One of the most challenging things about singing, or doing anything musically for that matter, is finding a quiet area. Not only is it essential to have a quiet space to use, so everything sounds better, but it can cut down on distracting others.
One option out there for singers is a soundproof mask for singing. It is something that has not been around for too long just yet, and a few different companies put out some interesting options that provide value.
Are they actually worth investing in? First, let us take a look at some of the best of the best out there, and then examine whether or not they have the capability of meeting expectations.
1. Scream Jar
This might look a little ridiculous in the advertisements, but the Scream Jar (Amazon) is just fine for singers as well as those who have a lot of stress built up. It is is a voice silencer that will allow people to warm up and signing just like they would. This product is also extremely inexpensive.
It does not reduce as much sound as some of the more expensive options out there, but it is an inexpensive option to mess around with.
Use it for warming up, and do not take it too seriously. It is relatively small so people can carry around anywhere, and it is meant for short practices more than anything.
- It is a very inexpensive option to try out.
- It is an easy design to put up to the mouth.
- It does not provide the same level of soundproofing as others.
- A bit difficult to travel with the Scream Jar.
The BeltBox (Amazon) is one of the most well-known vocal dampeners for singers on the market right now. It allows people to have their own portable warm-up room, which is perfect for those who do not want to disturb others.
As great as it sounds in theory, it does an even better job when actually put to use. Simply put, this is the industry standard at this point for a soundproof singing mask.
To start with, everything that comes with the BeltBox makes the entire experience as comfortable as possible. It is 100% waterproof, which allows for easy cleaning to keep people well sanitized. There is also a removable strap that allows for people to put the box right up against their mouth if they want to, or strap it on for extended use.
When it is actually put to use, the warm-up room act as it should. It blocks close to 30 dB easily, and it provides a good seal for just about any type of face. In fact, they provide such a great seal that it might seem a little hard for people to breathe at first, but the two nostril holes do provide a decent job of air.
One thing that is pretty frustrating with this is the fact that it is a little limiting with facial movement. Those who sing with a lot of movement in their face might not feel like they can do the same thing with this design. It can really cause some pain, and also change how people sing.
This is a great starting point for those who want to try something like this out, but do not know where to go. It is affordable and pretty low technology, which is good for people who do not want to baby the item too much.
- Allows for a very customized to fit.
- Easy to keep clean.
- Restrict facial movement a bit.
- Pretty hard to breathe.
3. Steno SR Pro-1
For people who want a little bit more technology behind they’re singing mask, the Steno SR Pro-1 (Amazon) is one way to get exactly that. It is a bit more technologically advanced, especially since it is designed for speech recognition as well as singing. Some people will use it for both, and having those as features does come in handy to a certain degree.
With the specific software, people can have everything transcribed as they go. This is good for people who might be singing and want to take notes, or just when they are talking as well.
The big eye-opener is, of course, the price, which is a little higher than a lot of people want to spend when it is all said and done.
Does it provide enough features to entice singers? For the most part, the answer is no, but it does offer some good isolation and a way to get precise wording down.
Use it in a pinch if it is needed for other work as well, but perhaps look at something a little cheaper if it is just meant for warming up.
- The Steno offers superior isolation.
- It works with speech recognition technology.
- Connect easily to a phone or computer.
- Very expensive.
- Not exactly designed for singing only.
Pros of a Soundproof Singing Mask?
In theory, a soundproof singing mask sounds like a great idea. It just needs to be executed correctly for people to really get a good amount of use out of them.
The ones listed above are all pretty good options, although there is not that perfect one just yet.
A good mask is going to absorb anywhere from 20 to 30 dB of sound. This is pretty good for a mask that is so small and lightweight.
If everything is completely quiet, people will probably still be able to hear a little bit, but it might only sound like a small whisper at most.
Masks that help with soundproofing do not require too many moving parts. That means as long as a person treats everything well, it should be able to last for a pretty long time.
Make sure that it is cleaned consistently, and it is placed in a safe place when not in use.
It is a bit of a nuisance to clean a soundproof singing mask, but it goes by pretty quickly once a person gets the hang of it. Stay on top of it all, and the mask will work very well.
Competition Has Lowered Prices
The first soundproof singing masks were admittedly a little overpriced, but they have dropped considerably with so many new releases.
It is now an affordable solution that is available for just about any person out there.
These masks are pretty small and compact in most cases, which means people can take them just about anywhere. Some have a designated area that they are going to use their mask in, while others want to take it on the road in case they are in close quarters.
Cons of a Soundproof Mask
As great as these masks appear on paper, there are some cons that people need to be aware of. It is not going to work for every single person out there, especially if they can’t make some adjustments to get just the right fit initially.
During the very first wear, the thing that a lot of people realize is just how limited airflow is overall.
There are only two orifices on the nose area for most of these masks, and none in the mouth area. This means that the more personal things, the more it will start to really be a problem.
With a rubber or plastic build, a soundproof singing mask it is not going to absorb any water. It has to go somewhere, which means that there is usually condensation for people to have to deal with.
This can be frustrating for a lot of people the more they use it. This means taking it off and wiping it down more and more often during a session.
All of the moisture and inhaling creates heat inside a pretty closed off area as well. This means that people need to get used to the fact that it might not be that cool when in hot temperatures.
As if all of the other cons do not make it apparent, the mask is not exactly the most comfortable thing in the world. People need to figure out exactly how it fits for them in the beginning and then make adjustments as time goes on.
After some adjustments, it might seem like it fits a little better, but there is still some level of discomfort most had to deal with.
Other Ways Can People Practice Singing Quietly?
There are a lot of different tricks for people to practice their vocals without having to irritate everyone else around them. It might not always be ideal, but there are certain times when it is needed.
While a soundproof singing mask will offer a pretty normal experience, here are some other tips on keeping sound levels down as much as possible.
Use a Pillow, or Something Similar
This is a great way to sing pretty quietly, while still pushing the vocal cords so that they get a proper workout. It works in a lot of the same way as a soundproof singing mask, just that it is not exactly designed for that purpose.
A lot of people will use this as a way of singing in their bedroom when it is later in the day. Make sure to have the pillow up very close to the mouth so that there a little sound actually leaks through.
In the bathroom with the fan on, shower running, etc.
Singing does not sound as loud and as obnoxious if there are other sounds to help distract everything. Singing in the shower or bathroom offers horrible acoustics because of the echo but at least the sound is a bit reduced in the shower.
Just about everyone has messed around with singing in the shower, and it is a great way to have some fun. The room is isolated a bit from everyone else, and the combination of a fan running and water pouring down might be enough not to distract others.
It is simple, yet effective. A lot of people will hum in order to practice hitting notes and work on a natural form of volume and projection. The sound stays relatively muted, but will obviously still be heard in a very quiet room.
Singing Under Breath
There is good and bad with singing under breath to keep things down. The good news is that people can work on hitting notes and lyrics, but it is not going to be the same volume people sing with.
Compare this in a lot of ways to practicing public speaking, but only in a whispering voice. While it might help to some degree, it is not going to replicate the same thing.
Singing In The Car
The car is a great place to practice vocals, as it is sealed off from the outside world. Only the people inside a car can hear most singing unless a person is really raising the volume.
Since most cars have pretty good acoustics as well, it just gives people a good idea on how they sound to others. In a lot of ways, a car is just a really big soundproof singing mask.
Are Soundproofing Masks For Singing Worth It?
Since the price is so low these days, it is hard not to give one of these masks a try for people who are singing a lot around others. It just makes sense to have one available for certain situations, and putting it to use a little bit will be just fine.
It is not going to be something that is used consistently for most people, but that is perfectly fine. For its purpose, a lot of people seem to really enjoy what they bring to the table.