t.akustik Print Panel: What is it?
If you want to improve the acoustic performance of an existing space the most realistic solution is to add a combination of absorber panels, diffusers and bass traps.
This is why the vast majority of studio spaces you see invariably have an array of panels covering large swathes of the walls and ceiling.
On the internet, you’ll find plenty of tutorials on how to build your own panels and diffusers, which allows you to create a more bespoke solution and could save you money. If you’d rather buy something ready-made there are now plenty of options.
One manufacturer with an extensive offering is t.akustik, and it manufactures absorber panels using materials including PET, polyurethane foam, mineral wool and melamine foam.
Nevertheless, adding panels can make for a rather glum environment and that’s where t.akustik’s Print Panel comes in.
t.akustik Print Panel: Performance and verdict
This reasonably large (1.2m x 60cm x 6cm) panel comes in a choice of ten eye-catching music-related photographic designs. These are printed onto the fabric cover and even after this process, the fabric retains its acoustic transparency, which we confirmed by blowing through the fabric.
The panel has a 16mm MDF frame and integrated metal hanging clips and is supplied with a wall mounting bar. Once screwed into the wall the panel hooks over the bar and is essentially flush with the wall. This looks very tidy, although as we’ll discuss below may not deliver the best absorption.
It’s also worth saying that the available prints mean the panels are only designed for horizontal mounting. Nevertheless, the overall construction we have to say is excellent and the print fabric is stapled securely and tightly in place.
Inside the panel is acoustic foam and this is open at the back. The quoted density is 25kg/m3. T.akustik don’t quote an operational frequency for the panel, but other t.akustik products with the same polyurethane flexible foam quote reduction from about 1250Hz.
Remember, densities of 40kg/m3 to 60kg/m3 are typically used for broadband absorbers, and you’d expect these to work from 200Hz or 300Hz upwards. So, the Print Panels seem designed to tame mid to higher frequencies, and with a couple in place in a small room the bare wall flutter does reduce and this of course makes the room acoustic sound more controlled.
As mentioned above the panels sit flush to the wall and at 6cm are not particularly deep. Both these aspects limit the absorption frequency range. By mounting them away from the wall by a few centimetres it would be possible to improve the mid to low frequency performance.
Thinking even more radically, and given that we really like the tidy construction but not necessarily the polyurethane foam filling, we're sure we could repurpose these panels towards the lower frequencies by stripping out said foam, which is only glued to the frame and replacing it with something denser like mineral wool.
Overall we like these panels as they are well constructed and good value with some quite eye-catching prints to choose from. That said, although they help tame higher frequencies their broadband capabilities are somewhat limited by the depth and choice of filling material, so they’d best be used in conjunction with other broadband absorber panels.
MusicRadar verdict: The Print Panel is well constructed, good value and will liven up the look of your workspace. It offers moderate taming of mid to high frequencies and should ideally be used alongside other broadband absorbers
t.akustik Print Panel: Specifications
- Designs: choice of ten music-related photographic images
- Cover Material: printed acoustic transparent fabric
- Mounting: flush-mounted with rear clips and included wall mounting bar
- Frame Material: 16mm MDF
- Filling Material: polyurethane foam
- Filling Density: 25kg/m3
- Safety: Flame retardant according to MVSS 302 (burning rate < 100 mm / min.)
- Size: 1200(w) x 600(h) x 60(d) mm
- Weight: 4kg
- CONTACT: t.aksutik (opens in new tab)