Are you tired of those unwanted noises that disrupt your quiet living?
In today’s articles, I’m going to show you some of the examples of sound absorbing materials that will help you get rid of the irritating noises. Some of these noise absorbing materials are cheap. But before I get into details, I think it’s good for you to understand in details what sound materials are and how they work.
For starters, it’s important to note that there is a difference between soundproofing and sound absorption.
Soundproofing vs. sound absorption
While soundproofing deals with prevention of passage of sound, sound absorption is the process by which sound is soaked up or taken in by soft surfaces.
Soundproofing products block/stop sound waves from entering or leaving a room while sound absorption materials absorb unwanted noises like reverb or an echo within a room.
Products like tiles, acoustic panels, ceiling baffles, and clouds are good examples of sound absorption materials specially built to reduce reflected sound and dampen reverberation.
Types of sound absorbing materials
Noise absorbing materials are divided into three different categories. We have resonant absorbers, panel absorbers, and porous absorbers. Now let’s have a look at a detailed description of each product.
1. Resonant absorbers
Resonance absorbers use the same principle as when you blog across the mouth of a beverage glass bottle to produce a note. They consist of an acoustic or mechanical oscillation system where there’s a solid place with very tight airspace behind.
Sound absorption reaches its peak when at the resonance frequency.
2. Porous absorbents
These often take two forms; the open-celled foam and fibrous materials. In open-celled types, air movement as a result of the sound waves pushes air particles through thin passages which as a result generates viscous loss with heat. Fibrous materials, on the other hand, are able to absorb sound as the sound waves force the fibers to bend generating some heat in the process.
3. Panel absorbers
They are made from non-rigid and non-porous materials. They are also known as single absorbers or membrane absorbers, and they represent a class of common building materials such as a chair, table, door, window, etc. Panel absorbers are effective in dealing with low sound frequencies/bass frequencies.
If you want to learn more about the different categories of sound absorbing materials kindly read this article. (Opens in a new tab).
10 Examples of Sound Absorbing Materials
Below are detailed reviews of some examples of sound absorbing materials that you can use for DIY projects. Luckily for you, they are all available on Amazon. Click on the product images to view more photos and user reviews on Amazon.
1. Acoustic Fiberglass Board
Acoustic fiberglass boards are available online in black and yellow colors and with varying densities and thicknesses. They are available in three different classes.
- Fiberglass plain boards
- Fiberglass mat boards
- Black fiberglass boards used for wall and ceiling applications
Acoustic fiberglass insulation is effective in controlling excessive reverberation and eliminating sound reflections. They are easy to install and ideal for DIY acoustic projects. My recommended fiberglass product is the Owens Corning Acoustic Insulation(see more photos).
2. Acoustic Foam Bass Trap
Superchunk Bass traps are some of the most popular sound absorbing products on the market today. They are small and portable and are ideal for low-frequency sounds. (bass sounds).
The traps are designed using acoustic foam and work best when installed at the corners of a room even though they may work well when installed on flat walls. (Read installation guide here).
I have previously written a full guide on how acoustic foam bass works.
3. Moving Blankets
You’ve probably heard about sound deadening blankets, right? They are commonly used by those moving guys to protect your furniture from damage when moving to a new house. But did you know that they are good at absorbing unwanted noises especially when used correctly?
While they won’t completely muffle sounds, they will significantly absorb to manageable levels. If you want to achieve the best results, I would recommend you to try out these Audimute Sound Deadening Blankets.
The best thing with these blankets is that you can install them on your windows, soundproof sliding doors or walls.
You can also use the same blankets to soundproof a dog cage.
4. Noise reducing curtains
Also known as soundproof curtains, noise reducing curtains absorb more sound than they block. As a bonus, these curtains can block out sunlight and provide thermal insulation benefits thus making them ideal for bedroom windows. (See more photos and user reviews)
But there are some factors that you should consider before buying sound deadening curtains.
First, check their weight. The heavier the curtains, the more they’re effective in soundproofing purposes. Secondly, check the material used and make sure that it’s tightly woven and has a plushy and soft surface like velvet.
For the curtains to be effective, ensure that they stretch all the way to the floor and that they’re a few centimeters wider than the window. These Nicetown Blackout Curtains will work magic in absorbing echoes in your bedroom.
5. Acoustic foam panels
Acoustic panels are some of the common used sound absorbing materials. What makes it popular is the fact that it’s cheap and easy to install.
Acoustic foams are available in different shapes and sizes. The design and pattern do not influence the panel performance so you can always go for one that’s more appealing to you.
Because these panels don’t offer the best level of echo reduction that’s why they are best for small and medium-sized rooms, you can install them in your home office, home recording studios and a variety of locations.
One of my most recommended acoustic panels is Mybecca Acoustic Panels Studio Foam Wedges.
6. Acoustic Cotton Batts
Acoustic cotton is another good example of sound absorbing materials you can use to muffle echo and reverbs in a room. They are made of cotton meaning that they are microbe-free and that they are friendly to human skin.
A good example of cotton batts is ATS Acoustical Cotton Batts made of 100% recyclable material making them best for LEED certified projects.
What Materials Are Best for Absorbing Sound?
From the above guide we can conclusively say that acoustic foam panel is the best material for absorbing sound.
You will find acoustic foam in most setups including gaming rooms, recording studios, drum rooms, concert halls, and home theaters.
We also have another material known as soundproofing wallpaper.
While this product doesn’t soundproof against noise, it’s highly effective in noise absorption.
Additionally, the material itself is also aesthetically appealing adding to the interior beauty of your home.
On Sound Absorbing Materials
There you have it guys, examples of sound absorbing materials you can get for cheap that are easy to install. What’s your favorite pick? Let me know in the comment section down below.