The Short Guide To Listening Vol. 2 - Listening To My Room
That’s the first thing I do when going into a new space whether it would be outdoors, in a prairie, or inside a warehouse. What do you hear? What don't you hear that you are surprised by? What are the acoustics of the space? The most important thing for those who love sound is listening.
Let's dive deep into the sounds of my home studio.
What Did My Home Studio Sound Like A Few Years Ago?
In high school, I worked at a major retail company and saved a lot of my money that I got from that job. When I went to Orlando, Flordia and attended Full Sail University I was able to buy a pair of ADAM Audio A5X studio monitors early on. From old used 1990, Dell speakers that I made sick beats on in Highschool to ADAM's was a big jump and absolutely fell in love with them. I didn't have any acoustic treatment right away but just moving to better monitors was a great move. I was in an awfully noisy apartment with apartments air conditioning unit running constantly, thin outside walls, hearing a lot of traffic and loud people which was really annoying trying to record. If I needed to record, it would need to be late at night while most people are asleep.
Later on, when I switched to the Recording Arts program and moved to a different apartment. I really wanted acoustic treatment for my home studio which was AKA my bedroom, but couldn't afford much of anything. I was using bathroom floor mats for people getting out of the shower. I hung those on the sides of the walls to reduce the reflection and echo of the room. I bundled towels into the corners to try to reduce the low-end frequencies being trapped in the corners. The new apartment I moved to wasn't perfect either but I loved it a lot more than the first. Thicker walls and better acoustics with quieter people.
What Does My Home Studio Sound Like Now?
I moved back to my hometown in North Dakota and now living in a small house. The acoustics and surrounding noise is a bit better except the air conditioning is right outside my home studio and a lot of young families with kids which can make recording difficult a lot of the times in the summer but nonetheless better than both my apartments in Florida. I recently purchased foam and great sound panels for my room. I also bought some foam to put underneath my speakers so there is some space between them and the stands they sit on.
It took a long time for me to buy acoustic panels and better gear and having a lot of patience of waiting for all of this.
Being patient is one of the best advice I've received. It can take a long time building your home studio, affording equipment and software/plug-ins, improving your skills. If you don't, or at least speaking for my self... - Fall into the imposter syndrome, feeling that I am not good enough, why should I create anything great when many others already are? Being patient and working on your self and skills continuously will keep you from falling into those traps of feeling like an imposter or feeling as though if you don't have [fill in the blank] that you can't create, or you even refusing to.
The Truth About Home Studios / Conclusion
We are all fortunate and privileged enough to have at least a computer in our homes. Having one is already a fantastic start for sound designers and music producers and only having that shouldn't be looked down upon at all. Put on some headphones and get to work.
It's not the perfect space and as long as you are in a home studio it won't be a perfect space but it's also not needed. As long as you have a laptop and a good pair of headphones that you know the sound of you are well on your way to creating something great.
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