Let’s try to keep it quiet! Comments and Sound Ideas on SoundProofing your home or business

December 29, 2009

5 Soundproofing Principles

Filed under: — admin @ 9:39 am

When it comes to effectively soundproofing an area you’re going to find that tailoring the methods you are going to use is certainly more of a science than an art form. While it often takes some creative deductive reasoning in order to determine what areas need to be soundproofed you will find that determining how to solve your sound problems is much more methodical.

As you approach your soundproofing task you’ll need to keep the 5 principles of proper soundproofing in mind. They are as follows:

  • Mass,
  • Mechanical decoupling or isolation,
  • Absorption,
  • Resonance, and
  • Conduction


Mass is important in soundproofing for a very simple reason. The heavier something is the harder it is for sound (or any object) to pass through it. Let’s say you want to soundproof a room by adding extra layers of drywall. Drywall, for all intensive purposes, does not weigh very much at all. Adding a second layer of a lightweight drywall will not do very much to solve your sound problems whereas adding a layer of weighted mass loaded vinyl might have a more significant impact.

Mechanical Decoupling/Isolation

Decoupling is the art of creating a path through with sound has to travel in order to get from point A to point B. As the sound passes through it begins to lose it’s ability to vibrate because it will keep hitting certain sound barrier materials. Mechanical decoupling is often achieved by creating resilient channels, adding sound or whisper clips, by staggering studs, or by double studding the walls.

Sound Absorption

Sound absorption is something we talk about quite frequently. Adding material in between the layers of your wall, no matter what material you use, can go a long way in lowering sound frequencies as they attempt to pass through. The effectiveness of your work will depend on the frequency of the noise but using something is always better than using nothing. Use a popular soundproofing product, like Green Glue, and you’re almost guaranteed the most effective outcome.


Resonance is the ability of sound to vibrate through or on a wall or surface. It’s exactly what you’re trying to avoid by using the absorption, decoupling, and mass addition techniques we’ve described so far.


Finally, you have to consider conduction, or the way vibrations are carried along surfaces. You might have a speaker, for example, set on the floor next to your wall. The sound will certainly vibrate through the wall to the room next door but it can also be conducted along the walls or studs through the ceiling into the room above. When soundproofing, you have to take steps to eliminate or reduce the methods sound can use to conduct throughout your household or business.

Keep these 5 essential principles in mind as you begin your soundproofing efforts. Address each one and you’re guaranteed positive results!

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