A process of adding an unstructured, unobstructed, lowlevel of sound to an environment.This process doesn’t change or eliminate the sound butacts as a mask that cause blockage to reduce noisedistraction, protect private conversation and theintelligibility of human speech.They are placed in the ceiling cavity created by specialdigital generators.How does it work?Just like how a sheet covers a pillow, soundmaskers cover, disguise other unwanted sounds,not to forget that they do not change or eliminatethem. To distract sounds, such as conversationsand loud noises, is by making the ambientbackground sounds rise up to or above the levelof the expected intrusive ones, and each leveldiffers, for example, the level needed for aresidential space differs than a big hall for events.
The level for the residential space needed is lowwhile on the other hand, the level needed formasking a big hall is high.”ABC” Rule stands for Aborsp, Block and Cover:Absorption of sound waves by using ahigh-NRC-rated ceiling tilesBlocking by using high-STC-rated panels, partitions,walls, windows, etc.Covering by adding a source of unstructured i.e.
,not music, which is information and thereforedistracting, low-level background soundOne tool of the above by itself will not solve speech privacyproblems. Most environmental conditions require thecombination of the these three tools to achieve anacoustically comforting atmosphere. While coveringprovides the required increase in privacy, it must be usedwith the proper amounts of absorption and blockingcomponents to form an integrated system of the threetools.Sound masking should not be clearly heard, but it shouldbe barely noticeable where it should harmonize andblend with the background of any space. Sound maskingis unintersive sound that is similar to the sound of airflowand a typical modern hvac system.
There is a misunderstanding between people when itcomes to sound masking and white noise. It’s usuallyreferred as white noise, but it is not. As explained before,sound masking is more of an unnoticeable sound that isengineered to harmonize with the human speech and bea cost efficient method to reduce noise distraction.On the other hand, white noise is more of a loudunpleasant sound to listen that some referred it to radio’sstatic as a metaphorIncrease focus and productivityProtect private conversationsSound masking has some advantages that makes it preferableover traditional methods:Sound masking, contrary to most sound attenuation, isvariable and the location of it can vary to suit the changingenvironmental conditionsnon- expensivePortable systems.
These systems are small and can be installed on a temporarybasis. They are controlled and powered centrally. They are used for Secret Privacyin rental rooms, and can be used for demonstration purposes elsewhere.Self-contained systems. These are typically one, or several, single units thatcontain all the features necessary to create masking sound. Each unit is powered bystandard line voltage and there is no centralized control, but they are portable.They are used in homes, on desk tops, and can be carried in luggage for privacy inhotel rooms.
Centralized systems. They can be of any size but are preferably used in large,permanent installations. They can contain the advanced features noted above, arecentrally powered, and centrally controlled.Distributed systems. These systems can be of any size but are distinguished fromcentralized systems by the fact that they may be centrally controlled, but thepower to speakers is distributed throughout the area.The horizontal spacing of masking speakers is very important since it has a strong impact on the cost of any project.The cost would be higher If the speakers are too close, but it would produce a good uniformity.
The cost would be lower If the speakers are too far apart, but it when it comes to the uniformity and the acceptability ofthe masking, it is compromised.” Spacing for speakers in a suspended ceiling plenum is determined by:Suspended Ceiling Material.Suspended Ceiling Height.Plenum Depth.Sound absorbing batts in the plenum.
Spacing in an open plenum is determined by:Structural ceiling Height.Sound absorbing batts.Typical spacing for face-down masking speakers is 12 feet to fit into the standard 2 by 4 ceiling tile shape.
Spacing for under floor speakers is determined by:Cavity height: Deeper cavities permit greater spacing.Air grilles: Spacing is determined by their presence. “ref : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sound_masking#Masking_SystemHorizontal Speaker Spacing and VerticalLocations1. Commercial facilities.Closed officesOpen officesLess common applications.2.
Medical facilitiesRegulationsNoise problemsSound masking in medical facilities.3. Secure facilitiesWindowsDoorsWalls4. Private facilities