THE PROCESS OF OPTIMIZING MECHANICAL SOUND QUALITY IN PRODUCT DESIGN
DS 68-4: Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 11), Impacting Society through Engineering Design, Vol. 4: Product and Systems Design, Lyngby/Copenhagen, Denmark, 15.-19.08.2011
The research field concerning optimizing product sound quality is a relatively unexplored area, and may become difficult for designers to operate in. In some degree, sound is a highly subjective parameter, which is normally targeted sound specialists. This paper describes the theoretical and practical background of managing a process of optimizing the mechanical sound quality in a product design by using simple tools and workshops systematically. The procedure is illustrated by exploring a case study regarding a computer navigation tool (computer mouse or mouse). The process is divided into 4 phases, which clarify the importance of product sound, defining perceptive demands identified by users, and, finally, how to suggest mechanical principles for modification of an existing sound design. The optimized mechanical sound design is followed by tests on users of the product in its use context. The result of this article is a systematic process, which has the possibility of enhancing the knowledge about sound design in products and its cause and effect.