Clients, Not Products, Determine the Best Solution to Acoustic Issues

Consistent with our core values of artistry, accuracy, community and integrity, there is a strong culture of “giving back” at Acoustic Distinctions.  Particularly now during these challenging times, we have been focused on how we can help and how we can add value to other professionals who work in the built environment and to the end users of these facilities.

In one recent week, we were contacted by two separate individuals with a common problem: noise from a neighboring property causing a nuisance  Both people had done what people do these days when they’re seeking an answer to a question: they googled it.

In both cases, a top result was an ad for a product making some rather broad promises. A quick inquiry into its specifics revealed that this particular product wasn’t the best solution for either of the people we advised.

Just to be clear, we’re not anti-product. In our recommendations, we rely on products to perform many different functions; we couldn’t do our job without products. Nor are we saying that this particular product is bad. Rather, we’re saying that there’s no such thing as a “magic bullet” that will solve every acoustic problem, or even most of them.

Often, in fact, an acoustical challenge will have many possible solutions. Even when two acoustic challenges seem similar, there are often subtleties that bear examination and result in different recommendations to achieve the best outcome. Consideration has to be given to circumstances, the nature of the intrusive sound, construction of the building, codes and regulations, and of course cost.

As one example, the chart below shows five possible floor/ceiling assemblies and how their sound isolation performance vs. cost varies. Which one is right for a particular client? There’s isn’t one answer; it depends on many factors.

Figure 1: Performance vs. cost for a variety of floor/ceiling assemblies. Costs are relative and approximate.

Our focus is to help our clients find the most cost-effective solution; not to sell our clients any particular product, but rather to evaluate all the possibilities and identify the one that is most cost-effective and appropriate based on the parameters and needs each individual client voices.

Please let us know how we can add value to any of your projects.