Soiund pressure levels


What sound pressure levels are considered dangerous to hearing these days?

I fell into one club a few months ago with a few friends. (I am at a point in my life where I don't have to provide proof of age) They issued wireless (Bluetooth?) headsets to the patrons, offering several channels of music.

I enjoy listening to music quite loud but I know when I am fatigued and when it is time to turn down the volume.

It is my understanding that some clubs have RMS output of 45kw+

No wonder the current generation of music listeners prefer MP3's. They simply cannot hear anything, anymore.

At what level do you listen? And, oh, most clubs are fitted with only analogue gear.


Watts have nothing to do hearing issues. It's all about decibels. You can google lots of information on sound level and hearing loss. And, be very careful with listening through headphones at high volumes. That can be worse than listening without them at higher levels.
What sound pressure levels are considered dangerous to hearing these days?

SPL level depends on exposure and type of sound. It is not well understood. The fact that people almost always go deaf or at least slightly deaf as they get older complicates our understanding.

So regular hunting without ear defenders is a no no. Once in the while firing a hot gun...not likely to cause damage for most people but will make your ears ring for a couple of hours.

Firing artillary without ear defenders may give you instant damage.

Long exposure to high levels of music (musicians and club workers and rodies) with several hours a night - definitely bad.

Sitting at the wrong place for an entire rock concert (in front or speakers at 115 DB SPL ) - bad news for ears - permanent damage may be expected.

Long exposure levels of 90 DB SPL and more 8 hours a day - day in day out = BAD for hearing but again it may depend on type of sound - if it is not bang in the midrange then it may be less damaging (for example Ultra LF at 90 db SPL is barely audible).

You going to a nightclub once in a while or cranking your stereo from time to time or listening to a few rock songs at high volume with your iPod in the gymn (less than an hour) - no worries mate!

In general your body/brain will tell you - just be senstive to when you feel you have had enough and your ears need a rest!