AirHush® modular sound-blocking panel system

AirHush Sound Blocking Panels

MINNEAPOLIS—pinta acoustic, inc. announces the introduction of AirHush®, a portable sound-blocking panel system engineered to keep sound from traveling into adjacent spaces. AirHush panels easily assemble to create freestanding partitions or enclosures to allow for private conversations or to block disruptive noise from equipment or other nearby sources. The unique contemporary appearance, modular design and sound isolation properties of AirHush make it ideal for open-plan offices as a huddle or conference room, educational facilities, music and media rooms, retail sound rooms, trade show conference areas, worship facility crying rooms and more.

AirHush sound blocking Panel

Constructed with an inflatable core and modern soundproofing materials in an aluminum frame, standard AirHush panels have a sound transmission class (STC) of 34. Enhanced models have higher STCs, as well as R and NRC values. AirHush ISAT (Inflatable Sound Attenuation Technology) Systems provide the flexibility to create areas for blocking or isolating sound anywhere.

“The AirHush panel system is a great addition to our full line of acoustical products,” says Joerg Hutmacher, CEO at pinta acoustic. “This system is being offered through a partnership between pinta acoustic and AirHush ISAT Systems Inc. of San Francisco, California, developers of the ISAT innovation.”

“AirHush is excited and pleased to be partnering with pinta acoustic, a global leader in their domain for more than 50 years,” says Jim Pilaar, CEO of AirHush ISAT Systems, Inc.

The barrier material is available with transparent mass-loaded vinyl. When sound blocking and absorption are needed, the product can be modified to include pinta’s willtec® sound absorbing open-cell foam. The system is simple to disassemble and panels deflate to save storage space and shipping costs.

For more information or to find a representative, visit or call 1.800.662.0032 or +1.612.355.4200. To download “The Science of Better Acoustics” white paper, go to

About AirHush ISAT Systems, Inc.

AirHush ISAT Systems Inc.’s Inflatable Sound Attenuation Technology is one of the most significant innovations in sound control of the past 20 years. The company’s patented intellectual property is first in class, first-of-kind. It is based on the revolutionary premise of replacing the mass used in traditional sound control solutions with air (or other gases or liquids), combined with modern sound attenuation materials. For more information, visit or email


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GulfQuest National Maritime Museum is equipped with acoustical products from pinta acoustic to provide pleasant interactive experiences


MINNEAPOLIS—GulfQuest National Maritime Museum, located on the Mobile River in Alabama, is the world’s only maritime museum dedicated to the heritage of the Gulf of Mexico. Featuring hands-on interactive experiences, GulfQuest opened in September 2015 and is estimated to draw more than 300,000 guests per year, including groups of boisterous schoolchildren. To maximize the visitor experience, the building team at this major educational attraction selected SONEX® Valueline and willtec® direct-apply panels from pinta acoustic.

pinta-GulfQuest-upper-logoDesigned by Watermark Design Group to look like a ship headed into Mobile Bay towards the Gulf of Mexico, the 90,000-square foot (8361-square meter) museum includes 90 exhibits, a store, café and event spaces. Representing international trade in the Gulf of Mexico, the centerpiece of the rotunda, known as the grand lobby, is America’s Sea. This exhibit is a large interactive map with touchscreens allowing visitors to explore points of interest around the Gulf of Mexico.

Open-floor levels above the America’s Sea exhibit feature flags from 96 countries and two large radiating blue bands of curved metal plates, which lead up to a centered skylight revealing a globe sculpture atop the roof. Originally, the curved metal plates were specified to be perforated for sound to pass through. However, these were changed and solid-steel curved plates were installed. As constructed, the rotunda’s dome interior space highly intensified reverberated sound around all of the curved, radiating metal plates and about other hard, reflective surface finishes—such as painted gypsum, steel, concrete, exterior glass and terrazzo floor—presenting an acoustical problem.

“The space was already experiencing acoustic issues while the interior finishes were nearing completion prior to the museum’s scheduled opening,” says Paul Frenkel, vice president from Ben M. Radcliff Contractor. “Asked to make a recommendation, we contacted Acoustical Solutions, looking for a product that would absorb sound and conform to the various irregularly curved, painted metal panels around the rotunda.”

“We considered acoustical spray foam. Acoustical spray foam is messy to install and it tends to flake off. This would have created a potential risk for the America’s Sea exhibit, which is located directly below the panels,” explains Tony Zodrow, executive director of GulfQuest. “Other acoustical panels that were reviewed would not have conformed properly to the curves of the metal plates.”

“Acoustical Solutions recommended pinta acoustic products,” explains Frenkel. “pinta’s architectural products/projects manager Anthony Antonelli visited GulfQuest to experience the physical space and make recommendations. Antonelli suggested omni-directional SONEX Valueline Panels that have softly sculpted surfaces. These acoustical panels produce subtle, ever-changing shadow and sunlight play effects about the rotunda’s radiating sides under its large, centered skylight. pinta worked quickly with us to provide a custom acoustic product solution. The company sent several taper-sided sample panel sizes to help us determine panel dimensions that would best fit the various irregularly curved steel plates before production.”

Flexible and ideal for GulfQuest’s grand lobby, pinta’s SONEX Valueline Panels have a high sound absorption rating or noise reduction coefficient (NRC) of 0.90. A custom color blue acoustic coating was developed for the panels’ finish that matched a selected color from the batik sail art created by artist Mary Edna Fraser to suspend within the dome. One hundred twenty-eight custom-size, 1½-inch (38 mm)-thick SONEX Valueline Panels with a taper-sided shape and continuous beveled edges were directly applied and adhered to the painted curved steel plates.

“Prior to installing the SONEX Panels there was a great deal of sound reverberation when you clapped your hands,” says Zodrow. “During the grand opening, there were 200 to 250 people in the grand lobby. The sound level with SONEX was comfortable, allowing for conversations without raised voices.”

pinta’s willtec® colortec, smooth-surface, charcoal color finish panels were direct-applied and adhered front to back in single-panel rows between box beams under the concrete ceiling in the Port of Victory Theater. The small 400-square foot (37-square meter) theater shows a WWII film in combination with sound, lighting and fog effects. Sound within the space was attenuated using approximately 270 square feet (25 square meters) of 22- by 48-by 3-inch-thick acoustical panels (559 by 1219 by 76 mm) and pinta’s acouSTIC adhesive.

SONEX Valueline direct-apply, glue-up panels and suspended baffles provide effective acoustical control at an economical price. Made from Class 1 fire-rated willtec foam, lightweight SONEX expanded melamine foam products deliver excellent acoustic control across all sound frequencies with NRCs ranging from 0.75 to 1.05. pinta acoustic’s SONEX products are available in both standard and custom sizes. Offered in natural white, natural grey, standard, custom and other premium acoustic color coatings, SONEX Valueline Panels are easy to install using pinta’s water-based acouSTIC adhesive on most porous substrate surfaces.

Used to fabricate nearly all of pinta acoustic’s product line offering, willtec SONEX is Class 1 fire-rated according to ASTM E 84 for flame spread and smoke density. The lightweight acoustic material offers exceptional sound control and is customizable to suit virtually any interior application.

GulfQuest National Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico

Located in Mobile, Ala., GulfQuest is a 90,000-square foot (8361-square meter) museum that features interactive exhibits, simulators and theaters, complemented by artifacts and memorabilia. Designed to look like a ship headed into Mobile Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, the museum is estimated to draw over 300,000 visitors per year. It is a public and private partnership between the City of Mobile and the nonprofit organization overseen by the National Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico Board of Trustees.

Watermark Design Group, LLC

Watermark Design Group is an architecture and design firm in the port city of Mobile, Ala. The company’s expertise is visible in landmarks across the Gulf Coast, from Mobile’s new GulfQuest waterfront maritime museum to one of the world’s most sophisticated industrial facilities located in northern Mobile County. Watermark Design’s professionals excel in projects of any scope, from master planning for long-range goals, to the preservation of historic structures. The company’s designs are driven by the clients’ needs, imagination and attention to detail.

Ben M. Radcliff Contractor, Inc.

Ben M. Radcliff Contractor is a full-service general contractor based in Mobile, Ala. Founded in 1956, Ben M. Radcliff Contractor provides general construction and design-build services to a multitude of markets, including manufacturing, maritime, health care, institutional, municipal and educational. The company has earned an exceptional reputation for superior quality, attention to detail and customer satisfaction. Ben M. Radcliff Contractor prides itself as a family- and community-oriented company with a continued commitment to improve the economic and social well-being of Mobile and surrounding communities.

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pinta acoustic introduces SONEX® PLANO Absorbers Customizable to add a distinctive flair with high sound absorption


0548_SONEX_PLANO_160pxMINNEAPOLIS — pinta acoustic’s new SONEX® PLANO Absorbers provide exceptional sound absorption with virtually unlimited design shapes and grid work configurations.  Possible baffle shapes include curving convex, concave, stepped, diagonal, wedge and other custom contours. SONEX PLANO Absorbers are easy to suspend using typical 15/16-inch grid systems. Set in countless pattern arrangements at one or various elevations across a ceiling plane, SONEX PLANO provides state-of-the-art design expressions.

SONEX PLANO has a high NRC to reduce echo and sound reverberation in large open areas, such as museums, convention halls, auditoriums, cafeterias, factories, assembly areas and more. Constructed of pinta’s Class 1 fire-rated willtec® foam, these acoustic baffles are offered in natural white or light grey, as well as standard and custom HPC-color coatings.

SONEX PLANO Absorbers are offered as standard sizes, including a 2-inch (51 mm) thickness, 46-inch (1,168 mm) length and depths from 4 to 32 inches (102 to 813 mm). SONEX PLANO Absorbers feature factory-cut, T-slots along the top of baffle lengths. These T-slots allow 4-foot (1.22 m) cross tees to be easily slid through and quickly connected between main runners while constructing a grid suspension system.

“SONEX PLANO is our newest customizable product that reduces reverberation and echo while providing an artistic flair to practically any interior application,” says Joerg Hutmacher, CEO at pinta acoustics. “SONEX PLANO is uniquely designed for easy installation in new and existing spaces using low-cost, standard T-grid systems. The grid-work framing suspension system is one of three suspension options possible with pinta acoustic’s baffles.”

For more information or to find a representative, visit or call 1.800.662.0032 or +1.612.355.4200. To download “The Science of Better Acoustics” white paper, go to

pinta acoustic, inc. manufactures a broad range of attractive direct-apply, glue-up and suspended ceiling and wall panels, clouds, baffles and other acoustical products for commercial and industrial applications. pinta acoustic’s products include WHISPERWAVE™ Clouds and Baffles, CONTOUR® and PHONSTOP™ Ceiling and Wall Panels, HARMONI and WHITELINE® Lay-In Ceiling Panels, SQUARELINE® Expanded Metal Ceiling Panels, BALANCE™ Ceiling Clouds and Wall Panels, FABRITEC Wall Panels, SONEX® Direct-Apply Panels and Suspended Baffles, acouSTIC™ adhesive, SONEX AFS acoustic plaster finishing systems, SONEX Linear Absorbers, SONEX PLANO Absorbers, SONEX Rondo cylindrical baffles, SONEX Clean Baffles and Panels, PROSPEC® Barrier Foam and Composite Materials.

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SONEX Linear Absorbed Sell Sheet

SONEX Linear Sell Sheet

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Moonacy Music Room delivers studio-quality sound, without sacrificing design, with pinta acoustic’s products

MoonacyRoomWindows430,72dpiWhen singer/songwriter Jan Edwards expanded her property in Plymouth, Minn., to include the Moonacy Music Room performance space, aesthetics, a state-of-the-art sound system and optimized acoustics were vital. Designed to represent the four elements—earth, water, air and fire—the Moonacy Music Room is a collaborative venue for songwriter workshops, video conferencing, house concerts, fund-raising for music-related nonprofits and private events. To achieve optimum acoustics, the design and engineering team incorporated FABRITEC Wall Panels and willtec® strips from pinta acoustic into the art and décor.

The concept for the room began to take shape when Edwards had purchased an 18- by 9-foot (5.48 by 2.74 m), colorful Native American painting created by Rabbett Before Horses Strickland, an Ojibwa artist from northern Wisconsin. Called The Right to Consciousness, this artwork was central to the space. The creative process evolved during a brainstorming session between Edwards, architect Alex Haecker and interior designers Shelly Reihl David and Carl David. Edwards introduced a magazine tear sheet with a quilted wall. This was the impetus behind what has been named the magic wall.

Moonacy Music Room, Jan EdwardsThe magic wall contains nearly 400 squares of custom FABRITEC acoustical tiles wrapped in 11 different textured and colored fabrics. To add movement to the wall, Luke Nelson from Acoustic Vision recommended incorporating 19 Planar® digital screens intermixed with the acoustical panels. These digital screens were programmed to display atmospheric images, such as the murmuring of starlings or a rolling storm. The video images on the magic wall represent the element air.

The music room was designed with angled walls, exposed metal trusses, a shiplap ceiling that increases in elevation from 11 to 17 feet (3.35 to 5.18 m) and an epoxy-coated concrete floor. The wall behind the stage contains a 98-inch (2489 mm) digital display from Planar, flanked by large twin guitar cabinets made with glass and reclaimed wood from a tobacco barn in Virginia. Reclaimed wood was also used to build the stage and wide baseboards and wainscoting. To allow natural light in, the space includes a wall of windows opposite the stage. The wood of the stage and cabinets, and the wood instruments symbolize the element earth.

The shape of the space, along with many hard, reflective surfaces, posed acoustical challenges. To address them, Nelson brought in audio engineer and classically trained cellist Charles G. (Skip) Kahane from PGS/Broadcast Media Services. Kahane recommended pinta acoustic’s FABRITEC Wall Tiles, willtec panels and willduct® HVAC ductwork thermal and sound insulation for the Moonacy Music Room.

“The increasing rise of the ceiling, and ending in a glass wall, gave the space a megaphone-like characteristic,” explains Kahane. “In music venues, we typically treat the stage first and the wall opposing the stage second. We were unable to do that because of the guitar cabinets and large display on the stage and the facing glass wall.”

To treat the space, Kahane specified 15.5- by 15.5- by 1-inch (394 by 394 by 25 mm) FABRITEC panels for the magic wall. These tiles were custom-wrapped in the materials selected by interior designer David. 10.375-inch (264 mm)-wide willtec strips, faced with a superwhite HPC coating, were directly applied using acouSTIC adhesive in a pattern to blend with the white shiplap ceiling. Additional 1.5-inch (38 mm)-thick willtec acoustical panels were nested in the frame behind the artwork using string tacked in a zigzag pattern across the back of the frame. Testing after acoustical treatment reveals a reverberation time of .74.

“We couldn’t have done it without pinta acoustic’s product,” continues Kahane. “Fiberglass wall panels were not an option. The exceptional acoustical performance of FABRITEC and willtec and the ability to custom-cut the product in the field allowed for the freedom to provide a simple solution.”

“Many of the FABRITEC panels were shipped from pinta acoustic with the custom fabric fully wrapped on the top and edges,” says Devin Jackson, acoustical engineer and owner of Jackson Sound Management Productions. “Additional panels were supplied with the fabric secured only to the top. This allowed us to custom-cut the tiles to fit the ceiling and wall lines. Once cut to size, panels were finished by wrapping and adhering the fabric to the edges. Each tile was direct-applied to the wall using pinta’s acouSTIC adhesive. The willtec strips on the ceiling were also cut in the field to fit around the metal tresses and other fixtures.”

“The fourth element, fire, is depicted in the bar that was created by a local sculptor, James Lamis. Also a light display casts the image of fire onto the draperies behind the bar. Unique hanging light fixtures simulate charred tree branches,” explains Edwards. “One of my favorite features is the aquarium that’s on the same wall as the painting. It exhibits specimens of beautiful koi and a replica of the Moonacy Music Room on a cliff. The painting by Rabbett, aquarium and the powder room symbolize water.”

Made of pinta’s willtec foam core, FABRITEC Wall Panels offer outstanding acoustical performance, absorbing up to 85 percent of the sound directed toward them. Available in custom and standard sizes, FABRITEC panels are impact resistant and have a tackable surface. Select from hundreds of standard or custom fabrics, including Guilford, Maharam and others. FABRITEC Wall Panels are lightweight, making them easy to install with adhesive and/or hook and loop.

willtec foam is Class 1 fire-rated and available in natural white or light grey with an optional HPC coating in standard and custom colors. Panel sizes can be any dimension up to 48 by 96 inches (1219 by 2438 mm), and typical thicknesses range between 2 and 3 inches (51 and 76 mm). Custom shapes, colors and sizes are available.

willduct was also used to absorb background noise caused by HVAC fans and blowers. Resistant to mold and mildew, willduct passes UL 181, is easy to install in HVAC ductwork and provides thermal and sound insulation.

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pinta acoustic introduces SONEX® Linear Absorbers

Streamlined appearance offers excellent sound absorptionSONEX Linear Absorbers, museum application

pinta acoustic announces the introduction of SONEX® Linear Absorbers. These straight-line baffles provide excellent sound control with a modern appearance. Highly customizable product design and shape options offer new optimum form and function possibilities in a variety of interior ceiling applications.

Class 1 fire-rated, SONEX Linear is constructed of pinta’s willtec® foam and is offered in natural white or light grey willtec and HPC color coatings.

SONEX Linear Absorber, Single BaffleSONEX Linear Absorbers standard and custom sizes include lengths up to 96 inches (2438 mm), 6- to 24-inch (152 to 610 mm) depths and a set thickness of 2.03 inches (51.56 mm). These baffles are easily slip-fit into 2-inch-wide (51 mm) channel trim typically fastened in-place to wall or ceiling substrates.

“SONEX Linear Absorbers are ideal for reducing sound reverberation in new and renovated spaces,” says Joerg Hutmacher, CEO at pinta acoustics. “Custom shapes, sizes and color options, as well as virtually unlimited ceiling plan and elevation arrangements can provide a signature look to suit virtually any décor.”

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pinta acoustic’s WHISPERWAVE™ Ceiling Clouds provide functional ceiling art in Stony Brook Medicine satellite office

Stony Brook 160x160WHISPERWAVE™ Ceiling Clouds provide the visual appeal that inspired relocated workers at Stony Brook Medicine on Long Island to embrace new offices in a renovated building a few miles from the main facility. In addition to inviting eye movement and providing style, pinta acoustic’s WHISPERWAVE clouds absorb reflected sound, which establishes a more productive work environment.

One of the primary purposes of the additional 40,000-square foot (12,192- square meter) building was to create an attractive, intelligent work environment to accommodate various administrative departments such as procurement, admittance and accounts payable. Some of these groups function in teams, others operate independently, and some have call-intensive functions.

“A majority of the personnel relocating into this new space have for many years worked at Stony Brook Medicine in windowless areas that are spread around various campus facilities,” states Michael Mannetta, AIA, senior partner/director of design at Spector Group Architects. “While their existing office environments were somewhat dark and uninviting, it was their space, and the idea of change was not one that they would embrace easily.”

Stony Brook Medicine’s new building features an inviting reception area and two open-plan office spaces with low-height partitioned workstations. The office areas have painted gypsum board walls, exposed ductwork and corrugated metal deck ceilings, interior glass and continuous exterior windows with other hard-finish surfaces, which reflect sound. Reflected sound travels freely over cubicle walls and reverberates within the spaces, making it harder for workers to concentrate, focus on telephone conversations and achieve effective team communication.

To create a productive environment, provide innovative style and reduce noise, the architect developed elevation drawings using both concave and convex ceiling clouds in undulating and barrel vault patterns. The design provides ceiling art with an acoustical function for the reception area and two open-plan office spaces.

“When they saw the renderings for the new open-plan office space with a distinctive waveform ceiling design, they were thrilled,” says Mannetta.

Concerned about the cost of the curved clouds originally specified, Stony Brook’s in-house construction group sought alternatives. Customized to a similar size and radius, pinta’s WHISPERWAVE clouds were identified and accepted as an alternative. In addition to being significantly lower in cost than the product originally specified, WHISPERWAVE clouds absorb 50 percent more sound, are thicker, of lighter weight and require basic carpenter skills to install without the use of special suspension kit accessories.

One hundred-eight, HPC-coated, 46- by 72- by 3 inches (1168 by 1829 by 76 mm)-thick concave and convex WHISPERWAVE clouds were installed in three spaces—all with 18-foot ceilings. The majority of the clouds were suspended above both open-plan office areas—the smaller designed to accommodate 50 staff members, the larger 110 employees.

Using corkscrew hangers with quick-setting cables, WHISPERWAVE clouds were suspended and consistently spaced to fit between lighting fixtures and exposed HVAC ductwork. Cloud locations were measured on the floor. Installers used laser light to shoot anchor points where cables were fastened to the corrugated metal deck. Suspended at various elevation heights and positions, curved clouds were accurately cut to fit on-site to suit random sprinkler locations as necessary.

Made from Class 1 fire-rated, lightweight willtec® foam, WHISPERWAVE Ceiling Clouds are offered with standard and custom designs in natural white or light grey. An optional protective coating is available in black, white, light blue, almond, ivory, light and medium grey colors. Cloud sizes may be any dimension up to 48 by 96 inches (1219 by 2438 mm), and the standard thickness is 3 inches
(76 mm).

To download “The Science of Better Acoustics” white paper, go to  To learn more about pinta acoustic and its product line, visit or call 1.800.662.0032 or +1 612.355.4200.

Stony Brook Medicine

Long Island’s premier academic medical center, Stony Brook Medicine represents Stony Brook University’s entire medical enterprise and integrates Stony Brook’s health-related initiatives, including education, research and patient care. It encompasses Stony Brook University Hospital, the five health sciences schools—dental medicine, health technology and management, medicine, nursing and social welfare—as well as the major centers and institutes, programs and more than 50 community-based health care settings throughout Suffolk County.

Spector Group Architects

For over 40 years, Spector Group’s global expertise in architecture, interiors and master planning has influenced the world with sustainable environments that exude energy and a sense of presence. The work is based on contextual sensitivity, and is supported by evocative and economic design solutions. Spector challenges the expected and creates buildings and interiors that please the eye while challenging the mind.

Michael J. Mannetta, RA, senior partner/director of design

With Spector Group since 1980, Mannetta has extensive experience providing unique, award-winning designs—in New York City, Long Island, across the nation and internationally—to corporate, educational, institutional and residential clienteles.

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pinta acoustic’s “SPLASH!” is a Merit Award Winner in the 2014 CODAawards

SPLASH! Merit Award Winner in 2014 CODAawardspinta acoustic’s CODAawards entry, “SPLASH!,” is a Merit Award Winner in the 2nd annual 2014 CODAawards – Public Spaces category. CODAworx produces the CODAawards to celebrate design projects that demonstrate the most successful integration of commissioned art into an interior or architectural space. Awards honor the those whose collective imaginations create inspiring public and private spaces.

The unprecedented SPLASH! sculpture was commissioned as part of the City of Miami Gardens’ Art in Public Places Program—a program that aims to bring art into the community. The art commission challenged artists to develop designs which would add vibrancy and address sound issues within the existing indoor swimming pool at the Betty T. Ferguson Recreation Center.

Splash! features 972 custom colored pinta acoustic SONEX® Rondo Baffles individually suspended at varying heights to simulate a three-dimensional sound wave effect. The results were audibly noticeable.

Jurors were impressed with the explanation of project goals and successful integration of the artwork into the space and the collaboration process between all of the parties involved.

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pinta acoustic recognized with 2013 Construction Excellence Award for custom triangle baffles installed at ESIF

0458_NREL_PR_360x288_2pinta acoustic, inc. has been presented with the bronze 2013 Construction Excellence Award in the acoustical solutions category. The Ceilings and Interior Systems Construction Association (CISCA) recognized pinta acoustic for the custom willtec® triangle baffles that are installed at the Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF). These prestigious awards acknowledge CISCA members who produce the year’s finest examples of interior commercial construction.

When the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colo., designed ESIF, one of its primary goals was to showcase sustainable design and energy efficiency. ESIF’s office wing features open-plan office areas with large windows and a metal ceiling deck, which reflect sound and could make it harder for workers to communicate and concentrate. To extend light reflectancy and reduce noise and echo, the architects selected pinta acoustic’s custom willtec triangle baffles. Without detracting from the décor, these attractive and sound-absorptive triangle baffles make the office areas more productive environments with greater speech intelligibility.

Highlighting all winning projects, CISCA representatives presented the Construction Excellence Awards at a breakfast during the CISCA Convention ceremony in Las Vegas, Nev., on April 2, 2014.

“It’s an honor to be recognized by CISCA for our innovative acoustical design solutions,” says Bob Donohue, sales manager, western region. “This project is a perfect example of a custom solution that was designed to meet specific customer requirements and enhance the décor.”


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Top Hat Lounge, a renowned live-music venue, gains studio-quality sound with pinta acoustic’s products

MINNEAPOLIS—When Top Hat Top Hat LoungeLounge in Missoula, Mont., remodeled, a state-of-the-art sound system and optimized acoustics were critical requirements. Top Hat selected pinta acoustic’s products, which are instrumental in creating an environment where live events can be recorded with studio-quality results.

One of the goals of Top Hat’s new owner, Nick Checota, was to become the Northwest’s premier live-music venue and attract a wide range of national and local musicians. In addition to enlarging the space for more capacity, Checota contracted with certificated audio engineer and classically trained cellist, Charles G. (Skip) Kahane from PGS/Broadcast Media Services. A patron who has performed at Top Hat, Kahane recommended pinta acoustic’s HARMONI ceiling tiles, willtec® panels and FABRITEC Wall Panels for Top Hat Lounge.

Top Hat installed 340 HARMONI Ceiling Tiles with a black HPC coating over the seating in the performance area directly in front of the stage. To minimize equal-angle reflections from the windows by the entrance, 2-foot by 4-foot, 1-3/4-inch- thick willtec® panels were glued to the ceiling using acouSTIC adhesive. Additional 2-inch-thick Class 1 fire-rated willtec panels were cut to size on-site and adhered to the ceiling between the exposed roof joists. The installer also fitted the rear wall of the Top Hat stage with 10 black fabric-wrapped FABRITEC Wall Panels. A brick wall was removed to expand the interior space, and another wall was sandblasted to remove the plaster and reveal the old brick.

The original space contained a tin ceiling, a large mirror behind the bar, wood surfaces and sizable windows in the front of the building. These reflective surfaces contributed to an undesirable reverberation time of 10.26 seconds. After remodeling and installation of pinta acoustics products Top Hat’s reverberation time was 0.57 seconds, slightly better than anticipated.

“The building in which Top Hat is located is on the National Register of Historic Places. It was constructed in the early 1900s and has been home to a saloon, speakeasy, restaurant, automobile supply store and pawnshop,” explains Checota. “I wanted to retain its charm and history while creating an environment ideal for live music, family-friendly events, film festivals and other entertainment.”

Top Hat LoungeHARMONI Ceiling Tiles are made of Class 1 fire-rated, lightweight willtec foam. Easy to install in a standard ceiling grid system, these tiles offer excellent sound absorption across all frequencies. HARMONI is available in two styles, each with a tegular edge. The VISTA pattern offers a smooth surface for a clean look while the TARTAN style provides a softly sculpted design. HARMONI tiles are HPC coated in white, black, light grey or almond for easy cleaning and durability.

willtec foam is Class 1 fire-rated and available in natural white or light grey with an optional HPC coating in standard and custom colors. Panel sizes can be any dimension up to 48 inches by 96 inches, and typical thicknesses range between 2 and 3 inches. Custom shapes, colors and sizes are available.

Made of pinta’s willtec foam core, FABRITEC Wall Panels offer outstanding acoustical performance, absorbing up to 85 percent of the sound directed toward them. Available in custom and standard sizes, FABRITEC panels are impact resistant and have a tackable surface. Select from hundreds of fashionable fabrics, including Guilford, Maharam and others. FABRITEC Wall Panels are lightweight, making them easy to install with adhesive and/or hook and loop.

To download “The Science of Better Acoustics” white paper, go to  To learn more about pinta acoustic and its product line, visit or call 1.800.662.0032 or +1 612.355.4200.

Top Hat Lounge
Established in 1952, the Top Hat Lounge is the premier venue for the Northwest’s music scene. Located in the heart of downtown Missoula, Top Hat entertains diverse audiences with live music across all genres, films, comedy and family-friendly events. With a capacity of approximately 700 people, Top Hat hosts Montana-based artists and national touring musicians. In addition to great entertainment, Top Hat offers a unique dining experience centered on a tapas-style menu.

PGS/Broadcast Media Services | Charles G. (Skip) Kahane, CAE
PGS/Broadcast Media Services provides architectural acoustic services, including design and installation of architectural-grade sound reinforcement systems for performance venues. A classically trained musician, Kahane has performed at various locations worldwide. This has presented him with the opportunity to study the acoustic signatures of different facilities. Kahane has also provided expert witness testimony in construction liability litigation.

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