If you've ever moved into a building in poor acoustics, noisy neighbors, or a 24-hour recycling plant across the street (yes, this happened to us) you know the importance of sound when looking at potential apartments. Dwell magazine has an interesting article about a company who uses software to predict the sound levels of yet to be built skyscrapers...
Arup, an engineering firm who have consulted on projects like the California Academy of Sciences and the Beijing National Stadium for this year's Olympics, premiered a new service called SoundLab in 2004. Architects and consulting engineers can listen in on simulated building plans to, "hear the difference between a single-glazed facade, for instance, and one with triple-glazing."
We think SoundLab's services, if paired down for the everyday consumer, would be great when planning your home theater. How great would it be to move your system around in your virtual apartment to see where you'll get the best acoustics for your blockbuster movie screenings?
Images: top, Dwell; bottom, Arup