Acoustically Treating A Worship Facility
There is no other place where spoken word is more important than in a sanctuary room.
Whether you're building a new Sanctuary, or just looking to improve your current facility the acoustical properties are very important to take into consideration. Poor acoustics in your sanctuary will decrease speech intelligibility and cause listener fatigue. During speaking, people's attention tends to waver if they have to focus hard to hear clearly.
The sheer size of most sanctuaries combined with the construction materials used creates a poor acoustical environment. In many worship facilities, bass buildup and excessive reverberation is a big problem. This causes music being played to be distorted in different areas of the room. Treating the walls with acoustic panels will help create more sonic clarity and balance within the entire room. Installing absorption panels near or on the stage area will provide more accurate monitoring for musicians. Another very important consideration is the back wall behind the mixing board area in your sanctuary. Live sound within a sanctuary can be particularly hard to mix. What a mixing engineer is hearing in their position may not be the same as what the person is hearing on the front row or the back left corner of the room. Installing treatments around the mixing area will help the mix engineer hear clearly. Installing treatments throughout the sanctuary will increase frequency balance across the entire room. A better mix = a better experience for your members.
We recommend a minimum of 20% room coverage to enhance the acoustical properties of your sanctuary. Because of the sheer size of most sanctuaries, extra large acoustic panels are recommended for the treatment of the available wall space. These can be custom fabricated on a per order basis. Another option which gives a completely different look as installing lots of smaller panels in multiple columns and/or rows. Whatever method you decide upon will be effective as long as you reach your rooms minimum coverage requirements.
To calculate 20% room coverage simply multiply the square footage dimensions (room length x room width) by .20 The resulting number is how many square feet (sq/ft) of acoustical treatments you will need to make an audible difference in the room's acoustics. Remember 20% coverage is the minimum requirement. Depending upon the size/shape/construction of your space it may be a good idea to exceed the minimum requirement to better enhance the acoustical properties of your space.
Note: Remember that you need to account for the ceiling height when determining your rooms requirements. The previous equation is for room's that have an 8ft-10ft ceilings. So for every extra 8ft increase in room height, your treatment requirements double. If you have a 16ft ceiling multiply the final number by (2). If you have a 24ft ceiling multiply your final number by (3). This will ensure that your room is getting adequate coverage.
If you have any questions about calculating the requirements for your particular room please fill out our FREE ROOM ANALYSIS FORM. You can also send photos of your room to customerservice@NGAcoustics.co
m - Or you can call us to discuss your rooms requirements between 9am-9pm et. @ (336) 684-0287