Hello, my name is Matt. I record, edit, and mix music for a living. My profession requires an extremely discerning ear. This little listening test is to see if you can pick up subtle differences in volume.
What I have below is a series of 1khz sine waves, in sets of two. In each test I’d like you to try to discern which tone is the quieter of the two. The first test contains one tone that is 0.8 decibels quieter than the other. I believe this to be the quietest incremental difference of volume the average person can readily discern (evidence suggests 1 decibel to represent this volume difference, but I give the ear a bit more cred).
The following sets of sine waves contain even smaller differences in volume.
Please answer honestly, and try not to guess.
Can you hear which sound is louder?
You should also try the MP3 Sound Quality Test
We are listening from a PC which really makes these questions pretty silly.
I’m not going to explain this.
no we are litening to speakers/headphones.
you won’t explain? i assume there is no explanation.
I just held a decibel meter up to my speakers (actually, I laid it on a platform to avoid the possible changing of hand position), and it reported the same volume on all the sample pairs. If there is a difference, then it must be only when the monitors are cranked to ear-splitting levels. I’m using a pair of Equator Audio D5 monitors which do dynamics very well. I think the test is screwed.
Not easy, they need to be in a different set up than that, clicking between the two made me forget the first one etc…
I watched a thing on comparing different sources a while back and Humans can’t compare sounds accurately enough if there is more than (not many seconds…less than 10 I believe).
I got two right, I guessed one and it was wrong.
I’m actually surprised I got all three right without guessing any.
It wasn’t very hard to distinguish the loudness of each pair of waves, but I honestly thought my hearing was not all that sensitive by now. (Way too many years destroying my hearing while studying music, although the said studying must have trained my hearing…)
I tried it again and got 2 out of 3 right. The trick is to play them at the same time! Why only 2 out of 3? Because I’m tired!
Yep, that’s why. You’re really smart too, probably like a 160 IQ, but because you’re tired you only score 105 😉
I stupidly forgot I had turned on loudness equalization and couldn’t tell a difference. (Except for the first one.)
Then, I turned it off… and I got them all correct. (I didn’t notice the “I hear no difference.” option for some reason, so I got the last one wrong.)
Got all three. I feel like a genius.
Got all of them right. I was actually concerned for a minute about one of them because the difference is subtle (i won’t spoil which one). Really nice test, but it’s passable if you have a decent hearing and a pair of quality headphones.
It might’ve been easier if I didn’t have to download them but got question 2 and 3 right… interestingly. By the third question I was wondering if I had gotten used to the sound.
I suck at this. All wrong. I changed all my right aswers. Why oh why did I do that. Fail 🙁
i only got one right and i think by mistake… the sinewaves resonate in my right ear really weird, I can’t tell if my hearing is bad or if it’s the location of my speakers.
The only way for me to know the difference was to overdrive my speakers.
The louder sine would create slightly more distortion.
Otherwise I only had 1 of 3 correct (the last one is in question as I perhaps loaded the wrong audio file).
easy. Got all three.
Manage to find this on a whim, All test manage to make excellent was not rocket science really just saying, Using a Beyerdynamic T1 as my headphones, its true indeed that audiophiles ear are quite sensitive lol
this was more tricky for me…
[…] hard work listening to all this over-stimulation! This test has a series of sine waves – can you hear which is louder? I was very happy to be able to get Q1 and Q3 […]