If you close your eyes while walking into a room, you can gauge the size of that area by calling out. An echo bounces off a faraway wall. In a smaller room, those echoes bounce again and again. Frankly, the effect makes the room feel empty, even lifeless. Acoustic foams and panels prevent these hollow sounds from propagating. How, in an enclosed room, do these solutions reduce undesirable echoes?
Room Panels Reduce Proximity Echo
When you first step inside a small room, there’s nothing in there, not even a floor lamp. Completely unobstructed, echoes bounce off of every wall as soon as a step is taken or a whispered word is spoken. Fortunately, most of the audio mirroring is dampened when “stuff” is moved into the small space. Cozy blankets and rugs absorb the echo before it propagates endlessly. The raw edge of this multiplying noise envelope is softened by these decorative items. But what if there are no rugs? What if you love that dark-grained hardwood floor? Well, acoustic noise-cancelling panels tackle that role. Now, instead of an incautiously located rug or a squished up cushion, purpose-designed frames are intelligently mounted at the sites where the echoing sound waves rebound.
Marketing Acoustic Foam Products
There’s an entire industry flourishing around this concept. At first, the wall-mountable foam slabs change the character of the petite space by looking like abstract wall print. In reality, however, the texturally polished boards are composed of multiple layers of cleverly packed foam. Closed-cell blankets absorb the energy of a sound wave before it hits the wall. That energy is dissipated through recycled cotton and sent harmlessly on its way. This is an acoustic foam by name, and it obviously functions as an echo-cancelling foam, too, but it’s designed to be safely mounted in a small area. That means the extruded material should be fire-resistant and free of VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). Mounted in interesting arrangements, the colours and textures that dress these skillfully fixed wall frames really supplement their noise-reflecting features.
It’s the multiple features, one that you’d never even consciously consider, that make acoustic foams and panels so indispensable. Stacked by colour or texture, they exude style, an aesthetic that impacts the entire room. They warm the space, literally and by dampening hollow sounding echoes. Beyond doubt, you should soundproof your small room. Noise leakages from the outside can really make a small space feel even more claustrophobic. Follow that acton with an echo cancelling program, one that uses panels and acoustic foams to cancel out room-trapped noise reflectance.