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Old 03-01-2017, 03:38 PM   #1
PostandIn
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Prompted partially by comments in the WRGMG thread, I am considering a condo and have some questions about noise transmission from suite to suite. Given that there are differences in building specifications and installation quality, can anyone comment generally about expectations relative to price?

For example, the building I am looking at specifies a 16" wood truss system, insulated with loose fill insulation, plywood sub-floor and 1.5" gypcrete. This strikes me as a fairly effective combination of materials / technologies for sound proofing, but is it? Where on the scale is this spec? Middle of the road for new construction? Upper end?

For wall systems, they have listed resilient channel drywall separators (which appear to be an effective and well-regarded sound deadening technology) and X type 5/8" drywall. While the website doesn't specify insulation in the shared walls my assumption is there will be something.

Comments?

Last edited by PostandIn; 03-02-2017 at 10:45 AM. Reason: Typo: Last sentence - doesn't not does
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Old 03-02-2017, 01:54 PM   #2
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I have no expertise in this area, but if noise was at all a potential concern of mine, I would only buy a Concrete property. I think you'll always hear bass and footsteps in any wood constructed building.
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Old 03-02-2017, 02:02 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PostandIn View Post
Prompted partially by comments in the WRGMG thread, I am considering a condo and have some questions about noise transmission from suite to suite. Given that there are differences in building specifications and installation quality, can anyone comment generally about expectations relative to price?

For example, the building I am looking at specifies a 16" wood truss system, insulated with loose fill insulation, plywood sub-floor and 1.5" gypcrete. This strikes me as a fairly effective combination of materials / technologies for sound proofing, but is it? Where on the scale is this spec? Middle of the road for new construction? Upper end?

For wall systems, they have listed resilient channel drywall separators (which appear to be an effective and well-regarded sound deadening technology) and X type 5/8" drywall. While the website doesn't specify insulation in the shared walls my assumption is there will be something.

Comments?
For a wood frame structure, this sound proofing is about as good as you can get. Yes, there will be insulation in the shared walls.

Sometimes it's the little details where the walls connect to the ceiling, and where shared walls connect to outside walls. Hard to determine from a simple description whether these details are being done well or not.

You shouldn't be able to hear most reasonable noise from other suites.
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Old 03-02-2017, 07:05 PM   #4
Realtor 1
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Wood frame buildings have come a long way. Walk into any 30+year old wood frame building and you can hear the neighbors fridge ticking (exaggeration but you get the point).
The main advantage to concrete is your floor and ceiling as you will have very similar insulation between units on the same floor. There is a reason top floor units always demand a premium and it has to do with not hearing the person above you vacuum or drop things.
A floor plan with bedrooms on opposite ends can also help as the main area for entertaining now has an additional buffer between neighbors. Typically you can crank your music if you wish but as the person above mentioned, bass is the real killer. Music on low with bass will be a problem where music on high with no bass is undetected.

Some things I look at when I have a potential apartment buyer are:
- are you concerned about your noise level or other people
- shared wall locations
- age of construction
- read the meeting minutes in detail to look for noise complaints (just sold one where a owner is limited to level 22 on his stereo haha)
- where on the floor is the unit (by the elevator or at the end of the hall). Regardless of insulation, you will always hear people in the hallways.
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Old 03-06-2017, 12:57 PM   #5
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Couple points to consider:

  • Your shared party wall will have batt insulation. And if they’re done properly you shouldn’t head your neighbor.
  • The gypcrete topping isn’t required and doesn’t really assist much in sound other then it forced the builder to ensure there aren’t any holes in the floor before pouring (or else the topping drains/drips through said holes). Most developers aren’t using gypcrete topping so I’d say this is better then average.
  • The biggest concern for sound will most likely be the corridor (sound will travel into your suite either under the entry door or through the mechanical system) and the unit above you. If you can get onto the top floor you’ll be much better off.
  • Avoid the elevator core area. Look for something at the end of the hall (maybe adjacent to the stair core) which might not be used much.
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