CSA Z107.56 and Safe Use of Music Players
AbstractThere has been much concern about young (and older) people listening to personal music players as part of their daily life and how to protect them from hearing loss. CSA Z107.56 includes a section on estimating noise exposure under headsets which puts this issue in perspective. Based on research indicating that most people set the volume of music and speech at about 15 dB above the existing ambient the standard provides an estimate of their noise exposure. Asssuming, as the standard does, that typical earbuds provide little reduction to the ambient noise, most people will not be exposed above 85 dBA provided the noise background is below 70 dBA. In practice, this means that overexposure shoudl be rare except on very busy streets or in louder vehicles, such as sports cars, high speed transit and aircraft. This narrows the areas of concern considerably and should help in targeting useful ways to control overexposure.
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