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Old 11-16-2014, 17:52   #1
Buckshot Barry
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How loud is 5.56 vs other calibers?

I had read that if I fired my M4 indoors I would be deaf. Please comment on this table

http://www.m1911.org/loudness.htm
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Old 11-16-2014, 18:51   #2
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Firing a single round from an M16 in an enclosed space will do permanent hearing damage. Trust me. I don't know how much difference the barrel length difference will make but it will probably not be any more fun.

Table seems reasonable but there are a lot of variables. For example you can put a muzzle break on an AR that does not reduce the amount of sound overall but directs more of it forward. Same with the .50 Barrett with the boat anchor muzzle break that directs it to the sides and back. Each would have an effect on the measurement of the sound depending on where the sensor is located in relation to the muzzle.
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Old 11-16-2014, 19:37   #3
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Before I read that chart, I would have ASSUMED that a 5.56 would be louder than a .357.
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Old 11-16-2014, 19:49   #4
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Firing most cartridge with or without ear protection will result in hearing damage.
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Old 11-16-2014, 19:50   #5
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Quote:
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Firing most cartridge with or without ear protection will result in hearing damage.
Troof.......
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Old 11-16-2014, 21:12   #6
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Any loud noise has the possibility of damaging your hearing.
Any continuous semi-loud noise has the possibility of damaging your hearing.

The fast the bullet, the louder the noise.
The larger bore, the louder the noise.

When shooting suppressed, you can heard it get louder as you get closer to the speed of sound. THEN when you hit supersonic, you get the boom.

Side notes, It was necessary to rounds indoors without hearing protection a while back. I also shot some pellet guns indoors, with and without a suppressor. I have also hunted a good bit. I still hear very well.
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Old 11-16-2014, 21:55   #7
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9mm pistol louder than .223 and .308 rifle? Yeah, sure.
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Old 11-16-2014, 23:27   #8
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9mm pistol louder than .223 and .308 rifle? Yeah, sure.
To a sound meter yes.

The reason you think the 223 and 308 are louder is because they loud longer.
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Old 11-17-2014, 01:54   #9
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To a sound meter yes.

The reason you think the 223 and 308 are louder is because they loud longer.
Which means just the raw db number by itself is meaningless.
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Old 11-17-2014, 10:50   #10
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Does it really matter which caliber is "louder"? They all will damage your hearing.
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Old 11-17-2014, 12:26   #11
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Which means just the raw db number by itself is meaningless.
I will not say meaningless, but it is only one factor.

What I don't know (and I don't think the doctors know), is would a nano second of really loud hurt the hearing any more of less than hours of listening to the wife/girlfriend done on and on about some meaning less thing that happen to a celebrity.

Wait a minute, one of those has the potential of making you deaf, the other just makes you wish you were deaf.

Seriously, loud noise for a nano second or medium noise for long hours....which is more damaging.
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Old 11-17-2014, 13:20   #12
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The problem I have with lists like this is context.

Object A is B decibels.
Object C is D decibels.

In what context? Is the meter 24" from the muzzle of the firearm? How far is it from the exhaust nozzle of the jet engine? What barrel length? It really doesn't mean much. How is the .380 a decibel louder than the .45 ACP on the list? They're close to the same chamber pressure and velocity, but the .45 has a much larger volume of powder.

Also, there are different ways sound can be produced and received. High pitched, low pitched, short, long, etc.

A pistol might have a very high decibel "crack" when it is fired, but a rifle will have a longer, lower, BOOM that is felt much more.

Also, I'm not an audiologist, but I would think that the shock wave that is produced by a .308 muzzle blast is quite a bit larger than the blast produced by a 9mm. Not sure if that would be considered independent of sound or not.
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Old 11-17-2014, 13:45   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RWBlue View Post
I will not say meaningless, but it is only one factor.

What I don't know (and I don't think the doctors know), is would a nano second of really loud hurt the hearing any more of less than hours of listening to the wife/girlfriend done on and on about some meaning less thing that happen to a celebrity.

Wait a minute, one of those has the potential of making you deaf, the other just makes you wish you were deaf.

Seriously, loud noise for a nano second or medium noise for long hours....which is more damaging.
Nope. There is a difference between hearing loss and brain damage...
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Old 11-17-2014, 14:24   #14
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Originally Posted by fnfalman View Post
Firing most cartridge with or without ear protection will result in hearing damage.
Looking at that chart and looking at the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of ear muffs (21NRR) and ear plugs (32NRR)... even with protection damage may occur.
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Old 11-17-2014, 14:49   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LurpyGeek View Post
The problem I have with lists like this is context.

Object A is B decibels.
Object C is D decibels.

In what context? Is the meter 24" from the muzzle of the firearm? How far is it from the exhaust nozzle of the jet engine? What barrel length? It really doesn't mean much. How is the .380 a decibel louder than the .45 ACP on the list? They're close to the same chamber pressure and velocity, but the .45 has a much larger volume of powder.

Also, there are different ways sound can be produced and received. High pitched, low pitched, short, long, etc.

A pistol might have a very high decibel "crack" when it is fired, but a rifle will have a longer, lower, BOOM that is felt much more.

Also, I'm not an audiologist, but I would think that the shock wave that is produced by a .308 muzzle blast is quite a bit larger than the blast produced by a 9mm. Not sure if that would be considered independent of sound or not.
True on all accounts. I have also seen another chart that disagrees with that chart.

Although they post real numbers, I think of it more like a guideline or general reference.
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Old 11-17-2014, 15:30   #16
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Quote:
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Looking at that chart and looking at the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of ear muffs (21NRR) and ear plugs (32NRR)... even with protection damage may occur.
That's why I wear double ear protections.
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Old 11-17-2014, 15:39   #17
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That's why I wear double ear protections.
Huh.......
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Old 11-17-2014, 15:40   #18
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Speak up,......I CAN'T HEAR YA!
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Old 11-17-2014, 16:24   #19
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I disagree with that chart.

If I fire a common, non-magnum pistol round outside with no hearing protection, it is uncomfortable, but not painful.

If I fire a .223 or .308 outside with no hearing protection, it is painful.

Decibels don't tell the whole story.

Most people don't notice the ringing in their ears because there is rarely a time of complete silence to notice it. But a lot of people have minor hearing damage and don't know it.

If I could do life over, I would double up on hearing protection any time I know I am going to experience anything over 80 decibels or so.

Last edited by WinterWizard; 11-17-2014 at 19:11..
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Old 11-17-2014, 16:35   #20
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Tinnitus sucks...........trust me.
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