You may want soundproof panels, also known as acoustic treatment panels, for a variety of purposes.
Let’s say you live in an apartment and you’re constantly hearing dogs barking next door or you’re looking to upgrade your in-house recording studio and need something to dampen the sound. Well, that’s where soundproof panels come in.
In today’s guide, we’re going to cover exactly what you need to know about these sound-dampening panels and which ones are best.
Let’s get into it.
What Are Soundproofing Panels?
Acoustic or soundproofing panels are essentially boards made from special materials used to isolate sound coming out or into a room. You’ll see them primarily in rehearsal and recording studios. Although many business offices use them to create a more suitable working environment.
Read Next: 9 Must-Have Home Studio Essentials In 2023
Several types of soundproofing panels exist, such as foam, fabric, fabric-wrapped, and other panels.
What Are the Best Soundproof Panels?
The first model on the list is Auralex 2-inch Studiofoam Wedgies. It’s a bundle of 24 charcoal gray acoustic panels that are very easy to install and maintain.
This is a simple solution for people that want to sound-treat a large room, making it an ideal solution for rehearsal studios. With Auralex’s acoustical wedgies, you can cover up to 24 square feet large. Each panel is exactly a foot tall and two inches thick.
These wedge panels are made of studio foam material, which blocks external noises while dispersing and sponging sounds coming in the frontal direction of the panel.
- Made of studio foam material
- A bundle containing 24 acoustic panels
- Each panel is 1-foot tall and wide; two-inch thick
What I Like / Dislike
Auralex panels are lightweight and small, meaning they are super-easy to install anywhere. Unlike tall soundproof panels, you can arrange them in any way you see fit, and you can easily replace any parts that may have become damaged over time.
The efficiency of these acoustic panels is good for the money but inferior in comparison to foam-wrapped fabric panels.
The Ultimate Acoustics Treatment Kit UA-Kit-SB1G is very similar to Auralex’s soundproofing bundle, sporting numerous petite panels made of quality foam material.
This kit is comprised of 18 soundproofing panels, all of which excel at absorbing treble and highs. The wedge design allows for easy stacking; alternatively, you can install these panels with their “spikes” pointing outward, which will break outbound noises down before subduing them.
The efficiency of any material to insulate sound can be categorized into classes A to D (A being the most effective and D being the least effective material). Ultimate Acoustics’ UA-Kit-SB1G features a special kind of foam that passed all the tests required to be categorized as Class B soundproof foam.
- Made of Class B acoustic foam
- A studio kit containing 18 panels
- 2-inch thick panels
- Reflects outbound noises; excels at controlling treble and high-frequency sounds
What I Like / Dislike
There are many things I like about Ultimate Acoustics’ UA-Kit SB1G, such as its great quality material, ease of installation, and simple maintenance. What I love the most about this bundle is the fact that this Class B foam was specifically designed to tame treble and highs.
The higher frequencies are, the harder they are to block (and for human ears to endure), so I wouldn’t trade high-frequency absorption for any benefit.
There are no major drawbacks to this soundproof panel bundle. It’s a bit too similar to the Auralex panel kit aesthetically, but performance-wise, it’s quite different.
ProSoCoustic WaveRoom Pro is a soundproofing set made using an array of advanced technologies and materials.
Boasting high resistance to mold and moisture, these panels can endure years of use in virtually any environment. Even though they’re much taller than Ultimate Acoustics and Auralex soundproof wedges, ProSoCoustic WaveRoom Pro is very simple to install. The company provides all the necessary hardware and instructions about how to properly complete the setup.
These panels are as “green” as they can be, having been granted several sustainability certifications, most notably FSC and ECC.
What truly separates ProSoCoustic WaveRoom Pro from contemporary soundproofing panels is its ability to diffuse sound before absorbing it. Outfitted with inbuilt diffusers, these soundproofing panels excel at controlling all sounds and noises in the room they are installed in, no matter which frequency they belong to.
- The kit features two 48 x 24-inch WavePro panels
- Interchangeable fabric
- Built-in audio diffusers for premium sonic control
- Mounting hardware included with the bundle
- ECC and FSC certifications for sustainability
What I Like / Dislike
If you are scared to put such a giant piece of wood into the same room with your expensive equipment, your mind should be at ease knowing that ProSoCoustic WaveRoom Pro panels are classified as Class A for fire resistance.
In my opinion, the main reason why ProSoCoustic WaveRoom Pro is a set of the best soundproofing bundles is that they don’t completely block all noises in the room. Instead of compressing ambient sounds (and air) to the point where the pressure is unbearable, WaveRoom Pro panels tame it and filter the most troublesome frequencies out.
The only issue with this kit is that it only contains two panels. Even though they are very large, you can essentially isolate two walls at most, leaving the other two sides exposed to sonic ricochets.
ClearSonic’s S2233 soundproofing bundle is an acoustic treatment kit mainly used to isolate sound in recording and rehearsal studios. These panels excel at blocking extreme frequencies, leaving more “pleasant” sounds while eliminating unwanted noises and jittering.
Unlike foam-made wedges and panels I’ve covered in the sections above, S2233 panels are made of premium quality fiberglass that sports robust cloth embroidery.
Setting your ClearSonic S2233 panels is an easy job, as they feature Hook & Loop fasteners. Attaching them anywhere is a breeze, especially given the fact that the company provides the necessary installation hardware.
- The bundle contains four soundproofing panels made of cloth embroidered in quality fiberglass
- Compatible with all ClearSonic IsoPac systems
- Hook & Loop mounting setup
- Each panel is 33-inch tall and 22-inch wide
What I Like / Dislike
The thing I liked the most about S2233 soundproof panels is that each bundle features four of them. Each panel is large enough to cover critical points in an average-sized wall, meaning that you can fully isolate a studio room with just one kit.
I also loved the fiberglass construction. It does an amazing job at eliminating muddy bass frequencies, effectively allowing a band with poor-quality equipment to sound much better and clearer.
Thirdly, I’d like to point out that S2233 can be considered more affordable than ProSoCoustic WaveRoom Pro, even though the price tag of the former is a bit higher. Where you’d need two WaveRoom bundles, you need only one S2233.
ClearSonic S2233 panels are fairly durable by soundproofing panel standards, but I would advise against leaning against them, no matter how tired you may feel after hours of practice in a studio. Aside from that, there aren’t any major drawbacks to the S2233 kit.
Primacoustic London’s 16 Acoustic Room Kit is the most comprehensive soundproofing bundle comprised of a range of differently sized foam panels. I would argue that these are the best soundproof panels on the current market, or they would be widely accepted as such were it not for their hefty price tags.
This acoustic room treatment kit rocks the following:
- (4) 48″ Broadband Panels – 24″ x 48″ x 2″
- (16) Control 48″ Columns – 12″ x 48″ x 2″
- (24) Scatter 12″ Blocks – 12″ x 12″ x 1″
- (48) Surface Impalers
- (16) Corner impalers
- Anchors, Screws, and 1/4″ Drill Bit to Mount Impalers
The panels are your main sound isolators – place them in the middle of the room to block the initial sonic impact; place control columns on the sides of each wall to further mitigate the dispersing sounds and create a more controlled sonic environment.
Primacoustic London’s scatter blocks are very similar to Auralex’s soundproofing wedges. You can place them anywhere the sounds are still managing to ricochet off of.
- A comprehensive kit featuring 24 foam scatter blocks, 12 soundproofing control columns, 4 acoustic panels, and additional corner and surface impalers
- Different pieces are made of different materials, mainly high-quality wood and foam
- Installation hardware included
What I Like / Dislike
This is the perfect soundproofing isolation for everyone and anyone. Whether you want to isolate your garage where your band is practicing in, create a more welcoming environment in your business offices, or sound-treat your entire home, you can do it all with Primacoustic London’s 16 acoustic room kit.
I love the fact that this is the only bundle you will ever need to completely soundproof any studio or room. It features acoustic panels, columns, and blocks that can be arranged in any way you need.
The only thing I didn’t like as much is the price tag; Primacoustic London’s 16 Acoustic Room Kit is the most expensive bundle of acoustic panels on this list.
Let’s wrap things up with the second soundproofing kit from Auralex. The LENRD is an abbreviation of Low-End Node Reduction Device; low-end equals “bass”, meaning that these panels were specifically designed to tame the lowest frequencies. Each LENRD bundle features four 2-inch bass traps.
The angled design of LENRD bass traps allows you to place them in the corners of studio spaces and rooms of your home/office.
This way, you will still allow bass frequencies to circulate the room, but they won’t be allowed to freely roam; the less they bounce around, the more pleasant the sounds are.
- Made of high-quality foam material
- Each panel is 2-inch long
- Curved design suitable for placement in corners of any room
- Four LENRD bass traps per bundle
What I Like / Dislike
I love how easy it is to set LENRD bass traps up, but I don’t like the fact that the company doesn’t provide installation hardware (adhesive in this case).
These soundproof panels are fairly durable and their specialty is blocking low-end noises. Tracing back to the first model I’ve reviewed (Auralex studio foam wedgies), which is ideal for blocking high-end frequencies, the combination of these two makes a perfect combo for a complete room sound treatment.
What to Look for When Buying Soundproof Panels
There are a couple of things you may want to keep in mind when shopping for soundproof panels, including material, design, and cost, so let’s address these topics in a bit more detail:
The most common materials soundproof panels and blocks are made of are cloth, foam, and fiberglass. Better-quality models usually feature a combination of materials, such as ClearSonic S2233, for example.
The foam acts as a sponge; the cloth is an effective dampener meant to control rather than block sounds while fiberglass is a more versatile middle-ground option.
You probably noticed that soundproof panels come in all shapes and sizes. The largest ones are meant to prevent sonic ricochets and are usually mounted in the middle of the wall. Mid-sized panels are typically used to direct the sounds bouncing off the room.
Smaller ones are usually called “blocks”, and they are meant to be used as puzzle pieces, providing you with the much-needed flexibility to complete your setup.
The difference between $100 soundproof panels and $1,000 soundproof panels is usually obvious. The market is full of cheap panels that can barely get the job done.
I warmly recommend investing in pricier sound treatment equipment, as more expensive panels not only last longer, but they’re much more efficient at blocking or controlling noise. The price tag is not always reflective of a product’s quality; perfect examples of such cases are Auralex’s soundproof wedgies and ProSoCoustic WaveRoom Pro.
The best soundproof panels are not necessarily the most expensive ones. Studio engineers and owners typically need more comprehensive solutions than homeowners that simply want to block the sounds coming from one particular direction.
Whether you want to fully isolate one room or sound treat a larger area, I’m sure you’ll find what you need in one of the products I’ve reviewed in the sections above.