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  1. I'm looking to add a rubber floor in our video studio. Anyone have rubber flooring in their studio, and what specifically (manufacturer/brand name, product names) would you recommend?
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  2. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    Before going further, I've got to ask: to what purpose is your intent on adding rubber flooring?

    Acoustical absorption? - bad idea. Rubber is not the appropriate solution for this. For a glimpse, see HERE.
    To "Float" or isolate a surface? - possibly, but other factors come into play.
    To "Seal" sound leakage? - leakage to/from where? there are other, possibly better solutions here.
    To provide "bounce" - this at least makes sense.
    (I'm sure there are other scenarios...)

    Scott
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  3. Member hech54's Avatar
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    Oh my. Any bets another first-time poster just happens to come along with a recommendation in the form of a glowing review and a link?
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  4. Originally Posted by Cornucopia View Post
    Before going further, I've got to ask: to what purpose is your intent on adding rubber flooring?

    Acoustical absorption? - bad idea. Rubber is not the appropriate solution for this. For a glimpse, see HERE.
    To "Float" or isolate a surface? - possibly, but other factors come into play.
    To "Seal" sound leakage? - leakage to/from where? there are other, possibly better solutions here.
    To provide "bounce" - this at least makes sense.
    (I'm sure there are other scenarios...)

    Scott
    We are looking for a floor that accomplishes three things:
    1. Is best for sound recordings.
    2. We need an anti-static floor as the room doubles as a photo studio.
    3. Something ergonomic...on the feet, legs and back when doing all-day shoots...so no concrete! That sounds like a dreadful nightmare to me...even though that is what the person in your link recommends.
    Thanks for the link to the recording studio design forum. I might try that forum, if I don't get any luck here.
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  5. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    I am a pro audio engineer, but not an acoustician, so I know SOME but not nearly ALL about this kind of thing.

    If it were me designing, from the ground up (and this is a real rough suggestion, as I haven't had time to do any research checkups), I'd start with concrete slab, then a layer of rubber matting, and top it with wood. that way, you get the acoustic benefits of the wood, along with the isolation & resonance benefits with the concrete, but with some extra "spring" to the wood from the rubber inner layer.

    I would be more worried about rubber WRT static charge, than about wood or concrete.

    Anything you are considering, it would be best to run past a certified acoustics expert first before proceeding. This is NOT the sort of thing to be considered an AFTERTHOUGHT when doing the architectural design!!

    Are you planning on having a Cyclorama/Infinite background? That pretty much REQUIRES concrete when done properly (though I've built one with wood & drywall before and it worked, but that way it won't support nearly as much and it was acoustically too hollow).

    An additional suggestion overall for a sound studio is to add rubber horizontally BETWEEN slabs of different areas, so that the concrete room/sections "float" and there is much less transmission leakage.

    I understand your reluctance for concrete (having been on many ~10-14hour shoots holding boom or camera!), but it has its benefits, so most of us have learned to live with it.

    If you are intending to do sound recordings, what are your wall, ceiling & door treatments? How large and what shape is the space? What's the HVAC noise situation? Have you got portable acoustical baffles/walls? What's your overall "formula" for absorption/reflection/diffusion?
    These kinds of acoustical things I FULLY know.

    Scott
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  6. You want cork flooring...not rubber.
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  7. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    Hmm...
    Acoustically, since cork is related to wood, it probably does have similar beneficial properties. But I would be wary of using that in a high traffic, heavy pressure, rough, production environment such as a studio (remember, it's not just a sound studio - you wouldn't want to be rolling dollies, etc. on it all the time). Cork makes LOTS of (acoustic) sense on walls & ceilings and has been used successfully for that purpose for decades.

    Scott
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  8. Cork flooring is quite common in industrial applications.

    We're not talking bottle stopper cork...It's an engineered surfacing product.
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  9. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    Sounds like you're more familiar with use of that material, so I'll bow to your experience.

    Scott
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    I'll throw in a vote for Marmoleum (Linoleum) from a previous life in flooring sales.

    It's anti-static and I'm guessing there must be some desirable acoustic properties since it's used in Radio City Music Hall (supposedly the same installation for 20-50 years depending on who you ask).
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    Un-padded, anti-static, industrial carpet. Dollies will roll smoothly and quietly. Will minimize sound reflections.
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  12. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    2 Decades working with dollies, I have NEVER run them on any kind of carpet!

    And carpet is known to be very narrow-band in the range where it actually is absorbant, so don't let that fool you.

    Scott
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  13. Originally Posted by lingyi View Post
    I'll throw in a vote for Marmoleum (Linoleum) from a previous life in flooring sales.

    It's anti-static and I'm guessing there must be some desirable acoustic properties since it's used in Radio City Music Hall (supposedly the same installation for 20-50 years depending on who you ask).
    Agreed. There are numerous products generically referred to as marley-type flooring. It's smooth and firm and used by dancers both for grip, and to save wear and tear on their limbs. It's easy to run a not-too-heavy dolly on, and likely has acoustical benefits as well.
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  14. Originally Posted by Khaver View Post
    Un-padded, anti-static, industrial carpet. Dollies will roll smoothly and quietly. Will minimize sound reflections.
    interesting. I think this might work for us. Didn't know there was a such thing as anti-static carpet. Can you send some links?

    @ Cornopia...keep in mind this room wouldn't have traffic all day, every day. It's an in-house studio for a busy marketing/creative dept...so lots of things are happening outside the studio. We could go several days without using it at all. We would mostly be using it for photos. We do also use it as just a sound studio for audio recordings as well (no video). The all day shoots would be for photos, mostly. But we would need to, on occasion, do videos, too, for hours of use. It's kind of a multi-media room.
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    Originally Posted by Khaver View Post
    Un-padded, anti-static, industrial carpet. Dollies will roll smoothly and quietly. Will minimize sound reflections.
    Good point on the dollies. A video studio needs a good, smooth roll for the dollies. I don't think rubber will work well, and the camera man's weight might create shake in the camera.

    If you do end up with carpet or rubber or cork, you might have to go with a dolly track system, a steadicam, or a slider to get those moving camera shots.

    Are back and leg problems common among other users? I've only worked on concrete and never saw this.
    Lowell Niles
    Creative Director, Sunword Studios
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  16. Originally Posted by lniles View Post
    Originally Posted by Khaver View Post
    Un-padded, anti-static, industrial carpet. Dollies will roll smoothly and quietly. Will minimize sound reflections.
    Good point on the dollies. A video studio needs a good, smooth roll for the dollies. I don't think rubber will work well, and the camera man's weight might create shake in the camera.

    If you do end up with carpet or rubber or cork, you might have to go with a dolly track system, a steadicam, or a slider to get those moving camera shots.

    Are back and leg problems common among other users? I've only worked on concrete and never saw this.
    Hello, Camera dollies are not part of our requirements. This is in no means a professional recording studio. Just a small in-house studio with a very light weight camera. We have three requirements that are listed above.
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  17. Member Cornucopia's Avatar
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    Just know that, if you build it RIGHT, it becomes a valuable asset in its own right, which can be rented out to independents, etc. Doing it lightly (partially-assed!?) won't allow it to command the same kind of draw. One of those ROI/TCO things. Something to consider.

    Scott
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    If those are your only 3 requirements then I'd go with the anti-static carpet. Easy to install. Cheap. Dampens sound.

    I have a room with vaulted ceilings, drywall, laminate floors, glass, and tile. It's basically an echo chamber! As an experiment, I covered everything with whatever fabric I could find (towels, blankets, backdrops, etc). It eliminated the echo quite effectively.

    Never had a problem with static electricity and I'm in a very dry environment (San Diego).

    What equipment are you recording audio with?
    Lowell Niles
    Creative Director, Sunword Studios
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  19. Originally Posted by lniles View Post
    If those are your only 3 requirements then I'd go with the anti-static carpet. Easy to install. Cheap. Dampens sound.

    I have a room with vaulted ceilings, drywall, laminate floors, glass, and tile. It's basically an echo chamber! As an experiment, I covered everything with whatever fabric I could find (towels, blankets, backdrops, etc). It eliminated the echo quite effectively.

    Never had a problem with static electricity and I'm in a very dry environment (San Diego).

    What equipment are you recording audio with?

    I like the idea of anti-static carpet. Can you recommend a particular brand/product/ send links? The anti-static is needed for our photography equipment (flash units, etc), not our video equipment. It's more of a multi-media room (video and photography).
    Last edited by Dave M.; 15th Oct 2014 at 12:59.
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    I think you can go with almost any anti-static carpet, I just googled and there are lots. It depends on what your sub-floor is. Some will install on any kind of subfloor, some would need a specific underlayment.

    I would go with the continuous roll of carpet as opposed to the modular ones (aka carpet-tiles). The cracks in between the modular ones will have poor acoustic performance compared to the continuous, gap-free one-piece.
    Lowell Niles
    Creative Director, Sunword Studios
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  21. Thanks for everyone's help. I got a lot of useful information. I'll let everyone know how it goes.
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