Beginner’s Guide: How Many Acoustic Panels Do I Need?



How to Address Acoustic Issues in the Office…



Before we begin, if you are still on the fence as to whether acoustic wall panels are right for you, take a look at another of our blogs to see if acoustic panels are the right fit. If they are, then the natural next question is how many of them am I going to need in my room. For this blog, we’re going to be focusing on offices specifically, so bear that in mind. As offices present such large open areas, they can be a bit trickier to cover as opposed to home studios. Also, as every office is unique in terms of layout in design, it’s important to get the acoustic layout right.

Extremely busy environments may require a complete acoustic panelling system, while smaller, calmer offices may only require a few installations. In fact, the general rule of thumb that we recommend is a 15% – 20% wall coverage. This can be made up of acoustic wall panels, hanging ceiling panels or in conjunction with a range of other acoustic solutions. If you are looking for a solution which is not glaringly obvious, then acoustic wall panels are the way forward.


Acoustic Wall Panels
Acoustic Wall Panels – Photo Courtesy: BAKOKO


How to Fit Acoustic Wall Panels into an Existing Office Design…



First, we’re going to have a think on how acoustic wall panels integrate with the existing aesthetic. They stand out as acoustic options compared to say partition screens as they can be installed into the background of an office. At Go Displays, we offer two different designs. The common option which many clients go for is fabric acoustic wall panels. Simple in design and available in a variety of different fabric colours, these are made to measure, either to cover a wall completely or to create a number of different designs on a wall.

For context when creating a more stylish installation like the one featured below, remember that sound waves are completely erratic, so leaving hard surfaces free will ensure there is a reverberation of sound in the room. That said, if you are looking for a more stylish design which fits into your modern office, then art acoustic wall panels are ideal. These masquerade as canvas paintings, but, integrated inside the panel is acoustic foam which helps to combat ambient background office noise.


Acoustic Wall Panels
Photo Courtesy: Chattanooga Public Library


What Kind of Balance Should I Be Looking for With Acoustic Wall Panels? 



By balance, we’re talking about the distribution of acoustic panels within an office. It’s all well and good covering one section with panels, yet leaving another completely bare will cause issues to persist. It’s best to create a level balance across the office to reduce the overall reverberation levels. As mentioned before, this can be created with a balance of acoustic wall panels, hanging ceiling panels and also acoustic partition screens. With this kind of arrangement, there are various surfaces throughout containing acoustic foam. This helps to combat ambient background noise at the source and thereby preventing it from spreading across the office.

One of the common problems with acoustic foam in the past was the garish nature of the raw foam. Take a recording studio for example – while they are great for creating a pitch perfect sound, they hardly look like somewhere where you would want to sit at a desk all day. Fortunately, today’s acoustic wall panels and acoustic partition screens are taking on increasingly modern designs. This is essential for offices which are becoming increasingly vibrant.



Where Exactly Should I Place My Acoustic Wall Panels? 



One of the fortunate aspects of acoustic wall panels is that there is no wrong place to install them. What is going to make a difference in the acoustic quality of the office is the overall square footage used. Whether you decide to go with fabric acoustic wall panels or art acoustic wall panels – as long as they are spaced out evenly – they will both achieve a similar acoustic quality.

If you are particularly stuck on how much coverage you require, the folks over at Acoustic Surfaces have a robust solution:

  • Cubic Volume of the room x 3% = square footage of product
  • Height x Width x Depth x 0.03 = Sq/Ft

With this, you can calculate the approximate number of panels you will require to effectively reduce the overall reverberation within the room.


Acoustic Wall Panels
Acoustic Wall Panels – Photo Courtesy: Ben Kraan Architechten


If you require further assistance on addressing the acoustic issues within your office then we are here to help. At Go Displays, we manufacture acoustic wall panels bespoke, tailoring each to fit your office design and layout. For more information, please call 01733 232000 or send an e-mail to [email protected].

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