While acoustic diffusion has become a common acoustic treatment, many people still struggle to explain exactly what diffusion does, or what it sounds like – and because how we hear is subjective – we at Acoustics First feel that the best way to explain it, is to let you experience it.
We have created a demo to let you compare what a room sounds like with no treatment, good diffusion treatment, and extensive diffusion treatment.
The setup is as follows:
- A small office with no windows and one solid door (6′ x 8′- 8′ ceiling)
- Standard office carpet over concrete.
- Drop ceiling with standard 2’x4′ tiles and one 2’x4′ flourescent light fixture.
- Drywall over metal studs – no insulation.
- A binaural head in the center to capture the audio
The demo uses different noise makers to help you hear the room:
1. A Balloon Pop
2. Bang-Snaps (Pop-Its)
3. Slamming a Book Shut
The space is configured three different ways:
While the Demo is best experienced with a pair of reference headphones – earbuds or decent speakers should work as well. The headphones allow you the ability to hear the room just like it sounded when the test was run without hearing your own room – Think of it like auditory immersion. This is the best way (we’ve found) to compare the results of adding high-quality diffusers to an inferior space.
The test is run in rounds, you will hear the same noise (a Balloon Pop, for example) in each room configuration (First Untreated, then with Good Treatment, and finally Extensive Treatment) before progressing to the next round. The image will show the room configuration (and the noise producer in the upper corner) while the sound is played.
The Demo is as follows:
1. Balloon Pop (1 Round)- Untreated, Good Treatment, Extensive Treatment
2. Bang-snaps (3 rounds) – Untreated, Good Treatment, Extensive Treatment
3. Book Slam (2 rounds) – Untreated, Good Treatment, Extensive Treatment
Note: ArtDiffuser® Model D units were the only acoustic treatments used in this demo.
While we would rarely treat a room only with diffusers, the results of treating this space with just diffusers was interesting…
The diffusers reduced the SPL from 89 dB down to 87dB according to a pink noise test with the handy-dandy Radio Shack SPL meter…
Cut the RT(60) from about .7 seconds down to about .4 seconds…
Sometimes hearing is believing.
– Acoustics First®.