FAQ

Snowsound Acoustic Panels FAQs

Learn more about Snowsound Acoustic Panel technology, it's inspiration, how it differs from other acoustic solutions, technical details and how to use it to improve your space.

With the growing need for acoustic comfort in spaces, Snowsound® introduces a line of acoustic solutions that architects, designers and project owners no longer need to hide. The products are as beautiful they are functional, and not only does Snowsound® create a more comfortable acoustic environment, but it also enhances the aesthetics of any given space. Design partners that include Michele De Lucchi, Alberto Meda, and Alessandro Mendini elevate the design integrity of the spaces they’re incorporated into. The colors, shapes and sizes as well as their ease of installation make them the most flexible and user-friendly acoustic panels, with the broadest spectrum of application and mounting possibilities, thus providing a solution for any project need.

Inspired by nature, Snowsound® panels use a patented composition of sound absorbing material that mimics the properties of freshly fallen snow. An industrial invention of material comprised of variable densities allows the panels to selectively absorb the optimal amount of sound from each frequency category. This selective absorption optimizes the acoustical environment, without eliminating key sounds.

Snowsound improves sound by absorbing echoes and reverberation without eliminating all sound, creating natural sounding peace and quiet. The panels act as acoustic equalizers and close the gaps between the different frequencies in a space, which leaves necessary sound without the feeling of noise. Through the use of variable density material, the panels can treat all frequencies in the acoustic spectrum as opposed to focusing on limited ranges.

Based on the dimensions of the room, height of the ceiling, purpose of the room and the material of the room surfaces, our technical team calculates the optimal number of panels for the space. Since acoustic sensitivity between individuals can vary to some degree, and because rooms may have some constraints, our quantity recommendation is usually given in a range, from better to best.

Flexibility and ease of use are two of Snowsound®’s greatest features. Because sound travels at over 1,000 feet/second, Snowsound® panels will absorb the unwanted sound frequencies no matter how they are arranged or placed; as long as the panels are evenly distributed in the space, optimal sound absorption will be achieved. The panels are manufactured complete as one unit, which allows simple mounting and customization in specifying the desired layout.

Several characteristics differentiate Snowsound® from other acoustic solutions on the market:

  • Snowsound® products are manufactured using a patented sound absorbing material with variable densities, which allows the panels to be the market leader in sound absorption effectiveness with NRC ratings of 1.0 for all panel designs.
  • The patented and award winning Snowsound® technology behind our product enables the panels to achieve acoustic correction and balance: the inner core of our panels is made of variable density polyester, which allows the panels to selectively absorb the optimal amount of sound from all frequency categories in the spectrum, resulting in the most advanced acoustic correction to eliminate echo and reverberation.
  • Snowsound® acoustic panels can be free standing, desktop standing, wall mounted, ceiling suspended and ceiling mounted. Their ease of installation, convenience and flexibility of application make Snowsound® panels the primary choice for immediate and retrofit acoustic solution needs.
  • Panels are made entirely of polyester, 100% recyclable, and GREENGUARD Gold Certified to meet sustainability and evironmental health standards for green buildings.
  • Complex manufacturing yields a complete single unit, double-sided panel, without any fabrication or assembly required. The absence of an airspace or cavity between the outer fabric and sound-absorbing core significantly decreases the accumulation of dust and the panels are easy to clean with mild cleanser. The frameless design also gives Snowsound® panels a completely sound absorbing surface; no other material is present to hinder the sound-absorbency or reflect part of the sound.
  • Snowsound® Acoustic Panels are designed by some of Europe’s most renowned architects and designers, giving project owners the ability to solve acoustic problems while enhancing the aesthetics of their space. Available in 12 colors and a multitude of application hardware, Snowsound® panels improve both the acoustics and aesthetics of any environment.
  • Some manufacturers of other acoustic panels boast that their panels are most absorptive at higher frequencies. However, it is not something to boast about. By nature, the higher frequencies are easiest to absorb, and are absorbed by objects and people in the room. If a concert hall is being fitted with acoustic panels, it would be a mistake to use ordinary panels that are most absorptive at the highest frequencies – this would drown out the sound of the high pitched instruments like the violin and create an imbalanced acoustic performance. While it is typical for current acoustic panels to absorb more of the high frequencies, Snowsound® technology intentionally diffuses a bit of these high frequencies in order to maintain the acoustic balance of spaces to create the most optimal acoustic environment, making Snowsound® Acoustic Panels entirely unique.

All panel designs weigh less than 1lb. / sq. foot. All panels have a standard thickness of 1.5"

In the simplest possible terms, a NRC (or Noise Reduction Coefficient) is the number that represents the effectiveness of a material at absorbing sound. The NRC is a single-number determined in a lab test and used for rating how absorptive a particular material is. This industry standard ranges from 0 to 1*. It is simply the average of the mid-frequency sound absorption coefficients (250, 500, 1000 and 2000 Hertz).

*Based on the testing methodology, and depending upon the material's shape or surface area, some products can test at an NRC above 1.

Sound absorption testing was conducted by Istituto Giordano using the (UNI EN) ISO 354:2003 standard, obtaining CLASS A sound absorption according to ISO 11654 standards. This ISO 354 test is comparable to ASTM C423 (Standard Test Method for Sound Absorption and Sound Absorption Coefficients by the Reverberation Room Method).

Additional sound absorption testing was done by Laboratoria Di Acoustica of MATERIACOUSTICA, a research and engineering lab specialized in acoustics and vibration according to ISO 10534-2, which is comparable to ASTM C384 (Standard Test Method for Impedance and Absorption of Acoustical Materials by Impedance Tube Method).

Snowsound® Acoustic Panels have an NRC of 1.0 for all panel designs.

Snowsound® Acoustic Panels are CLASS A Flame Spread and Smoke Development (UL 723 / ASTM E-84)

The key difference between NRC and STC is that NRC is used to rate materials that absorb sound, while STC is used to rate materials that block sound. The design of Snowsound® Acoustic Panels to absorb sound rather than eliminate sound was intentional: the panels purposefully allow some of the high frequencies to persist, in order to keep the acoustics balanced and prevent the muting of these essential sounds. The goal of Snowsound® is therefore not to eliminate sound, but to clarify it and enhance it, to make for a more pleasant and comfortable acoustic environment.

Snowsound® Acoustic Panels can be ordered in your area through our authorized dealers. If there is not a dealer in your area, please contact us directly at orders@snowsoundusa.com and we will facilitate the order.

Designed by world renowned architects and interior designers, Snowsound® panels are the most contemporary acoustic panels on the market. Mitesco was designed by Michele De Lucchi; Flap was designed by Alberto and Francesco Meda; and Corista was designed by Lorenzo Palmeri. New products debuted at NeoCon 2015 include designs by Marc Sadler, Alessandro Mendini, Sezgin Aksu and Lorenzo Damiani.

Delivery lead time for Standard orders can be as soon as 1-2 weeks, but up to 6 weeks, depending on panel color, size and quantity availability. Special orders will maintain a lead time of at most 10-12 weeks. Please contact your Snowsound® Dealer for exact availability.

Snowsound® panels are extremely easy to clean due to their durable surface. The absence of airspace or a cavity between the outer fabric and sound absorbing inner material significantly decreases the accumulation of dust. Panels can be vacuumed (lightly) with a clean upholstery brush. For spots, warm water on a clean sponge or towel can be used to dab the area. The area can air dry or dry on low with a hairdryer.

Snowsound® Acoustic Panels are designed and manufactured in Italy.

Snowsound® USA is a division of Atlantic Inc. and is headquartered in Los Angeles, California.

To apply for Representation or Dealership, please contact us directly through the contact tab on our website at www.snowsoundusa.com/contact

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Snowsound Fiber Acoustic Textiles FAQs

Learn more about Snowsound Fiber technology, how it differs from other fabrics and textiles, technical details, and how to use it to improve your space.

Snowsound-Fiber is a new collection of sound absorbing textiles. The first of its kind to offer a true acoustic solution in the form of a fabric, Snowsound-Fiber can transform the acoustics of a space while serving as an authentic design element. Available in 44 color / texture combinations, Snowsound-Fiber serves as a premier acoustic solution for architects and designers to integrate into projects in the form of drapes, curtains, ceiling canopies, window shades, roller shades, and space dividers.

The collection comes in six award-winning and inherently flame-resistant textures aimed at reducing echo, making conversations more understandable and achieving acoustic comfort in the space they’re applied. Produced in Italy, Snowsound-Fiber blends technology and aesthetics to embody design and functionality.

Snowsound-Fiber’s patented technology is based on a precise weave composition of soft, interwoven polyester acoustic fibers that create a sound absorbing net. The sound absorption technology is activated as the air (sound energy) passes through the fabric weave, eliminating reverberation by dissipating and absorbing the sound energy. The textiles can achieve a range of NRC ratings depending on how they’re installed, but in the most effective installation modes, they can achieve an NRC of 1.0.

Inspired by nature, the Snowsound brand is based on the sound absorbing properties of freshly fallen snow. Using principals of biomimicry, our engineers developed the Snowsound-Fiber patented technology using nature’s snow as a guide. The reason it’s so quiet outside after snowfall is because of the various layers and air gaps in the snowpack as it falls. Similarly, Snowsound Fiber textiles use variable density air gaps in the weave of our textiles to yield a similar sound absorbing peace-and-quiet effect.

Snowsound-Fiber solutions are effective and practical both as Day 1 or Day 2 solutions to acoustically correct a space while contributing to the interior décor. Utilizing Snowsound’s patented software technology, architects and designers can simulate the impact of including Snowsound-Fiber in their project during the planning and design phase as well as post-construction as a retrofit solution.

Installing Snowsound-Fiber textiles can correct acoustic reverberation in built environments, where retrofitting existing walls and ceilings is neither affordable, practical, nor desirable. Installers can easily apply textiles to ceilings and walls without interfering with existing space conditions.

Open workspaces often need a combination of acoustic comfort, privacy, pleasant ambience and reduction in outside sunlight. Snowsound-Fiber textiles are effective in providing all these solutions.

Many modern buildings use hard, sound-reflective material surfaces, such as concrete, glass, metal and drywall, among others. Snowsound-Fiber used as drapes, curtains and shades reduce environmental noise. The product absorbs sound that reflects off hard surfaces, eliminating unwanted reverberation. Reducing echo and softening the sound in the workplace improves productivity, concentration and the conversation, ultimately contributing to employee’s wellbeing in the workplace.

Snowsound-Fiber is most effectively used as an acoustic solution in the form of drapes, roller shades, dividers, window shades, curtains, partitions and canopies. These applications allow the textiles to provide the ultimate performance in sound absorption. Additionally, Snowsound-Fiber’s nature as a fabric element, which has existed in commercial interiors for years, allows specifiers to make a meaningful impact on a space’s functionality without a significantly new learning curve.

Snowsound-Fiber technology can balance an environment’s acoustics with precision —though various installation modes, adjusting the fabric’s fullness (flat or wavy), as well as the distance it’s applied from the wall or position in a room.
In addition to the product application flexibility and versatility in mounting, there are a myriad of different pleats to the drapery, as well as different forms such as flat or wavy. This allows for endless opportunities in the way the textile can take form in a space. As long as the product maintains an air space on either side, the acoustic benefits will be realized.

The availability of a flexible textile collection that performs as an acoustic solution - beyond the traditional options of rigid acoustic panels – broadens the designer’s palette of choices for applying acoustic solutions to new and existing offices, schools, restaurants, call centers and public gathering environments. Textiles provide a softer and more flexible solution for healthcare and hospitality as well, compared to traditional fabric wrapped panels and the like.

Snowsound-Fiber is unique in that it allows designers to continue using curtains and draperies in spaces as they always have, but now with a true dual purpose as not only design, but also sound absorption. This addresses the challenge of trying to integrate more products into the workspace that may not have existed before. Snowsound-Fiber offers a natural fit.

Designers can use the same matching textiles for complementary upholstered furniture. Upholstered products allow for a uniform textile theme within the environment. Designers no longer must sacrifice form for function.

Snowsound-Fiber can be easily applied in a space, removed, washed, and repurposed elsewhere without losing any of its sound absorbing or flame-resistant properties. Because of the various textures and colors, it can be seamlessly co-specified with commercial furniture and architectural finishes.

Snowsound-Fiber is the first sound absorbing textile collection to offer NRC ratings up to 1.0 across multiple textures and fabric thicknesses. It is also the only sound absorbing textile line with a patented technology. Precise ratios of air gaps in the textiles were scientifically calculated to achieve Class A NRC sound absorption beyond that of even many existing padded acoustic panels with infills. Other polyester textile structures cannot perform at the same sound absorption level and maintain a broad array of design focused texture offerings and tactile perceptions. Despite their thin and flexible construction, the Snowsound-Fiber achieves significantly better sound absorption than other heavier, thicker materials. Textile weight varies from 0.6 oz. to 15.07 oz. per square yard.

These Class A fire resistant fabrics are 100% recyclable, Greenguard Gold Certified and can be washed without losing sound absorbing properties or color.
Their light-weight characteristics also make installation much easier than other textiles, while the thin weave also prevents dust collection compared to thicker drapery fabrics. When it comes to fabrication, Snowsound Textiles do not require any backing and are naturally double-sided, which is a significant benefit for both the workroom and client as it improves the aesthetics and lowers the labor cost.

These Snowsound-Fiber textiles can also be used together with Snowsound Panels to create a harmonious, flexible and cost-effective solution for offices, healthcare spaces, schools, and public gathering environments.

Utilizing Snowsound’s patented software technology, architects and designers can simulate the impact of including a combination of Snowsound-Fiber and Snowsound Panels in their project during the planning and design phase as well as post-construction as a retrofit solution.

Designers have 44 texture/color combinations across 6 texture families from which to choose. These sound absorbing textiles can be used in any application that traditional textiles have been used in – but now as an acoustic solution. In particular, Snowsound-Fiber is most effective when used as drapes, roller shades, dividers, window shades, curtains, partitions, sheers, upholstery, and canopies. The possibilities are endless.

Based on ceiling height, and square footage of the room, our Snowsound acoustic analysis software can help recommend how much coverage is needed to mitigate echo and optimize the acoustic comfort of the space.

Recent studies have found that we waste 86 minutes per day because of sound distractions. Further, 31% of workplace personnel must leave the office to complete their work in a quieter place. Without dividers between employees, interruptions happen about every 11 minutes. Then, it takes 25 minutes to regain maximum focus on the interrupted task.

A national survey conducted jointly by ESI Ergonomic Solutions and OnePoll exposed millennial’s top concerns in the workplace. Significantly, 25% of participants cited “Ability to Control Noise Level” as the most important element affecting work productivity and personal wellness.

All six fiber textiles are 100% flame resistant, 100% recyclable and maintain a very thin profile ranging from 0.6 to 1.7 mm. All but Fiber 2R are machine washable up to 86 degrees Fahrenheit, can be ironed on low heat, and can be dry cleaned. Fiber 2R can only be spot cleaned.

Fiber 1 even contains silver ion technology, anchored to the DNA of the polyester fibers, which prevents bacterial growth on the textile. The effect is permanent and is not affected by either washing or usage, which can be particularly useful for healthcare environments.

All Snowsound Fiber textiles are double-sided with no backing for maximum sound absorption and uniform appearance from both sides. Fiber 8 even has a different texture on front and back. These textiles are constructed from soft interwoven, polyester, fire resistant fibers, weighing 6.5 to 41.1 oz. per linear yard. All but Fiber 2 and 2R textiles can be used as “blackout” curtains in that they block light transmission.

Snowsound-Fiber textiles are manufactured with superior materials and quality control with a lifetime warranty against manufacturing defects. The improved quality compared to typical polyester textiles is due to the precise control taken in producing the finished textile from the raw yarn. Snowsound owns and controls all production processes with precise attention to protecting the sound absorbing characteristics of the material. The slightest variation in color, temperature, and other variables when creating a textile can affect the acoustic properties. As such, special care and control is taken in every step of the production process. Color variations between dye lots are insignificant.

Fiber 1, 3, 6, and 8 can be used as upholstery, passing Martindale Abrasion resistance tests up to 65,000 rubs. All are Colorfast to Light and Crocking (Grade 7 Light and 4/5 wet and dry). Their Propensity to Surface Fuzzing and Pilling (Grade 5) shows “no change.”

All fibers are 100% flame resistant, Greenguard Gold Certified and 100% recyclable. They are machine washable, can be ironed on low heat, and can be dry cleaned – without compromising color, flame resistance or sound absorbing properties. The entire textile collection has been tested and meets Class A / Pass status for all industry required flame resistance tests, including NFPA 701, NFPA 260, CAL TB 117, UL 723 and ASTM E84.

Fiber 2 and 2R are used primarily for Window Shades, Roller Shades, and Sheers. They have been tested for Solar / Light / UV Transmittance, Reflectance, Absorption, Glare Control, Night Privacy, Daylight Utilization, Secondary Heat Transfer, and Shading Coefficient.

All six Snowsound-Fiber textiles are made entirely of 100% recyclable, fire-resistant polyester fiber. There is no felt or other organic materials which would be difficult to recycle. Formaldehyde or other hazardous chemicals are not used.
In fact, Snowsound-Fiber textiles are Greenguard Gold certified for commercial use, validating their low emissions specifications and their contribution to environmental quality. The textiles have been independently tested and certified to meet UL’s rigorous third-party Greenguard Gold certification standards, among the most stringent in the world. To help reduce indoor air pollution, architects, designers, specifiers and building owners can use Snowsound-Fiber with comfort, knowing they’re preventing the release of possible pollutants.

Greenguard standards screen for over 10,000 chemicals. Greenguard Gold certified products offer stricter certification criteria for sensitive individuals, such as children and the elderly. They are ideal for use in schools and healthcare facilities.

Earning this certificate helps to acquire credits within the framework of the Indoor Environmental Quality section in the LEED, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, buildings assessment system.

Contact your local dealer or representative. If you need help, please call us at:
562.903.9550 ext. 2
Monday - Thursday 8am-5pm
Friday 8am-4:30pm.

Email: info@snowsoundusa.com

Snowsound Fiber textiles are sold in bolts of pre-set lengths (6.5, 8.7 or 27.3 yards) and widths 55 to 118 inches. Please refer to the Fiber Textiles section of the Product Specifications Catalog for details.

Our North American distribution center in Los Angeles stocks a wide selection of the colors and textures offered in the collection. If not stocked, products can be imported from Italy in 8-12 weeks.

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