Acoustical Materials 101


Absorption materials are the most basic and widely used acoustical materials available. Absorbers reduce reverberation and noise by absorbing sound. Performance is engineered by product type, location and the amount of absorbing material in your space. Absorbers are used in any reverberant space from corridors to expansive arenas. There are many types of absorbers available and are typically porous, open cell acoustical materials manufactured out of foam or fiberglass. Sound absorption efficiency is rated by an NRC number, or Noise Reduction Coefficient rating. The higher the NRC rating, the more efficient the product is at absorbing noise energy.

These products include:

  • Fabric Wrapped Acoustic Panels
  • Acoustic Ceiling Clouds
  • Acoustic Baffles and Banners
  • Acoustic Foams
  • Acoustical Absorption Blankets

Noise Barriers

Noise barrier materials are used to block noise from transmitting from one area to another. These acoustical materials are typically made of flexible mass-loaded vinyl or other engineered materials. Performance is measured by placement of these materials between source and receiver and is measured by an STC rating. All Noise Barriers are rated by an STC number or Sound Transmission Classification. The higher the STC rating, the more efficient the product is at blocking noise path.

These products include:

  • MLV Sound Barrier
  • Acoustical Barrier Blankets
  • Ceiling Barrier
  • Acoustical Door Seal Kits

Composite Materials

Composite materials are products that combine both Noise Barrier & Sound Absorber materials. These products when engineered together typically prove the greatest levels of noise reduction. Acoustical composite materials have both an NRC and STC rating. Again, the higher the NRC and STC rating, the more efficient the material is at reducing noise levels.

These products include:

  • Drop Tile Ceiling Barriers
  • Combination Acoustical Blankets
  • Blanket Enclosures
  • Stretch Wall Systems
  • Composite Ceiling Tiles