Absorbing vs. Blocking Noise In Recording Studios

absorbing vs. blocking sound in recording studios

There are many misconceptions about sound treatments for recording studios. While many think sound absorption and blocking are the same, they are actually very different. Different products should be used depending on if you’re looking to absorb or block sound. Read on to learn what each term really means, and what treatments can be used to solve the sound problems you are facing in your recording studio.

Blocking vs. absorption infographic

First, determine if your biggest need is sound absorption or sound blocking. Note that if you have an issue with feedback, reverb, clarity, or just generally “good sounding” music, then it is likely sound absorption that you need. On the other hand, if your neighbors down the street are complaining about your drums and other instruments, then sound blocking is the answer.

Sound Absorption

Absorption helps to improve the overall sound quality when recording music. If you have a problem with echoes or reverberation, a sound absorbing product is what you are looking for. These types of materials are usually light and fluffy.

Absorption Products

Absorption Panels

Absorption panels are hung on the wall and made to trap and contain sound waves, minimizing echo and reverberation. They improve speech intelligibility, get rid of background noise, and make for a clearer sound while recording. Check out some absorption panels here.

Acoustical Wedge Foam

Acoustical wedge foam is a low cost, easy to install solution to noise problems in your recording studio. It reduces reverberation, improving acoustics and greatly increasing sound quality in the space.

Sound Blocking

Blocking involves stopping outside noise from entering the recording space altogether. If you have a problem with outside noise in your studio, you should be looking to block sound. Blocking materials tend to be heavier and more dense.

Blocking Products

Door Seals and Sweeps

If sound is seeping into your recording through the door, seals or sweeps are a great solution for you. Door seals are installed around the perimeter of the door, preventing noise from coming into the studio through cracks or gaps around the door. Door sweeps are placed underneath the door, closing the gap to the floor and stopping noise from traveling underneath the door.

Soundproof Curtains

Our AcousticCurtain™ can be hung over any window in your studio and seals around the window frame, deflecting sound waves. This prevents outside noise from entering the room, reducing disturbances when you are trying to record.

While exterior noise prevention means you won’t need as many “takes”, soundproofing curtains in your studio also mean that you’ll be less likely to disrupt your neighbors, since they are equally effective at keeping sound in!

Did any of these tips help improve the sound quality of your recording studio? If so, let us know in the comments below!

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