If you’ve ever spent time in a crowded restaurant, bar, or nightspot on a Saturday night, you probably know that restaurant acoustics are often terrible. It's a shame, because a good acoustical environment will make people stay longer and buy more food. We aren't saying the ideal restaurant acoustics should make your place sound dead quiet. In fact, a good acoustic treatment will reduce the muddy sounds, echo and reverberation, leaving a lively buzz, but much greater clarity of sound.
Many owners mistakenly attribute loud noise to a positive user experience - "It’s a noisy, busy fun place to be." Sure, noise can be a good thing - but only if it’s controlled. Diners don’t want to be bothered by the reverberation of other people’s conversations, the echoes caused by the clanging and banging in the kitchen or even the traffic outside. If your wait staff or customers have to shout to be heard, you have a problem. Patrons don’t just visit restaurants for the food. They go out to eat for the entire experience.
Restaurant Acoustic Treatments
How can I improve my restaurant's acoustics affordably?
Many restaurant owners turn to Audimute Acoustic Panels for affordable acoustic absorption. Read Deagan's Kitchen and Bar case study for more information about enhancing your Restaurant Acoustics. Audimute's acoustic panels absorb up to 100% of the echoes and reverb from mid- to high-frequencies, those of voices, high pitch machinery, plates and glasses clanging.
Recent studies such as the Zagat Survey (which reviewed more than 15,000 restaurants across the nation) show that poor restaurant acoustics is the second most common complaint amongst restaurant-goers (second only to poor service!).
Why are restaurant acoustics important?
More than 27 million Americans are hearing impaired - and this number is growing as Baby Boomers age. Did you know that by age 50, 20% of Americans experience hearing loss?
To ensure that this growing need for better restaurant acoustics is recognized, the OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) has come out with regulations for restaurant noise reduction. For example:
- A hearing conservation program must be implemented when restaurant employees are exposed to 85 dB or more in an 8 hour day
- Engineering or administrative restaurant noise reduction is required when exposure exceeds 90dB - this means owners must take measures to improve restaurant acoustics with the help of sound control products such as Audimute Acoustic Panels or Peacemaker Sound Insulation.
Not following the OSHA restaurant noise reduction standards is an expensive mistake! Restaurant owners can be penalized anywhere between $5000 - $70,000 if they ignore restaurant acoustics. In 2002, for example, total penalties for OSHA violations exceeded $72.8 MILLION!
How can Audimute Help?
We understand the importance of design and décor in a restaurant, having worked with many different in the past. What makes us different than our competition is our ability to incorporate that design element into your space without disturbing the aesthetics, all while adding our highly functional soundproofing products. We understand restaurant acoustics and all the materials that can be used to solve your problem. Whether restaurant owners want rustic looking shapes, large custom image panels or anything else, we can make it happen.
If sound is an issue in your restaurant, contact our experts today. Give customers a wonderful experience and they will surely be back to dine again soon.