Improving acoustics for recording in sports hall venue

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by cornishscot, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    Anybody got any novel ideas which might work for us in this situation?

    Hall is standard school multi-purpose hall with high ceiling, gym equipment and hard polished floor.

    MD has suggested we bring blankets to hang to deaden the sound in some way (what we fix them to is open for debate amongst the membership).

    1st recording session at the chosen venue takes place Sunday week so would appreciate receiving any comments from TMP users by then if at all possible please.

    Yours in anticipation.

    Angela Tregaskes
    pp. Oxted Brass Band
    Surrey, UK
  2. Flugel Boy

    Flugel Boy New Member

    It's just a thought, but have you contacted the people doing the recording? They should be able to advise you as they sort out that kind of thing. They may not want you to do anything. Good luck with the recording.
  3. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

  4. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    Our MD definitely feels that something needs to be done to the acoustics of the venue - I just wondered how others had overcome the sort of difficulties we have (or whether the putting assorted blankets up around the room would (a) have any difference whatsoever or (b) whether that difference would comprise any improvement to the acoustic for the recording engineer (or God forbid) make matters worse than they are already perhaps).

    Even if the engineer recommends no change to the acoustic present "au naturelle" (and the MD backs down on that point as a consequence) it is surely best to go prepared with blankets and similar "acoustic adjusting implements/hardware" than discover on the morning we need them and no-one has thought to bring them along.

    I appreciate each situation is different but there must surely be some ideas tried/experimented with (and failed to make any significant improvement) we may not have thought of already. Tricks of the trade if you like ..... <smile>
    Better prepared with gadgets and sound deadline aids than not though eh?
  5. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    We also have a problem with "buzzing" light fittings which stops, as one might expect, when you turn them off. As we are recording during daytime hours I suggested turning the lights off completely only to be "shouted down" that the floor to ceiling curtains on those similar sized windows need to be closed (at least in part) to deaden the sound we make - so what do I know eh?
  6. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    Maybe we just need to put a carpet under where we are seated and light a few hundred candles around the stand to provide enough light to see the music (or, alternatively, invest in a set of 27 of those lights affixed to an elasticated headband akin to a miners pit helmet light which Argos sell for a fiver a piece). Problem solved? Who knows !
  7. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Precisely - and that's why you're paying them to deal with it for you - it's the engineer's job to sort out the acoustic and not the Band's.

    I'd suggest not trying to second guess them - what you're suggesting could well make things worse not better....and with the greatest of respect an MD is an MD and not a recording engineer (probably ;) ).
  8. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Or look for an alternative venue if you're worried about it - these things are always better prevented than cured.
  9. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    My thoughts entirely - but in this band we have a few people who already seem to perceive themselves as "experts" or perfectionists" in this field on the subject in question and clearly want to add their own personal flair to proceedings for some reason over and above just playing what they're being asked to play at the right time, at the right tempo, in the right style and at the right volume on the day. That's probably enough for me to worry about personally to be honest.
  10. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    The alternative venue is not an option either - the MD wants to use this one, adapted to suit as necessary, come what may although some of the committee would be happy to use our usual church venue (which is, in turn, against the MD's wishes).

    Personally I have no preference - provided it works to produce an optimum standard recording which we can then sell - no-good spending money and time making something like this if we don't address any acoustic issues correctly is there?
  11. FlugelD

    FlugelD Member

    If the engineer hasn't seen the place, there's still maybe time to get them along for an opinion?...
  12. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Oh dear :rolleyes:

  13. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    I'm not on the committee myself and therefore don't know if he has or hasn't (we did have a rehearsal in there last night, without the engineer present, and this is when these issues were initially raised from what I can make out).
  14. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Churches can be problematic as well.

    I've got to say it again I'm afraid - "if we don't address any acoustic issues correctly" - it's part of the job for them to make the recording release ready (including the suitability of the room)....the thing you've got to focus on is the performance and not the technicalities.

    Good luck with whatever happens.
  15. Ipswich trom

    Ipswich trom Member

    Exactly! When we did our recording the Sound engineer visited to check it out for us first. If you have a problem with the buzzing lights is it all of them or could you just take out the offending one?
  16. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    There's a good chance the engineer and MD have visited the venue with, perhaps, the Chairman beforehand - but no band in situ. I get the impression our MD is competent enough to consider doing that as a mandatory venture (just as mandatory as his decision now to tamper with the acoustic to get it the way he thinks is best).

    Whether it's fine as it is or would be improved by the use of blankets (as suggested) ........ we'll we'll have to wait and see won't we. There's also a possible psychology issue in that if we are perceived to be doing something constructive then we will eventually convince ourselves that the desired effect is (a) obvious and (b) just what's required even if, in reality, it makes either very little or no ****** difference whatsoever to what is eventually picked up by the recording engineer acoustically.

    If it was up to me I would generally follow whatever guidance the recording engineer gave us on the day as to whether to attempt to improve (and, if so, how, or how much) rather than second guess what will be required too. Just need to make sure we have some suitable props available if something specific is suggested all the same don't we.
  17. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    Just one or two I think - we tried that test last night - very dark without all of them on though!
  18. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    Any specific thoughts on the curtains being opened or closed/ partially closed during a daytime/daylight recording session meaning we would, hopefully, not need any lights on internally?
  19. cornishscot

    cornishscot Member

    back to my original post (let's leave the politics and decisions to those that think they know all the answers to debate and agree on)

  20. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    you can't make the decision about the curtains ;)

    hire halogen lighting, but be careful that they don't cause a problem themselves either with audible buzzing or EMI.


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