Tradesmen

ton-pennings

Dutch tradesman Ton Pennings specialises in the application of acoustic systems. In this interview, he describes the procedure for applying and installing acoustic systems.

Drents Museum, Assen, Netherlands

Sparkasse-Kufstein Drents Museum, Assen, Netherlands
  • Mr Pennings, what constitutes a well-designed acoustic system?

T. Pennings: First things first, the physical appearance of an acoustic system has a key role to play. Whatever the solution, it should look clean and elegant in all lighting conditions, however the light falls. Just take the seamless systems from Sto, for example: if they are correctly installed, the distance between the boards is no more than 0.2 millimetres. At most! Then we know for sure that they've been fitted absolutely flat and evenly - that is to say, seamlessly. And on top of this, the systems have a whole host of performance requirements to fulfil. These are agreed with the client in advance.

  • Do architects take a lot of convincing when it comes to acoustic systems?

T. Pennings: They often prefer a smooth ceiling surface area and disregard the acoustics at first. But that's understandable, of course, as acoustic systems certainly shouldn't compromise the positive overall impression of a room. That said, the solutions available today – such as the acoustic systems from Sto – provide a functional alternative with exceptional aesthetic appeal. Our task as planners and tradesmen is clear: we provide two different calculations by drawing up one option without acoustic measures and another with these in place. This calculation allows us to highlight the added value that an acoustic system can offer. The client can then make an informed decision on this basis. The calculation often speaks for itself.

  • What does good acoustic consultation involve?

T. Pennings: It all comes down to providing a comprehensive concept. Acoustics consultants start by discussing acoustic performance with the client as well as the expectations of the room as a whole. Next on the agenda for finding the ideal system is calculating the reverberation level. Additional services are available on top of the standard package, such as the installation of voltage rails, LED lighting, and a complete extraction system. In a nutshell, a good acoustic system doesn't just come down to acoustic properties, it also takes into account all interior architectural requirements, from lighting to heating and cooling.

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