, especially one at home, the first question that both musicians and engineers ask regarding acoustics is, “How can I make sure that my neighbors don’t hear us?” When it comes to soundproofing, there are some very basic principles that just about anyone can understand that will get you 90 percent of the way there. The problem is that every extra percent of isolation that you wring out of your space from that point costs exponentially more money.
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Improving The Sound Of Your Room – Part 3Improving The Sound Of Your Room – Part 3

These days it seems that nearly everyone has some sort of a recording studio in their home, but that doesn’t mean the space you use actually sounds good. In this series, we’ll look at how to improve your listening environment for a lot less money than you’d think was possible. In Part 3, we’ll look at the appropriate measures needed to isolate your room.
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