Markets: Houses of Worship

  • Reverberation – Worship spaces often need to have similar acoustical characteristics to a multipurpose auditorium, where there is a balance between good acoustics for speech intelligibility and good acoustics for musical enhancement.  Acoustics will also vary by denomination, building size, and even the specific preferences of the individual congregation.  For example, one Catholic Church may be more traditional with a pipe organ and male choir, where even the spoken word service is sung and high reverberation times are required.  Contrast this with another Catholic Church with a smaller congregation that prefers contemporary music and optimum speech intelligibility, favoring relatively low reverberation times.
  • Speech Privacy/Sound Transmission – Speech privacy is an important consideration in any space where sensitive or private information is discussed.  Religious leaders are counted on to be trusted advisors where conversations must be kept private to protect personal matters.  Sound transmission between spaces is also an issue, particularly in worship buildings with multiple sanctuaries or ministries conducting services at the same time.
  • Background Sound – Excessive background sound levels within a worship space will decrease speech intelligibility and can be a distraction for those attending services.  Both the quality and level of background sound from the HVAC system must be carefully evaluated to ensure a successful design.
  • Audiovisual System Design – Sound reinforcement systems are necessary for almost all modern worship spaces.  A correctly designed system will provide even coverage of sound throughout the space, without distortion, using the full speech and music frequency spectrums.  AEC has the unique capability of making sure the acoustics and sound system are designed to compliment each other.  Video systems are increasingly becoming part of the worship experience, from simple text displays to full motion video.  Recording of worship services, live feeds to overflow areas, and streaming or podcasting services over the internet are becoming popular as well.

Audiovisual System Design

Relying on a contractor to provide an unbiased system design? Think again. Read More >>

Noise and Vibration Control

Control of background sound and vibration levels is important in every building from concert halls and recording studios, to classroom and office buildings. Read More >>

Environmental Acoustics

Noise from the outside environment can be very disruptive to any building, therefore the need for proper acoustical separation from outside environments is key to any building. Read More >>