Professional Sound - Indepth

5 Tips For Stalking, Managing, & Capturing Rogue Sounds With Traps & Baffles by Russ Berger

Employing Sound Traps and Baffles is much like hunting.

  1. Know your hunting grounds: Before the hunt, know and understand your acoustical environment. Once you bound a space with walls, a floor, and a ceiling, you’ve committed acoustics. The boundaries of your space define the low frequency modal response and set limitations for the ambient decay time. Wonderful programs and countless texts have been written that clearly describe the process for analyzing, predicting, and managing acoustical boundary conditions.

Once you understand your environment you will better know how rogue sounds behave in the space; you can better identify where problems might lie and devise a trap to capture the problem.

  1. Put the traps where the beavers are: Place traps to capture rogue sound much like you’d place traps for beavers. Placing beaver traps on the ceiling will do you little good, just like placing acoustical traps where the sound you want to capture doesn’t exist. Beavers pretty much live their lives along the floor plane. But rogue sounds live in the three dimensional world, so successful hunting can be achieved if the traps are placed in proximity to boundaries and intersections.

  2. Be sure your passive trap is big enough to capture your game. Lower frequencies require larger and deeper traps to control and manage long wavelength rogue sounds.

  3. Know how many you want to trap: Trapping one beaver vs. an entire colony will require different methods. The effective trap absorption efficiency is proportional to the area of coverage.

  4. Conceal the trap: A good looking studio always seems to sound a little better. Integrate your traps into the architecture and along with those rogue sounds you’ll catch new clients.

Bonus Tip #6: go to – Russ Berger is Owner of Russ Berger Design Group (RBDG), which is a design and consulting firm that combines expertise in acoustics, architecture, and interiors to create technical environments and buildings for recording studios, broadcast facilities, creative production spaces, and home theaters.

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About Andrew King
Andrew King is the Editor-in-Chief at Professional Sound. He is also a co-host of Canadian Musician Radio and NWC Webinars’ series of free music and entertainment industry webinars.
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