Whether we like it or not – we are constantly bombarded by acoustic stimuli. Our hearing never cedes to listen. It is always set to receive. Even in the office: voices, making a call and the phone ringing are noise sources which are particularly disruptive when acoustic conditions are poor.
If, on the other hand, it is too quiet in the office, the spoken word is heard even more, creating an even greater annoyance. Sounds become noise as soon as they impair our personal well-being or emotional balance. This can be nerve wrecking as noise translates to permanent pressure. And that can cost in real terms: lack of concentration, a reduced ability to absorb information, poor performance.
In relation to the recommended volume, the goal is to differentiate the types of work to be performed: for simple office tasks the sound pressure level can reach 55 dB(A) and more; if greater attention is required, the level should not surpass 50 dB(A). In order to focus on the task at hand, the SPL should be less than 50 dB(A).
We are best heard when directly facing our counterpart, which is why sound-absorbing elements should be placed high enough and as closely as possible to the speaker. A focus on phoning requires a furniture arrangement that is oriented towards the wall, with users seated back to back. To align optimal acoustics and attractive office concepts, sound planning and individualised solutions are called for.
König + Neurath’s large selection of sound absorbers provide a valuable contribution to cushioning the effects of noise. The labelling system developed by König + Neurath makes it easy to identify the acoustic properties of products and materials at a glance, for optimal planning.