Posts Tagged ‘Difference’

The Difference Between Sound Proofing and Sound Treatment

Despite what the salesman at your local A/V shop tells you, sound proofing and sound treatment are not interchangeable terms in acoustics. Sound proofing is the process of creating a space that prevents any form of sound from escaping it, while sound treatment is the manipulation of a room’s response to particular frequencies to create a balanced sound within the room. Although there are similar materials for both procedures, their expected outcomes and processes are nonetheless very different.

Sound proofing a room

If you’re creating a space that will be used to contain a huge amount of sound and noise (like a death metal band’s rehearsal space), the best way to do this would be to build a room within a room. The room itself should have a thick cement floor, walls and ceiling. This forms an outer shell which is the space’s last line of sound proofing, and must be dense enough to absorb even the loudest low frequency sounds.

Within it, another room must be made whose walls, ceiling and floor (ideally) may be made of cement as well to ensure maximum density. Drywalls filled with sheetrock or fiberglass can also be used. This inner room must be smaller than the outer room and is generally placed in the middle of it, allowing for a space between them where the resultant escaping sound is trapped even more. This ensures that only a minimum of sound meets the walls of the outer room, thus increasing the chances of a 100% sound proofed room.

Treating a room

Treating a room requires less material than sound proofing it, but requires more patience and knowledge as there will be frequent listening tests and adjustments to be made in order to create a tailor-fit sound. There are three ways to treat a room, either by sound absorption, reflection or diffusion.

Sound absorption is important in an acoustically treated room/studio because it eliminates standing waves and early reflections from surfaces. Taming these undesirable sounds also creates a clearer and more precise stereo image, as in the case of a mix engineer’s suite. Sound absorption is achieved through the placement of porous material such as cloth and fiberglass in strategic areas. These act as traps that absorb high and mid frequencies, and are generally placed around the room and on the ceiling. To trap low frequencies, denser absorbers (called bass traps) are placed in locations that form corners, such as between walls and in spaces where the room’s wall’s meet the ceiling.

Diffusion serves to scatter sound hitting its surface in random directions. Though less ubiquitous than absorbers and reflectors, diffusers serve an important purpose of preventing redundant travel of sound waves. Diffusers are generally crafted with a mathematical model as a guide to ensure the randomness of its surface. Once sound arrives on the face of the diffuser, it is distributed in an arbitrary manner.

The next time you decide to create a quality listening space, define first whether or not you would like to sound proof it, treat it, or even both. Knowing what you would want to do ahead will save you energy and money by letting you focus on what would be the priorities for your acoustic project.

Emics is a leading laboratory providing calibration and Inspection services

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - February 18, 2010 at 7:28 am

Categories: Audio   Tags: , , , ,

Sound Effects Libraries | What is the Difference Between Them?

When looking at sound effects libraries, there are a few key differentiators. You will especially want to know the difference between sound effects libraries if you want to ensure a high quality production. Not all sound FX libraries come in the same style or quality! Here are a few of the most critical things you should look for in sound FX libraries.

Firstly, the recording quality in sound FX libraries are probably one of the most critical deciphering factors. Traditional sound FX libraries will come with 16 bit / 44.1 kHz recorded sound effects. If you have a half decent audio card on your workstation you will want to go with the 16 bit version. If you are serious about your sound design, there are many sound FX libraries that today are being offered in 24 bit / 48 kHz with some being offered in a high definition 24 bit / 96 kHz format. Cutting edge sound effects libraries are being pushed to be delivered in 24 bit  / 96 kHz format, while at the same time providing other compatible versions of the sound effects on the same library (such as 16 bit) which allow you to choose whatever format you might need.

Another deciphering item is the actual saved file format the sound effects are saved in. When sound effects libraries are offered in MP3 format they diminish the quality of the original recording (few are). Most sound effects libraries are offered in a WAV format and are of much higher quality then MP3s (and therefore much larger files). This is still a large reason why sound effects libraries still take up multiple CDs or whole hard drives when you purchase them.

Next, if you want to seriously consider the full effect of sound effects libraries, one should consider surround sound. Surround sound FX libraries are created in true 5.1 Dolby Surround Sound, the audio standard for surround sound productions.  Surround sound adds realism and depth to your production, placing the viewer or listener and making them feel like they are in the middle of your production. Surround sound FX can be especially effective when creating ambiences and background sound effects.

Finally, it’s important to consider the search tools for indexing your sound FX libraries. Often search tools are provided and come along with sound effects libraries. Common search tools people use that they might already have are Pro Tools, AVID, Sound miner, Net mix and others. While all of these are great tools, one of the easiest tools you already have is ITunes. You already likely use it to index a lot of your music, why not your sound effects? Whatever you use, just make sure you’ve thought this through ahead of time and make sure the indexing of your sound FX library is compatible with your search tool.

In summary, when picking sound FX libraries, make sure they are the quality you want, the appropriate file format, decide on whether you want surround sound effects, and finally make sure you can index them and find them when you need them!

The Sound Effects Shop is one of the largest Sound Effects Libraries which have a collection of professional sound effects and royalty free music for post production, broadcast and motion picture industries. Sound FX Libraries are the ultimate resource of podcasting and sound design for commercial use.

Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by admin - February 8, 2010 at 12:00 am

Categories: Audio   Tags: , , , , ,

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