Healdsburg Community Church
Pastor Dave Jordan-Irwin contacted ASC because of a high RT-60 (echo) in the Sanctuary, and a poor speech intelligibility response. They had already spent a considerable sum installing an electronic noise control system that didn't work. Typically, an acoustic engineer calculates total cubic foot volume of the space to determine how many square feet of absorptive panels need to be installed. The dilemma here is that the recommended RT-60 for speech is 0.8 seconds. And the RT-60 for music to sound clear and strong is 1.8 seconds.
The cubic foot formula can be misleading, however, because of the unique acoustics of churches, and the desired results. An RT-60 that's too low will make the Sanctuary sound too dead, while an RT-60 that's too high will have the congregation gritting their teeth. ASC uses the balloon burst test to determine RT-60 across a range of frequencies, which is far more accurate.
The ASC approach is to use minimal absorption placed in the right places so that both music and speech sound clear and crisp. The first benefit is less cost due to less acoustic panels. The second benefit is a happy congregation that experiences the uplifting inspiration they came for.
ASC uses highly efficient and diffusive SoundPlanks to help soften wall reflections from the praise band. We like to keep them down low where they're needed. We also panelized the SoundPlanks into four foot ready-to-install units.