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A Loudness-Level-Meter for Broadband and Pulse-Containing Sound

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A measuring device is described, where all essential laws are considered by which the loudness, and therefore also the loudness level, is estimated by the auditory system. The instrument continuously shows the spectrum of the recorded sound on the screen of a cathode-ray tube; the physical scale of frequency is transformed into the critical-band function, the physical sound pressure into the specific loudness. The masking of sound components of high frequency by stronger components of lower frequency as well as the dynamic properties of the auditory system are simulated, guaranteeing respectively also the correct measurement of loudness and loudness level of pulse-containing sound. The instrument permits either the continuous observation of the loudness-critical-band-diagram of a varying sound or of the preservation of the “maximum-loudness-critical-band-diagram” of a single sound on the screen for a certain time. This offers the possibility of measuring correctly, short sound events happening but once. In four overlapping measuring ranges a dial gauge records the loudness over a range of 1 soneG to 400 soneG corresponding to a range of 40 phono to 125 phonG. The instantaneous value of the measured loudness can be registered by a level recorder as a function of time.

The dynamic properties of the instrument were examined with broadband noise pulses, the measuring accuracy by comparison with subjective measurements. The recorded value is in good agreement with the subjective values of loudness level. The error of measurement is less than ±3 phonG.

The instrument is portable; the mains as well as a 24 V battery may be used for its operation. It can be stored in the trunk of a large passenger car.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 1966

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  • Acta Acustica united with Acustica, published together with the European Acoustics Association (EAA), is an international, peer-reviewed journal on acoustics. It publishes original articles on all subjects in the field of acoustics, such as general linear acoustics, nonlinear acoustics, macrosonics, flow acoustics, atmospheric sound, underwater sound, ultrasonics, physical acoustics, structural acoustics, noise control, active control, environmental noise, building acoustics, room acoustics, acoustic materials, acoustic signal processing, computational and numerical acoustics, hearing, audiology and psychoacoustics, speech, musical acoustics, electroacoustics, auditory quality of systems. It reports on original scientific research in acoustics and on engineering applications. The journal considers scientific papers, technical and applied papers, book reviews, short communications, doctoral thesis abstracts, etc. In irregular intervals also special issues and review articles are published.
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