Wherever you are right now, be still and try to identify all of the subtle ambient sounds you can hear. Is there...
- a light woosh or buzz from your computer?
- a barely audable high pitch ring or low pitch rumble?
- the hum of a fan or refrigerator?
- the rush or roar of distant traffic?
- something ticking or clicking, a clock or a radiator perhaps?
- reflect (slap or bounce) off the walls?
- sound sharp or does it have a duller quality?
- fade or suddenly die?
By asking yourself these questions, you have gained a greater awareness of the sound around you and the acoustics of the space. What you have just discovered will help you make better decisions if you record in that room as it will help you decide on any changes you need to make. For example, you might realize you need to turn off a fan. You might also become aware of how reverberant the space is and that either you need to take steps to dampen the sound or choose a different room.
Further on, we will discuss how to address background noise and reflection issues, but first, we will talk in greater detail about acoustics and ambient noise.