Boring bare walls are a thing of the past. They were once seen as the perfect backdrop to allow furnishings, lighting, and other décor items to shine but have now become the ideal place to accent with bold colors. On top of that, with new challenges surfacing for designers every day, reimagining bare walls can additionally help solve acoustic issues in the space.
BuzziSpace offers plenty of beautiful and inspiring interior acoustic solutions that can treat noise problems. In our short guide, we dive into some of these issues focusing primarily on acoustic wall coverings.
If you Google “acoustic wallpaper,” you will instantly get millions of hits on a variety of wall applications. The results range from bulky, acoustic foam panels to paper-thin applications, which makes some people question whether acoustic wallpaper work. Let’s answer this question in the following section.
First, let’s define a few of the different types of acoustic wall coverings. Up until now, you may have noticed that we have used "wallpaper" and "coverings" interchangeably. Generally, "acoustic wallpaper" or "soundproof wallpaper" is used to describe layers of paper that have a foam backing or other suitable material for sound insulation. On the other hand, there exists another type of acoustic wallpaper made from sound-absorbing materials in its entirety. This solution is often referred to as "acoustic wall coverings". Consequently, there are no additional layers of material hampering the absorption and therefore the acoustic performance.
On the other hand, there exists another type of acoustic wallpaper made from sound-absorbing materials in its entirety.
In short, the answer is “yes” as well as “no”. Just like all other acoustic solutions, it’s crucial to identify the acoustic problem you wish to solve as the solution will depend on this main factor. For instance, do you want to prevent sound transfers or minimize background noise?
Looking at the performance of acoustic wall coverings, such as BuzziSkin Printed, BuzziBrickBack Architectural, and BuzziTile, these are perfect for reducing mid-frequency and high-frequency range noise which the graph shows below.
The mid-frequency range is typically named speech frequency (250 – 2500 Hz), where human speech is discerned. As a result, acoustic wall coverings, like BuzziSkin and BuzziSkin Printed, are excellent solutions in hallways, classrooms, and meeting rooms where the human voice is the main source of unwanted noise and reverberation.
On the other hand, high-frequency noise (2500 – 12000 Hz) includes everything from ringtones, clicking sounds, and typing sounds. Sound reflections coming from kids’ voices are another example of high-frequency range noise that can be reduced using acoustic wall coverings. As such, wall coverings are very versatile, providing the perfect backdrop for enclosed office spaces or breakout areas.
We’ve already highlighted a few of the characteristics and benefits of acoustic wall coverings including versatility. Our wall coverings are available in a wide range of colors, prints, and patterns, and suit almost any space. But that isn’t all.
All of our wall coverings are made from recycled PET felt, providing users with a tackable surface. Pin your ideas, favorite photo, or to-do lists that you can’t forget.
Another benefit of wall applications is that they are easy to install—no need for a hammer and nails or any construction work. The self-adhesive backing makes the installation very straightforward.
Until now, we have primarily focused on the acoustic aspects of wall coverings, acknowledging that they do not solve all sound issues. Generally, before you invest in any acoustic solution, ask yourself what need you’re trying to accommodate. For instance, are you looking for acoustic treatment? What type of acoustic problem are you facing? We help you detect this in one of our other guides.
Depending on the problem you wish to solve, wall coverings may not be the most suitable solution. For instance, if your issue is linked to sound transfers or privacy challenges, consider free-standing room dividers and screens like BuzziBlinds, BuzziScreen, or BuzziFalls Standing, also available in BuzziFelt Printed designs. On the other hand, if you’re looking for aesthetic improvements, you can make your space more visually appealing by playing around with different prints and striking colors.
All the acoustic wall coverings presented so far are excellent for reducing mid-frequency and high-frequency range noise. However, if you wish to optimize the effectiveness, there are a few additional measures you may take.
Depending on the size and activity of the space, you may enhance the room with other acoustic solutions placed closer to the sound source. In meeting areas, acoustic lighting adds that extra light output you often need while helping to create a more acoustically well-balanced space—seen below with BuzziBell and BuzziSkin at New Wave in Maryland.
Often you don’t need to look far in your search for sound-absorbing materials. Soft furnishings, upholstered lounge seaters, or chairs with a soft shell, are great add-ons for improved acoustics.
Now it’s your turn. Be creative and bring back your walls to life.