Decibel Rating of Various Calibers


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Lord Soth
February 16, 2003, 07:55 PM
Does anyone have a list of the decibel rating of various calibers (unsuppressed)?

Thanks!

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Blackhawk
February 16, 2003, 08:02 PM
Too many variables.

The same load out of a short barrel will be much louder than from a long barrel.

A 9mm 115gr WWB target load from a Kel Tec P-11 will out bang a .45 from a M1991A1, anecdotally speaking.

yesterdaysyouth
February 16, 2003, 08:08 PM
i dont' think caliber would have as much effect as barrel length or type of firearm, on db level....

of course a .22 through a 18in. barrel in a semi-auto rifle and 44mag through a revolver are gonna be a huge difference.... but what about 32acp. in a small auto? do you think the sound would be that much quiter than 45acp in a gov. sized 1911??

i only made the mistake of shooting my m29 with earplugs one time.... since then i won't shoot anything without protection...

i've lost some of my hearing playing drums, in competition car stereo and at work... i can't afford to do any more damage...

New_comer
February 16, 2003, 08:50 PM
Read something about that in TFL.

22lr hovers at aound 130 dB, the loudest in that list is the 357 at 180+, IIRC.

I'd try to search the TFL archives... ;)

New_comer
February 17, 2003, 02:20 AM
Here's what I found:


dB Environmental Noise

10 Normal breathing
50 Interior home noise
70 Crowded restaurant
80 City traffic
85 Hearing Damage Possible
90 Lawn mower
120 Threshold of Pain
120 Siren
130 Jackhammer
140 Jet engine at takeoff
152 .22 pistol
156 12 gauge shotgun
157 .45 ACP pistol
160 9mm pistol
164 .357 Magnum revolver

This table clearly shows that a shot from all calibers is detrimental to hearing. :(

bountyhunter
February 17, 2003, 03:36 PM
What is overlooked by many people is that the standard highest quality muffs attenuate the noise by about 30 dB.. This is subtracted from the above listed values. Ergo, a magnum fired near you will apply about 165 - 30 = 135 dBA to your ears which is extremely damaging. Wearing internal plugs with the muffs will give you another 6 - 10 dB of reduction (I always use both). If you are in an indoor range and somebody is shooting a magnum, your ears are being damaged. Incidentally, the muzzle wave has a "null" directly behind the muzzle which means the shooter is not getting hiy as hard as the guy on either side in the next lanes.

bogie
February 17, 2003, 04:00 PM
I bought a ratshack sound meter to calibrate my home theater stuff (hey, there's nothing quite like watching We Were Soldiers at full volume in surround sound...), and I plan on taking it to the Supershoot, and doing a little checking. I'll try to remember to post back...

bedlamite
February 17, 2003, 05:15 PM
bogie, I've got a RS dB meter. Don't bother trying it, they can't handle anything that loud.

bogie
February 17, 2003, 05:31 PM
Actually, I'm going to check out some areas a modest distance from the line.

Show a few folks that there's a reason why "Huh?" is the most frequently heard word...

Matt G
February 17, 2003, 05:35 PM
I posted a query on TFL some while ago about this stuff, when I was faced with the possibility of shooting a sick skunk in a trailer park. The discussion got way side-tracked [ :rolleyes: ] to the question of which arm was more appropriate for the job, but what I was curious about was: which would be quieter, a 2" Chief Special firing 125g .38 spl Gold Dots, or a 5" Kimber 1911 firing 230 Gold Dots? Never did get a satisfactory answer.

:confused:

-M>

benEzra
February 17, 2003, 08:48 PM
What is overlooked by many people is that the standard highest quality muffs attenuate the noise by about 30 dB
The NRR is assessed using progressively quieter sounds until the test subject can no longer hear the sound; the difference between the quietest sound that can be heard with and without the muffs is the NRR. HOWEVER, some have pointed out that the relative reduction may be greater the louder the sound; I'd like to see some tests on this. I can say that I've shot a .22 rifle without hearing protection and had threshold shift and ringing ears, and I've shot a .223 with Peltor Shotgunner (NRR 21 dB) and didn't have ringing ears after. Still, I usually do double up, with the pink wal-mart earplugs (fantastic) under the Peltor muffs.

Someone over on TFL posted a link to an excellent article on the Field & Stream/Outdoor Life website on dB levels of various firearms, by Jim and Eric Carmichel. Anyone have a current link? One of them owns a business that specializes in testing of high-intensity impulse noises (IIRC), and they used special equipment and techniques that allowed them to get an accurate reading of the peak sound pressures.

You can get the full report from ELC Engineering (1449 East 10th Street, Tucson, AZ 85719) for $10 (check or money order) for printing and postage.

rhedley
February 17, 2003, 08:55 PM
The loudest I have ever heard was a H&R .32 mag..

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