Absorption vs. Blockage: All About Acoustic Foam

Learn about the different types of acoustic foam available to you.

acoustic-foamWhen people have a noise problem in their apartments or homes, they tend to seek out acoustic foam panels because that’s what they’ve seen in recording studios and sound booths. It’s even advertised as wall treatments for homes. There are some important things you need to know before you buy a foam panel, such as which panel is right for absorption or blocking sound.

Two Types

There are two basic types of acoustic foam. The first absorbs any echo within the room, which is the type most commonly found in recording studios. The second blocks or stops sound entirely. Some panels can accomplish both of these tasks, but most do one or the other.


When you’re looking to absorb sound from inside of a room, which is great for entertainment centers and home theaters as well as recording booths, you’ll want a softer kind of foam. The spongier kind of foam has almost no density, though, so it won’t block sounds. You can stand on the other side of the wall and very clearly hear voices coming through the sponge.


Foam that blocks sound is usually found within the walls of the home itself. These sheets are usually very dense, which adds to the weight of the product, and their design makes it impossible for the walls to have any kind of physical connection with one another.

Final Thoughts

Now that you understand the difference between foam sheets used to block sound and sheets used for the purpose of absorbing sound, you should be able to make a more informed decision about refinishing your room.

Foam Factory, Inc., based in Southeast Michigan, sells sound proofing foam as well as a variety of polyurethane foam products. Order now for shipping across the United States and Canada.