CertainTeed Listening Lounge predicts acoustic needs of commercial buildings

listeningloungeJust as architects and designers rely on sketches and 3-D renderings to visualize an unbuilt project’s aesthetics, an auralization experience from CertainTeed can help specifiers design on an auditory level. The CertainTeed Listening Lounge, a virtual demonstration sound modeling tool located at the company’s headquarters in Malvern, Pennsylvania, lets the specifier hear how ceiling design, materials and product specifications can affect the acoustics of a space.

For architects and designers tasked with providing acoustic comfort in their buildings, the CertainTeed Listening Lounge enables the participant to actually hear what a specific design will sound like before it is built.

“Acoustics play a huge part in creating a comfortable environment for all commercial buildings, whether that is for employees, patients, or customers,” said Stan Gatland, manager of Building Sciences and Comfort, CertainTeed Corp. “The Listening Lounge tests the human listening experience within a defined area before it is even built, allowing specifiers to better understand the materials needed to provide an acoustically sound space. Essentially the participant can click on differing solutions and evaluate their actual perception of the difference each material makes.”

Developed by CertainTeed’s Building Science team in conjunction with architectural acoustics consultants at Acentech in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the Listening Lounge was created by isolating an existing collaborative work space within CertainTeed’s headquarters. This technologically-advanced teaching tool will serve as a testing ground for acoustic design and CertainTeed Ceilings product solutions.

The room is completely framed with high-performance Ecophon acoustic wall panels to eliminate outside sounds and internal reverberation and features strategically placed speakers for a 360-degree listening experience. The room is also programmed to model unique situations occupants might encounter in various areas within an open office environment. In addition, designers can preview the impact of interior finishes, audio systems, sound isolation and even the introduction of an electronic speech privacy system (sound masking).