Mechanical systems are noisy by nature. Heating and air conditioning units, fans, drinking fountains, coolers, toilets, roof drains, fluorescent light ballasts, transformers and other necessities can be annoying and distracting, particularly in the music area.
Music requires substantial physical exertion, and often involves large groups of students. Because of this, the air exchange required is double that of ordinary classrooms. As a result, it is essential that the supply and return ductwork is large enough to accommodate the exchange rate without creating a “whooshing sound” that masks musical sound. And because adjacent rooms served by the ventilation ducts can result in acoustic cross- talk, music rooms should be supplied with separate supply and return lines.
Quiet-rated fluorescent light ballasts will help eliminate the “hum” associated with standard ballasts. The hum is usually an approximate B-flat musical pitch and can be very distracting in a music environment.