We often come across home cinema installations where all walls are covered in fabric. The fabrics used in these dedicated home cinema systems are classed as “acoustic.” Acoustic fabrics are solely covering the acoustic treatments used in the cinema room, while providing a more pleasant visual appearance. They are used solely for aesthetics. Acoustic fabrics must allow sound to pass through in order to maintain full functionality of all wall treatments used; absorptive and diffusive.
Home cinema designers, architects and interior designers must consider how well the fabric will look after installation. The choice is usually done based solely on the way it looks, ensuring it complements the interior decor. Home cinema installations can have pre-fabricated panels covered with acoustic fabrics, or fabric stretched on-site over custom made acoustic wall treatments. The choice is endless.
However, there are a lot of fabrics that are not suitable for covering acoustic treatments. Backed fabrics are not recommended because they tend to resist any stretch, plus the extra backing limits its acoustic transparency. Another thing the home cinema designer needs to consider is the material of which the acoustic fabric is made of.
The use of Synthetic fabrics is more suitable for fabric-stretch applications in
home cinema systems. Synthetic fabrics can sustain high humidity without sagging and rippling, maintaining their original shape when stretched over acoustic panels. A fabric that has a maximum of 30% natural fibres would be suitable in case a fully synthetic acoustic fabric is not used.
Choosing the correct fabric in a home cinema installation will ensure an excellent visual result that will please the client for many years to come.