Frequently-asked questions

Here some answers to the questions we're often asked when people are thinking about acoustic solutions. But if you can't find the answer you're looking for, then please get in touch and we'll do our best to help.

Why would I need acoustic panels?

Sound remains one of the most problematic issues across the built environment. Just 30% of office workers report being happy with the acoustics in their office according to Leesman and with an increasing trend towards open-plan offices and co-working, this is only going to get worse. Meanwhile a World Health Organisation study revealed that noise is one of the top environmental hazards to both physical and mental health and wellbeing. This was echoed by a 2013 study from the University of Sydney which found that a lack of sound privacy was far and away the biggest drain on employee morale.

Good acoustics matter. Acoustic panels can help to address the issue of reverberation in offices, reducing unwanted noise and improving sound privacy. This boosts engagement and productivity in offices and educational environments, increases enjoyment levels in restaurants, hotels and at home and speeds up recovery in hospitals.

How do the panels work?

In large open-plan spaces like an office, sound waves hit the walls and bounce back creating an echo. Offices are often quite ‘hard’ spaces with lots of glass, metal and concrete and little soft material to deaden sound. With air-con units, computers, printers and people all emitting sound, it can quickly become noisy. People naturally increase their speaking level to be heard above the hubbub and the noise levels skyrocket. Our acoustics panels work like giant sponges, soaking up the sound in the space by trapping and absorbing the sound waves. The panels also even out the different sound frequencies making it a more comfortable environment to work and live. Different products have different noise reduction co-efficient (NRC) levels, so check with us, or your acoustician, what you need for your individual space.

Where can the panels be used?

Our panels are used in corporate, educational, retail, residential, leisure and healthcare environments. You can see them everywhere from restaurants, hotels, shops, offices and schools to universities, clinics, hospitals and individual homes. They can be unobtrusive, quietly getting on with the business of absorbing sound, or be the centre of attention and a real talking point. They’re for indoor use only buy because they are not affected by moisture, can be used in areas with high humidity, such as swimming pools.

How much sound can the panels absorb?

Our panels provide up to 1.0 NRC – noise reduction co-efficient – the measurement showing how much sound a product can absorb. Check out the individual product specification to find out each panel's NRC.

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Can you create panels in my company’s exact brand colour?

Yes. We have 12 designs in up to 16 different colours but can also create bespoke options in any colour or design. We paint them to match any corporate colour or design requirement. A minimum order number may apply. 

We’d like panels in the shape of our company’s logo or product. Can you do this?

Absolutely! Although we have 12 different designs in up to 16 colours, we can create any shape to match your specific needs. We’ve created everything from company logos to birds. A minimum order number may apply. 

How sustainable are your products?

Our acoustic panels are third generation products which began life as plastic bottles. The PET bottles are then turned into exhibition carpets. Once that short-term lifespan is over, we carefully relayer the carpet fibres to create the felt panels. Therefore the panels are made from 70% recycled content. Our business is built on the very foundations of the sustainable economy. 

As non-toxic recycled plastic, there are very few allergens and our products are guaranteed to be hypoallergenic and non-toxic. Our in-depth Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) testing and analysis demonstrates that there are no toxic materials in the products. These test results are available on request. 

Are the panels fire tested?

Yes. The panels are tested under the BS EN 13501-1 system, which is the primary recognised standard in the construction industry. The classification process involves up to five rigorous tests to assess the product on combustibility, heat levels, flame spread and smoke release. Once tested, the product receives an official classification of its fire rating, known as a Euroclass rating. Soundtect panels achieved Class Bs1 d0 which means they have limited contribution to fire, smoke emission during combustion is absent or weak and there is no production of flaming droplets during combustion meaning they are suitable for use for Class 1 and Class 0 requirements.

Are the panels independently acoustically tested?

Yes. Soundtect’s panels are tested under BS EN ISO 354:L2003 Acoustics– measurement of sound absorption in a reverberation room. This standard specifies a method of measuring the sound absorption coefficient of acoustical materials used as wall or ceiling treatments, or the equivalent sound absorption area of objects, such as furniture, persons or space absorbers, in a reverberation room. Each panel has its own Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) rating of how much sound it can absorb. See the individual product specification for further details.

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I’m in outer Mongolia, can you deliver there?

We have a network of agents around the world who can not only supply our products wherever you are on the planet but also work with you to create the perfect bespoke design for your needs.

What’s your lead time for delivery?

Our lead time from our UK-based warehouse is five days. For bespoke products, we can transport in 8-12 weeks.

Can the products be used in hypoallergenic environments?

As non-toxic recycled plastic, there are very few allergens and our products are guaranteed to be hypoallergenic and non-toxic.  Our in-depth Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) testing and analysis demonstrates that there are no toxic materials in the products. These test results are available on request. We can also spray the products with a hypoallergenic coating for certain applications.

Can I install the panels outside?

No. Soundtect panels are for indoor use only but can be used in any area that acoustic treatments are required including areas of high levels of humidity such as swimming pools. Polyester fibre showed only 0.03% absorption of moisture during recent testing where panels were subjected to high humidity of 90% for a five-day period. Moisture does not affect polyester and is therefore safe in all indoor applications.

How difficult are the products to install?

Our panels are easy to install. We can provide an installation service or your fit-out contractor or handyman can do it for you. We provide installation guides for each product which can be downloaded from the individual product page.

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Do you provide an installation service?

Yes, we have an in-house team who can install the products for you if required. 

I know we need acoustic panels but I don’t know how many and where to put them. Can you help?

Yes, our experts can help you at every stage of your project from working on your design with an architect to supporting you with the installation. We are there to help throughout your project and afterwards. However we are not acousticians, so if you have a very specialist or sizeable project, we would suggest you use a trained and experienced acoustician. We can provide recommendations if you need them, wherever you are in the world.

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