Echo and acoustic reflections can potentially create a lot of issues in recording rooms, studios, theaters, and other areas. Some apartments or homes even face this issue because of their design, age, and other factors. Sound absorbing panels are one of the most effective ways of reducing echoes and enhancing the overall acoustics of a room.
In this review and guide, we’ll go through the 7 best sound absorbing panels available on the market today. All of these options are highly rated and perform exceptionally under many indoor conditions.
In a hurry ? Here are our top picks
Our Top Picks
Head over to any online or brick and mortar shop to look for sound absorbing panels. You’ll be surprised with the sheer number of options available. Some of them simply focus on doing their job while others try to stand out with an attractive design that can enhance the overall look of the room.
The best choice for you depends on many factors. Just like any other product, you’ll need to find the balance between functionality, aesthetics, and price.
1. Acoustic Eggcrate Tiles Studio Foam
These egg crate foam tiles are a perfect addition for a studio, recording room, or any other area that needs sound absorption. This is an environment-friendly product that doesn’t have any toxic components and is 100% safe to use. Simply measure the wall, cut the foam sheets where needed, and get started.
Most sound absorbing panels nowadays come with an adhesive coating to allow convenient installation. Unfortunately, this product doesn’t have that feature. So, you’ll have to use nails, glue, or double-sided tapes to install them.
This means that you won’t be able to remove these panels as easily as other options. Be extra careful about where you’re installing them. Otherwise, you’ll have to deal with nail marks or paint damage.
One important thing to note is that the panels are delivered in compressed vacuum packaging to save space during transportation. Therefore, don’t be alarmed by the distorted shape. Keep the foam tile in the open air for a few hours and they’ll be back to their original shape.
- Environmentally friendly
- Excellent sound absorbing capability
- Versatile use
- Flame resistant
- Available in a bulk package at a reasonable price
- Doesn’t have any adhesive coating
- Harder to remove after application
- Available in a single color only
2. Wasait 3D Wall Panels
The 3D wall panels by Wasait kill two birds with one stone. The high-quality PE foam is an excellent sound absorber and the white brick design gives some personality to your room. The wall panels are available in both white and black colors, so you can choose the color that agrees with the overall theme of your room.
A usual concern with 3D wall panels, especially those that come with adhesive backing, is the exposure to harmful compounds like Formaldehyde. Wasait is a trusted brand and uses 100% safe materials in its products so you can choose this option without any concerns.
If you’ve got kids, then these 3D wall panels have additional benefits for you. Children of a certain age love to draw on anything they get their hands on. If you constantly deal with doodles on your walls, then these panels can help you out. The panels are waterproof and can be easily cleaned.
Just wipe the stains with a damp cloth and your walls will be good as new.
While the Wasait 3D panels are an excellent choice for your TV room or any regular apartment wall, their sound absorbance is not adequate for a professional studio. The product balances off between aesthetics and functionality, so you’ll have to compromise a little.
The adhesive is also a little weaker and comes off in a very short time, so you’ll either have to buy new ones or use permanent methods like glue or nails.
- Attractive look with a brick design
- Available in two colors
- Free from any harmful compounds
- Comes with a pre-applied adhesive coat
- Can be easily cleaned with a damp cloth
- Inadequate sound absorption for professional users
- The adhesive wears off after some time
- May be difficult to align
3. Acoustimac DMD Stagger Acoustic Panel
The Acoustimac panels are a premium option that gets full marks in both functionality and aesthetics. One set of noise absorption panels comes with 8 panels in total and covers an area of 32 sq feet. Four of these 8 panels are in a gray/charcoal color while the rest are in white.
If you’re interested in the technical specifications of this choice, it comes with NRC and ASTM certification for its functions and safety. The panels are a bit more expensive than other options on the market, but it’s worth the investment.
There are some issues to consider before you dive into purchasing this product. The Acoustimac panels are quite a hassle to install. Unlike the other options in this list, these acoustic panels need mounting hardware and other tools.
The panels are also quite fragile and have a history of being damaged in shipping. It’s probably due to inferior packaging or other similar reasons. According to most users, the supplier vigilantly replaces them, but the entire process is still inconvenient.
- Excellent sound absorption
- Aesthetically pleasing design
- Rated by NRC and ASTM
- Fire resistant
- Comes with installation hardware
- Inconvenient to install
- Weak packaging may damage the product during shipping
4. ZHERMAO Acoustic Panels
The Zhermao acoustic panels are another excellent choice that delivers an unmatched sound absorbing experience. Not only that, these are one of the few options that effectively isolate your room, as well — an impressive quality when you consider the overall price of this product.
On the aesthetics front, these panels are excellent. They’re available in multiple colors and have a beveled design. Just like the Wasait panels, these panels also have a 3D shape.
Unlike the Wasait, the Zhermao panels don’t compromise on sound dampening capabilities, so you get both excellent functionality and aesthetics in a single product.
The material used by Zhermao is a premium quality polyester fiber with a density of 215 kg/m3. The material allows these panels to block sounds and gives it other useful capabilities like flame resistance and corrosion resistance.
A pain point for many customers of sound absorbing panels is the installation procedure. The Zhermao panels circumvent that issue with all sorts of adhesives and surfaces. Whether it’s a spray or a double-sided tape, these acoustic panels can work with anything.
- The best combination of aesthetics and functionality
- Superior soundproofing
- High-quality materials
- 3D beveled shape
- Flame resistant
- High-density material
- Little different than the shown pictures
- Slightly expensive
5. Acoustic Panels Soundproof Studio Foam by Burdurry
Burdurry’s acoustic panels are an ideal choice for anyone looking for a budget option that performs as well as other premium options. These panels are made up of high-quality materials that are both environmentally friendly and pose no health risk for anyone.
Just like the first product in our review, these panels don’t come with a pre-applied adhesive coat. However, you can use any nails, staplers, or glued to attach them to a surface. Unlike the first listing, these panels are available in different colors. You have the option to choose between black/coffee, black/green and black/red combinations, depending on your preferences.
There is, however, a huge weak point of the Burdurry panels. Some reviews suggest that a significant percentage of these panels don’t expand to their proper shape even after being unboxed for a while. There are also reports that these panels leave a slight odor for a few days, which may be uncomfortable to smell.
- Excellent acoustic performance
- Available in different color combinations
- Eco-friendly materials
- Suitable for a variety of applications
- Doesn’t have an adhesive coating
- Some panels don’t return to their original shape after vacuum packing
- Leaves a slight odor
6. Stone Ten Faux Brick Wall Panels
The final sound absorbing panels on our list are the incredible faux brick panels by Stone Ten. These premium panels can turn your regular room into an awesome area where you can let your creativity flow. The design of these panels gives off a realistic wooden look and the thin material delivers the same performance without taking up too much space.
When it comes to installation, the Stone Ten panels are great for any user. You don’t have to worry about getting any adhesive spray, tape, or nails as it comes with a pre-applied coating. Unlike many other options, the adhesive coating of these products is quite durable and versatile enough to work with many surfaces without any additional processes.
One distinguishing feature of these faux brick panels is their compatibility with regular paint. If you want to hide the sound absorbing panels, you can easily do so by painting over them. The wall would look exactly like before and no one would be able to tell the difference (unless they take a closer look).
If we talk about the negatives, the first issue many users face is the damage to the wall. Since the adhesive coat is extremely strong, it damages the paint and is quite hard to take off. Similarly, some users report that the panels are quite hard to align.
- Excellent design and performance
- Realistic wooden look
- Pre-applied adhesive coat
- Compatible with regular paint
- Hard to take off and damages the wall’s paint
- Difficult to align
Buyer’s Guide: Selecting a Sound Absorbing Panel
If you’re still unsure about which sound absorbing panels are right for you, this buying guide should help to clear things up. While choosing the product that best caters to your needs, you must consider a set of factors before making any decision.
Sound Absorbing Panels are usually safe but the inclusion of materials such as Formaldehyde in certain panels is concerning. Formaldehyde can negatively affect your long-term health and should be avoided.
Moreover, materials like Polyurethane should also be avoided, as it has a high smoke level if burned. In case of a fire, Polyurethane is the last thing you want near you. Whatever panel you choose, make sure that it contains safe materials and is fire-resistant.
Before making a choice, you must consider whether you need an adhesive sound absorbing panel. The installation of a panel with adhesive coating is a piece of cake, but it can be difficult to remove them afterward. If you move around a lot, then mounted sound absorbing panels would be much more suitable for you despite its pestering installation process.
You need to see just how good a panel is at absorbing sounds, especially if you live in a metropolitan area. Certain panels are built with a variety of designs, such as the egg crate design, that can increase the efficiency of sound absorption.
Remember to check the NRC rating of the product beforehand to get a proper idea of how well the sound absorbing panels work. The closer the rating is to 10, the better.
Design and Color Options
With the right kind of design and coloring, you’ll be able to enrich the look of your studio and boost your creativity.
Like all products, sound absorbing panels can have both cheap and expensive price tags. It’s important to note that you’ll most likely get the best value for your money somewhere between the two extremes. Furthermore, there are several reasonably-priced budget and premium options available that have a variety of different features.
Using Sound Absorbing Panels can significantly help enhance your living standards by combating noise pollution. There are several brilliant panels available and we hope that this guide helps you find the best sound absorbing panels for your needs!