Every experienced musician knows that creating a studio is a difficult process. Not only do you have to consider the hefty price while building it, but it is also important to consider the noise. Building a studio in your own home is not exactly very practical. You probably do not want annoying everyone in your household when banging on the drums, strumming the guitar, or singing. This is why so many musicians tend to build a home music studio inside of their garden log cabin or shed.
However, if you want to turn your cabin into a real music studio and to ensure that it will be properly soundproofed, you will have to follow certain steps and standards. People have been doing these kinds of projects for a long time, so there is no need to experiment with your own project. There is enough information out there that will help you with this.
Of course, you do not have to look any further because with this article I am going to guide you on this exact topic.
Tools you might need
Before we can delve deeper into this guide and help you with the subject, it would probably be good to ensure that you have all the right tools and equipment for this kind of project.
Since you will probably be adding insulation and foam panels, you will need a tape measure, a drill, and a utility knife. These will be your essentials. Of course, a few screwdrivers will also come in handy. While working inside, I also suggest wearing a dust mask. This will protect you from any dangerous particles in the air.
Materials you might need
You have all the right tools, and now it is time to ensure that you also have all the right materials. If you plan on adding additional insulation today garden log cabin, it would probably be best to buy some insulation materials. For soundproofing, I suggest going with the fiberglass and blown-in cellulose insulation. They are both great for keeping the warm air inside and keeping the caller outside while also providing a great noise reduction. You might also require a bit of plywood to close off the insulation.
Naturally, you also require some foam panels if you are planning to make some serious music inside of the shed.
Increase mass and insulation
One of the main issues with garden log cabins is the fact that their walls are quite thin and made out of wood which are not exactly great for isolating sound. I believe that soundproofing is essential in building a home music studio in this kind of shed. You do not want to annoy the people around you or your neighbors. If you do, someone might file for a noise complaint. Of course, you want to avoid those kinds of legal problems and you do not want to make your neighbors angry.
The first thing you will need to do for proper soundproofing is to increase the mass of the walls. The best way to do that is to add some fiberglass insulation or applying a few more layers of wood toward plywood. Or, you could do the combination of both which is probably the best thing you could do for sound isolation.
Keep in mind, there are some companies out there that provide high-quality log cabins that already have enough mass. As you can see on the loghouse.ie website, the garden rooms do seem to have thick enough walls for great noise reduction.
Add acoustic foam panels on walls
Once you have made sure that your garden room is properly sound isolated and that you will not bother the people in your neighborhood, it is time to start thinking about the quality of music that you are going to create inside.
The main problem with creating music in such low shacks is the reverb effect. The sound bounces off the walls and the windows which makes audio recordings sound shallow and echoey. To prevent that from happening, most musicians add acoustic foam panels on their walls. These can be very effective, but you will have to install them properly.
Fortunately, these acoustic foam panels are not exactly very expensive. You can probably buy a set of panels for all the walls for no more than $50. Although, I would suggest buying a few extra in case one of them gets damaged.
Cover the floor
If you want to reduce the reverb effect as much as possible, you will need to cover every surface inside the garden log cabin. You cannot forget about the floor. Although, installing acoustic foam panels on the floor is not exactly a good idea.
Keep in mind, the floor is already a great insulator and the sound will not bounce off too much from it. In other words, you could focus on other things. Although, if you are determined to make this perfect, but you could do is buy a nice thick and soft carpet. Make sure you lay it down perfectly in every corner.
The thick and soft carpet will be able to absorb quite a lot of sound.
Windows and doors
Windows and doors are always the weak spots of every music studio. Windows are awful both for sound insulation or absorption. They will leak a lot of sound and they will be the cause of a lot of reverb. Unfortunately, there is not much you can do about that. You have to make a sacrifice. You have the choice of keeping the windows uncovered to get some sunlight throughout the day or you could close them off entirely with plywood or with acoustic foam panels. It is up to you.
You could also stick some acoustic foam panels on the door. You could also try closing off any of the gaps around the door or the windows to improve the soundproofing even further.
This kind of project will not be simple or easy, but with this guide and enough dedication, I am sure that you will be able to successfully finish it.