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5 Questions for Businesses to Answer When Shopping for Sound Masking

Blog Post
February 12, 2021

Businesses in all industries are taking advantage of sound masking for enhanced privacy. Offices, hospitals, financial institutions, and more can be noisy and distracting places in which to work. Sound masking is a cost-effective solution for making a better auditory experience in the workplace.

Sound masking involves installing an ambient background noise to limit distractions and increase privacy for a better workspace. Many parents do this for their children with a fan or white noise machine (though the correct term is pink noise). However, businesses require professional sound masking installation to transform their space effectively.

To get the best sound masking solution for your location, you’ll need to answer a few basic questions. Here are the top questions you should prepare answers to when shopping for sound masking.

1. What type of ceiling does your space have?

Different spaces and buildings can have drastically different ceilings. The type of ceiling that you have will impact how audiovisual experts design and install your sound masking technology. Common commercial ceiling types include:

  • Suspended: Suspended ceilings hang a few inches below the main structural ceiling. Therefore, the suspended ceiling covers the foundational framework above it. This kind of ceiling is common in one-story homes, or the first story below a bathroom.
  • Conventional: Conventional ceilings are also associated with residential architecture. They’re flat, made from standard drywall, and typically 9 feet away from the floor.
  • Open/Exposed: Open ceilings are common in modern offices. They’re also known as “exposed ceilings” because they leave the structural systems exposed. They provide an industrial look and make rooms feel more spacious.
  • Cathedral: A cathedral or vaulted ceiling slopes upward, meeting at a peak. These ceilings add vertical volume to a room.

As you can imagine, the different types of ceilings will impact the way sound operates in the room. Audiovisual consultants need to know what type of ceiling you have to determine the best sound masking system for your building.

2. Are you able to provide an image of the floor plan?

Floor plans are essential for sound masking systems. It’s ideal to find an architectural drawing of your building in PDF or PNG form. If you rent your space, check with the building manager for a floor plan. If you own the space, you should search your organization’s records for the floor plan. The floor plan helps inform the sound masking process.

3. What are the measurements from the floor plan?

The floor plan provides the audiovisual expert with key measurements. If possible, make sure to have the answers to the following questions on hand:

  1. What is the ceiling height?
  2. What is the total square footage?
  3. What is the square footage per floor?
  4. If suspended, are the acoustic ceiling tiles 24X24 or 24X48? And which direction do they go regarding the floor plan?

These measurements will help the experts determine how to feed in the sound masking system so that it’s as discreet as possible.

4. What are the most critical areas of the space for speech privacy?

The key to effective sound masking is to handle priority spaces. Where do you want to prevent critical conversations from being overheard? Planar speakers (loudspeakers used for white and pink noise) radiate sound evenly, but it’s important to map the system with your priority spaces in mind. Noise impacts productivity, distracting employees and potentially spreading confidential information. To design the most effective system for you, identify the most important areas for speech privacy.

5. Can you mark where your server room is located?

The best place for the amplifier to live is in the server room. The server room is your hub for IT infrastructure. It often houses remotely operated computer servers. If you are unsure whether or not you have one or where it is, first start by checking with your IT department.

Create a Better Work Environment with Sound Masking

If you’re ready to create a private and productive work environment, we’re here to help. Teksetra is a trusted technology provider that will help you get your customized sound marking solution. Talk through the questions above with our AV specialists and get on track for sound masking installation. We have all the vendor relationships you need to help you get the best masking solution for your workplace. Learn more about how we can help with sound masking or get started today by contacting us!

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