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Re: VO booth construction

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Mark SimpsonRe: VO booth construction
by on Aug 27, 2001 at 8:10:14 pm

Hi Ron,

Regarding what Spot suggested about the floor isolators. You can buy something like he's describing readymade very cheap. On my booth, I used Isoloation pads that are designed for mounting High wattage Power Transformers, motors, and the like. They are essentially a piece of 3/4 inch cork sandwiched between two pieces of corrugated hard rubber. They cone in sizes fron about 2"x2" up to 6"x6". Glue several of these to the bottom of your platform, and they work great. They cast one or two dollars each.

They can be had from Graingers, electrical wholesale distributors, etc..

I built the base for my booth, by firat laying down a layer of 3/4" MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard) which is like Particle board, but much denser, and twice the cost. Then I placed one of those rubbery mattes on top of that, that are designed to keep rugs from sliding on hardwood floors. Then, I placed another layer of MDF with the joints perpendicular to the first layer.

Next I built the base itself out of two layers of 3/4" MDF glued on each side of a 2x4 framed (16" 0.C.) structure, and filled with lots of R30 fiberglass. I built these with a custom tounge and groove design so that the three 4x8 sections interlock. I glued several of the small iso pads described previously to the bootom of each section an set the whole thing on top of the two layers of MDF that are on the floor.

Then I fastened a 2"x4" wall structure to this which (with 1/2" particle baord glued to the back) which accepts custom made soundproofing panels I built from 2"x3" framework with 3/4" MDF backs glued to them. These were filled with two and a half inches of Owens Corning R704 fiberglass sound board. These were covered with burlap that was attached to the soundboard with 3M spray on contact cement. And each covered soundboard section was fitted into the framed soundproofing panel. The panels were them fitted into the openings of the walls.

Once the walls were up, I duct taped all seams on the floor and joints where the walls met the floor, then I placed another layer of 1" MDF on top of that to complete the floor section. This was taped together, then carpeting was placed on top.

The ceiling structure was constructed using a similar method as the walls, but the panels are 2"x4" (as opposed to 2"x3") set in a 2"x6" framing structure which holds them, and are filled 3 and a half inches of burlap covered R704 panels.

R704/705 is a very dense fiberglass material commonly on the walls surrounding large deisel power generators, A/C systems, Deisel Fire Pumps, etc. of large commercial structures (like high rises) to absorb sound. It works very, very well. It comes in rigid sheets in thicknesses of 1", 1.5", 2", and 2.5". The sheets are available in 2'x4' panels (for use in T bar ceilings) or if you want to buy by the pallet, they come in 4' x 10' sheets (40 sheets in a pallet).

The booth I built is very soundproof and sounds pretty much acoustically dead inside, which is desireable for such a small room (8' x 12'). I create room ambience artificially with digital reverb. It's completely portable, but I use the term loosely as it consists of a lot of heavy pieces, and is a 'lot' of hard work to move.

Given the dimensions you stated and the purpose, I would think you'd want it to be pretty dead too.

My booth is currently disassebled as it is being enlarged (it was previously 8'x8' and is being enlarged to 8'x16'.

That book I suggested will give you a lot of great ideas on how to build your booth 'very economically', and better yet will give you enough 'why' information to build just about any kind of a sound containment structure/room/booth you might want.

Mark Simpson


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