Any mastering-studio is only as good as it’s monitoring-system, and even more important, acoustical treatment. All rooms have room-modes which create dips and peaks in the audio spectrum. This is something you don’t want, especially not in a mastering-studio. To make the B&W 802’s sound at it’s absolute best, I spent a lot of time and effort in the acoustics of the studio.
There are no parallel walls to get rid of a lot of standing waves (which all rooms have). After some serious measuring, I added a large amount of acoustical treatment. The complete backwall is a floor to ceiling broadband basstrap with an added open/tuned basstrap on top. The double studio-door is not just massive and heavy (about 60kg), but also suits as a custom fractal diffuser. I made a lot of the other basstraps myself with industrial 221 rockwool, but there is also a large amount of GIK acoustics treatment. This includes 6x monstertraps (4x with range limiter), 4x tri-traps (floor to ceiling), 5x 244 traps, 3x 242 traps and 6x (custom-built) tuned (47hz) membrane traps. And ofcourse, I also thought of diffusion in the form of fractal diffusion at critical points.
The room itself is soundproofed with double, triple and quatro(!) walls and ceiling. There are no computers or other noise-making equipment in the studio. I even replaced the little fan in the mini-fridge with a high-end fan so that you can’t here it cooling your soda. The silence is deafening 🙂
Because of the soundproofing and isolation it’s also airtight which means, no fresh air. Gulp… To have fresh air, I designed a silent and soundproofed airsystem using 2 extremely silent fans and a huge silencer with carbon airfilters on the roof. These filters also help to get rid of the ‘polluted air’ by the use of over-pressure, there are air-grids in the front wall. These end up in the 4 (four) layers thick frontwall and moves the air outside without the music going outside. For natural daylight, I installed a Solatube system.
The studio-desk is custom made by myself to have the least impact on the acoustics. Most mastering-desks are bulky and the bottom part is closed because of rackspace and stands. I didn’t like that idea and so I made an open desk with the smallest footprint possible. A lot of studio’s use big screens nowadays which block the soundfield or at least have some acoustic diffraction around the edges. I decided to use one big 42 inch angled and mounted on the floor, one 20 inch main screen suffit mounted in the desk and a small 10 inch screen for metering on the side. That way I have all the info that I need but with it blocking or messing up the soundfield.