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Inspiring Ideas for Modern Home

8 Best Soundproof Panels for Absorbing Dampening Sound

The best soundproof panels are the Sonic Acoustics Hexagon Panels, offering excellent noise reduction capabilities without breaking the bank. That said, every panel set aims at a different requirement, and the right choice rests on the user’s preferences. Further, attenuation will only be achieved with 100% coverage of the target walls.

Best Soundproof Panels

Creating a quiet environment is quite important for a home recording studio, especially if you live in a noisy locale.

Moreover, a home office setup benefits immensely if it is in a quieter place, improving your productivity and allowing you to focus on the task. And to achieve this, you’ll need a set of soundproofing panels that suit your specific needs.

To help you choose the right product, I’ve curated a list of the 8 best soundproof panels that perform this task effectively.

Best Soundproof Panels for Noise Reduction

1. Best Acoustic Panel Overall: Sonic Acoustics Hexagon Acoustic Panels

Sonic Acoustics 12 Pack Hexagon Acoustic Panels, 14" X 12" X...
  • [SUPERIOR SOUNDPROOFING]: Our Sound Dampening Panels are...
  • [STYLISH]: Stylish hexagonal honeycomb sound panels design...

Made from high-density materials, the Sonic Acoustics Hexagon Panels are designed to provide sound insulation while being flame retardant, non–toxic, and corrosion-resistant. These hexagon panels can be used as wall art to decorate and are available in various colors and styles.

The material primarily used to make the Sonic panels is polyester fiber, a commonly used element for absorbing sound that is effective at noise control. For frequencies ranging from 2000 to 6000 Hz, the material can absorb more than 90% of the noise. The acoustic panels have an average NRC rating of 0.92, which is sufficient for most small and medium-sized spaces, but may not be enough for large rooms.

Sonic Acoustics panels come in a 12-panel set with a surface area of 14 x 12 inches each, which completely covers my home office room. However, the hexagon shape means that the panels can’t cover every corner of the room whole. For this purpose, the acoustic panels were made to be cut easily and affixed to the surface in the desired shape.

The set can be installed with a general-purpose adhesive that can be sprayed on walls to stick the panels in the desired positions. I was also able to use a roll of 3M double-sided tape to stick the soundproof panels to the walls after reading the manufacturer’s instructions.

Material: Polyester fiber | Surface Area: 14 x 12 inches | Thickness: 0.4 inches

2. Best For Soundproof Treatments: TroyStudio Acoustic Studio Absorption Foam Panel

TroyStudio Thick Acoustic Foam Panels, 12 X 12 X 2 Inches 6...
  • 【SPECIFICATIONS】: Size - 12 X 12 X 2 inches, pack of 6;...
  • 【EXCEPTIONAL REVERB & NOISE REDUCTION】: Crafted with...

The Troy Studio Acoustic Foam Panel features groove-style sound-absorbing foam that can double as wall décor. These sound panels are square-shaped, thick, dense, and non-toxic while being affordable for beginner home studio setups.

TroyStudio Foam Panels are made primarily from polyurethane open-cell foam for room reverb cancellation, echo, and noise control. This, in turn, helps improve the sound quality in a room and makes recordings much less noisy. These panels feature an NRC rating of 0.75, which is ample for small spaces and can effectively reduce undesired sound reflection once set up properly.

Installing acoustic panels of this set is as easy as cutting them up and using spray adhesive. I was able to get them up and ready using a box cutter and the adhesive, albeit with some trouble keeping them adhered to the wall.

Coming in a pack of six, 12, 18, and 36, the acoustic panels cover a lot of space per panel on the wall. With a surface area of 12 x 12 inches per panel, eight of them were enough to cover the length of my home office walls. The high surface coverage, in addition to the 2-inch thickness and low weight, make these panels suited for acoustical treatment.

Material: Polyurethane open-cell foam | Surface Area: 12 x 12 inches | Thickness: 2 inches

3. Best For Environmental Sustainability: XIN & LOG Acoustic Foam Panel

48 Pack Acoustic Foam Panel Wedge Studio Soundproofing Wall...
  • The sound-absorbing foam brick has beautiful appearance and...
  • Made of environmentally friendly polyurethane foam. In order...

The Xin & Log Acoustic foam panels are a set of foam bricks with a checkered pattern that absorbs sound. This checkered pattern was made with wavy triangular shapes that help with noise reduction in addition to the visual design.

These sound panels are made from environmentally-friendly polyurethane foam that is also non-toxic. A common problem with some soundproofing materials is that they have a noticeably foul odor, something that is completely absent from the Xin & Log panels.

At 12 x 12 inches, the Xin & Log panels are sized sufficiently for small or medium-sized rooms such as vocal booths, studios, and control rooms. However, the low NRC rating of 0.4 and thickness of a single inch may somewhat deter it from being effective as a sound treatment option.

The polyurethane panels are soft enough to be cut through with shears or box cutters, and they can be installed using double-sided tape or spray adhesive. And they come in a pack of 48, ensuring that you have enough acoustic foam tiles to line your walls completely with the foam panels.

You can find the Xin & Log Acoustic Panels in black and black-and-blue colors, which you can match with your preferred aesthetic schemes.

Material: Polyurethane Foam | Surface Area: 12 x 12 inches | Thickness: 1 inch

4. Best For Covering Large Areas: DEKIRU Acoustic Panels

DEKIRU 12 Pack Acoustic Panels Hexagon Sound Proof Padding,...
  • 【FASHIONABLE APPEARANCE】: This unique hexagonal sound...
  • 【EASY TO CUTTING AND REMOVE】: Easy to cut with a sharp...

Available in plenty of colors, the Dekiru Acoustic panels are hexagonal soundproofing implements with bevel edges for both aesthetic and functional purposes. This design choice enables the acoustic panels to effectively minimize echo while doubling as honeycomb wall décor.

The Dekiru panels come in a set of 12 and are made with odorless, non-toxic, flame-retardant, and formaldehyde-free polyester fiber. This material remains soft and easy to breathe in, making it simple to reshape the panels. Moreover, the panels can be detached from the walls and relocated without leaving visible blemishes or holes in your walls.

With a surface area of 14 x 13 inches, the panels promise to dampen sounds by a noticeable degree. That said, I found their 0.4-inch thickness to be a point of contention, ultimately limiting how much sound the panels absorb.

As for the installation, it is simple and straightforward and can be performed using 3M adhesive tapes, spray adhesive, nails, or glue. I would recommend using spray adhesive to keep the walls free of major blemishes if you ever wish to relocate your acoustic panels.

Material: Polyester fiber | Surface Area: 14 x 13 inches | Thickness: 0.4 inches

5. Best For Home Offices: HEMRLY Acoustic Self-Adhesive Acoustic Panels

12 pack Acoustic Panels Self-Adhesive, 1" X 12" X 12"...
  • 🧽【Quick-Recovery】Be different from other Acoustic...
  • 🔇【1 Inch but High Density】You may be concerned that...

The HEMRLY Acoustic Foam Panels feature a wedge design on high-density and highly elastic materials for soundproofing small and medium-sized spaces. They are available in three colors: carbon black, gray, and black-gray.

These panels are self-adhesive, meaning that they come with glue applied to the non-wedge side. All you need to do is remove the cover on the back, line the acoustic tile up against a wall, and apply sufficient pressure. Installation can be completed within minutes, requiring very little effort at most. And if needed, the HEMRLY panels come with some extra tape just to be safe.

As for the soundproofing capabilities, the 12 x 12 inches panels can absorb sound and echoes from the surroundings. They can be used in recording studios or at home offices for professional needs or to create a quiet environment to relax in.

The soundproofing foam can be cut and reshaped to fit a room as necessary, and it can be machine-washed without any issues. And once compressed, the acoustic panels take a few minutes to decompress, cutting down on the waiting time before beginning installation.

Material: Acoustic foam | Surface Area: 12 x 12 inches | Thickness: 1 inch

6. Best Acoustic Foam Panels: Audiosoul Acoustic Panels

Sale
52 Pack Acoustic Panels 1 X 12 X 12 Inches - Acoustic Foam -...
  • ★ Professional Sound Absorbing Properties - Acoustic foams...
  • ★ Quality - Our Acoustic Foam Panels are made with...

The wedge-style Audiosoul Acoustic Panels come in a pack of 52, featuring sound masking capabilities that can reduce noise pollution and remove echoes. Made from professional-grade acoustic foam, they can be used in professional soundproofing projects and treatments for rooms, doors, garage spaces, and more.

Owing to the acoustic foam, the Audiosoul Acoustic panels are lightweight while being quite dense, further reducing the intensity of unwanted sound reflections. Furthermore, the foam remains dense and consistently firm across its surface to keep the noise reduction high.

Covering a surface area of 12 x 12 inches, the 52-acoustic panel set will be ample to cover most spaces. But, if you do not need 52 panels, the Audiosoul panels are available in 24 and 12 packs as well, available at an affordable rate.

These panels, when combined with acoustic foam bass traps, can suppress noises of any frequency. Without a bass trap, the acoustic panels can successfully dampen the sounds of mid and high frequencies.

Installation is fairly standard in the Audiosoul sound-dampening acoustic panels; simply use double-sided tape, spray adhesive, or glue to install them to hard surfaces.

Material: Polyurethane acoustic foam | Surface Area: 12 x 12 inches | Thickness: 1 inch

7. Best For Recording Studios: JBER Acoustic Foam Panels

Sale
JBER 12 Pack Acoustic Foam Panels, 1" X 12" X 12" Studio...
  • Great for spot treating sound on walls in your studio or...
  • 12 Pack Covers 12 Square Feet - Each tile is 1 square foot...

Designed to be used in spaces like home offices and studios, the JBER Acoustic Foam Panels are wedge-style panels that reduce outside noise in an enclosed space. These can be used to spot-treat a studio or a home recording space as well if needed.

JBER Acoustic Foam panels are made from acoustic polyurethane foam, an odorless and flame-retardant material with high noise-reduction qualities. The sound-dampening panels can improve the sound quality of recordings by reducing background noise, echo, and reverb.

You can find the JBER acoustic panels in a 12 or 48-pack in three different color schemes: black, red, and charcoal. Each panel is sized at 12 x 12 inches with a 1-inch thickness, making it sufficiently sized for most home setups. YouTubers, music producers, and podcast hosts can make use of these panels.

When combined with a layer of sound insulation panels, the JBER foam panels can completely soundproof a room with no issues. And much like other acoustic panels on this list, the sound-absorbing panels can be resized and altered without affecting their acoustic capabilities.

Material: Polyurethane acoustic foam | Surface Area: 12 x 12 inches | Thickness: 1 inch

8. Best For Reverberation Dampening: SD SODOCT Acoustic Foam Panels

24 Pack-12 x 12 x 2 Inches Pyramid Designed Acoustic Foam...
  • 【Outstanding Sound Absorption】 - Distinct pyramid 3D...
  • 【Improve Sound Quality & Clarity】These high dense panels...

Featuring a pyramid pattern, the SD SODOCT Acoustic Foam Panels are designed to increase the contact area with sound. This leads to the absorption of flutter echoes and standing waves, which is necessary for acoustic treatment.

Made from polyurethane acoustic foam, the SD SODOCT panels are non-toxic and flame-retardant panels that control and dampen reverberation and typical background noises. This contributes to better sound clarity in recordings, video and audio calls, interviews, and more.

Each panel is sized at a standard 12 x 12 inches, with a thickness of two inches. The extra inch of thickness makes a noticeable difference in the sound-dampening qualities of a room. Adding to the noise reduction is the high material density, which sits at 25 kg/m3, deterring residual sound effectively. 

The premium acoustic foam panels are easy to alter and install, owing to their soft nature. It is worth noting, however, that the panels take a day or two to decompress after unpacking.

Material: Polyurethane acoustic foam | Surface Area: 12 x 12 inches | Thickness: 2 inches

Best Soundproof Panels Comparison Table

ProductMaterialSurface AreaThickness
Sonic Acoustics Acoustic PanelsPolyester fiber14 x 12 inches0.4 inches
TroyStudio Acoustic Studio Foam PanelPolyurethane open-cell foam12 x 12 inches2 inches
XIN & LOG Acoustic Foam PanelPolyurethane foam12 x 12 inches1 inch
DEKIRU Acoustic PanelsPolyester fiber14 x 13 inches0.4 inches
HEMRLY Acoustic Acoustic PanelsAcoustic foam12 x 12 inches1 inch
Audiosoul Acoustic PanelsPolyurethane acoustic foam12 x 12 inches1 inch
JBER Acoustic Foam PanelsPolyurethane acoustic foam12 x 12 inches1 inch
SD SODOCT Acoustic Foam PanelsPolyurethane acoustic foam12 x 12 inches2 inches

Buying Guide For The Best Soundproof Panels

1. Qualities To Look For In Soundproofing Panels

When choosing a set of soundproofing panels, you’ll want to ensure that the product you purchase performs its task well. Sound treating a room is a necessary part of any recording studio, after all.

The best soundproofing panels reduce sound, dampen sounds and provide you with better sound quality. They can also reduce the intensity of unwanted noise and reverb, making your recordings sound clear and professional.

Here is a brief overview of each quality that most foam panels have to transform your room into a quieter place.

A. The Make

Soundproofing panels are made with all kinds of materials, ranging from natural materials like wood to artificial ones, such as foam. What each of these has in common is that they stop sound waves from entering a space, reducing any noises that come from the outside. As a result, the room becomes quieter and more suited for working or recording purposes.

Depending on the size of your room and the scale of your needs, you can choose from a host of panel materials. Each soundproofing solution will have a different way and in turn, a different level of effectiveness for successfully performing its task. Smaller rooms and spaces can work with thinner and sleeker soundproofing panels, while larger, noisier rooms require thicker foam panels.

There are more than 30 soundproofing materials to choose from at different price ranges and effectiveness, so you won’t be starved for choice. Some of the most common soundproofing material types are acoustic membranes, fiberglass, textile materials, and soundproof drywall, to name a few.

A common misconception is that an egg crate can be used as an effective soundproofing solution. While this isn’t exactly untrue since adding any kind of mass to your walls will reduce noise, the effectiveness of crates is extremely limited. So, it’s best to use materials made specifically for soundproofing purposes.

B. Noise Reduction Coefficient Rating

The Noise Reduction Coefficient Rating (NRC) is a measurement of how much sound a soundproofing panel can reduce and dampen. These ratings range from 0.00 to 1.00, with the latter being the most effective.

Small spaces don’t require much soundproofing, so you can use a panel with a relatively low NRC rating without an issue. Larger spaces, however, benefit immensely from panels with an NRC rating that approaches or is 1. Background noises and bass frequencies become an issue the larger a space is, necessitating greater soundproofing solutions.

C. Dimensions

Typically, soundproof panel sets come in bundles of six, 12, and 24, with a surface area of 1 ft2, 2 ft2, and 2ft x 4ft each.

Your set of soundproof panels should be able to cover an entire room well, and the panel dimensions determine how much of your walls they cover. An average home studio can use up to 48 1ft2, which is why most starter panel bundles come in a combination of all the panels you’ll need. These combinations may include 48 of 1 ft2 panels, 12 of 2 ft2 panels, or six of 2ft x 4ft panels.

D. Surface Pattern

Most soundproof panels come with a pattern on them to dampen any sounds, with wedged and pyramid patterns being the most widely used. 

Though there is a marked improvement in the soundproofing performance of panels with patterns as opposed to those without, the pattern type makes little difference. For instance, the difference between the soundproofing performance of wedged and pyramid patterns is minimal, so feel free to choose as per your aesthetic tastes.

2. Soundproofing Principles Used

Soundproofing a room makes it acoustically isolated by reducing or outright blocking sound waves passing in and out of it. Acoustic isolation stands on five key principles, namely deflection, absorption, decoupling, thermal conversion, and constrained layer damping. Each of these principles works independently, with soundproofing panels making use of one or more of them at once for added effectiveness.

Let’s look at these principles briefly to know how your soundproof panels work and focus on which principle will net you the best results.

A. Deflection

Deflection is a principle that works by adding mass and density to the walls, floor, and ceiling of a room. The density and thickness of a soundproof panel act as a deterrent for sound waves, causing them to lose energy as they pass through the soundproof panel.

This is a principle put to use by most soundproofing panels on the market and is effective in rooms of all sizes. 

B. Absorption

Have you noticed that some soundproof panels have perforations? These perforations facilitate the absorption of sound, achieving acoustic isolation while preventing reverbs, resonance, and amplification of sound waves. 

C. Decoupling

Decoupling occurs when the area of the direct link between the structure and soundproof materials is reduced. This interrupts sound vibrations that travel through a room’s connectivity from one side to the other. 

You can think of this principle being enforced by creating what is, effectively, a room within a room.

D. Thermal Conversion

This principle converts sound waves into trace heat energy through friction in the acoustic sound insulation membrane. Professional-grade soundproofing solutions employ this strategy to maximize noise reduction and dampening, in addition to the other principles on this list.

In contrast to some of the other principles, thermal conversion doesn’t rely on mass for soundproofing, making it standalone as a soundproofing material.

E. Constrained Layer Damping

Constrained layer damping reduces the natural resonant frequencies of a structure by using specific materials in a given ratio. This is typically enforced by applying damping compounds in the middle of two rigid panels like plasterboard or drywall.

When sounds strike these compounds, shearing forces between panels cause friction in the damping compounds, essentially converting sound energy to heat.

3. The Differences Between Soundproofing And Sound Absorption 

Soundproofing and sound absorption are fundamentally different concepts, but they are often confused with one another. In truth, sound absorption is a subset of soundproofing and is chiefly used in two ways.

The voids in a stud wall can cause unwanted reverberations, which is where sound absorption materials are used as a part of soundproofing systems. Oftentimes, absorption materials are used to line the surface space of walls and ceilings to reduce sound resonance in the room by absorbing sound waves.

Soundproofing is a process that is much more involved than sound absorption, employing all manners of sound and reverb reduction techniques. The materials used for soundproofing prevent sound waves from entering or passing through a room, creating what is known as acoustic isolation.

Soundproof Panels FAQs

  • What is the difference between soundproofing and sound absorption?

    Soundproofing is the blocking of sound from entering or leaving a space. Sound absorption, on the other hand, is about soaking up sound waves to reduce echo and reverberation within a room. Soundproof panels are designed for sound absorption.

  • Can soundproof panels completely eliminate noise?

    While soundproof panels significantly reduce noise levels, they are not designed to completely eliminate noise. They can, however, dramatically improve the sound quality within a room by reducing echo and background noise.

  • Are soundproof panels safe for indoor use?

    Yes. Most quality soundproof panels are designed with indoor safety in mind. They are typically fire-retardant and non-toxic. However, it’s always wise to check the product specifications before purchasing.

  • How many soundproof panels do I need for my room?

    The number of panels needed depends on the size of your room, its shape and the sources of noise you want to address. Manufacturers often have guides or calculators to help determine how many panels you’ll need for your specific circumstance.

  • Do I need a professional to install soundproof panels?

    Not necessarily. While a professional can ensure panels are installed for maximum effectiveness, most soundproof panels come with instructions that are easy to follow for DIY installation.

  • How do I install soundproof panels?

    Soundproof panels can be mounted or hung on walls, ceilings, and even doors. They usually come with installation instructions that are easy to follow. Some require adhesive strips or glue, while others may need to use mounting brackets.

  • Are soundproof panels easy to maintain?

    Yes, they are. Just use a vacuum to remove dust from the surface as needed. For tougher stains or dirt, use a damp cloth with mild soap. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s instructions for any specific care requirements.

  • Conclusion

    Picking a soundproofing panel on a budget can be an ordeal, but it needn’t necessarily be so. After all, all that matters is that unnecessary noises are removed from your room once you soundproof it.

    At the end of the day, the soundproof panel set I found to be the best was the Sonic Acoustics Hexagon Panels. It showcases noise reduction at an affordable price point that makes it worth a recommendation. That said, the remaining soundproofing solutions are not far behind.

    Some sound absorption panels offer high soundproofing capabilities, while others have a high panel count per set. Each of these products offers something for every niche and based on your personal preference, you can make an informed decision on the matter.