I want to rest. Just what are the best noise cancelling curtains? are the best at stopping the noise from the outside as well. In addition, their thickness provides for excellent blackout and thermal insulating properties – you will save money on air conditioning.
Heavy Velvet Curtains – Best Noise Cancelling Curtains
For best sound absorption with a window treatment, there simply isn’t a better solution than Long, Thick, Heavy Velvet Curtains as of today. Perhaps, in the future, specially designed translucent and light curtains will be able to absorb the noise. Scroll down to “Off The Cuff Futuristic Solutions”, below. But currently there just isn’t a way around getting heavy media room curtains.
Lighter Suede Blackout Curtains
A much lighter alternative is useful when you only need a little bit of extra noise proofing. In that case you can get thermal insulating, blackout type curtains. These are quite light. They feature a Thermaback liner which stops the sun rays and stops the heat from entering or leaving the room. You will achieve significant darkening of the room even during the day. These curtains will remove noticeable amount of noise as well.
Because you are reading this blog, you will be better equipped with advice on exactly what curtains to buy. You will also know exactly what total width and length to pick to maximize the noise reduction.
More Options For Better Sleep
What if even the best noise cancelling drapes don’t cancel enough of the noise to allow you to fall asleep? You still have additional options! You can use them by themselves or in addition to your noise cancelling window treatment.
Noise Cancelling Headphones
The only type of true noise cancellation you can really achieve is by noise cancelling headphones. Up to 90% of external noise reduction or sometimes more can be achieved with current readily available consumer technology.
Noise cancelling headphones, currently available, are not perfect. However, they work. According to manufacturer’s measurements, they cancel as much as 85% or more of the incoming noise. There are two types. The first type is the over-the-head noise cancelling headphones. These, however, are quite bulky (due to the limitations of the noise cancelling technology).
For better sleep, your best bet is to use noise cancelling in-ear headphones instead. With these you will be able to turn and toss on your side. Especially when you are a side sleeper, you will prefer in-ear headphones. We like Audio Technica Quiet Point In Ear Earbuds.
But I Need Noise To Sleep! We Have You Covered Too!
You are not alone. A lot of people just can’t fall asleep in complete silence. They’ll be disturbed by the sudden loud noise from the street. And when they try to fall asleep the deafening silence feels uncomfortable also. If you are like that, there are several possibilities. Instead of reducing the outside noise, you introduce a manageable additional noise. You can have a standing fan humming near you, or keep an air conditioner on. Either will keep fresh air circulating and allow you to fall asleep.
If neither of the above is an option, Dohm-DS by Marpac, the Original Sound Conditioner, is a white noise sleep machine. It produces noise similar to the sound of the rushing wind. This helps people who can’t stand too much silence fall asleep. Also, it helps drown low level external noise coming in from the outside.
Off The Cuff Futuristic Solutions, Far Into The Future
For your entertainment, we present some additional noise cancelling and noise reducing technologies.
Active Sound Cancelling Solutions
Active sound cancelling solutions can be applied as window treatments for noise. Sono Window Treatment, currently in concept phase, can reportedly cancel street noises by 12 dB and still allow bird chirps through. Check it out at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mv6sBuwzLhk. Initially, this product is not expected to work perfectly. You can still supplement its noise reduction by using noise cancelling curtains such as our favorite Absolute Zero noise reducing curtains.
Rock-It 3.0 by OrigAudio is similar to Sono. Rock-It turns any surface into a speaker. It is a promising technology, both for windows and for walls, when coupled with noise canceling software like Sono.
Passive Solutions: Sound Cancelling Curtains
Special new curtain textile designs by Annette Douglas are lightweight and translucent. Yet they absorb up to 80% of the sound, which is incredible. We have seen installations around the world, mostly in Europe. However, to date, we have not seen any independent verification of her claims of 80% sound reductions with extremely lightweight curtains that are also translucent. We have also not seen how deep into the low frequency spectrum, for example below 400 Hz – 600 Hz range, will these curtains work. We suspect these curtains will not work well below that range. Check out the following sources to find out more.
We’ll update this page if any of the above solutions become viable, proven, and commercially available at a reasonable cost. Check back here. When the Sono, or the Rock-It concept the Annette Douglas curtains become available and affordable, you will be the first to know.