Let’s Make Sweet, Sweet Music in a New Home Studio
When properly designed, a music room can provide a satisfying listening experience. But, to get the most out of this specific space, it requires a bit of design and acoustic expertise. The first step is determining if the space is intended for live performances or recording and music playback. For live music, you need to account for placement of musicians and instruments, whereas a recording studio calls for sound isolation and the positioning of recording equipment. Whether you’re a musician or have one in the household, creating a space to enjoy or play music can be a groovy home project.
Decor & Lighting
Give your new space a strong identity and choose a bold color scheme. Use it repeatedly throughout the room in pillows, seating and decor. Or, splash it on the walls, the floor and even the ceiling like this room created by HGTV’s “Design on a Dime.”
Photo by Marc Wathieu via Flickr
For a more tranquil vibe, use grays and whites to get the same effect. You can break up any monotony by showcasing a collection of wall-mounted musical instruments that will serve as a gallery of functional art. Another option is framing album covers or creating functional built-ins to store equipment, CDs and vinyl.
Lighting is also important, as it will lend a specific atmosphere to a room. You’ll want to point a spot on the playing area so musicians can see what they’re doing, and supplement that with track lighting or recessed options. Avoid using halogen or fluorescent lighting as they can put out too much heat.
Photo by ralph and jenny via Flickr
Acoustics & Sound
If you want to make a home studio, acoustics are key. If you have a large enough space, try to make two distinct zones: one for recording equipment/playback and one for creating live music. If your space is limited, use a heavy drape or sound baffler to separate the two zones. Soft furnishings like sofas, chairs and floor cushions can soften the sound of a music room. What’s really great, is that they can easily be moved and re-positioned to change the acoustics of the room at will. That being said, you’ll also want to incorporate reflective surfaces, such as wood blinds from a retailer like The Shade Store or small metal tables to help make the sound fuller and add bass. Everything in your room affects sound, so experiment with the placement of furnishings to find the perfect setup.
Photo by Mike Logan via Flickr
Soundproofing your music room is vital so you can jam at any decibel without disturbing your family or neighbors. Use carpet or foam padding to help deaden wall vibrations and limit audio interference. You can soundproof everything from a single wall to the entire room, including the ceiling. Some folks even go as far as soundproofing the floor to reduce impact and airborne noise. If you have hardwood or tile flooring, use area rugs to soften and tame any jarring sounds. Whether you’re a classical violinist or the next head-bashing, metal comeback band, the main objective is to make your music room more absorbent, reduce reverberation and improve the acoustics.