The Ceiling Tile Myth

While most of us are familiar with the every day commercial grade ceiling tile, seen in most any commercial space that you may shop, dine, worship, study or play in, the reality is that the majority of these tiles offer very little support acoustically.   They are there primarily to disguise the pipes in the ceiling, and offer an archtiectural finish to a room.   Standard commercial grade ceiling tiles do NOT block sound from bleeding in or out of the room, nor do they offer superior sound absorption properties inside the room.   Most commercial grade ceiling tiles carry very low NRC values, ranging in the .50-.55 range (see NRC in our Academy for an explanation of the NRC).

If your goal is to combat sound bleed in and out of your room through a drop grid tile system, NetWell offers two options.   First, if your starting point is a finished tile system is in place, our Ceiling Caps are insulation plates that rest atop your existing tiles.   We’ll cut them into 2’x2′ or 2’x4′ and you simply lay them down atop your ceiling tiles.  Or, second, if your system is not yet in place, we also offer Granite Tiles, which are a finished ceiling tile lined with density to combat sound bleed through a drop grid tile system.   Both of these options offer the “density” that standard commercial grade ceiling tiles lack.   If you opt for either, be sure to triple up on the hangers used to support your grid, so that in turn, the grid can support the weight.

If your goal is to use ceiling tiles to absorb echoes within the room to produce great quality sound, again, commercial grade ceiling tiles offer little absorption value.   They are typically made of a low cost compressed fiberboard of some kind, with a white finish.   If you are in need of stronger acoustic values, the upgrade is to have the tiles made out of melamine foam.   This core material offers NRC values of .90-1.00 on a ceiling tile, which will more than double your overall effect for absorbing unwelcome background noise.   NetWell’s DIME Tiles are made from this melamine foam, and offer superior interior room acoustics values.  

For more information on your ceiling tile options, call our help desk at 1- 800-638-9355 or post your comments here!   We check our Journal and Blog entries daily to offer back whatever free advice you seek!


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