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Loudest/Quietest centerfire rifle cartridges?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by rifleman14, Apr 2, 2010.

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  1. rifleman14

    rifleman14 Member

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    Hey everyone, thought id start up a potentially fun thread and ask the question, what is the loudest centerfire rifle cartridge? how about the quietest? the first question is really two questions...what is the loudest centerfire rifle cartridge within the average joe's reach?(no 50 BMG, 416 Barrett, 20mm vulcan........) And what is the loudest centerfire rifle cartridge PERIOD?

    if someone could find/compile a list in order from quietest to loudest, that would be even better :D

    i understand that barrel length will affect the amount of noise produced so lets say that the barrel length must be at least 16"
     
  2. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Member

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    On the short list of quietest un supressed is going to be 38 special
     
  3. rifleman14

    rifleman14 Member

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    i guess my post needs clarification......i am asking about centerfire rifle cartridges only, not any centerfire cartridge in a rifle(pistol calibers). 223, 308, 30-06, 7.62x39 etc......not including 9mm, 38 special, 45 ACP, etc

    sorry for the misunderstanding
     
  4. R.W.Dale

    R.W.Dale Member

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    In that case they'll all require hearing protection or perminate hearing loss could result.

    On the pure technical aspect typically the lower pressure rated cartridges eepacilly the least overbore ones will also be the quietest due to having low pressures as the bullet exits the muzzle. Trapdoor 45/70 loads would likely be amongst the least noisy.
     
  5. General Geoff

    General Geoff Member

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    I'd put money on .510 Whisper being one of the quietest centerfire rifle cartridges in existence, suppressed or unsuppressed.
     
  6. SpeedAKL

    SpeedAKL Member

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    Rifle noise depends on several factors: the amount of powder being detonated (more power capacity increases noise), the length of the barrel (shorter = louder), and the presence of a muzzle brake (dramatically increases perceived noise).

    All other things being equal, the loudest cartridges aside from some huge exotics (.50BMG, .408CT, .577 T-Rex, etc) will be the large-capacity magnums like the Weatherby Mag line (especially the .378-based cartridges), the .338LM, and the Remington Ultra Mag line. The traditional big-bore boomers like .416 Rigby, .375H&H, and the Nitro Express line will be quite loud as well.

    The quietest rifle cartridges will either be the smaller units typically seen in carbines like .5.7x28 FN, .30 Carbine, 7.62x39 and 5.45x39, etc. or smaller-capacity varmint rounds.
     
  7. rifleman14

    rifleman14 Member

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    so can anyone compile me a list? quietest to largest?
     
  8. scythefwd

    scythefwd Member

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    7.62x54R out of a 16.5" barrel would be loud. Not sure if anything bigger would be... like a .338 LM or a .458 Lott.
     
  9. rikman

    rikman Member

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    22 short in my kids Savage Cub is ultra quiet :)
     
  10. dubbleA

    dubbleA Member

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    Reading comprehension anyone?:rolleyes:



    It's all spectuative unless sound meters are used to measure the db's. Like felt recoil, folks percieve things differently.

    As previously stated, there are many variables in the equation, all effect sound levels.
     
  11. 627PCFan

    627PCFan Member

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    "It's all spectuative unless sound meters are used to measure the db's. Like felt recoil, folks percieve things differently"

    +1

    My ears are more sensitive to the bullet "crack" than the boom itself.
     
  12. aka108

    aka108 Member

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    Loudest I recall was 8X56R comming out of a Steyr Model 95. Kicking little SOB to.
     
  13. X-Rap

    X-Rap Member

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    I would rather shoot a 338-378 unprotected that a .30 carb from a Ruger Black Hawk.
    They are both rifle cartridges but from a short barrel the crack from the .30 is very painful and the only one that actually caused pain to fire.

    I don't shoot without ear protection unless hunting but let the .30 rip while hiking and won't do it again.

    To the OP, I would say you can pretty much list by velocity and bullet diameter, then allow for barrel length. I doubt that it will be perfect but it will be quite close.
    If there is some kind of decibel chart it would be interesting to see.
     
  14. benEzra

    benEzra Moderator Emeritus

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    The peak dB depends a whole lot more on barrel length than on caliber, and whether the barrel is fitted with a muzzle brake or not. That's why in terms of dB, handguns are as loud as (or sometimes louder than) rifles.


    http://www.freehearingtest.com/hia_gunfirenoise.shtml

    Table 1. SHOTGUN NOISE DATA (DECIBEL AVERAGES)

    .410 Bore
    28" barrel.............150dB
    18" barrel.............156.30dB

    12 Gauge
    28" barrel...............151.50dB
    26" barrel...............156.10dB
    18" barrel..............161.50dB




    Table 2. CENTERFIRE RIFLE DATA

    .223, 55GR. Commercial load 18 _" barrel.....155.5dB
    .243 in 22" barrel...........................155.9dB
    .30-30 in 20" barrel.........................156.0dB
    7mm Magnum in 20" barrel.....................157.5dB
    .308 in 24" barrel...........................156.2dB
    .30-06 in 24" barrel.........................158.5dB
    .30-06 in 18 _" barrel.......................163.2dB
    .375 — 18" barrel with muzzle brake...........170 dB




    Table 3. CENTERFIRE PISTOL DATA

    .25 ACP...........155.0 dB
    .32 LONG..........152.4 dB
    .32 ACP...........153.5 dB
    .380..............157.7 dB
    9mm...............159.8 dB
    .38 S&W...........153.5 dB
    .38 Spl...........156.3 dB
    .357 Magnum.......164.3 dB
    .41 Magnum........163.2 dB
    .44 Spl...........155.9 dB
    .45 ACP...........157.0 dB
    .45 COLT..........154.7 dB
     
  15. Quoheleth

    Quoheleth Member

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    BenEzra, good info there.

    Can the human ear really differentiate between a couple of decibles? For example, would the human ear really be able to discern the difference between the .223 and the .30-30, or between the .380 and .38?

    Q
     
  16. Maverick223

    Maverick223 Member

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    Absolutely, the scale is exponential because the decibel is a logarithmic unit (base-10). Note the rather small change in dB from a rifle with a brake to one without (as indicated in the scale above), note that the difference percieved by the shooter and surrounding viewers is substantial. There is a rather large difference in volume with each small increase in dB. The bel (1/10th of a dB) is the smallest unit discernible by the average human ear.

    The quietest cartridge would be something like the .300Whisper (or more commonly something such as the .30-30Win), with the loudest likely a .50BMG or the like (or more commonly a .338RUM or similar).

    :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2010
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