In recent years, many of us have had to adapt to new working habits. With increased awareness of social distancing, the busy work environments we were once used to can now often feel hectic and overcrowded. Many of us are now more sensitive to common sounds such as the movements and conversations of others, and as remote working and video conferencing is now the norm, background noise has become a much larger concern. A recent study by the World Health Organisation showed that the optimum noise level for focused work is around 40 decibels. Above that, it becomes harder to differentiate between conversation and other sounds, making it more difficult to concentrate.
Designing your office to manage background noise can make it easier to focus by reducing distracting sounds. Finding the right level of acoustic comfort can go a long way in creating a pleasant working environment for everyone in your office.
Want a stylish and sophisticated sound design solution for improving the ambience of your workspace? Let’s jump straight in and look at some key acoustic basics, and considerations when reviewing your offices room acoustics.
How to Design Your Office for Acoustic Comfort
Excessive background noise is associated with increased stress, reduced creativity, and lower productivity, but it’s almost impossible to stop excess noise from occurring altogether, especially in a busy workplace. Understanding how sound travels and how materials can affect this can help you to decide what materials to use in your office.
In poorly designed spaces, sound waves are reflected from hard, flat surfaces, causing them to travel back through the room. When this is heard even after the original sound has stopped, it’s called reverb.
Softer materials such as foam, cushions, and blankets work like sponges to absorb some of the original sound. This reduces reverb and echo and improves the overall sound quality of the room.
Noises may be reduced or muffled by soft materials, but sound can still travel through them. In order to completely soundproof a space, a solid surface is required to block the waves from passing through. For multifunctional or shared spaces, the DB Cork acoustic panel can be used to separate areas for more private conversations or focused work, or to stop sound from travelling through an open-plan office.
Acoustic Panels are one of the best ways to instantly improve your soundscape. Great for dampening noise, acoustic panels control ambient sounds through both absorption and proofing.
One of the most popular materials for acoustic performance is cork, due to its capacity for both sound absorption and sound proofing.
Whether you want to reduce the impact of distracting background noise, set apart areas for private conversations, or simply create a calmer workspace, cork acoustic panels can be used to reduce noise and manage sound levels in any work environment.
What are Cork Acoustic Panels?
Corkbee Acoustic 3D wall panels that are specifically designed to neutralise sound.
These acoustic wall tiles are made from cork, a highly sound-absorbent material, and are shaped in a way which enhances their acoustic properties and creates an aesthetically pleasing design.
How do cork acoustic panels work?
Cork has natural properties which makes it an ideal solution for controlling noise levels in busy environments.
Its dense, honeycomb-like structure is great for absorbing sound vibrations, and because it’s lightweight and easy to compress, it can be moulded into solid panels for blocking sound waves.
Just 3mm of cork material can absorb up to 40% of sound produced by the human voice, and effectively block up to 10dB, making it ideal for both sound absorption (reducing reverberations around a space and dampening sound) and sound proofing (blocking transmission of sound waves from one room to another).
Cork acoustic panels come in different shapes and sizes and can be applied to any wall or ceiling to dampen noise and prevent sound transmission.
What are the other benefits of cork acoustic panels?
Corkbee Acoustic Panels are not only brilliant for controlling ambient sound and improving office acoustics; they also look great! These panels come in a range of contemporary geometric designs such as the Corkbee Kite & the Corkbee Line which is a diamond shape. Available in 11 different shades which can be mixed and matched to suit your tastes, there’s something for every style of office.
Weighing only 250g, they can be easily relocated or reconfigured, so you can change it up whenever you like!
Cork is a long-lasting, biodegradable material. Sourced from residual waste from wine cork factories, Corkbee Acoustic Panels are a sustainable solution for acoustic performance. And, because cork is a natural thermal insulator, Corkbee Acoustic Panels can also be used to provide additional insulation and create a warm, welcoming space for guests.
Safe & Hygienic
Cork is water-resistant and has antistatic and antimicrobial properties, which reduce the appearance of dust as well as the risk of mould or mildew. Corkbee Acoustic Panels are also durable, lightweight, and fire-resistant.
In comparison to other materials with similar noise-reducing properties, cork is incredibly cost-effective. Corkbee Acoustic Panels have a low upfront cost, and as they are long-lasting and easy to maintain, there’s no need to continuously reinvest in replacement wall panels.
How to improve your office space using cork acoustic panels
Having an office that’s designed to manage sound levels for optimum comfort makes a world of difference. Many businesses are now seeing the benefits of managing acoustics in the workspaces. It can make a space much more calm, comfortable, and inviting by reducing the stress caused by continuous background noise, reverberations, and others’ conversations.
Looking for a modern, sustainable solution to improve your workplace acoustics? Get in touch today with Panelscreens today to discover our range of environmentally friendly cork acoustic panels.