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Using cork as a sound absorber
Old 11th May 2011
Here for the gear

I saw a few things recently and snapped some quick pics just to stir the discussion here a little.
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Old 13th May 2011
Lives for gear
jhbrandt's Avatar
And now the song by Eminem starts playing... "Just lose it!"..

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Old 13th March 2012
Here for the gear
Thinedude's Avatar

is this thread still alive? if it is, i'm sure you've already finished your project sethsquatch. I had the idea of making panels covered in corks sitting on end as absorbers, so i decided to do a quick google and see if anyone else had come up with the same idea. I hope you're still around so you can tell me how it worked!
Old 4th February 2019
^ I guess he didn't do the project after all.

Just found this old thread after considering larger cork tiles (rather than cork plugs from wine bottles) for DIY early sound reflection surface, rather than hard sheet rock being a final surface. The stuff is supposed to be pretty inexpensive being it's a recyclable product. I've seen large square cork tiles placed on walls somewhere several years back, can't recall where or for what purpose. It appears that cork at least does something to help, it may not the very best there can be, but can look pretty cool though... definitely a retro look from way back, I haven't seen those cork squares on walls for several years, maybe since the 80's?

It apparently comes in all kinds of colors, with designs, made to look like faux brick, different thicknesses, & even in rolls

Last edited by Steve Fogal; 4th February 2019 at 07:01 PM..
Old 4th February 2019
Deleted e999d8e
Cork is cool-looking all right, but I've never heard of anyone using it for acoustic treatment. All you'd have to do is rap on it with your knuckle to discover the shortcomings.
Old 5th February 2019
A thicker suitable softer type cork, which no one is claiming as the best type of material available, is certainly better than having a final surface of hard sheet rock, which all pro studio's I've been in have had. Although they also had sound panels placed around here & there. Having a room with it's final wall surface of soft cork panels would be fine for a personal non-pro home studio. One could still place sound panels where needed here and there, leaving the rest of the wall area not nearly as reflective as sheet rock.

A lot of the cork products are designed for aesthetic purposes mostly in mind, and may even have products mixed in to make them harder, like those made for floor tiles. But plain old cork, like used for wine bottle plugs are soft & rubbery. Then there's bulletin board & wall type cork tiles. If planning on covering an entire room with a final wall & ceiling surface, being made of a softer material other than that of sheet rock, it would have to be an economical product. Cork material is just one possible solution.
In a home studio at my previous house, I put up inexpensive 4X8 sound board sheets from Home Depot over my sheet rock, and that greatly reduced room reflection to my ears. But that stuff is ugly and smells pretty funky, not even coating it with a latex paint took away the smell, though looked a lot better.
Old 8th April 2019
Here for the gear
Hey there, I'am also curious to see if this project came to fruition. I am planning on treating my new home studio with cork panels - this product specifically - Expanded insulation cork board Lambourde (Lamburd) 50x500x1000mm - it's 50mm thick expanded cork. I'm really interested to see if anyone has worked in studios with cork as acoustic treatment. From what I read it seems like it has very good/promising acoustic properties. I'm waiting for a technical spec sheet from the supplier to check exactly it's acoustic properties.

Old 13th February 2020
Here for the gear
So intriguing following this!! I am also looking for a free recording room treatment solution.
Sethsquatch says he has some bulbous shaped corks as well as champagne corks - I actually went on a tour of a cork factory in a cork producing area of Portugal last year (the joys of living in Europe!) and was surprised to learn that, when soaked in water, champagne corks or any corks of irregular shape from top to bottom, will revert back to being cylindical shaped, as they are when first place in the bottle. They are the shape they are purely because the portion inserted into the top of the bottle is compressed. Decrompression happens when they are put in water - I have no idea how long the process takes as I haven't tried it! Good luck!
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