Soundproof a Gaming Room: A Pro Guide


Gaming room

If you like gaming, then you already know how unpleasant it is when someone enters your room and starts yelling at you about the noise that your games are making. In fact, I have experienced that myself, especially during my teenage years. So, when I became very enthusiastic about soundproofing, one of the first questions that came to my mind is how do I soundproof a gaming room?

To soundproof a gaming room, you have to block out everywhere from which noise can escape. This includes the door to the gaming room, windows, floor, and reinforcing the walls of the room. It is essential that you examine your gaming room and the structure of your home to find cracks and crevices that can let out more noise than necessary.

Trust me, I understand that always having to play at low volumes can be dull and drab. Just like most other gamers, I enjoyed playing the games with high volume. Sometimes, I even had my friends over to play. So, you can imagine how much noise we were making.

And yes, now that I think about it, my parents’ complaints were indeed justified. Never mind though because here is a step-by-step guide on how you can soundproof a gaming room in the best way possible.

Methods to soundproof gaming room windows

Well, I can’t say that the windows are the most important aspects of soundproofing a gaming room. But since the general idea is to not bother your family members and the neighbors – that’s why I decided to do this list in the first place – we need to talk about the windows. In this case, windows are the easiest part of your gaming room to soundproof, and that’s why we are going to consider it first.

There are different ways by which you can soundproof gaming room windows, nevertheless, here are the easiest methods.

Buy soundproofing curtains

soundproof curtains to soundproof gaming room windows

Soundproofing curtains are designed with the sound-absorbing materials that considerably reduce the noise leak inside and out of your room. They are mainly designed to reduce the noise that goes in and out through the windows. The best thing about them is that they are a very affordable and easy solution for soundproofing the windows of your gaming room.

Some of the best and most affordable sound curtains can be found here on Amazon. All you need to do is to hang them on your window just like any other curtain. It’s that easy! The best part about these curtains is that they are available in so many different colors. Pick your favorite color, buy on Amazon, and it will be shipped to your doorstep.

Seal the gaps of your windows in your gaming room

After using a soundproofing curtain, the next step you need to take is to seal the gaps in the windows. This way, you get to prevent noise from escaping your gaming room more efficiently and effectively.

It might sound like a challenging thing to do, but in reality, it is not. What’s more? It could be pretty simple and fun. While you are shopping on Amazon for soundproofing materials, make sure to also get some dampening seals like these. What you should do once you get them is to place them on the sides of the windows in order to seal the gaps and prevent the sound leaking in and out.

In case you prefer to seal the gaps of your window the old way – with a caulk – then make sure to take a look at this video.                                                     

If you want to learn more methods in order to soundproof the windows of a gaming room then check out my other article on how to soundproof windows here. It covers that topic in extreme detail and explains the various techniques you can use in soundproofing a window.

Methods to soundproof a gaming room door

Unlike the windows, soundproofing the door of the gaming room is crucial. It’s definitely one of the most essential moves you shouldn’t forget to make. Chances are that most of the sounds that your family members are complaining about escape through the door. This means that you should put an extra effort into soundproofing the door.

So what should you do?

Install a weatherstripping tape

Soundproof weather striping

A good suggestion would be to replace the existing door with a solid core wooden door. However, if you decide to buy a new door made of solid wood then after installing, consider getting a weatherstripping tape like this. It serves to block the air gaps and that is important if you want to effectively soundproof the door.

In fact, as little as one percent air gap at the door perimeter will allow up to 30% of noise to pass from one side of the door to the other. Using a weatherstripping tape of a certain quality will mean that you block the sound with a neoprene gasket. The gasket near the hinge will allow no noise leakages in the lower part of the door.

Install a door sweep

Another way to prevent the air gaps underneath your door is to install a door sweep. You can install this adjustable door jamb seal around both sides and on top of the door jamb. It offers the door a soft neoprene rubber seal to close, rather than the small gap between the door and the door jamb.

This prevents sound from passing from one room to another which is great for soundproofing a gaming room door. A door sweep can be particularly useful if the door leads to a hallway or an adjourning room. What more? It can also help you conserve heat in the gaming room.

Install sound-absorbing foam panels

In case you find buying a solid wooden door a little bit costly, then perhaps you should consider installing sound-absorbing foam panels on your existing door. What you should do here is buy some sound-absorbing foam panels and attach them to the existing door. This wood laminated acoustic panel is a great option that a friend of mine uses for his door.

Keep in mind that while attaching them, nails could damage the door. That’s why the best option would be to use command strips like these that you can also find on Amazon. This way, not only will you protect the existing door from getting damaged, but you will also save yourself time and effort because they are super easy to apply.

Once you apply them on the sound-absorbing foam panels, all you have to do is to press the panels against the door, and that’s it! In addition, if you want to achieve better results, I highly recommend that you seal the gaps with both weatherstripping and door sweep. This way you get to block all the edges and holes.

If these methods don’t work for you, then you need to see another article I wrote about doors. In that article, I shared expert ideas on how to soundproof a door. That took me a few days to put together, but I assure you it’s worth it.

Methods to soundproof a gaming room walls

If you want to effectively soundproof a gaming room, then you should try to reinforce the walls. Right now, it might sound a little bit complicated to you if you don’t have any soundproofing experience, but it’s not that complex. Luckily, there are many different methods that you can choose from if you want to soundproof a gaming room wall.

Install a Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV)

Holding MLV

Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV) is a sound-damping product that people use everywhere from nightclubs to recording studios to homes and gaming rooms. It comes in a roll and its price depends on weight, length, and width. Keep in mind that the thicker the MLV, the better it will block out noise and end echoes.

However, the thickness varies from 1/16 inch to 1/4 inch, and may not be included in the product specifications. If that’s the case, then you should check the weight. A half-pound MLV weighs half a pound per square foot of coverage and is 1/16 inch thick. While one pound MLV is one pound per square foot of coverage and is 1/8 inch thick and two-pound MLV is 1/4 inch thick.

My best recommendation would be this TotalMass MLV Barrier. Check out which options fit your requirements and make an order accordingly. Now let’s focus on how you can apply it in order to soundproof gaming room walls.

While MLV can be hung directly on a wall, it works best when placed between drywall sheets. Doing so also gives you aesthetic options, as the generally shiny black MLV is not the most decorative and attractive surface. Ask for assistance while installing your MLV. Don’t be shy, it is heavy and naturally a two-person job.

Mini guide to applying MLV to walls

Step 1

Before ordering MLV, carefully measure the walls you intend to soundproof. Leaving gaps in the size of the MLV will drastically compromise its effectiveness. Therefore, you’ll want to buy enough for a complete wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling coverage. When calculating your needs, keep in mind that MLV tends to be sold in 2 foot or 4 foot wide rolls.

Step 2

Measure a length of MLV that reaches from floor to ceiling, and then cut a sheet with the scissors or knife. Cutting on top of the scrap wood would be the best so you can protect the floor.

Step 3

Using a stepladder and place the MLV against the wall starting at each end, working at the other corner. To install it, place it against the ceiling, with your assistant holding it in place. Using drywall nails and a hammer, attach the MLV to the top of the wall at 12-inch intervals. Then fasten the bottom at 12-inch intervals, and finally at 12 to 24-inch intervals along the sides of the sheet.

Step 4

Repeat steps 2 and 3 as much as necessary until the entire wall is covered. Be sure to place the MLV against the previous sheet so there are no gaps.

Step 5

Install a layer of drywall on top of the MLV to make soundproofing twice as effective and provide you with a surface for painting or install wallpapers. For installing wallpapers, you would find this article pretty helpful.

Soundproof the walls of a gaming room with soundproofing curtains

Although soundproofing curtains are generally associated with windows like I already mentioned when talking above, they are also great for walls. They are relatively inexpensive and as easy to remove as they are to install. Please note that when you double the weight of the fabric, it can triple your sound reduction capacity.

Even more important than weight is curtain construction; pleated curtains can be three times more effective against noise than straight-hung curtains. What makes them better is that pleats not only double the thickness of the fabric in many parts but also act as a deflector, confusing reflection, and braking of a sound wave.

Remember, the goal is to eliminate the noise. So, a floor-to-ceiling curtain that covers the entire wall will definitely be the best solution. You can buy curtains in various panels to fill the wall. If you’re feeling adventurous, mix colors and patterns to create a wall of funky features and make the gaming room more appealing. Check out the options that you have on this Amazon listing.

Mini guide to install soundproofing curtains on a wall

Step 1

Measure the wall before buying curtains. When you purchase, please check the package information to see the weight of the curtains. You will need this to choose rods or another suspension system strong enough to hold them. If you’re using curtains that don’t include the weight on the packaging, you could put them on your bathroom scale at home. Tip: Keep them in the package so they will fit easily on the scale.

Step 2

Buy a weight-rated suspension system for shades (packaging or website marketing should tell you how much weight they can handle). If they weigh 40 pounds and the wall to be covered is 12 feet long, you will need a rod or suspension system that can handle approximately 3.5 pounds per foot. So keep that weight rating in mind when making your choice.

Step 3

Before mounting the suspension system, make sure there is enough space above the suspension for the top of the shades to move freely without weighing against the ceiling. Locate the wall studs with a stud finder, or use the appropriate wall anchors for your weight, before drilling into the wall with screws. Attach the bar or suspension system to the walls as recommended by the manufacturer.

Step 4

Hang the curtains on the rod or cable system, and then apply them in equal amounts across the wall until they look good.  Keep in mind that pleated and bunched fabrics will absorb more sound than flat fabrics. And that’s it!

Methods to soundproof a gaming room floor

If you want to soundproof a gaming room effectively then you should soundproof everything including the floor. There are two super cost-effective ways to soundproof a gaming room floor:

  • Buy heavy rugs.
  • Use interlocking mats.

Buy a heavy rug

Heavy rugs are a great way to reduce the noise leaking through the floor. A heavy rug like this dark grey/ivory carpet is enough to do the trick very well, so make sure to check it out. However, it is important that you cover the entire floor. Hence, you might need a few instead of just one. You don’t worry though, you can use them to make your gaming room more decorated so it shouldn’t be a big deal.

Apart from the noise that comes from your gaming console and your voice, rugs help to cushion impact noises. For example, your gamepad falling from your hand or you pounding your foot on the floor won’t be such a nuisance anymore. An additional benefit would be the overall comfort of where you place your feet; we all know rugs are more suiting on the feet.

Interlocking mats

interlocking mats to soundproof gaming room floor

Interlocking mats are often used as floor soundproofing solutions. The best thing about them is that they are very affordable and super easy to install. Basically, all you should do is lay them on the floor and connect them together. However, you should note that by itself, this mat can’t remove all the noise. Hence, it would be best if you use them in a combination with rugs.

If you choose to combine both thick rugs and interlocking mats, you may want to place the rug on top of the mat. This is because rugs are designed to be surface materials. Which means that they have a better aesthetic appeal than mats. However,  this is what an interlocking mat looks like. It also doubles as an exercise or training mat.

Extra tips to soundproof a gaming room

Soundproof box

Make a soundproof box for your gaming console or computer 

I know this sounds technical. Well, it is technical. But, believe me, you can do it if you understand the basics. What you need to make a soundproof box or cabinet is a few plywood panels, nails, and MLV.

Here, we are going to highlight what you need, but I wrote extensively about how you can soundproof a cabinet on this article. The article is a product of the interview I did with one of the foremost soundproof experts in the world. You should find all the details you need there.

For now, what you need do to build a soundproof cabinet for your gaming room include the following

  • Make sure to build the box in a way that is big enough to place your console or computer inside
  • Cover the walls with MLV
  • Remember to leave one side of the box open or make a few holes on the box so your equipment won’t overheat

If you need to see how it looks like, then check out the video below.

Buy Noise Cancelling Headphones

noise canceling headphones

You need a noise-canceling headphone if you like your gaming sound very loud and don’t want to bother others. Of course, there are many different types of noise-canceling headphones that you can choose from, and since you are a gamer I am not going to get too much in detail about them because I am sure that you already know all of that.

However, as an avid gamer in my team and a soundproofing enthusiast, I can point you in the right direction with regards to headphones. That’s exactly what I did when I analyzed the best noise-canceling headphones on the market. You can find that article right here.

Buy Bass Traps

Bass traps to soundproof a gaming room

Another thing that might be super useful is to buy a bass trap. If you don’t know what it is, in reality, it is acoustic foam which has a slightly different shape and you can place it in the corners of the gaming room. Video games often include sounds like bazookas, gunfire, and other sounds that involve bass, therefore, this might help.

Obviously, I would advise you to use them in a combination with other methods if you want to soundproof the gaming room as effectively as possible. But if you fancy this, then you can check out the various options available to you here.

Get some plants

This might sound weird to you, but plants can help to reduce the sound in your room. Especially plants such as Ferns, the Peace Lily, the Rubber Plant, etc. They absorb soundwaves and act as a cushion between the noise and hard surfaces.

This way, they drastically reduce echo in the room and excessive reverberations. If you want to learn which plants are the best sound absorbers and why then make sure to check out this article.

Final thoughts

If you want to soundproof a gaming room, you would definitely need to invest some time and money. However, it will pay off in the long run in terms of peace of mind and quietness. It will help you to avoid some family drama without having to sacrifice your passion game.

I grew up in a household where my gaming hours were relegated to when most of the family were out of the house. Hopefully, with this guide, you can have fun with your games whenever you choose.

Photo credit: 24prdesk.com

Photo credit: creativedgemusic.com

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