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Microphones and Acoustics

Frequently Asked Questions

Get your most commonly asked acoustics questions answered.

Section I: Definitions and Terminology
Section II: Microphone Recommendations
Section III: Calibration and Testing
Section IV: Specification Clarifications
Section V: Specialty Microphone Applications
Section VI: Maintenance and Handling

If you don’t see the answer to your question, call our 24/7 SensorLineSM 716-684-0001 to speak with an application engineer or visit Ask the Acoustics Experts.

What is A-weighting and what is the best way to implement it?

Different frequencies affect the human ear in different ways. Equal loudness tests determined how each frequency affects the human ear and showed that the average human ear is most sensitive around 4 kHz. A 100 dB signal will only feel like 70 dB at 50 Hz. This is why a guitar may sound louder than a bass drum, or a brake squeal is more annoying than an engine knock, when in fact they are the same decibel levels on a linear scale.

An A-weighting scale is basically a filtering system, which provides the relative dB effect on a human ear, at each frequency. This can be accomplished in the software system, within a Sound Level Meter, or with an in-line filter.

What is A-weighting and what is the best way to implement it?

Different frequencies affect the human ear in different ways. Equal loudness tests determined how each frequency affects the human ear and showed that the average human ear is most sensitive around 4 kHz. A 100 dB signal will only feel like 70 dB at 50 Hz. This is why a guitar may sound louder than a bass drum, or a brake squeal is more annoying than an engine knock, when in fact they are the same decibel levels on a linear scale.

An A-weighting scale is basically a filtering system, which provides the relative dB effect on a human ear, at each frequency. This can be accomplished in the software system, within a Sound Level Meter, or with an in-line filter.