The Difference Between Masking Noise and White Noise

The Difference Between Masking Noise and White Noise

A growing body of evidence indicates that consistent exposure to noise causes both psychological and physiological consequences. In fact, noises exceeding 40 decibels begin to disrupt mood and stress levels in people exposed to sounds slightly louder than office noises. As decibels rise, researchers find that those hearing louder noises experience increases in blood pressure, stress hormones, and feelings of irritation and resentment. 

Most offices seem quiet enough, right? Employees are either sitting at their desks working, talking on the phone, or using computers to perform various tasks. However, researchers have discovered that certain sounds called “environmental noise” can distract employees without them being aware of it. Background noises like keyboard typing, the hum of air conditioners, footsteps, and even barely audible speech are a few examples of workplace sounds that subconsciously interfere with a person’s ability to focus on their job. 

White Noise or Masking Noise: Which is the Better Option for Business Managers?

What is White Noise?

White noise is composed of all sound spectrum frequencies that are the same in measure. When most people think of white noise, they think of those white noise sleep machines that play a softer type of static heard in between radio stations. People use white noise machines to help drown out sounds that disturb their sleep, like traffic, dogs barking, or household noises. Although white noise does mask some sounds, it simply does this on a superficial level by utilizing all frequencies of sound to basically overpower specific frequencies of sound. 

What is Masking Noise?

Masking noise, or sound masking, does much more than muffle noises that disturb sleep. In fact, sound masking has become an integral part of business environments subjected to the constant buzz of noises over 40 decibels. 

Sound masking systems work similarly to noise-canceling headphones. A state-of-the-art sound masking system evaluates the frequency of ambient sound using an analytic algorithm and then counteracts ambient sound by emitting sound frequencies that depress ambient noise. The frequency or frequencies issued by a sound masking system has no sound since it is designed to coordinate with more consolidated noises in an enclosed environment.

Features and Benefits of Sound Masking Systems

  • When professionally installed, a sound masking system for offices and business spaces can be concealed in floors or ceilings. They take up little to no space wherever they need to be installed.
  • Sound masking reduces the ability for others to hear human speech, which enhances a sense of privacy desired by employees who work within any size office.
  • Minimizes or potentially eliminates audible distractions emanating from inside and outside an office environment.
  • Much more cost-effective and efficient than relying on white noise machines. Business managers using white noise machines to mask noise would have to place a white noise machine near each noise source. 
  • Sound masking systems can be implemented in all types of work areas, including large cooperate offices, banks, healthcare centers, financial institutions, and many more.

Communications Solutions provides superior sound masking systems to businesses in Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Palm Coast, and all other areas in northeast Florida. Call 904-777-6656 today to learn how you can make your work environment more productive and dynamic with a sound masking system from Communications Solutions.



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