Skip to comments.Connecticut May Be First to Lower Movie Volumes
Posted on 03/10/2014 8:40:29 PM PDT by Tolerance Sucks Rocks
(Newser) Connecticut could become the first state to curb loud movies. The legislature's Public Safety and Security Committee is considering the bill, which would prevent theaters from showing a film or preview that exceeded 85 decibels. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health recommends noise should be kept below 85 decibels for workers for eight hours to minimize hearing loss. For comparison, the American Tinnitus Association says 85 decibels is the sound of average traffic, 80 decibels is the sound of an alarm clock 2 feet away, and 100 decibels is the sound of a blow dryer.
"Hopefully this will be a wakeup call to the theater owners and the MPAA to get their act together and do something that's good for the public and still will satisfy their needs," said William Young, a Stamford resident with a doctorate in chemistry who has pushed the measure. An exec with the Motion Picture Association of America told the committee that the legislation is unnecessary and undermines voluntary standards adopted by companies and theaters. "Certainly no one is going to do anything that would have a hint of being harmful," he said. "We've gone to great lengths to make sure that average is in an acceptable range that is not harmful."
Nanny State PING!
“We’ve gone to great lengths to make sure that average is in an acceptable range that is not harmful.”
The last time I went to a movie theater the sound was too loud for comfort.
If they can do this to movie theaters, they can definitely do this to music concerts (especially those that are not controlled by LiveNation).
Same here. I haven’t been to one in years but the last one my Daughter took me to see “True Lies”. The sound actually hurt my ears.
The last time I went to a movie theater, the band played a live score to the action on the screen.
"Who wants to hear actors talk?!"
Maybe they’ve turned the volume up so that people can no longer use cellphones in the theater.
WHEN WILL THE PUBLIC SAFETY AND SECURITY COMMITTEE ADDRESS THE PRESSING ISSUE OF PEOPLE WHO YELL IN CAPS?
You would think the theaters would at least take that fact into consideration when they have a movie meant for young kids.
Hell, my hearing probably isn't what it used to be, and some of that sound, especially in the previews they show, is too loud for me as well.
IS THAT 85 OR 100 DECIBEL FONT YOU ARE USING THERE?
What a great state job! Spend your shift watching movies with a audiometer in your lap. I wonder how many union jobs this regulation will create?
Thanks for the ping!
Yes, they should let free enterprise determine sound levels. I NEVER go to movies because the sound is insanely and unsafely loud. Theaters should decide whose business they want. Most of them sure don't want mine.
First guns then movies and soon Connecticut passes Sheryl’s law. One sheet of TP per defecation. Psychopaths all.
I’d rather be in the movie theater than in the house watching tv with my parents who don’t realize they are going deaf.
I used to love going to movies. Then I developed hyperacusis and have to wear special earplugs that leave bruises in my ears. Theaters are too loud even with those in.
That said, the free market should decide. Meanwhile, I’ll enjoy DVD’s at home.
To get a THX certification home theater sound system have to be able to produce volumes above 105db.
My father was a physicist, specializing in acoustics. One thing I learned from him was that the use of “decibel” in the popular press is absolutely meaningless. He would say that a “decibel” is a “logarithm,” not a “unit of loudness.”
I have no idea what that means, but I believe it.
I have always been the ONE guy in the theater who would go find the manager if the picture was out of focus. (WFB wrote years ago about sitting in a theater with hundreds of people—not one of whom got out of his seat to complain about a seriously out-of-focus picture.)
I guess it’s the same when the sound is too loud or too soft.
When I was a kid, if the picture was out of focus, every kid in the theater would yell “FOCUS!”
That was hard for the projectionist to ignore.
What a crappy job that must be.
I’m with you, I just watch Netflix or whatever at home heh.
I can’t stand the crowds either, let alone the noise.
I don’t see too many movies in theatres these days but did see Peabody & Sherman yesterday (may have been only person in 5 pm showing!)
20 minutes worth of trailers with more than a few little videos urging people to shut off their cell phones. Ads (Coke, Build a Bear Workshop)—gee I guess the movie would have cost $20 if it weren’t for those (and it was an entertaining movie).
Trailers LOUD (film not so bad), for films that had me shaking my head “no, don’t want to see”. And yes, there have been films (nice little comedy-dramas like Trouble With the Curve with Eastwood) that have a quiet scene, but as you’re watching you hear a loud BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! from the theatre next door.
Maybe less people go to movies because the quality is poor, OR you can get them on DVD or on-demand quickly. (Next movie on my list: Atlas Shrugged Pt 3...Sept. I think)
Your father is technically correct. Without defining a standard of measurement, the term decibel is meaningless. It's like saying "the noise is ten times louder" without saying what it is louder than.
However, there is a standard air pressure vibration from which most acoustic measurements are related. It is difficult to find this number, though not impossible. Most all acoustic measurements are based on this standard. An instrument grade "sound level meter" is calibrated from this basis, but simply reports the results in decibels.
Amen...... loudness is the hall mark of movies I have attended recently (3) : )
How about just the soundtrack? Movies now have a constant drone of background music you cannot hear the dialogue.
Apparently; Red Englanders love control freaks.
IIRM 91 decibels is twice as loud as 85 decibels.
I wouldn’t have a problem with occasional peaks over 85 dbA, especially at lower frequencies. One really shouldn’t feel they need to wear earplugs to protect their hearing in a movie theatre (as I’ve seen a friend of mine do, and I’ve considered) or a restaurant. Dance clubs and rock concerts...well, you pretty much expect it.
I think you need to find some different earplugs if they’re leaving bruises in your ears - that shouldn’t happen. May I suggest: very soft foam disposable earplugs, or soft silicone flanged earplugs. I wear the former for motorcycle riding, and I have a set of musician’s earplugs of the latter type, with 3 different filters that can be used to customize the level of sound attenuation. Not as comfortable for me as the soft foam plugs, but they don’t distort the sound as much.
What brand are the musician’s earplugs you have? I have a pair of soft plastic flanged ones, but they aren’t adjustable, and I must have a very tiny ear canal because they still hurt. The squishy foam ones are great when I don’t have to follow a conversation, but they distort sound too much for movies. Or meetings.