Sound "dampening" for the Home?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by hdswriter, Jan 21, 2013.

  1. hdswriter

    hdswriter New Friend

    Mar 25, 2007
    Columbus, OH
    I've been mulling over different ways to possibly lesson the impact of my practicing on my family and neighborhood. I would love to spend the money and build a practice room in the basement, but not sure that I want to make that kind of investment just yet. My family is very understanding, but the house is rather porous when it comes to sound. Definitely not interested in using my practice mute.

    Playing into the hanging clothes in the basement works a bit, but I'm wondering if anyone has tried this idea. When thinking about the "acoustic egg" at the place where I bought my hearing protection, I'm curious if an acoustic box would work.

    I was thinking about building a 3 sided box (with bottom and top) with insulation and sound absorbing foam. At that point, I would sit facing the open end with my bell just inside the box. Maybe 2 1/2 to 3 feet square (thereabouts) and elevated off of the floor. It would provide some dampening... but how much, I wonder.

    Has anyone attempted this? Or, is there an acoustics guru on the site that might be able to provide some sort of ball park idea as to how effective it might be? I'm of course looking for dampening. I understand that the dampening might be minimal to moderate. I just need something to take the edge off... well, that doesn't involve alcohol, anyway.

    Any thoughts?

  2. DaTrump

    DaTrump Forte User

    Oct 21, 2011
    Huntsville, Texas
    A friend of mine built one out of a wood pyramid and Wendy's drink holders. It did quiet things down a bit but the sound you hear is SOO different. I've never liked to practice with mutes or practicing in odd spaces because I'll start to do weird things in order to sound the way I normally do, but that's just me.

    JNINWI Piano User

    Apr 26, 2011
    I use a box, actually it’s a plastic storage box turned upside down with a hole cut in the long end, and lined with 2 inch foam and old towels hanging inside. I attached it to an old stand so it’s at the perfect angle for me. My fiancé can’t hear me at all, and no additional backpressure, it works great, muffles all your sound.
  4. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

    Jan 21, 2010
    Great Southern Land
    Perhaps the folks upstairs can just turn the TV or stereo right up, or you could provide them all with full-cover hearing protection earmuffs.

    I've never been able to play in our house anywhere without being too loud for the family except when I use a mute.

    Maybe search TM for "turtle shed"?

  5. Sidekick

    Sidekick Mezzo Piano User

    Apr 14, 2011
    London UK
    I know what you mean about practice at home, but I would suggest using a Wa Wah mute.
    If you get a decent one, whilst the intonation will be the same, the volume is significantly reduced. So you will still know when your playing is working well and when you are having an off day (not that I am suggesting that you have off days!).
    There are those who are not fans of practicing with mutes of any sort, but it allows my neighbours to sleep and I can still get some practice in.
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2013
  6. SmoothOperator

    SmoothOperator Mezzo Forte User

    Jul 14, 2010
    I have used a soft case from my drums(bass or snare) it worked, but I was worried about the zippers on the finish, use a mute.

    Acoustic dampening in the house will be difficult, because the duct work. I just bought a house, so I can finally play more or less whenever and whatever I like, except my wife likes to sleep in.
  7. Brad-K

    Brad-K Piano User

    Jun 18, 2011
    Maybe you'd want to build or buy yourself a "vocal booth" in your basement. ...I've been wanting to build one myself...

    [Edit] Tried to attach a photo of one, but it's just not working. I would suggest doing a photo search for such. There will also appear devices that are intended to isolate and dampen a microphone, which are basically made of foam that you would play or sing into.

    You can also try Auralex Acoustics - World-Class acoustic foam sound control products at real-world prices! They have a pretty useful informational section on their site.

    You can also search on you tube. There's a few vocal booth videos there.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jan 21, 2013
  8. Buck with a Bach

    Buck with a Bach Fortissimo User

    Dec 29, 2009
    Canton, Ohio
    Maybe TJ will chime in on this, he just built himself a practice "shed" and was working with a lot of sound dampening materials:oops:
  9. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
  10. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    Haven't heard much from Turtle lately. Hopefully, this thread will nudge him out of his shell.

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