Chances are, if you’ve found your way to this article, you’ve tried all the internet’s cheap and easy soundproofing suggestions. The blankets, the rugs, the curtains, and probably even the very popular (but wildly ineffective) egg cartons.
Unfortunately, cheap methods yield cheap results (if any). The best way to soundproof your room efficiently is to follow these proven steps:
Soundproofing tactic 1: add mass
The main element that determines how much sound enters or leaves a room is the mass of its walls. If you’re planning on building a room from scratch, you’re in luck, because you can add mass by building your walls with a dense material such as concrete.
Most of us aren’t in such a fortunate situation though, and need to use what we have. In this case you’ll need to add additional structures to your walls using materials such as mass loaded vinyl.
Mass loaded vinyl is used by home recording enthusiasts as well as professional sound engineers and can be bought online.
SOUNDPROOFING TACTIC 2: DAMPING
This is an interesting one. By using a damping compound, you can actually convert the energy caused by sound waves into heat. Create mobile sound barriers that can be used on any surface in your room, by sticking two panels together using the damping compound. These surfaces includes walls, floors and even ceilings.
SOUNDPROOFING TACTIC 3: DECOUPLING
Sound travels through vibrations, which means that structures in contact with each other will cause more noise. To battle this, we turn to the method of decoupling, which can be achieved by inserting dense rubber between the aforementioned contact points.
SOUNDPROOFING TACTIC 4: Filling air gaps
The final step after adding mass, damping, and decoupling is to check your room for any gaps where sound could be entering or escaping and filling them up. This can be done by using acoustical calk or foam gaskets.
When it comes to those pesky gaps under doors, automatic door bottoms are your best friend.