Acoustic Foam vs Mineral Wool Insulation: OMG! Why Not I Knew This First?

Acoustic Foam vs Mineral Wool

Insulation is something most of us think about when we think about our homes. We want to make sure our homes are well insulated so that they will be comfortable and energy-efficient. But how can you choose the right insulation for your home?

According to the report of Energy Star, homeowners could save an estimated 15% on their energy bills by adding more insulation. Acoustic foam and mineral wool insulation are two of the most popular types of insulation. 

Because both types of insulation are so popular, many homeowners are wondering which one is the best option for their home. In this article, we will compare acoustic foam vs mineral wool insulation to help you make the best decision for your home.

That’s why you need to completely read this article. Because in this article, I have shared how acoustic foam vs mineral wools are different. 

And also, I have covered highlights on acoustic Foam panels vs mineral wool insulation. If you want to know about it, then keep reading this article till the end.

So, Let’s get started.

How Acoustic Foam vs Mineral wools are different?

There might be the case you are aware of both or maybe not hence I decided to put both separately to understand in detail how both are important in soundproofing and why you should use them.

What is Acoustic Foam Panel?

We have seen many people using sound absorption materials to overcome the noise and improve the sound quality and for that purpose, their primary choice is to search for acoustic foam panels.

Acoustic foam is also known as an acoustic foam panel which is different than conventional foams and specially designed for acoustic treatment. Its main job is to reduce the amplitude of the soundwaves and dissipate the energy in the heat form.

If you have read our detailed guide on what is noise or sound then you remember that noise waves travel in the air and reflect from every surface which has a low noise reduction coefficient(NRC) or less absorption capacity.

This causes multiple reflections from different areas like the wall, floor, ceiling, etc, and noise gets amplified and generates echo in the house.

To overcome this amplification and reduce the reflection of sound waves, we need material on top of all these reflective surfaces which absorbs the sound waves and reduces the reflection the best material is an Acoustic foam panel.

What does the Acoustic Foam panel look like?

If you got an idea of what is Acoustic foam panel then the next part to learn is how this actually works and what materials they are made of.

Ideally, every acoustic foam is made of Polyurethane foam such as polyether or polyester and extrude melamine foam. These are available in different sizes, colors, and shapes and cut into different tiles like panels.

Few acoustic foam panels are made of fiberglass which is having the ability to friction against the soundwaves and more dissipation of the sound vibration into the heat energy.

As explained earlier, the soundwave’s power depends on the amplitude of the sound energy and acoustic foam panels help to minimize the same and that is why it is mainly used in places like churches, halls, and studios to improve the sound quality and minimize the echoes.

Types of Acoustic Foam Panel

Acoustic foam panel has a different property to deal with the sound energy as the flat surface has less ability to absorb the sound waves as compared to one which has pyramid or Egg crate shapes.

As the sound energy could be in between the low-high frequency range or maybe bass which is unable to trap by any acoustic panels and that is why there are different acoustic panels available in the market.

  • Flat Acoustic Foam Panel
  • EggCrate Acoustic Foam Panel
  • Pyramid Acoustic Foma Panel
  • Wedges Acoustic Foam Panel
  • Grid Acoustic Foam Panel
  • Corner Bass Trap Foam Panel

Every acoustic foam panel has its own importance and ability to reduce the soundwaves.

If you are planning to learn more in detail about how all types of acoustic foam panel works and which one is best for your use then I recommend going through a detailed guide on Is soundproof Acoustic Foam really Works?

Till this point, I can say you are confident enough with the learning on Acoustic Foam panel and this time to learn about what is Mineral wool insulation, which can give us more idea on Acoustic foam panel vs mineral wool insulation.

What is Mineral Wool Insulation?

Acoustic foam’s main idea is to absorb the sound waves, however, if you are thinking of preventing the sound from coming out of any area or blocking unwanted noise from coming into your private space then you have to work on soundproofing instead of sound-absorbing.

The primary material used for sound blocking or soundproofing is an insulating material and in this list, the very best material is mineral wool insulation. Mineral wool is the acoustic material specially used during construction to fit in between the verticle studs of the wall or ceiling.

As well all know noise travels by vibrating the air particles however Mineral wool is structured in the form of a mat of fibers which prevent the movement of air and in result reduction of noise.

It has a unique ability to combat fire and strong resistance against fuel fire or flame propagation. If you are struggling with noise from a neighbor or willing to bound your drum playing noise within the room then your concern will be to soundproof a wall.

In recent days most of the partition walls are made of Drywall, which is not efficient enough to block the noise coming from the other side of the room, so by inserting Mineral wool insulation you can improve the STC Score of the Wall as it reflects back most of the soundwaves.

Hence while soundproofing the basement ceiling or main ceiling or wall then behind the drywall it is a standard practice to have an insulation layer that can create a blocker for the sound waves while passing from one side to another.

How does Mineral Wool Insulation Look Like?

Mineral wool is of fibrous material which is created by the process of spinning or drawing (Tensile forces to stretch the metal) the minerals materials like glass, stone, or slag.

In this process, the molten glass, stone, or slag materials are spun into a structure like fiber which is different than all other insulation materials. Mineral wools are extremely lightweight and easy to install at any place without any additional hard fixings.

It is designed in different varieties based on its use for ceilings, solid wall, cavity walls or piping, etc. Mineral wool is porous and elastic in nature which allows soundwaves to be let in but traps or blocks them and that is why is a highly recommended solution after thousands of studies.

It is designed to perform incredibly under 400-degree Celcius temperature which makes it a fireproof solution for cavity walls or studs.

Rockwool acoustic mineral wool insulation due to its high NRC rating is the most recommended mineral wood for insulation purposes, if willing to learn more feel free to check the product here. 

Now let discuss what are the types of mineral wools and how they can be differentiated based on their manufacturing style.

Types of Mineral wool insulation

Mineral wools are mainly created by using the glass, stones or slugs, or waste of industries, which means the best recyclable solution for noise reduction purposes.

Based on the types of materials it uses it has been categorized into two parts.

  • Glass wool insulation
  • Stone wool insulation

Glass wool insulation is made of recycled glass, sand, limestone, and soda ash the same materials which are used to make the glass objects like a window, bottles, etc.

However, the stone wool insulation is made of volcanic rock, like dolomite or basalt which is recycled material.

In addition to this, there is another mineral wool which we call slag wool and this is made of blast furnace slag.

That is why mineral wool is the most rated environment-friendly solution for soundproofing as it is mainly made of recycling materials and helps to reduce the pollution and risk of fire.

There are different insulation materials available in the market, if you are keen to learn more in detail then I recommend learning from the detailed guide on what is soundproof insulation and how it works?

If you are with me till this point then I consider that you got almost every major difference between acoustic foam panel vs mineral wool insulation.

Highlights on Acoustic Foam Panel vs Mineral wool insulation

To summarize all our learning let’s go through the below highlights, which can give you the best comparisons of all.

  • Acoustic foam panel is the solution to improve sound quality by reducing noise, however, mineral wool insulation is the best solution to block sound transmission.
  • Acoustic foams are widely used in studios with varieties of sizes, shapes, and colors to dissipate the sound energy, however, Mineral wool insulation is mainly used during the construction of building to use in between the cavity of studs.
  • Acoustic foams are made of Polyurethane foam such as polyether or polyester materials which are some chemical compounds however Mineral wool is made of recyclable materials.
  • Acoustic foam panel is always having a risk of fire exposure however mineral wool is strong resistive against the fire risk and can resist up to 400-degree celsius.
  • Acoustic Foam panels are a bit expensive as compared to Mineral wool insulation.
  • If you are struggling with an issue of echo then recommend going with an acoustic foam panel however willing to make your space secret where sound can not pass through the wall then go for mineral wool insulation.

Here are all the major differences you need to know prior to use in soundproofing your room or house or studio.

Wrap Up On Acoustic Foam Panel vs Mineral wool insulation

We have gone through every single aspect of Acoustic foam vs mineral wool and also learned about their types and still the thing which can confuse you is which type could be best for your purpose.

For that, I suggested two guides in the middle of the content to make sure you visit each to further clarify your doubts and best product guide. Mineral wool is the best eco-friendly soundproofing solution as compared to an acoustic foam panel but both have a different use.

You have definitely seen acoustic foam panels in the studios to improve the sound quality. Acoustic foams can easily stick to the wall however mineral wool will need some effort to fix in between cavities.

If you have used any of them then feel free to write your comment, so the reader will get your best opinion to choose further.

FAQ: Acoustic Foam Vs Mineral Wool Insulation

People have many questions related to acoustic foam and mineral wool insulation. Here I am giving you answers to some important questions.

Q1. Is acoustic foam more expensive than mineral wool insulation?

Ans: The cost of acoustic foam is higher than that of mineral wool insulation. The main reason for this difference is that acoustic foam is made of more expensive materials. In addition, acoustic foam is available in a limited range of colors and designs.

Q2. Which one is more effective in reducing noise – acoustic foam or mineral wool insulation?

Ans: Acoustic foam is more effective in reducing noise than mineral wool insulation. This is because acoustic foam has a higher density, which allows it to better absorb sound waves. Additionally, acoustic foam is more porous, meaning that there are more voids for sound to travel through. This also helps to reduce the overall noise level.

Q3. What is your opinion on the use of acoustic foam and mineral wool insulation for soundproofing?

Ans: There is no definitive answer to this question as it depends on a number of factors, including the specific situation and requirements of the person looking to soundproof their home or office. So it is worth considering both options to see which would be the best fit for your needs.

Hey, I am Kirtish Vyas a YouTuber and believer in making life peaceful, a couple of years back I started soundproofing my house, bedroom, studio, and Car to reduce the unwanted noise, and the same experience I am sharing on SoundProofidea. Read More