How loud do you play music?

I bought the above Sound level meter which give out peak reading.

It tuned out that peak db is around 85 db at my listening chair.

From time to time I got over 90db but I found the sound to be too loud.

But last night I recorded 105db while playing .

There is some behind story for this.

About one week ago after swapping some IC cables, I started hearing ground hum.

At first I guessed that there must be some problem with IC cables but not.

Thus I pulled back two big 2KW isolation transformers that I had kept for 20 years.

I had not used them for last 7 years since they are heavy and taking lot of space.

With those two isolation transformers in Line Magnetic SET amplifier and power supply of Lansche 4.1 speakers, 80% of ground hum disappeared.

I bought one more 450W isolation transformer from Amazon and set it up with my EMMlab DAC2 and now almost 90% of ground hum are gone.

The amazing thing is that some digital sheen is also gone after setting up three isolation transformers.

I bought 2 packs of 20 magnetic cores.

I put them on digital, IC and speaker cables.

Now I can play music above 100db without ear aching hardness.

The only drawback of magnetic cores is that it may sound less open or slightly less dynamic.

But I am comfortable with the round and musical sound after putting three isolation transformers and 30 magnetic cores.

2 packs of 20 magnetic cores cost me 24 $ including tax.

This is the best value tweak that I had done on my system.

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Using a crappy Iphone db meter, which I've since deleted, I was typically listening in the 65-75 db range with occasional peaks approaching 80. That's in a practically nearfield setup in a small apartment.
Using the AudioTools app on my Iphone typically listening between mid 60s to mid 80s. Have hit 100db plus a few times with Pink Floyd, Dire Straits.
Low to mid 80,s  according to my works decibel meter. We usually have to check the level of new machinery after installation to see what area it needs to be designated so my meter is fairly accurate.

Anyways that’s a comfortable every day level for me.
Push it to high 80,s low 90,s and I am done ... Lol. Getting old.

SQ is still very cohesive,it’s just me that can’t take it!
As one get older, the sound level down.

But sometimes I would like to feel the music by playing loud over 90db.
Now that I think about it, I never play music at low volume. It must be loud enough to energize the system and to provide the full share of dynamics and bass response. Music is all about dynamics. But never so loud as to produce distortion or discomfort. So please, no angry emails.
But that is part of the trick is it not.
The holy grail we are all searching for?
To be able to play at lower volume levels and retain the vast majority of those dynamics from higher spl sessions.

Not totally there yet but have made huge inroads on it for sure.
What you mean we, kemo sabe? 
Hi Geoff

If you enjoy loud and dynamic sound, can I ask you the speaker you are using?


I don’t like loud for the sake of loud. I like Dynamic Range. But most systems won’t sound dynamic at low volumes, they usually require a certain amount of energy to get cooking. Loudness and Dynamic Range are not the same thing. Almost all systems lack proper dynamics to me, but that’s just me. 😁 That’s kind if the whole idea behind the Loudness Wars - they substituted Loudness for Dynamic Range.
As alone today decided to crank it on vinyl with new to me cartridge fitted.

93db average with peak at 106db.

And it still sounded sweet and clean.

Happy camper with my system indeed !