Customers Often Ask How Acrylic Window Inserts Compare to Laminated Glass Window Inserts.

Acrylic is plastic and has all of the typical characteristics of plastic – it’s easy to manufacture, lightweight, easy to scratch, yellows over time, etc. Companies that offer “acoustic-grade acrylic” are actually offering 1/4″ thick acrylic instead of standard 1/8″ thickness. It would be more accurate to call it “double-thickness grade.” Doubling the thickness increases its ability to abate sound, because the mass per-square-foot is increased, not because there are specially engineered characteristics to make 1/4″ thick acrylic “acoustic-grade” vs standard.

Laminated glass is specially engineered. It’s made of two layers of glass held together by a PVB interlayer, which gives it special acoustical characteristics. The soft PVB interlayer dissipates sound pressure and vibration. Think of the analogy of placing your finger on a ringing bell. The bell stops vibrating and stops making sound. Another characteristic of 1/4″ thick laminated glass is that its mass per-square-foot is more than twice that of same-thickness acrylic, helping it abate much more sound.

If Laminated Glass Is Better Than Acrylic, Why Do Companies Offer Acrylic?

Acrylic is much easier to manufacture, often has a lower cost for raw materials and is lighter weight. That means it can cost less to manufacture inserts and definitely costs less to ship them.

We Used To Offer Both Acrylic and Laminated Glass Inserts

Seven years ago we made the decision to manufacture inserts from laminated glass because of its superior characteristics, even though it is more difficult to manufacture. Up until then, we made our inserts from 1/4″ thick acrylic. In those days we had to be careful to set realistic customer expectations between the two products and price points.

Soon we learned that about 70 percent of our customers gave high praise for the acrylic inserts, but about 95 percent gave high praise for laminated glass inserts.

As we grew, our purchasing power lowered our cost of laminated glass to match acrylic. We were able to lower our price for laminated glass inserts and and discontinue acrylic about five years ago.

How Sun and Sound Windows Compare to Indow Windows

Indow Windows:

  • Acrylic window inserts
  • DIY focus. You measure and install.

Sun and Sound Windows:

  • Laminated glass inserts
  • Full-service. We do everything – assessment, measuring, manufacturing, installation

Want to get a cost estimate for laminated glass soundproof window inserts for your home or office? Contact us.