What You Need To Know About Acoustic Panels To Improve An Office
One of the most important aspects of office space planning is acoustics. Although modern, open office layouts have many benefits, one of the biggest complaints people have about them can be noise. Many workers believe they will be more productive in less noisy, or acoustically treated environments.
In this blog we will look at some of the different types of acoustic panels for offices. We will also consider the main benefits of using acoustic panels in office space planning.
An acoustic panel is a sound-absorbing panel used to mitigate noise and reduce the reverberation and echo in a particular space. The main purpose of acoustic panels is to eliminate the residual sound in a room. Acoustic panels are usually soft-furnished and large. They can be strategically placed in rooms in rooms to improve overall sound quality. Acoustic panels for offices are usually made from a combination of both fabric and foam, which is easy to cut into various shapes and sizes.
Vertical or Horizontal Acoustic Panels?
The proper usage of acoustic panels is essential in delivering quality acoustics. When installed correctly in an office space, acoustic panels can absorb, or diffuse sound form the first point of reflection.
When it comes to choosing between vertical and horizontal acoustic panels, it is important to note that they are not the same in terms of function and effect. Vertical acoustic panels help mitigate sound transfers in space. This prevents that sound from going from one closed space to another. They can also aid in bringing down background noise levels. Horizontal panels, on the other hand, are usually used for direct absorption. They convert sound energy into heat energy via friction.
Most rooms need a balance of vertical and horizontal acoustic panels to sound as great as they should.
Wall Mounted Acoustic Panels
Wall mounted acoustic panels for offices are great at providing sound dampening. They also offer the opportunity to add creative flair and design to walls. PET is the abbreviation for polyethene terephthalate. This material is fundamental in the production of high-quality acoustic polyester fibre. These days PET panels made from recycled plastic bottles are available in standard shapes and sizes. Wall mounted acoustic panels for offices come in shapes such as squares and circles, as well as bespoke designs. Either material, PET or fabric upholstered are usually applied to the wall by a spray glue or double-sided tape/Velcro.
3D Acoustic Panels
If your focus is aesthetics as well as acoustics, then 3D acoustic panels could be the solution you are looking for. Utilising 3D panels can also provide additional texture to the overall room design. They also combine different thickness within the design. Fabric upholstered panels are also available, but usually only in standard shapes. Constructed from particle board & foam, which is then upholstered, they are also likely to be heavier.
Suspended Acoustic Panels
When suspended from the ceiling, horizontal panels absorb undesired sound waves. For improved acoustic performance, install the panels at different suspension heights. It is important to determine the location of the acoustic panels to achieve the best performance. The ideal location will depend on different factors. These factors include room type, the main activity in the space, and existing business office furniture and materials in the space (e.g., glass, plastic, wood).
Suspended panels are either vertical (approx. 2.m high x 1.2m wide) or horizontal (squares, circles etc). The vertical panels are either fixed to the walls, or else used to create a dividing wall. These are often PET and have designs cut-out to allow light to pass through. They are available 12mm or 24mm thick, and in various colours. These panels can also be bespoke, and so include the customer’s logo or own cut-out designs, for example. The horizontal panels are available in various designs, including squares. circles, clouds etc. and in various sizes. Usually, we install horizontal panels in high density areas.
Using a lightweight, recycled material, and adding a new design element to your office whilst at the same time reducing ambient noise, the benefits of PET panels are obvious. More and more of the office space planning that BT Office design and installs include a large element of PET Panels.
Grid style suspended panels are great for reducing sound travel separating certain areas in office space planning. They provide a different feel to standard flat panels and are ideal for use over large expanses.
Floor Standing Acoustic Panels
Placing freestanding panels in rooms with limited space is an effective way of office space planning. Floor standing screens offer privacy and discretion. Another benefit is using them as movable wall partitions helping to create a calm space within busy open plan offices. Most of the floor standing screens will be chipboard covered in acoustic foam and then upholstered in fabrics.
See our full range of Floor Standing Office Screens
Overall Benefits of using Acoustic Panels
- Improves working performance
- Increases productivity
- Aids effective communication
- Reduces echo and reverberation
- Absorbs unwanted sounds
- Improves ceiling Acoustics
- Improves sound intelligibility
- Improves speech clarity
- Improves concentration
- Improves comfort
- Reduces stress
- Improves wellbeing
- Improves wall aesthetics
BT Office Furniture
Good room acoustics are essential to improving overall health, wellbeing and comfort. Acoustic panels can play a key part in this. At BT Office Furniture we specialise in acoustic seating, acoustic booths and acoustic panels for offices. We have carefully selected a range of acoustic products, to help manage open-plan office noise creatively and effectively. Take a look at our beautiful acoustic range solutions or contact us today to discuss your office space planning and acoustic requirements.