Much of the harsh noise we experience in a room comes from sound bouncing off hard surfaces such as floors, ceilings, and furniture. Acoustical panels are manufactured to reduce sound that strikes their surface by up to 70%. These panels also serve as a barrier to block sound from traveling to adjacent rooms. As they soften, remove, and diffuse sound, acoustical panels help create a more pleasant environment, free of echoes and bothersome noise.
There are two general ratings that indicate how effective acoustical ceiling panels are in controlling sound.
Noise Reduction Coefficient (NRC) tells you how much sound a ceiling panel will absorb.
Typically expressed as a decimal, NRC 1.00 represents the perfect absorption of sound, while NRC 0.00 indicates no absorption at all. A ceiling product with an NRC rating of 0.50 absorbs 50% of the sound in a room. By comparison, a standard drywall ceiling has an NRC rating of .05, meaning it only absorbs 5% of sound, allowing 95% of the sound to bounce back into the room.
The other acoustical rating is Ceiling Attenuation Class (CAC). It’s important to consider this rating when sound is traveling to adjacent rooms or to the floor above. A ceiling system with a CAC rating greater than 35 (>35) indicates higher performance, meaning very little sound is transmitted through the tiles or panels, while a CAC rating less than 25 (< 25) is considered lower performance, with more sound escaping to other rooms through the ceiling.
The NRC rating refers to how well a ceiling panel absorbs sound hitting its surface. The CAC rating refers to the amount of sound that is allowed to pass through into an adjacent room or floor. For example, a suspended ceiling with high NRC and CAC ratings would be very effective in controlling noise within the room, as well as minimizing noise traveling to another room or floor.
The high performance surface of acoustical ceiling panels by Armstrong can reduce noise by 55% or more, making them excellent choices for a home theater or game room.