Winter Park, Florida-based tech company Highwinds, a content delivery network provider, was rapidly outgrowing their old office and needed a new space with room to grow. Their new office, in a newly constructed building, promised an open, collaborative environment with plenty of cool design features and natural light. Highwinds old office was a traditional office setting without any open office area. While providing more options for architectural and design considerations, the new open office space had much fewer walls to block sound, meaning that speech privacy would be compromised and noise distractions would be elevated.

Or did it? Director of IT Dave Herrell asked Highwinds’ property manager, CNL Real Estate, if they could recommend a vendor who could provide audiovisual solutions for the conference, lobby, and break rooms. CNL recommended Sound Stage, also of Winter Park, to handle the new office’s AV Integration. Given the open nature of the new office, Sound Stage suggested Highwinds add sound masking to the space. Sound masking is the process of adding a low level, unobtrusive background sound to an environment to reduce the intelligibility of human speech and reduce noise distractions. By making nearby conversations unintelligible, sound masking protects speech privacy and allows individuals to work more productively in a space with fewer noise distractions. Sound masking is more cost effective than other acoustical treatments such as partitions or soundproofing materials.

Sound Stage installed the QtPro™ sound masking system in Highwinds new office.  Small, barely visible emitters (speakers) were installed seamlessly into the office’s unique open ceiling and octagonal-cloud-ceiling. The emitters were connected by cables to a QtPro control module residing in the server room.

Highwinds was able to create an open office environment that’s both beautiful and functional. Office chatter in the open office area is unintelligible (and therefore less distracting) at distances over fifteen feet, and conversations in the break room, lobby, and corridor don’t spill over into the work area. As an added benefit, the small emitters fit in design-wise with the office’s architecturally-unique ceiling.

"The QT 300 that Sound Stage installed is incredibly easy to manage and gives us greater reduction of noise and distractions allowing our staff to be more productive and feel more private,” says Herrell. “QtPro even meshed aesthetically with our multi-style tile ceiling design. Employees don’t even recognize or notice the emitters directly above them. “

Highwinds is a content delivery, network and cloud-based IP services business that offers a comprehensive suite of CDN solutions, including content storage and IP software. Highwinds delivers content and rich media over our high-performance RollingThunder® network to millions of global users every day. Their CDN customers gain unprecedented command and control with our StrikeTracker® 2 console and open APIs. Highwinds is headquartered in Winter Park, Fla., and maintains data centers around the world.