Updated: Jan 18
Setting up your studio can be difficult sometimes, especially if you just started out and don't really know where and how to start! Trust me I know this, I spent the last 5 years creating studios and helping other independent artists in making one in a home environment.
Yes, I did study physic of sound and I have a degree as sound engineer and with the time being I discovered a real passion in this context as it really satisfy me for obscure reasons!
But honestly? You don't really need to study anything at all if you don't want to! In fact, the secret it's all hidden behind symmetry and few simple rules that comes with a bit of knowledge in the field.
With the technology being frequently more available and therefore cheaper due to a massive demand and market anyone can actually make a great sounding studio out of a bedroom!
As long as we follow certain rules we could make music but most importantly we could mix music in a space that is not necessarily created for this purpose as a professional studio might be; without the expensive isolation system and acoustic treatment!
Disposition, Arrangement & First Decisions
"The best possible room would be a rectangle,
where you face the shortest side with your desk, speakers and gears".
This kind of room allows bass frequencies to expand throughout the longer side and are less willing to create stationary waves, which inevitably will influence your perception of the audio that is coming out from your speakers to your ears!
When I say the best room I mean the easiest one to work on. You are half way there if you have a rectangular room, true, but don't desperate if your room is a perfect square or a different kind of weird shape that doesn't have a name either! One of the most important things here is to be quite symmetric at least with the mixing position!
So if you have a square room,
I would probably try to place the mixing position in the corner as the picture here.
If you can't or don't want to, just try to stick in one of the wall but you'll have to position the speakers in the most symmetric way possible and
perhaps the listening won't be so bad.
This is very depending on the material you are playing/mixing and also the volume you are playing, yes that makes a lot of difference too! I am going to explain in detail the importance of having our audio system with precise distances between walls and ourselves and why is so important to follow these easy but fundamentals rules.
The Mixing Position
A little bit of fun & useful theory
I am not going to write in depth about theory here, but when you play music in your room, tons of waves are coming out from your speakers with different energy and length (wavelength). When they'll hit hard material such as walls and furniture, they will act as light would when hit a mirror! Soft and porous material instead, will absorb the sound and help reducing the echo in your room (sofas, bed, books, foam and so on).