CPM One Source has partnered with Snowsound, an Italian acoustic panel manufacturer with its USA HQ in Santa Fe Springs. CPM has installed Snowsound’s 100% sound absorbing surface products in our CPM Studio at The CalEdison Building located at One Bunker Hill in Downtown LA. In this special series, we’ll be exploring ways to correct workplace acoustics with Snowsound. You can read Part I of this series here, Part II of this series here, and Part III of this series here.
All Snowsound products leverage the exclusive patented Snowsound technology, based on sound absorbing material with variable densities, which enables selective absorption at various frequencies for optimal room acoustics. The Snowsound Lab’s newest project, now available in multiple forms, is Snowsound-Fiber: a patented acoustic textile fiber with sound absorbing properties. If you want to learn more about Snowsound-Fiber click here: snowsoundusa.com/technology/Snowsound-fiber
Part 4: Snowsound: Just What the Doctor Ordered
Part III of this series left us understanding what makes Snowsound the market leader in sound absorbing solutions, Part IV which is the last part of this series will focus on how to best use this effective product. There are two scenarios. Let’s discuss both scenarios.
Scenario A: an immediate need, when the client is looking for a “fix” to an existing space
- “We can’t have meetings or make calls in this conference room without being distracted by the echo.”
- “The noise levels in our call center are extremely distracting and prevent our team from being productive.”
- “It sounds like our CEO is talking with his head in a bucket from his private office.”
These are a few of the most common acoustical concerns in today’s modern office spaces after users have moved in and occupied their new office. The good news: the statements above are descriptive examples of exactly clients’ grievances. The bad news: it’s not all the time that your clients specify their pain-points. This is critical because the most significant element to prescribing the optimal acoustic solution is understanding your clients’ challenges and related expectations. Here are a few questions you can ask to arrive at the main problem:
- Who is using the space, and how many people on average are engaged?
- What is the purpose of the space? (e.g. meeting room, private office, phone room, video-conferencing room, café, etc.)
- What is preventing you from using the space comfortably?
Scenario B: What are you trying to ensure or avoid from happening once the user moves in?
Scenario B has historically been more challenging since this requires acoustical guidance during the project’s planning and design phase. With Snowsound’s simulation software, we’re able to support architects and designers in this pre-occupancy phase to ensure their designs will yield an acoustically acceptable room. We’re also able to specify the correct number of panels for budget-conscious clients.
- “We want to ensure sure there’s no echo in this room to disrupt conferences or meetings”
- “We want to ensure users can stay focused without acoustical interferences from their neighbors”
- “We want phone rooms to be private and comfortable for both the user and the speaker on the other line”
These goals can be accurately addressed, but only because they’re specific enough to allow Snowsound to offer a precise solution to meet the interior architect’s specifications.
Whether it’s Scenario A or Scenario B, asking the first three questions is critical to understanding the environment. Once answered, you have understood your clients’ pain points and can transition to the second set of questions:
- What are the room dimensions and ceiling height?
- What are the materials of the room’s surfaces? (ceiling, floor, and 4+ walls)
- How much coverage does each of those materials account for?
This is where Snowsound makes things easy, in both Scenario A and B: Equipped with these answers, Snowsound’s acoustic simulation software will recommend how many panels are needed to correct the acoustics in the room. Often times, clients are faced with variations in product performance when looking at a product line, which can be confusing. There may be 10 different product designs, each with their own rating. But Snowsound has streamlined their product selection by engineering each of their product designs with the same material and NRC capability. This allows clients to pick and choose solely based on their aesthetic preference, without compromising on the absorption quality.
Another benefit of Snowsound is the myriad of attachment hardware and the versatility of their line. Virtually any panel can be ceiling mounted, free standing, wall mounted, desktop mounted, or ceiling suspended – and Snowsound provides all the bracketry. This is a critical advantage that Snowsound has compared to other lines because a space may have mounting constraints where the areas acceptable for applying products are limited. This performance uniformity and application flexibility make determining which product or products to use the easiest part of the Snowsound solution process.
The Right Questions Lead to the Right Solution
There are cases where Snowsound may not be the sole acoustic solution needed for the space. Through asking the questions above, one can narrow down which of the ABC’s of acoustics will be the optimal solution. If the concern is in-room acoustics, you know “Absorption” (e.g. Snowsound) is needed. If the concern is loud open plan, you know “Absorption” and “Cover” (e.g. Snowsound and Sound Masking) are needed. For a noise transfer concern between closed rooms, “Absorb” and “Block” (e.g. Snowsound and Sealed Floor-to-Ceiling Walls) would be the optimal solution.
Specifying the right solution starts with asking the right questions. The good news: Snowsound’s product performance and analytic support makes answering them effortless.
This concludes our Special 4-part Series, with each part representing the WHY, WHAT, WHEN and HOW of applying the best acoustic solution in your workplace.
To further explore your acoustic needs, call or email CPM to arrange a consultation with Snowsound at our Studio to discuss what would be the “right prescription” for your workspace and learn more about creating a “sound friendly” solution through properly addressing the acoustics in your space.