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floor covering sound properties

Discussion in 'Stage Management and Facility Operations' started by duckydave, Oct 4, 2009.

  1. duckydave

    duckydave New Member

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    We have a theater with masonite covering the stage floor and our music dept wants us to remove our covering because it effects the orchestra and choir concerts. All of my knowledge of sound and working in theater says bull it would only be only minor if any effect. To top it one of the teachers suggested that the tape used to cover the seems aborbs the sound. The amount of time to remove the cover and put back down out weighs the difference it would make . Can you weigh in on this for me.Thanks.
  2. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    And just what, Pray tell, would they have you cover it in ? I'm sorry, Tape absorbing sound ? God sometimes I really hate musicians. No offense anyone.
  3. mstaylor

    mstaylor Well-Known Member

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    I would ask the tape expert how they managed to say that with a straight face. If they are trying to say masonite is absorbing the sound then they full of stuff. Have they never preformed on risers that have carpet on them? Many risers are covered in two finishes, carpet and, gasp, masonite.
  4. derekleffew

    derekleffew Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    What's under the Masonite? Most likely pine T&G flooring. Perhaps you can get a physics teacher involved, one who can explain to the Music Dept. that the differences in acoustic absorption and reflectance between Masonite and wood is negligible at best.

    Unless your theatre is actually a world class concert hall along the lines of Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Music Dept. should have much more important issues than the stage floor surface. Theatres don't make very good concert halls for a variety of reasons, but the stage floor covering is not one of them.
  5. SHARYNF

    SHARYNF Well-Known Member

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    the only thing I could possible think of is if the floor covering is loose and it rattles??? other than that it would be interesting to hear exactly what the music department specific sound issue is, not what they think is causing it but what is the sound characteristic they are having problems with

    Sharyn
  6. museav

    museav CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    As far as absorption coefficients, probably little or no difference and any change could go either way depending on the actual surface finishes and what is the alternative flooring. The one thing I could see is that if the Masonite floor is sprung or on some form of resilient underlayment, then they might have a legitimate argument as far as cellos, basses, tympani, etc. that rely on direct coupling to the floor.

    There is often a large psychoacoustic effect with wood, often well beyond the actual physical impact. Often related to many instruments being made of wood, wood finishes are often perceived by musicians as being 'warm' and 'resonant' while flat, monolithic materials may be perceived as 'cold' and 'harsh' regardless of the actuality.

    As far as the tape, ask them whether they plan to play in the nude since the musicians wearing clothes would probably relate to much more absorption than the tape. :rolleyes:
  7. hsaunier

    hsaunier Active Member

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    Got my laugh for the morning. Thanks Brad
  8. stevene

    stevene New Member

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    Fair Dinkum - haven't they heard of carpet...

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