How to Reduce Reverberation

By Anthony Smith

Reverberation can be understood easily if you think of it as the echoes that continue after an initial sound. It is noticeable in buildings or outdoor areas that have walls that reflect sound instead of absorbing it well. To create an audio recording studio, to keep noise down in a busy office or for other reasons, designers or those modifying a room often want to reduce reverberation.

Identify materials in the room that are highly sound reflective. Common building materials that contribute to high reverberation are concrete, tile, wood flooring, brick and glass.

Obtain and install sound-absorbent materials over those identified in Step 1. Sound-absorbent materials include heavy pleated drapes, fiberglass board, page board, and sprayed-on cellulose fiber. One easy method to reduce reverberation: Cover hard floors with thick carpet, then hang heavy drapes from floor to ceiling.

Reduce reverberation in sound recording applications by placing the microphone very close to the sound source. This will reduce reverberated sound that reaches the microphone. Have vocalists sing with their lips right next to the microphone.

Use a directional microphone with Hypercardioid and Supercardioid patterns when recording to further reduce reverberation. These are types of microphone pickup patterns designed to reject more of the room's ambient sounds.

About the Author

Anthony Smith began writing for Demand Studios in May of 2009 and has since written over 1400 articles for them. He also writes for "The College Baseball Newsletter." He attended the University of New Mexico, and has more than 25 years of experience in the business world.