Kaiser Comm Construction, which specializes in recording studio construction, has partnered with UK-based Smart Studio to introduce its unique modular studio system to the United States under the name Smart Studio USA.
Smart Studio employs an innovative modular design and off-site construction to significantly reduce the time and cost of building recording studios while providing acoustic environments of exceptional quality.
In their first joint project, Kaiser Comm Construction built three Smart Studios in Los Angeles for SIDE, a top provider of voice production; recording, editing, and mixing; localization; and performance capture services for video games such as Valorant (Riot Games), Cyberpunk (CD Projekt) and God of War (Sony Interactive).
Kaiser Comm Construction’s Kevin Kaiser was introduced to Smart Studio through a client in the UK, where Smart Studio has built more than a dozen modular studios for music recording, video game sound, and entertainment post-production.
“I thought it was a brilliant idea,” Kaiser said in a statement. “Because the components of the studio are pre-manufactured, construction time is reduced by half and costs by half, or more. And yet, it’s a real studio, not a portable booth. Acoustically it is as sound as a custom-built studio and suitable for all types of professional use.”
The Smart Studio concept was developed over a period of more than a decade by acoustician Jim Dunne. Modular components for studio floors, ceilings, and walls are precision manufactured offsite and incorporate state-of-the-art materials to optimize sound insulation, room acoustics, and ultra-low background noise. Onsite assembly typically takes just days or weeks.
Standard Smart Studio features include:
- Wall modules loaded with ultra-high density Damped Membrane Insulation Panels (DMIPs), ranging in density from 1,600Kg/m3 to 2,400Kg/m3.
- Isolated floors, constructed on a series of ISO80 isolation pads, provide the base upon which the modular Smart Studio™ system is installed. Typical floor build-ups provide for isolation to 15Hz.
- Ceilings are built off the wall-modules and independent of existing structural elements. Using specially designed ISOiBeam, the Smart Studio ceiling provides for high levels of sound insulation plus a deep void/chamber for effective bass absorption to 63Hz and below.
- Studios can be built in sizes up to 570 square feet and in a range of configurations to suit individual spatial requirements and applications including live rooms, control rooms, post-production mixing, music production, and game audio. Acoustics can be adapted to support virtually any technical requirements including Dolby Atmos sound production and mixing.
The three Smart Studios that Kaiser Comm Construction built for SIDE’s Los Angeles facility complement a trio of existing recording studios, custom-built by Kaiser Comm Construction in 2016.
“Smart Studio allowed us to expand quickly and at a fraction of the cost of building studios from scratch,” Olivier Deslandes said in a statement. Deslandes is the Senior Vice President of Audio & Speech Technology at SIDE, which had been looking to add sound production capacity without sacrificing quality. “The Smart Studios took much less time to build than we expected and eliminated the need for an architect,” he added.
SIDE Senior Technical Director Anthony Hales noted that, prior to moving forward with the project, they conducted exhaustive tests on an existing Smart Studio installation to ensure it met their audio requirements.
“It was incredible. The sound quality was better than [in] custom-built studios. It was absolutely fantastic,” he said in a statement.
“Our work is almost exclusively voice recording and we have very high requirements for quality,” added Deslandes. “Our clients want very low noise flow and very low reverb. We need a recording environment that is tightly controlled in terms of acoustics and very clean with no electrical artifacts.”
Given its unique combination of low cost, fast construction, and exceptional quality, Smart Studio makes sense for a lot of applications.
“It’s a perfect solution for post-production, voice recording, music production, and many other types of sound work,” explained Kaiser. “Smart Studio provides facilities in the recording, broadcasting, and post-production industries with an exceptional acoustic environment to complete critical audio work in a timely and cost-effective manner.”