Product design and development for noise and vibration

ISVR Consulting works with manufacturers, developers, design engineers or industrial design consultants to improve the noise or sound produced by a product. 

In some cases, though not all, the sound or noise will need to be reduced. We can identify the main sources of noise and vibration within a product, then make changes to make the product quieter.  Sometimes the noise will need to be inaudible, for example, a hard-drive or DVD recorder should not be noticeable at a normal distance. 

Sometimes the problem may be a slight rattle or buzz.  Curing a distracting sound, without necessarily making the product quieter, will improve the purchaser’s perception of build quality, solidity, reliability, and value.

Often noise may be an intrisic or intentional feature of a product.  For example, a vacuum cleaner needs to sound powerful, with a smooth spectrum of airflow noise.  But any additonal buzzes, whines, whistles or harshness will be annoying and detract from the build quality and a user’s satisfaction.

Occasionally products need to be made louder, or made to be more efficient as sound sources.  For example, alarm sounders or acoustic beacons usually need to be small, consume little electrical power, and yet be loud enough to be effective and to meet international standards.

Working in conjunction with the manufacturer or designer, we systematically review the key noise and vibration features of a product and suggest refinements to the design.  Common aspects that may need attention include casings, cooling fans, motors, isolation mounts, ventilation ducts, and absorbent liners. Sometimes one change can make a large difference to the sound; often several small changes and attention to detail will give a marked improvement.

A wide range of products have undergone development at ISVR Consulting, with common examples including:  

The scope of work may range from the modification of an existing product, to the manufacture of pre-production prototypes to showcase the benefits of acoustical design.  We can also benchmark equipment to assess how the sound of a product compares to competitors, and to highlight sound quality in marketing material.

By discussing the design concept and constraints at the start, we can ensure our changes or recommendations are practical and cost effective.

Component placement

Work may be carried out on behalf of component suppliers to show the potential benefits of installing their component within a product.  

Testing and standards

Products often need to meet requirements of British and International Standards for sound power, noise and vibration. Noise and vibration levels are often required in product brochures or marketing materials as well as specifications.  ISVR Consulting can carry out testing to these standards in our specialist laboratories which include a large anechoic and two reverberant chambers as well as our product development lab