Good soundproofing: What does it actually cost? (Part 1)
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Perhaps you’re thinking of good soundproofing your room/studio or home theatre but have no idea where to begin, what soundproofing entails and what the costs are- then you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we’ll explain the different aspects of soundproofing and the breakdown of costs to achieve good soundproofing.
What is good soundproofing? It is the means of preventing sound from entering or leaving a space so that you can work and rest well without being affected by external noise pollution from vehicles, noisy neighbour or even children. Here are some common noise pollutants, do you encounter them in your daily living?
Soundproofing is important for studios so that music can be recorded in it’s purest and cleanest form without the blemish of unwanted noise. Have you heard songs from well recorded old classics like The Beatles or the top pop-singers today like John Mayer?
They both have one thing in common- good studios. The Abbey Road Studio has well built soundproofing and great acoustics which makes them one of the most iconic studios existing today.
If you are a musician or singer and want to avoid disturbing your family/neighbour while you practice, then you’ll definitely want to look into soundproofing as well.
What else can good soundproofing do?
Soundproofing is also beneficial for maintaining the privacy of conversations, this is important for discussion of confidential matters in offices, doctor’s consultation room or counselling rooms.
Sound transmits through airborne or structural borne vibrations. The use of good soundproofing materials can help reduce such sound transmission and a variety of materials are available to do this. However, the costs may vary depending on the quality of the materials used. Every individual’s needs for their spaces are different and so the soundproofing approach may differ. The intended use of the space, size of the room, types of noise present and budget are just some of the factors we have to consider to create good soundproofing.
Soundproofing can be easily confused with sound treatment, but they are different.
Sound treatment or more properly, acoustic treatment, takes an entirely different approach because it aims to create ideal sounding space depending on the intended use of the space by controlling for reflections within the space. Check out this article if you are interested to know more about acoustic treatment.
Aspects of Soundproofing
Consultation & Testing
Do I need an acoustic consultant? Before actual work can begin, just like a doctor who must assess a patient’s symptoms first before giving the right medication, an acoustician has to visit the site to assess the space and find out the problematic areas within the space. There may be issues that are not immediately obvious and this requires someone who has the expertise and the right tools to accurately pinpoint the problems and recommend appropriate solutions to rectify them. The consultation process may also include design research if the space is to be built from scratch, an acoustic consultant is a must if you do not wish to compromise on acoustics.
The costs of consultation will vary depending on the size of the project and its complexity, the costs for basic consultation is approximately S$800 and consultations for commercial/advanced projects can go up to S$10,000. A home theatre project will likely set you back around S$25,000 due to it’s complexity and studio project consultations that includes both soundproofing and sound treatment would generally cost more.
What about large projects?
For larger projects, the consultation process will require acoustic testing. Acoustic testing is an objective way to assess the acoustical quality of a space. Acoustic testing is usually performed before and after soundproofing solutions are installed. The acoustic tests involve Noise Criteria tests, Impact Insulation tests and Sound Transmission Class tests. The results help to verify the effectiveness of the soundproofing solutions. The costs for acoustic testing starts from S$200.
Estimated Costs of Acoustic Construction
All the different aspects of soundproofing will be discussed in our 3-part article. We will discuss the aspects that contributes the most to a soundproofing project. Hopefully, the breakdown of costs will be helpful in giving you an idea of what goes into a soundproofing project. Of course, we are only talking about soundproofing in this article, if you would also require sound/acoustic treatment which is usually the case for music studios, then the costs would be higher as that would include other special materials designed to treat an acoustic space.
At Soundzipper, we are able to cater to your project needs and demands according to your budget, find out more about our projects and services here.
*prices may vary depending on projects
Extra: Please stay tuned to our next article on the different functions of Acoustic Treatment!