Difference Between Soundproofing and Acoustic Treatment
- Outside noises will stay outside. These noises wouldn’t bleed into your microphone and into your mixes. Also, these noises wouldn’t disturb your recording sessions.
- Inside noises will stay The noises in your studio or jam room will not go out and wake up the neighbours.
- Soundproofing is intended for minimising the level of sound that passes through the walls both ways by building it with heavy and dense material.
- Acoustic Treatment is intended for controlling the sound reflections INSIDE the room for making better sounding recordings.
- Adding mass: This tactic includes adding mass to your walls to prevent sound from entering and exiting the room. If you’re building a room from scratch, a lot of mass can be easily added by customizing the materials used while building. But if you’re trying to add mass to an existing room, additional structures must be built using materials like mass loaded vinyls or sheetblock etc.
- Decoupling: If any two elements in your room are in contact with each other, sound vibrations can pass through objects and thus sound can travel more than you intend it to. When you isolate these contact points, by using some dense material like rubber, this process is known as Decoupling.
- Acoustic Treatment:
- A harsh/metallic ringing sound
- A deep/smooth/pleasant reverb.
The 3 pillars of Acoustic Treatment
- Bass Traps: The foremost element for treatment is this. Contrary to popular belief, bass traps do not just absorb bass frequencies. Porous bass traps can also absorb mid/high frequencies due to their broadband nature. What we recommend for smaller rooms where low frequency is very problematic is bass traps on the corners. Try these Aurica corner bass traps which are very economical and work like a charm for me.
- Acoustic Panels: This is where people go wrong when they straight away move on to acoustic panels. Acoustic panels cannot absorb the lowest of bass frequencies. This is why they need to be installed AFTER you’re done with the bass traps.
- Diffusers: If bass traps are your necessity and acoustic panels a moderate need, diffusers are a luxury. Since most of the absorption has been covered by both of these, you may or may not put up additional diffusers according to your taste. This is a disputable topic, where some experts are in favour of putting diffusers in small studios whereas some aren’t.