When preparing a space for audio recording or creating a vocal booth, people often wonder what the best type of blanket to use for sound absorption. A first guess is to use moving blankets — they are easy to find and fairly inexpensive, right? But, what is the difference between a moving blanket and a sound blanket or acoustic blanket. Aren’t they both manufactured the same way and all pretty much the same? The answer is no.
The Difference Between Moving Blankets and Sound Blankets
Moving blankets and sound blankets are not the same. For instance, the Producer’s Choice line of sound blankets and acoustic blankets, measures at 80% noise absorption and has an NRC Rating of 0.8. NRC ratings fall between 0 (perfectly reflective) and 1 (perfectly absorptive.) So basically, the higher the NRC rating, the more sound a product can absorb. Most moving blankets are not even tested since they are designed for moving not sound absorption.
Visually, you also can see the difference when comparing these blankets side-to-side. In the photo below, the moving blanket (72 x 80) is less denser compared to the Producer’s Choice Acoustic Blanket VB70 (72 x 80) — both folded the same way.
When it comes to manufacturing, the blankets are produced differently. For example, look at the photo below which shows the type of filler material in both the moving blanket and the sound blanket. The moving blanket contains 86 lbs per dozen and the Producer’s Choice sound blanket contains 106 lbs per dozen.
Yes, some moving blankets may seem heavier than others only because they use heavier outer fabric. The weight may be higher in these blankets, but in actuality, the quantity of sound absorbing fiber is very low. On top of this, the denser outer fabric of some moving blankets reflect more sound before it even has a chance to be absorbed!
Moving Blankets (above) usually have 3 layers of outer fabric.
Producerâs Choice blankets (above) have a light outer shell and also a thick fibrous layer
of sound absorbing fibers made for sound absorption.
For additional durability some moving blankets have triple layers of outer fabric (picture above), which would result in higher sound reflection before it has a chance to be absorbed. In fact, moving blankets are created to have a tough dense outer fabric and less absorbing filler . . . for moving furniture, of course.