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Masonry and Sound Control - homeDESIGNstl - homeDESIGNstl

Masonry and Sound Control

With urban density increasing, living spaces growing smaller, and entertainment media expanding fast, acoustic privacy is a precious commodity. The ability to relax in a quiet space (or to blast the surround sound without disturbing neighbors) has become a valuable selling point in today’s residential market.

Sound transmission loss between interior spaces is measured in a prescribed way and reported in a standard rating called Sound Transmission Class (STC). Building codes require minimum STC ratings for certain partitions, such as those between separate dwelling units in multifamily housing projects. Partitions constructed of relatively heavy, dense material like masonry effectively stop the vibrations through which sound is transmitted and achieve relatively high STC ratings without special treatment. By incorporating air space, sound insulation or other details within a masonry assembly, a designer can provide extraordinary levels of acoustic privacy between living spaces.

Another measure, Outdoor Indoor Transmission Class (OITC), is used to rate the effectiveness of sound control from outside to interior space, and it takes lower frequency sounds into account. Of five different types of exterior cladding tested in a major study undertaken by the National Research Council of Canada, masonry in the form of a 4-inch brick veneer provided the highest OITC rating and was said to represent a desirable performance standard.

If what you want is a place for a little peace and quiet, masonry is the sound choice for designers, builders and consumers.

Resource: www.imiweb.org – International Masonry Institute

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