|Quoting Zeke (Reply 25):|
A380 56 dBSIL
A346 58 dBSIL
773ER 61 dBSIL
744 63 dBSIL
Yeah, but do you have the dBA numbers? Because if they aren't quoting them to you, maybe there's a reason?
And 63 dBSIL is not very high anyway. 56 is lower, and means you can probably almost whisper and be heard, but neither of them is so high that you must even talk loudly. It's the OTHER sounds that are louder.
dBSIL is fine if you want to have a conversation. But conversation is not the primary concern for people when flying on long flights. dBA factors in the higher frequency sounds that can be quite disturbing to sleep and cause headaches, the higher frequencies that I heard as the A380 tore overhead here at LAX
, and seemed to have a higher pitch than the 744 right before it. I am sure the A380 interior insulation will block that out way better than the old 744 stuff.
There's also the higher/whistling sounds coming from the AirCon system, again at frequencies above dBSIL measurements for the most part. The 737/757 for example inundates you with sounds in this range, which is why I will never fly those without ear protection for longer flights.
Another factor with dBSIL. If you get too low a dBSIL background level in an environment with reflective surfaces (like curved plastic walls and ceilings), you'll hear EVERYONE talking. This is one of the major problems with noise canceling headphones. They don't drop dB levels evenly, but on a diminishing scale as frequency increases, because they have a slow response. They can knock down lower frequency hums and rumbles, but they can't knock down high frequencies nor the "random" pattern of people's speech, so they seem to make it EASIER to hear people talking that you want to block out.
The best answer for noise on an aircraft is soft foam earplugs. They block out 25-33dB depending on type and how well they are inserted, and block out frequencies across the board. Combine them with the quiet interior of the A340 or A380 series, and you'll think you are in a quiet hotel room. And you can wear real over/around the ear headphones OVER them at a higher level and still hear your movie. I've yet to have anyone say I was disturbing them using this method, and it's really effective.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.