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Sounding Off

sounding off

blog of acoustics, noise, vibration & audio-visual systems

Acoustics By Design received the National and Michigan awards for the 101 Best and Brightest Most Sustainable Companies in 2016. ABD has won the awards every year they have been offered.

101 Best and Brightest Most Sustainable 2016


Erik J Geiger, CTS-D has joined Acoustics By Design in their Portland, OR office as Senior Audiovisual Consultant.
Erik Geiger Senior AV Consultant at Acoustics By Design Portland

When a construction project is underway, who is the best entity to hold the AV contract? Architects design buildings, and construction companies build them. That seems simple enough. While those are the cornerstones of a project, there can be dozens of other companies involved.


by Tim Heneveld on August 23, 2016

Why aren’t more AV projects using fiber communications? Are we just afraid of getting cut by the leading edge of technology, or are there legitimate reasons? Maybe there are just some myths out there that keep us from shifting from copper wire to fiber.



Acoustics By Design, Inc. and Daly-Standlee & Associates, Inc., two leading independent acoustical consulting firms, announced the merger of their businesses, effective April 1, 2016. Acoustics By Design, headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan and Daly-Standlee & Associates in Portland, Oregon, provide a full range of acoustical engineering and consulting, and AV design services to architects, engineers, facilities directors, municipalities, industrial clients and building owners.

abd-dsa-mergerCelebrating the signed agreement on 4/1/2016

We regularly hear from corporate clients regarding closed office privacy concerns. Acoustical challenges of an open office environment are manifold, but crosstalk between closed office spaces, or conference rooms, can be just as distracting. Typically, when these calls come in, we have a standard list of questions that we ask potential clients about their current environment to try to get an understanding of why they feel they have no privacy between closed offices.

Closed Office Speech Privacy


by Tim Hamilton on March 22, 2016

Sometimes when we work with an organization like a church, a school, university, or corporate client, we hear that they already have a tech guy (or girl of course). They’ve had, or recently acquired someone who is responsible for the technical systems. Now that a larger project has come up, the question is inevitably asked, “why should we hire a technical systems designer, when we already have a tech guy?” It’s not that your guy isn’t awesome at what he or she does. It’s actually a completely different discipline.

tech guy

Unfortunately, sometimes it’s the walls, the floor, or the ceiling. It seems like every hospital I’ve visited lately is under construction, renovating their current space or planning for large additions. With all the changes, it’s easy to forget about the “unseen” aspects of the design, such as Mechanical Noise and Vibration Control.


When most people hear about the Acoustic Standards in the LEED for Schools Rating System (LEED v4), their eyes start to glaze over like a pair of day-old Krispy Kremes. With over thirty pages of detailed acoustical design criteria, the ANSI Standards are a force to be reckoned with. What are the basic principles of acoustical design that will “LEED” to enhanced learning environments, happy school board officials, and of course… impressive LEED scores?

Acoustics and LEED for Schools

Finding a quiet place to live can be tricky business and can take a bit of time. Research, multiple visits, and looking for red flags are all necessary steps if you want to live in peace and quiet.

Look for Red Flags


When the noise from the condo or apartment unit above sounds like your neighbor’s favorite shoes are a pair of bricks, it can be a struggle. It’s not just multi-family and mixed-use units, single family homes can fall prey to unwanted noises that move from room to room. If you’re looking for some DIY option to help with the echo in your home – please see The Resonance in Your Residence Part 1. Here, we’re talking about those annoying noises from upstairs or next door.

Your upstairs neighbor's favorite pair of shoes


You’ve just moved into your new home, or maybe you recently did some renovations and there it is – noise. Unwanted sound right where you live. There’s an echo, a hum, or you can hear everything going on next door, every footstep above, and the traffic outside is louder than you thought. You love your home, but the sound is making you crazy.

Residential Acoustics


Taking the Din out of Dinner

January 15, 2016

Working with an independent acoustical consultant in your restaurant design and construction, or renovation process can help “Take The Din Out of Dinner.”

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2015 Best And Brightest Winner

December 21, 2015

As 2015 comes to a close, Acoustics By Design is delighted to be among this year’s National Best and Brightest Companies To Work For.

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Conference Room BYOD

December 2, 2015

BYOD in your conference room might be just what you need to get everyone collaborating, and all your devices working together.

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Peeking into the Fitness Center

November 18, 2015

It seems like a good idea; a fitness center in your building. It’s so convenient! Unless of course, you want some peace and quiet.

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Plan Ahead for Vibration

November 4, 2015

Vibration can be a determining factor in the success of many projects. Are you considering vibration for the people who will be in the building?

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Why Can’t We Just Do Wireless Video?

October 21, 2015

When a technical system design project includes video, we are asked the same question, “Can we do wireless video for that?” It sounds like a great idea. But…

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Plan Ahead For University Radio and TV Studios

October 7, 2015

The acoustics of University studios can make or break the student experience. Plan ahead, before you go on air.

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Acoustics and AVL – Early or Often

September 2, 2015

When the first call or email comes in about a new project it’s important to ask if the project is for renovating an existing space, or new construction. It’s an important question because the approach to each type of project is different. We’re brought in after a space is occupied about as frequently as when […]

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