Improving Acoustics with Fabric

Is your indoor space uncomfortably noisy?

Is your open plan office really noisy? Do the customers in your restaurant complain about not being able to hear each other? Is the din in the dinner hall mind-blowingly loud?

If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, it sounds like you need to think more about improving the noise reverberation in your interior space.

Acoustics means the qualities that determine how a room or other enclosed space reflects sound waves. When we talk about ‘good acoustics’ we mean that the space is reflecting sound waves in a way that allows distinct hearing. On the other hand, ‘poor acoustics’ means that sound waves are bouncing around in a way that distorts what can be heard.

These days problematic acoustics often arise because of the demand for clean lines and low maintenance spaces. Removing the curtains, drapes or pictures may give a more minimalistic and ‘cleaner’ look, but these hard-surface spaces – notably found in schools, retail centres, airports, restaurants and so on - are not acoustically absorbent. Sound therefore reflects and reverberates around internally, increasing perceptible sound levels and decreasing the acoustic comfort of the space. Basically, making it quite an uncomfortable space to spend any time in - which is not ideal if you want your customers to stay and spend their money. 

The key to reducing noise reverberation is to increase the amount of absorbent material present in the space. 

Introducing fabric structures can dramatically help to improve any acoustically-poor interior spaces. Structures and canopies can be made from special acoustically absorbent fabrics or materials which help to absorb sounds and make the space more pleasant to be in.

An acoustic structure is lightweight and modern in appearance and can be retro-fitted. As well as the acoustic benefits they can offer (absorbing between 0.20 to 0.85* depending on fabric types and depth of angles), they are also aesthetically interesting and can create a unique form in your setting and be designed to suit your individual space or branding.

Acoustic structures include:

  • Canopies
  • Screens
  • Sails
  • Ceilings
  • Fins
  • Walls

If you have a space you would like us to look at, contact us with as much information as possible, ideally drawings and/or photos, and we will be happy to chat through our solutions with you.

* across frequency range 250 Hz - 5000 Hz

By Abi Smith, 03/02/2020