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DIY acoustic panel advice


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seeking advice of people who actually built their own acoustic panels.  i did a lot of research and found all the different materials and a few different build techniques.  what i'm trying to find out is what materials actually seemed to work the best from those who build different ones.  i'm looking to build 3 panels to go around my TV then maybe some smaller ones at the very top of the wall.  i'm really just trying to stop some sound from transferring between the living room wall and the back bedroom. 

i've already looked into sound proofing that wall, it's just not cost effective. i had the batt sound proofing in my old home, and it really did nothing.  my last resort is to fill the walls with blown in insulation.  i did have a guy who specialized in acoustic wall treatment and just due to where the wall is, whats around it, and what we would have to do, it will get to $5K in a heart beat. (that is if i want to actually sound proof it).

the cloth material covering the sound proofing won't be a simple black.  i'll want to have something that is WAF and possibly match our decor.  it would be awesome if there were some Star Wars material that will work with acoustic panels! my wife would go crazy if i can make some R2D2  panels! i know i can spend $600 for a few panels and they can print that, but i'm way to cheap for that!

thanks for any help!

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This comes up often.

Stopping sound from transversing a wall is difficult. The wall vibrates at bass notes and sound also gets though any holes. In recording studios they build two walls isolated from each other.

A panel or many panels will not stop this.

If you want to build panels which will absorb higher frequencies (which will probably only help reduce transmission a little) you should look at

http://www.owenscorning.com/NetworkShare/EIS/14775-Fiberglas-700-Series-Insulation-Product-Data-Sheet.pdf

HD sells some of it. Go look.

You can row around the Internet and find that commercially made absorbing panels are made of the stuff. But you're paying for their cloth covers, frames, and means of attaching it to a wall. By some standards, a rip off.

As far as getting decorative. Putting some cloth over it by yourself can give a nice appearance. Are there Star Wars towels or table cloths? But something like a paper poster over the fiberglass slab will probably defeat absorption.

You could cut the panels in an outlines of Star Wars icons. Say, circles for the Death Star and cover in cloth, and draw details with a Sharpie.

There could be more WAF if she does the artwork, I'd think.

WMcD

Edited by WMcD
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This comes up often.

Stopping sound from transversing a wall is difficult. The wall vibrates at bass notes and sound also gets though any holes. In recording studios they build two walls isolated from each other.

A panel or many panels will not stop this.

If you want to build panels which will absorb higher frequencies (which will probably only help reduce transmission a little) you should look at

http://www.owenscorning.com/NetworkShare/EIS/14775-Fiberglas-700-Series-Insulation-Product-Data-Sheet.pdf

HD sells some of it. Go look.

You can row around the Internet and find that commercially made absorbing panels are made of the stuff. But you're paying for their cloth covers, frames, and means of attaching it to a wall. By some standards, a rip off.

As far as getting decorative. Putting some cloth over it by yourself can give a nice appearance. Are there Star Wars towels or table cloths? But something like a paper poster over the fiberglass slab will probably defeat absorption.

You could cut the panels in an outlines of Star Wars icons. Say, circles for the Death Star and cover in cloth, and draw details with a Sharpie.

There could be more WAF if she does the artwork, I'd think.

WMcD

yeah, i get you.  it's what the acoustic guy told me.  u just can't put a panel or some batt insulation and u are done.  you have to build the wall a specific way.  i'm just hoping a few acoustic panels will "help" limit a small amount of sound.  this is why i want to keep it cheap.  i can pay a few hundred and he will install the R7 insulation.  i'm hoping if i can get a good quote on blown in batt, it will be "better" and maybe a touch cheaper.  and i won't have to cut a 2' section across my wall out. 

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Yeah just hanging some panels isn't going to do much. Best way of cheaply soundproofing a wall involves offsetting and doubling up on your studs so that both walls aren't attached to the same stud, using insulation between the drywall, and doubling up on sheetrock, all of which really needs to be new construction to do cost effectively. Retrofitting, some blown-in and doubling up on sheetrock may not be too bad.

If you did just want to try to use panels alone, maybe look at very large and thick ones, preferably with something like Knauf that has better coefficients down low than Owens Corning. It is the bass / midbass that is going to get through the wall the most so you want to put a dent in that as much as possible.

At 125 hz even 3 pound 2" Knauf has a 0.33 coefficient while the more popular Owens Corning 703 is at 0.17.

The thing is though, double up on that to 4" thick and suddenly even that Owens Corning will be at 0.84 and the Knauf should be much better than that. Even then though you're going to have to about wallpaper the room with the stuff to have the effect that you want. Strategically placed behind the speakers may help somewhat though.

Edited by MetropolisLakeOutfitters
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Derrick is correct. Sound proofing and room acoustics are related but, two different things. Sound proofing  works best in the construction of the HT and acoustic Tx help shaped the sound inside the room.

 

The most effective solution for reducing sound transmission between two rooms is to "float" one (or both) of the rooms. By floating, I mean the walls, ceiling and floors have to be resiliently isolated from the wall studs, ceiling and floor joists. 

 

Check out the products from Kinetics Noise Control. They offer effective ceiling as well as floor isolation products that are reasonably priced. With the simple addition of their IsoMax Clips to a drywall furring channel, you can improve a 2X4 2-layer gyp board's STC rating from 50 to 57. 

 

 http://www.kineticsnoise.com/arch/pdf/isomax.pdf

 

http://www.kineticsnoise.com/arch/tests/isomax.html

 

Kinetics tests all their products at the Riverbank Acoustical Laboratories, the premiere acoustic products testing facility. You can see the testing results for each product on their web site.

 

Lee

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  • 1 month later...

Gil's fiberglass panels, or HVAC duct board make very good absorptive panels to control internal room reflections.  make a 1-by frame, use foil-backed duct board and aluminum duct tape to attach the board to the frame.  Wrap cloth (coordinated colors?) over the panel and staple into the duct tape.  Hang random sizes at random locations to kill reflections. 

 

As stated, this is not soundproofing.  For that you'll need off-set walls and ceilings, too, I suspect. 

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  i'm really just trying to stop some sound from transferring between the living room wall and the back bedroom. 

i've already looked into sound proofing that wall, it's just not cost effective. i had the batt sound proofing in my old home, and it really did nothing.  my last resort is to fill the walls with blown in insulation.  i did have a guy who specialized in acoustic wall treatment and just due to where the wall is, whats around it, and what we would have to do, it will get to $5K in a heart beat. (that is if i want to actually sound proof it).

 

 

What you need to do to block/reduce sound transmission on an existing wall, especially at lower frequencies, is add another layer of drywall, preferably 5/8" sheetrock. Before putting up the sheet rock apply Green Glue (available in my area at Menard's [surprisingly]). Also use Green Glue Sealant at all seams and around the edges. Use Drywall screws that are long enough to go all the way through to the stud. Green Glue is a visioelastic contrained damping compound that MUST be tightly constrained in order to be effective. It's excellent at reducing low frequency sound transmission.

 

I put up three layer of this stuff using 5/8" OSB and got a 20dB reduction in sound transmission at the worst case frequency. 

Edited by artto
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  • 4 years later...

You may get enough relief by soundproofing the bedroom door. Basically, you need to make it solid and have proper gasketing on ALL sides. If the living room and back bedroom share a wall, I’d try adding another layer of drywall and green glue following their recommendations.

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  • 1 month later...

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