Speaker Cloth Choices for Entertainment Centers

Good speaker cloth has better acoustic properties than regular cloth. April 4, 2011

What is the best cloth (black) that allows a remote signal to pass through to equipment behind the doors? Also, what is the best installation method? I'm doing 2" door frames, five piece with the cloth being the panel. I have searched the web and come up with a large range of pricing and selections.

Forum Responses
(Architectural Woodworking Forum)
From contributor E:
Take a trip to your local fabric store. JoAnnes fabrics has the good cloth that is thin enough to get a signal through.

From contributor W:
It has to be breathable. Hold it up, blow through it and if you have no resistance it will work! JoAnnes is a good source. It will want to stretch a bit and we install it using screen door spline and a dado (1/8th" +/-) and a sline roller.

From contributor M:
I have bought grill cloth. I find that the 3M spray adhesives work great for holding it together. Just mist light coats on the fabric so it doesnít bleed through. Also, try a local car audio shop that does custom work, they will typically make grills and have an inventory of cloth. They would probably even wrap whatever it is you are building. Not sure if a IR will pass through it, but parts express has IR repeater kits as well for around $125 which work great.

From contributor T:
I only use for sub-woofer doors. I suggest using the relay devices designed for remote.

From contributor S:
We've acquired fabric from an outfit called AcousTex.

From contributor T:
We get it from JoAnn fabrics, but we use 1/4'' smoked plate glass for in front of the components. I donít think the signal will get through the fabric.

From the original questioner:
Thanks for all the great responses. I am leaning toward the IR repeater kit if I can sell it to my customer. It might be cheaper as opposed to buying the cloth and installing it in four doors.

From contributor A:
Normal fabric just doesn't work; it cuts out over 10db on the high end of the spectrum. Acoustically transparent fabrics will allow sound to pass through them. Some fabrics can even enhance the system's acoustic performance.

From the original questioner:
I ended up using the speaker cover cloth from Rockler. It has a honeycombed plastic backing so itís very rigid. The cloth is black with no grey and tight grain. I completed the project and after all equipment was set up the remote functioned very well through the cloth.