The problem with noisy museums

A museum can be anything from a large, cavernous space to a series of smaller rooms that are interconnected. In either layout, the same challenges ensue. The intent is to bring the visitor through a series of audio-visual presentations that form a story book as they weave their way through each zone. In some areas, relative quiet is needed while in others, sound is amplified to heighten a particular effect. Hard, reflective surfaces such as glass, plasterboard and the tiled floor create a perfect breeding ground for echo and a long reverberant field. Without containment, noise permeates the venue. To attempt to overcome the problem, the audio system is invariably turned up and the problem intensifies. Visitors raise their voices to overcome the din, adding to the cacophony.  The noise and echo make it difficult to comprehend what is being said and the visitor leaves without fully appreciating the experience.

How can Primacoustic help you?

The key to a successful audio-visual acoustical environment is containing noise from traveling from one zone to another. This can be done using several tools.  For smaller rooms, applying 1″ thick (2.5cm) Primacoustic Broadway™ panels to between 20% to 30% of the wall surface will immediately lower the reverberant field and inhibit sound from reflecting off walls before it can escape. Mounting Broadway panels is as easy as hanging a picture. These are evenly distributed on the wall surfaces and attached to the wall using Impalers™.  For larger spaces, suspending Cloud Paintables™ above an audio visual ‘hot-spot’ will work double duty as it contains sound before it has a chance to expand upwards towards the ceiling while it also absorbs the reverberant field that is reflecting off the roof and upper wall structures. These are hung using eyehooks and adjustable SlipNot™ aircraft suspension wires.  If the venue is exceedingly large and suffers from a prolonged reverberant field, hanging Saturna™ bafflers high up in the rafters will prove to be very effective. Once in place, you will immediately notice the overall sound level drop considerably, noise from various zones will be contained and intelligibility will be greatly enhanced.

Executive Summary

  • Reduces reverberant field and improves intelligibility
  • Contains noise from AV systems from traveling between zones
  • Allows concurrent presentations to happen without interruption
  • Optimizes messaging systems for safety and evacuation
  • Cost effective to install, does not require special tools or training