Tuesday, Jun. 12th 2018

Top 10 Ways to Ensure Good Acoustics Before Breaking Ground!

10. Isolate any equipment that moves. No one likes to feel the floor moving under their feet whether it is caused by an earthquake or because that pump next door just kicked on.

Equipment like this should be neither seen nor heard!


9. Don’t let anyone see your noisy equipment. If they can see it, they can hear it. Use high-mass walls, barriers, enclosures, or treated louvers to keep it out of sight.


8. Select quiet diffusers for your HVAC system. Looks are important, but they aren’t everything. Choose diffusers and grilles with a low NC rating so you don’t hear that whoosh every time the air is on. Think about using some duct lining in there, too.


Gaps such as this allow noise to pass through.

7. Seal the gaps. Around doors and windows; around penetrations; where walls meet each other, the floor or the ceiling… If air can get through, so can sound.


6. Have a massive building envelope. Multi-layered walls, roofs and windows isolate the inside of your building from exterior noise sources…unless you are going for the rain-on-a-tin-roof effect.


5. Build walls to the deck. Any partition that needs to isolate two spaces should extend to and seal against the structural deck above.


4. Put batt insulation in the stud cavities of any partition separating two occupied spaces. This is the easiest way to improve the performance of the partition itself.


3. Avoid concave shapes. Semi-circles, barrel vaults, domes…unless you are trying to eavesdrop on the conversation at the other edge of the dome.


2. Choose hard and soft surfaces appropriately. In general: if you are in a performance space, make the front of the room hard and the back of the room soft; in most other spaces, have sound absorption on the ceiling and walls.


1. Get AVANT ACOUSTICS on your team! As soon as possible. We can guide you and your team in implementing these and many other project-specific ways to ensure good acoustics. When you get us involved early, we are better able to ensure that such measures become an integral part of the design, budget and construction of your building.


This post was authored by AVANT ACOUSTICS Senior Associate, Emily Jaumard.


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