To control reverberation—the reflection of soundwaves from surfaces—Mark suggests bringing in upholstered furniture, beanbags, or cushions to absorb those soundwaves and thereby attenuate reverberatory noise. Acoustic panels also serve to minimize reverberation.
As the pandemic drags on (and on), many of us must deal with budgetary constraints brought on by a shaky COVID-era economy. Fortunately, DIY acoustic panels can be just as effective as their commercially manufactured counterparts. Homemade sourdough bread failing to provide the satisfaction it did back in early quarantine days? Well, we don’t recommend baking more of it to use as sound absorbent material, but this How To Build Your Own Acoustic Panels tutorial may be worth sacrificing a few hours of Netflix binge.
You can further decrease the disruptive effects of noise from other parts of your home by turning on a small fan in your virtual classroom, as per Eric’s recommendation for home office workers. Though it may seem counterintuitive, sound masking—purposefully generating one sound to drown out others—engenders the perception of a quieter room by subtly raising its ambient noise level.
None of us know how the weeks and months to come will unfold, but if you do need to create a virtual classroom or office at home, we hope you’ve found helpful and actionable ideas here. As always, we welcome your feedback and questions around these and other noise-related challenges, so please don’t hesitate to contact us. Stay safe!