Noise and Good Design

Noise can interfere with sleep, rest and conversation, causing fatigue, irritability, headaches and stress. Thoughtful design and the selection of materials with high acoustic performance is critical, especially in multi-residential contexts, as it can reduce the impact of noise and improve the quality of life for occupants.

Noise is measured by sound pressure level which is expressed as a power ratio and calibrated in decibels (dB). The intensity of sound can be measured objectively in decibels, but our perception of what constitutes noise is affected by subjective factors. These include the type of noise, one’s mood, time of day, background noise levels and our expectations. Also, sudden noises can be more disturbing than steady or expected noises, and the frequency of noise may also have different impacts.

Good design can aid in the prevention of a noisy environment, and as such protect the quality of life for occupants. There are two main types of noise to be considered when designing a new building: airborne noise, such as a loud radio from a neighbour and structure-borne noise, such as heavy footsteps on floorboards. Several factors should be carefully considered including, but not limiting to site planning, building layout and design, and construction. Each factor must be considered in line with relevant building standards and regulatory requirements.

To aid in the development of good design, the team at Baines Masonry have developed an online fire and acoustic calculator which allows you to quickly and easily select the correct Baines walling solution based on your individual project requirements. The simple tool takes the guesswork out of specification and gives designers and specifiers the peace of mind that they are fully complying with industry requirements and significantly reducing their exposure to liability.

To use the tool, enter a few simple design parameters that include the required wall type, installation environment, acoustic and fire insulation requirements, and the relevant National Construction Code (NCC) requirement. The calculator then instantly provides a tailored shortlist of Baines Masonry products that meet the specified parameters. The shortlist is also provided in printable PDF format, allowing you to retain a hard copy for reference or insertion into tender documents. Try it today!

For information on specific acoustic construction requirements contact a professional builder or local council.

To discuss our range of masonry blocks and how calculator can help you with good design, contact one of our industry experts.


Address 900 Wilton Road Appin NSW 2560
Phone Number (02) 4631 1383
Fax (02) 4631 1402

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