Have you heard the phrase, 'even the walls have ears?' Well, that might not be true, but people on the other side do! Who knows, maybe on the other side of the wall, someone is holding their ears against the wall and trying to listen to your secret conversations? However, for many of us, the problem or goal is more about keeping the sound from coming in rather than going out! Just like social isolation, sound needs to be isolated, too, if you want to capture fresh, crispy sound without noise! A DIY Soundproof Booth might very well serve the purpose.
Sounds are made of vibrations or waves, and these waves meet, they disturb the flow of one another. You do not want that! Especially if you are recording music, recitation, audiobooks, or even podcasts. Sadly, even in an alone environment, there are always noises of sorts, maybe from a piece of equipment, perhaps the walls are passing outside airborne or impact noises! Also, there are many types of equipment that produce echo and end up disrupting the main sound! So, whether you are a CIA agent, vocal artist, or musician, our guide to DIY Soundproof Booth serves you all.
3 Ways to Build DIY Soundproof Booth
Depending on your usage and budget, you can opt for either a full-fledged wooden booth with sliding doors and everything or a booth with only Acoustic blankets!
The one with the acoustic blankets offers a more temporary solution, whereas the professional one is long-lasting and offers studio-grade soundproofing.
1. The Poor Man Solution
One of the easiest ways to build your DIY soundproof booth is using a plastic tote and a few pillows. This is a cheap way to get crisp sound. It doesn't look right, but it works. Once you have the cushions in place, place your USB mic right in the middle of the bin.
You will be able to do this method using things you already have in the house, which makes this so lovely. You have to stick your head into a bit to record, which is not ideal, but you will save money this way.
2. The Temporary Economic Way
● PVC Pipe
● Elbow Joints
● Shower Curtain Rings
● Acoustic Blankets
Sound Absorption Blanket
Step by Step Process:
If you have looked at the materials, you will find that almost all of them can be found at the local hardware store and are cheap except for the Acoustic blankets, which are the crucial element of the setup and are also expensive.
I am not specifying the materials' numbers because they will vary according to the DIY soundproof booth's shape and area.
Step 1: Select the space where you want to place the booth. It should be somewhere discrete and doesn't get in the way of other things. Then, make a blueprint or model of the booth. It would be best if you calculated how many bends the booth will have, how much area it will cover, and for that, how many of the materials you will need.
Step 2: This is the tricky part, and better if you have some craft ship skill. With all the materials on your hand, you need to make the skeleton of the booth structure. Cut the PVC pipes, join them with T-joints and Elbow Joints and build up a pipe structure that will cover the booth area from all four sides.
Step 3: Since it is a temporary booth, and you might dismantle it after every use, I recommend labeling each piece of the skeleton—this way, when you can construct the stall in half the time later on.
Step 4: Now, the big moment. Hang the Acoustic blankets on the skeleton. Ensure they hang the theme outside of the pipes, and use shower curtain rings appropriately to ensure they remain attached to the frame and one another without any spaces. On one side, overlap the two curtains from both sides. This will act as your door. You can use clamps to keep the curtain tight and in place, especially the top one, over the head.
Step 5: Remember, you will need to bring in wires within your booth to power your equipment and lights! So, drill a hole in one side of the blanket. Cut it big enough to bring in the wires. Use zip ties or something to bundle them. Then use a weatherstrip to seal the open space around the wire and blanket.
3. The Studio-Grade Way
● Wooden Frames
● Screws and bolts.
● Drill machine
● Acoustic Foam
● Drywall sheets
Step by Step Process
Step 1: Just like the temporary one, you will need an ideal space. In this case, be even more careful because this DIY soundproof booth will be a permanent one, and you can't just dismantle it and assemble it whenever you wish.
Step 2: Make sure the wood frames you bought aren't hollow on the inside. The woods we use in our households are mostly open, and they create an echo on the other side after a simple knock.
Now, again time for craft ship. Put together the woods on three sides. You don't have to construct a ceiling for the booth. You can use the wall ceiling. To make it soundproof, use acoustic foam and drywall.
Alternate to the wooden frames, you can also take advantage of the house walls. Again, stick drywalls and acoustic foams to the walls.
Step 3: You will need a door. Either buy a soundproof door that itself is solid and not hollow. Or, buy a normal one, and use acoustic foams to soundproof it.
Step 4: It's better if you have a power supply within your booth. However, if you do not have one, you will need to bring in wires! For that, drill a hole in the wooden frames.
Step 5: You will also need to weatherstrip your door and the hole you cut for the wires. Make sure you install the weatherstrips correctly so that you can open and close the door quickly and that sound can't pass through when locked.
Step 6: Now check for gaps and mismatch. If you have built the whole booth on your own using wooden frames, then the chances of having holes are relatively high. Use sealant glues like silicone caulk to seal the cracks.
Not Worth Doing The DIY Soundproof Booth?
The best thing about soundproof boxes and booth is that they don't cost that much money to buy one. Here are some great options below.
Microphone Foam Booth
Dog Crate Cover
Conclusion for Making Your DIY Soundproof Booth
Please note that, with the temporary setup, you won't achieve a studio-grade professional soundproof environment. Still, the setup is pretty lit and works great for recording crisp audios. However, if you aim for professional audio recording and plan to use such equipment, do not hesitate to opt for the permanent booth.
Do not mistake and compare these two booths with other popular household soundproofing solutions like recording in the closet, making a mattress fort, or the reflection filter.
With little woodman-ship, both the DIY soundproof booth are pretty easily doable. You can also ask the hardware shop to cut the frame for you; that way, it is all just attaching, gluing, and fixing!