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Master Handbook of Acoustics, Sixth Edition, 6th Edition by Ken C Pohlmann, F. Alton Everest

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CHAPTER 2

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Sound Levels and the Decibel

The decibel is one of the most important units of measure in the field of audio. The decibel provides an extraordinarily efficient way to describe audio phenomena and our perception of them. In this chapter we explore the decibel concept and see how decibels can be used to measure sound levels in various applications. Several numerical examples demonstrate the mathematics needed to use decibel measurements.

Sound levels expressed in decibels clearly demonstrate the wide range of sensitivity in human hearing. The threshold of hearing matches the ultimate lower limit of perceptible sound in air, that is, the ...

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