How to solve echo in my office with acoustic panels


Soundproofing is the term that is used to describe the process of blocking sound entering or leaving a space. When people complain they can hear conversations from the office next door, soundproofing is required. When you can hear the neighbours upstairs, soundproofing is the solution.

Unfortunately acoustic panels do not stop the transfer of sound from room to room.
We can only recommend finding a contractor that has experience with soundproofing.

Acoustic panels absorb sound that is generated in the space where they are installed. They eliminate reverb and echo. Acoustic panels do not help with stopping the transmission of sound.

Sound travels through objects in the form of vibrations, much like voices travel down the string in a tin can phone.


Sound can travel through water, concrete, glass and almost any solid. Sound is only impeded by dense material such as concrete. As sound travels through the air and objects it loses energy, and will eventually dissipate.

concrete wall

Where concrete is not practical to impede sound, there are other commercial products such as mass loaded vinyl. This is a dense synthetic application that can simulate 2 inches of concrete, even though it is only 1/8" thick.

The effectiveness of Soundproofing is increased when surfaces are decoupled. Decoupling is essentially inserting a medium that does not transfer energy, such as rubber, between two mating surfaces. You can buy these products at Vibrasystems in Toronto.

rubber decoupler

Mass loaded vinyl is a product that has a high STC rating that when applied properly the studs of a wall, will reduce up to 90% of sound vibrations. This product does not absorb sound, but repel it. Sound bounces off dense material, which can create another sound issue, called reverb or echo. To fix this acoustic panels can be installed to capture and eliminate reverb and echo in a room.

mass loaded vinyl

Soundproofing a room is typically done during the construction phase. Mass loaded vinyl is applied on the exposed studs of the wall, before the drywall is installed. It should be installed loosely but airtight. See the video below on how to install it.

It is important to note that acoustic panels will not provide any level of soundproofing, regardless of the NRC value of the panel. Soundproofing a room can be very costly, there are no cheap and quick fixes. To see how much work is involved see the video of Mike Holmes soundproofing a residential wall.

To find soundproofing products for your house, office, commercial or industrial space, call Jim at

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