Sounding Smart: The Benefits of Soundproofing

Ensure Your Clients Get the Most Out of Their Listening Spaces


One of the most requested custom home installations is a dedicated home theater. Homeowners love the idea of being able to watch their movies with optimal audio and video quality. But if you’re an experience builder in Bergen County, NJ, you know that the way a theater sounds is about more than just having the best gear. It’s about the acoustics of the room and the construction of the building. In this blog, we’ll explore some of the benefits soundproofing can bring to your construction process, so you won’t have to spend time on costly re-work.

The Difference Between Acoustic Treatments and Soundproofing

Many in the industry will use the terms “acoustic treatments” and “soundproofing” interchangeably. This isn’t just inaccurate, but it can lead to some very unsatisfied clients down the line. But the difference is pretty simple: soundproofing keeps audio from bleeding through the walls, acoustic treatments help the audio sound better in the room.

In the case of builders and architects, soundproofing is much more important. Whereas acoustic treatments are usually just panels applied to a wall or ceiling, soundproofing can change the materials you use to build a wall.

How Soundproofing Works

You probably have an idea of how sound travels. When a sound is made, vibrations travel through the air in waves until it finds a solid object to bounce off of. The object then vibrates, causing the sound. Depending on the make-up of the object (whether it’s rigid or soft), the sound can be loud or faint.

Most rooms are made up of pretty rigid materials like wood, plaster and concrete. That means any sound coming out of a speaker will make those materials vibrate. Of course, the vibration isn’t exclusive to one side of the solid object, meaning you can hear the sounds on both sides of the wall. Sure, there’s some level of dampening and absorption, meaning the sound will be fainter, but it will still be loud enough to annoy the person in the next room.

So you can probably guess one of the most common methods of soundproofing: enhancing the absorption and dampening power of the walls. This could mean lining them with foam or other insulation materials, to reduce the vibrations and minimizing the sound on the other end. While this method is common, it’s not the best way to soundproof any space.

The Best Way to Soundproof a Room

Ask any audio professional and they’ll agree, the best way to soundproof a room is through decoupling. This is a process of separating the inside and outside of a room’s walls, so that sound can’t pass through. Some professionals refer to this as building a room within a room.

By separating the sides of the wall, the sound is stopped dead in its tracks. The inner all is held up by small clips, and sound absorbing material is placed between the two halves of the wall. The result is a home theater that allows the user to play audio as loud as they want, without disturbing the neighbors.

Want to learn more about soundproofing for an upcoming project? The professionals at Total Home Technologies can help. Contact us today to ensure your client gets the job done right.