If you want to improve the sound quality of urban environments, hospitals, classrooms, or any other space, acoustical wall panels are an excellent solution. These panels blend functionality and style, helping you manage unwanted noise and create a more pleasant acoustic environment. Let’s delve into the science behind these panels, their benefits, how to install them, and essential factors to consider when selecting.

The Science of Sound and How Acoustical Panels Work

Sound travels in waves, and when encountering a surface, they bounce back. These reflections can lead to echoes, reverberation, and a messy soundscape in rooms without acoustic treatment. Acoustical wall panels are designed with porous materials that absorbs sound waves, converting their energy into tiny amounts of heat. This process reduces reflections, creating a more precise and controlled sound environment.

Critical Benefits of Acoustical Wall Panels

Acoustical wall panels are more than just a tool for managing noise – they offer a range of benefits that directly impact communication, well-being, and productivity. From classrooms to offices to your own home, these panels can make a significant difference:

Improved Communication

By minimizing echoes and background noise, acoustical panels enhance speech intelligibility. This makes them particularly useful in classrooms, offices, and meeting spaces where clear communication is essential.

Noise Reduction and Increased Calm

Excessive noise can be a significant source of stress and distraction. Acoustical panels help to create a more peaceful and focused atmosphere, making them ideal for homes, hospitals, libraries, or any space where a tranquil environment is desired.

Enhanced Productivity and Focus

In open-plan workspaces, sound can travel freely and disrupt concentration. Acoustical panels help to minimize these distractions, creating a soundscape that supports productivity and focused work.

Aesthetic Versatility

Modern acoustic panels are available in various materials, textures, colors, and designs. They can blend seamlessly into your decor or become a striking design element.

Beyond Noise Reduction: The Wide-Ranging Benefits of Soundproofing

While soundproofing is often associated with simply reducing noise, its advantages go far deeper. Let’s explore how soundproofing can positively impact various areas of our lives:

Urban Environments

In densely populated cities like New York, noise pollution is a serious issue, often leading to legal disputes. Soundproofing can combat this problem and create more livable urban spaces.

Enhanced Experiences

Restaurants and other dining establishments rely on soundproofing to create a pleasant atmosphere for their patrons. Minimizing distracting noise allows everyone to enjoy their meals and conversations more fully.

Healthcare Settings

Hospitals and healthcare facilities prioritize soundproofing to promote a healing environment for patients. Quiet spaces reduce stress, while improved acoustics allow for clear communication between medical staff, aiding in accurate decision-making.

Mental Health and Education

Soundproofing offers mental health benefits for multifamily environments, fostering a sense of calm and aiding in relaxation. In classrooms, it supports focus and inclusion for all students, especially those with additional learning needs.


Installation Techniques For Acoustical Wall Panels

Installing acoustical wall panels can be relatively straightforward, depending on the type of panel you choose, its decibel rating, and your desired aesthetic. Standard installation techniques include:


Using construction adhesive is often a simple and effective solution for lightweight panels. For the best results, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

Impaling Clips

These clips offer a secure and adjustable mounting option that is well-suited to various panel styles.


Z-clips provide a highly stable and reliable mounting solution when you need extra support for heavier panels.

FAQs About Acoustical Wall Panels

It’s natural to have questions when considering acoustical panels. Here are some frequently asked questions and their answers:

How thick should the panels be?

Thickness influences the range of frequencies the panel will absorb. Panels ¾” -2 inches thick are typically a good starting point, especially when managing lower frequencies. It’s not all about the thickness of the panel but the construction, the type of material used, and, most importantly, whether you leave a gap between the panels and the wall.

Do I need to cover the entire wall?

Strategic placement is often more effective than full coverage—target areas where sound first reflects off the wall, spaces behind speakers, and high-traffic areas.

Soundproofing foam vs. acoustic panels?

Soundproofing foam is primarily designed to block sound transmission, while acoustic panels focus on improving the sound quality within the room itself.

Vertical or horizontal orientation?

This is an aesthetic decision, so feel free to experiment with what fits your space visually.

Where is the best placement?

Focus on first reflection points, behind speakers, and high-noise areas.

Do they block sound completely?

Acoustical panels improve the sound within a room, but additional construction measures may be needed for complete soundproofing.

Do they interfere with Wi-Fi?

No, standard acoustical panel materials typically don’t disrupt typical Wi-Fi signals.


Selecting the Right Panels

Choosing the ideal panels involves considering several factors:

NRC Rating

Look for the Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC), which indicates a panel’s sound absorption effectiveness. Keep in mind that NRC depends on the type of installation. Make sure you have the installation method used when comparing NRCs of different products.

Room Usage

Consider the room’s function and the desired level of noise reduction. For best results, consider a sound engineer.


Consider the range of materials (fabric, wood, foam), colors, and designs available to find panels that complement your style.

Ready To Transform Your Space?

Whether you seek to enhance communication in a busy office, foster a peaceful multi-family environment, or create a professional-grade recording space, acoustical wall panels offer a powerful and versatile solution. By understanding the science of sound and the benefits these panels provide, you can make an informed decision that will help you rethink how you experience sound. Ready to transform your space? Don’t wait! Contact Spartan Surfaces today to start your project.

Contact Spartan Surfaces


Spartan Surfaces, a subsidiary of Floor & Decor, is a specialty flooring supplier headquartered in Bel Air, MD. Employing over 150 team members, Spartan holds warehousing and offices in Maryland and Minnesota with showrooms in D.C.and Chicago.  Its geography encompasses eighty-five percent of the United States, with continued expansion on the horizon. Taking a human-centered approach, Spartan prides itself on great people dedicated to great products, great families, great friendships, and great happiness. Whatever you’re working on, we’ve got you covered!