Material physical properties of a desk related to vibration propagation?

I'm a software programmer (not a physics expert) trying out a smartphone vibration detection algorithm on desks, and I want to measure the impact of the desk's material features on the algorithm. Are there canonical measurements for desk density, rigidity, etc. that will affect vibrations? Intuitively, I'm guessing a metal desktop surface will transmit vibrations more than a wood one.

If there is some measurement device, like a stud finder, that would be great.

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You should clarify a bit about what sort of vibrations and vibration propagation you're trying to detect. That is, are you wondering what the effect of the phone vibrating well have on the desk or the other way around? –  Brandon Enright May 1 at 20:34
Per my comment above, in either case I think you should look into the speed and attenuation of sound waves in a given material because that's likely to be quite similar to vibrations to / from a smart phone. This might help: kayelaby.npl.co.uk/general_physics/2_4/2_4_1.html –  Brandon Enright May 1 at 20:35
Yes, I'm trying to figure out the impact of a desk's physical properties (wood vs. glass, rigid vs non-rigid) on the amount of vibration that can be emitted and detected by a smartphone. I just need some measurable metric for the desks. –  stackoverflowuser2010 May 1 at 20:40
As you know, this is a material science and engineering question. Check out en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speed_of_sound and en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acoustic_attenuation for some of the theory. Ultimately though you're probably going to need to experiment or take material measurements since the theory involves a lot of material-dependent parameters. –  Brandon Enright May 1 at 20:50
What exactly are you measuring, and what exactly are you trying to detect? Do you have 2 smartphones on the same desk, one is vibrating, another one measuring with accelerometer? –  Soonts May 1 at 21:07