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CTS Audio - Bethel Church

Bethel Lutheran’s WallMate Installation

By Ted Weidman

I was contacted by Brian Pearce from CTS Audio in Franklin, TN about a project where a church needed to introduce some absorption behind their band area.  The following is a short write up about the installation at the Bethel Lutheran Church.

When I was first contacted by Brian, he explained that he was working with a church to acoustically tune the area where the band was performing because the sound was simply too live.  He told me that the band was performing in an area to the right of the pews, and that the surfaces that surrounded them were exclusively hard surfaces that reflected a great deal of sound.  He expressed the concern about the proposed solution being as visually inconspicuous as possible which a common concern in situations like this is.  Brian also mentioned that he wanted to get a two-inch thick acoustical panel into the area based on the kinds of sounds that he wanted to absorb.

Brian and I talked about two possibilities, our Fabric Wrapped Fiberglass panels as well as the WallMate high-tension wall system.  After some discussion, we decided that the pre-fabricated fiberglass panels were going to be cost-prohibitive for this job which leads us to the product that you see in the photos below.  

There are pros and cons to any kind of acoustical treatment, and determining the best approach or product is usually determined by weighing out the pros and cons.  One limiting factor to the WallMate product is that we are only able to make the track in a depth of 1 1/16” which requires some additional work if one is looking to use a 2” thick core.  Since that was the desired approach in this case, Brian had no trouble taking a true 1×2 piece of wood, wrapping it with fabric and screwing it to the wall.  This piece of wood acts like a hidden stand-off to increase the depth of the overall system.  Using the installation instructions found on the website, Brian then screwed the WallMate track to the wrapped plywood and continued to assemble the system.

Once the track is on the wall, the Echo Eliminator panels can be cut and glued into place.  I would suggest buying one of our ASI Knife Blades if one is doing multiple cuts.  This is an 8” round blade that fits into most table saws.  It has no teeth on it, and is usually described as a round razor blade – or a big pizza knife.  This is truly the fastest and cleanest way to field cut the panels.

A fabric from our standard line was chosen to blend in with the existing color of the wall, and the fabric was applied to the track.  When the track is snapped shut, tension is pulled in all directions toward the perimeter of the panel creating a smooth, monolithic look.  For this installation, some additional prep work had to be done to accommodate for a large HVAC register shown below.

The final report was that the sound generated by the musicians is much more true and clear.  The customer is very happy with the result considering the increase in sound quality as well as the discreet aesthetic of the installation.  Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about this installation.

Ted Weidman

Acoustical Surfaces Inc.

123 Columbia Court N.

Chaska, MN  55318

  1. 800.527.6253 (ext.25)
  2. 952.448.2613
  3. [email protected]