Decibels

D e c i b e l s

Mostly

Spikes

Granville Street Halloween Midnight

99

VFD Ladder Truck

96-100

DJ Randy speaking into mike at Let’s Dance

95

Most Tango

78

Swing Aggregation at Studio Records

80-95

105

Granville Street Saturday Midnight

90

Single Engine Float Plane on Take-Off (i)

80-89

99

Guitarist on Art Gallery Steps – + Vocals

85

95

Swing Aggregation at Backstage

88

Flamenco at Kino Kafe

85-90

Intermission and Floor Show at Porto-Swing

88

Music at Let’s Dance

83-90

The Rossi Gang Jazz Band

86

Latino Lounge at Pepitas Weekdays

85

B.C. Swing Club at Confederation

82-88

Ambulance Steady Siren (ii)

80-89

Swing-Tango Evening with Elizabeth

80

88

Maggie Bretton’s Scottish Hall

82-85

Empty Concrete Truck on level street (iii)

80

Sunday Matinee Tango

80

Euro Band at the Alpen Club

75-85

MacCaulder and Nolan – Fairview

75-80

99

Burrard Bridge Traffic 2 p.m. weekday

78

Keg Restaurant Granville Island

65

Decibels are measured on a logarithmic scale. ,,,,

100 dB is 10 times as loud as 50.

90 dB isn’t marginally louder than 80, it is a lot louder.

We all have our preferences in dB levels at dances. Some people like the music to dominate, like an organ playing Phantom of the Opera. Some like to enjoy a conversation when sitting out without having to shout at each other. Some of us have hearing difficulty.  Others express indifference. So here is a list to help you find the bands which you are likely to enjoy.

Argentine Tango and Salsa are both in the ascendency in Vancouver. Tango is typically danced to a variety of dB levels, usually just below 80, while salsa dancers expect closer to 90, and more.

Of course much of the sound may come from people talking. The louder the music the louder they will talk. Conversely, peoples’ clothing absorbs sound. Dancers don’t talk while dancing, they listen to the music and dance. And so many restaurants today seem to be designed to maximize sound, all glass, aluminum, and hard ceilings.

.

i Various float planes top out at different levels. A newer turbo model is louder than a 1967 beaver.

ii In considering emergeny vehicles it needs to be noted that other traffic noise virtually ceases. Therefore the siren of the emergency vehicle can stand out against what is perhaps a 65 dB background.

iii No one vehicle is generating all the sound heard. A concrete truck for example adds to general traffic noise.

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