Soundproofing prevents sound waves from escaping your studio. It also reduces the flutter of high-frequency sounds and the vibration of low-frequency sounds. Setting up a studio may seem challenging if you have a slanted attic, but it’s simple if you know how to do it.
Here’s how to soundproof a slanted attic recording studio:
- Measure and test your attic.
- Consider building an isolation booth.
- Get your soundproofing materials.
- Add mass or extra insulation to the walls.
- Seal the cracks.
- Dampen the floor space.
- Seal the door.
So, let’s go through all the steps you need to take to soundproof your slanted attic. I’ll discuss how soundproofing works and walk you through the entire process so that you can make yourself the studio of your dreams.
1. Measure and Test Your Attic
Before you jump in and start adding new components to your studio, you’ll need to test the area to see how effectively it reduces the vibrations of your sounds and how it echoes.
To measure and test your attic, measure the length and height of the walls. Then, record a sample of very low bass tones and high-frequency sounds. If you hear interference, flutter, or a vibrational hum from your recording, you probably need to soundproof the room.
Testing your room can help you isolate the areas that you’ll need to focus on in soundproofing.
If the vibrations of your bass sounds are overwhelmingly loud, you need to focus more on creating air space between the walls, floors, and the studs and joists in your walls.
That’s because the hum is created when low frequencies cause the walls and floors to vibrate, which sets off a chain reaction and causes the studs and joists to vibrate too.
If you can hear a fluttering echo of your high-frequency notes, you’ll need to reduce the number of cracks and crevices in your studio, which will prevent sound waves from getting trapped in your walls.
Ideally, your studio should be “dead.” That means your walls won’t allow outside sounds to come in and that they won’t allow inside sounds to cause vibrations or escape the room.
2. Consider Building an Isolation Booth
Soundproofing can be laborious and expensive, especially if you have a large attic with slanted ceilings. If you often use your studio alone and don’t need to make room for a full band or large pieces of equipment, building an isolation booth can make your soundproofing process much simpler and more cost-effective.
You may want to consider building a rectangular booth when making a recording studio in a slanted attic if you don’t need much space in your studio. These booths can make soundproofing much cheaper since you won’t have to modify the entire room.
Sound booths will eliminate the slanted walls of your room, allowing you to easily mount insulation and build a seamless box to record in. These isolation booths are perfect for people who want to practice without disturbing housemates or neighbors, and they work well for vocal artists.
However, these booths are often too small to allow multiple people to use them simultaneously, which may be a dealbreaker.
If you choose to build a booth within your attic room, you can create the frame and heavily insulate it using the following steps.
Here’s my guide on how to build a soundproof room within a room.
3. Get Your Soundproofing Materials
Now, it’s time to get all the materials you’ll need to soundproof your slanted attic.
To soundproof your slanted attic, you’ll need the following:
Mass Loaded Products
Mass-loaded products are some of the most crucial components in soundproofing. They add extra padding to your room, which will dampen sounds and isolate your studio. They can also reduce hum and flutter, giving your studio a pure, unadulterated acoustic quality.
You can use:
- Acoustic blankets
- Acoustic panels
- Mass-loaded vinyl
You may also want to combine some of these materials to make your room look more aesthetically pleasing.
Each of these materials works similarly to reduce vibrations and isolate your studio. However, the more mass you add to the room, the more effective it’ll be. That’s why I usually recommend using soundproof insulation combined with a layer of mass-loaded vinyl.
Just be sure you have enough to cover all of your walls, ceilings, doors, and windows.
Covering your floors with carpeting, rugs, or an extra layer of flooring is an excellent way to dampen sounds and reduce vibrations.
If you choose to go with the more cost-efficient route of adding carpeting or rugs, be sure that the fabric is thick and dense. You can also stack carpets on top of each other or lay down multiple mats, adding more dampening properties to your floor.
Lastly, you can also add a second layer of flooring on top of your existing floor. Although this process can be costly and labor-intensive, it’ll produce excellent results.
Check out my other article on carpet padding and soundproofing.
Soundproof adhesives can allow you to seal cracks and holes in your walls or mass-loaded products. While instantaneously soundproofing them.
Pros and DIY-ers alike always recommend using GreenGlue Noiseproofing Sealant (available on Amazon.com). This glue can soundproof anything, which makes it perfect for studio-building projects.
Last update on 2023-05-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
The sealant also comes in many other sizes, and you can use it on materials such as:
- Mass-loaded vinyl
It’s also perfect for sealing up windows in your attic to keep the good sounds in and the bad sounds out.
4. Add Mass or Extra Insulation to the Walls
When soundproofing, you need to add more mass to the walls. That way, the drywall won’t vibrate as much when soundwaves hit it, reducing the amount of flutter you get from each sound you make.
In addition, mass insulation can keep sound waves in the room while also preventing outside noise from coming in.
Most studios use mass-loaded vinyl, acoustic panels, or soft foam rubber to add mass to the walls. Still, you can use acoustic blankets, curtains, quilts, insulation, or carpeting to reduce vibrations and isolate the area, trapping soundwaves in your studio.
Since rooms with slanted walls add extra resonance to your sound, using mass to insulate the area is crucial if you want a high-quality recording. That way, the additional mass will convert your soundwaves into heat, preventing them from bouncing back and forth in your studio, creating hums and echoes.
Still, applying materials to a slanted ceiling requires some particular techniques.
If your walls are unfinished, adding high-density, thick insulation between the studs will do the trick. Still, you’ll have to isolate the drywall from the studs to help prevent vibration in your drywall from transferring to them.
If your walls already have drywall on them, you can choose from many insulating products. When using these products, which you should install on top of the drywall, be sure to cover the entire wall and ceiling area. That way, you’ll experience less echo from the slanted ceilings in your room.
To apply these materials, you can use a soundproof sealant. You may choose to use small nails to clamp the material to the slanted walls, but you should remove them and fill the holes with glue when you’re done to keep sounds trapped in.
Find out more on who’s responsible for soundproofing between flats.
5. Seal the Cracks
When there are cracks in the insulation, drywall, or any other product you put on your walls to add mass, high-frequency sounds can get stuck in the gaps and bounce back and forth, creating an unpleasant fluttering or humming sound.
To seal the cracks, use a soundproofing sealant or silicone caulk to close up gaps and holes in your drywall and windows. You can also use it to fill the joints between your mass-loaded products, giving them a seamless finish that dampens sounds.
Be sure to cover each hole and crack thoroughly, and don’t be afraid to be generous with the sealant. Pay extra attention to your ceiling, where the angled walls meet each other and seal up the joint entirely. You want the entire space to be sealed off, preventing sounds from moving in or out of the room.
6. Dampen the Floor Space
Like the walls, floors can also vibrate, transmitting sounds from room to room. Vibrating floors can also be detrimental to your sound quality, so dampening them is crucial if you want a genuinely soundproof room.
To dampen the floor space, you can install thick carpeting, stacked rugs, or mass-loaded vinyl. For a genuinely soundproof room, you can also install a second layer of flooring on top of the existing one, leaving a gap between the two to reduce vibration.
Dampening the floor goes a long way when soundproofing, so you should never skip this step. You can easily purchase rugs or carpeting anywhere, and–if you need a budget solution–my pro tip is to get old used shag carpeting from a thrift store or private seller.
You can also place plywood, mass-loaded vinyl, or a foam layer underneath your carpeting to add an extra boost to your sound barrier.
Check out my other article on best rug for soundproofing.
7. Seal the Door
Lastly, you’ll need to soundproof your door to ensure that your attic space is sound-tight.
To seal the door, use a rubber gasket or mass-loaded vinyl to seal the cracks around the door frame. Cover the door with your favorite mass-loaded product, such as curtains, carpeting, acoustic panels, or another soundproofing material.
Once your door is all soundproofed, you can move your equipment in and test your attic. You may need to make a couple of adjustments, especially if you haven’t sealed up all the cracks. But for the most part, you should notice a massive difference in your sound quality and the way that noise travels within your home.
Find out more ways to soundproof your home studio cheaply and freely.
Soundproofing a slanted attic recording studio is similar to soundproofing any room. Still, you’ll need to pay extra attention to the ceiling and all of the joints in your space to keep sounds from creating interference.
To soundproof the area, you’ll need to apply mass to the walls, dampen the floors, and seal off all cracks and crevices in your materials, the windows, and the door.
- Gearspace: Acoustics treatment of slanted ceiling attic (with measurements)
- Explain That Stuff!: Soundproofing
- Soundproof Central: Can You FULLY Soundproof a Room? The Facts vs. the Myths
- A Quiet Refuge: 26 Industry Experts Reveal the Best Soundproofing Materials & Techniques.
- Soundproof Central: 7 Ways To Soundproof A Floor (That Actually Work)
- Vi-Control: Mixing under a slanted ceiling?
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