AfterDawn: Tech news

EU tells MP3 player owners to turn down the volume

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 13 Oct 2008 21:28 User comments (22)

EU tells MP3 player owners to turn down the volume The European Union has told MP3 player owners that they are risking permanent hearing loss if they continue to listen to their favorite music at maximum levels.
Scientists from the EU reported that listening to MP3 players at volumes over 89 decibels, for more than an hour daily, for at least five years will leave almost 10 million Europeans with hearing loss.

EU spokeswoman Helen Kearns added "it's damage that may come back and haunt you later in life."

Kearns added regulators would be looking into lowering the limit of 100 decibels for MP3 players sold in the EU. In the past Apple was forced to pull its iPod line from shelves and upgrade the firmware to limit sound output to 100 decibels.

More news

Previous Next

Related news

 

22 user comments

113.10.2008 21:37

Lol, thats just nonsense. (turns up hearing aid)

213.10.2008 23:37

i already have no hearing in my left ear basically... just get surgery!! its that easy

314.10.2008 0:39

just get good headphones so u won't have to raise the bar, aside from that this is serious , just picture a day being depth

414.10.2008 0:49

nah, cant be worse than a navel crewman, those cannons will make those cars that rattle look like a sound proof environment.

514.10.2008 2:04

I love music, so protecting my hearing is imperative. What the EU states makes sense (at least to me)

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Oct 2008 @ 2:33

"The flimsier the product,the higher the price"
Ferengi 82nd rule of aqusition


614.10.2008 2:23

What? I can't hear you!

714.10.2008 4:55

Originally posted by iluvendo:
I love music, so protecting my hearing is imperative. What the EU states makes sense (at least to me)
I agree. Sometime while taking the train to work, I see some people with a MP3-player and everyone around them can clearly make out the lyrics of the song they are listening to. I can only imagine the kind of permanent damage they are doing to their ears.

814.10.2008 9:51

Typical of GOVERNMENT mandating what you can do in you own life.

914.10.2008 11:48

Originally posted by P51ride:
Typical of GOVERNMENT mandating what you can do in you own life.
Maybe so, but they're right.

1014.10.2008 11:53

My Mother told me this when I got my first walkman at age 10. 21 years later and Mom still knows best.

Next they will limit the amount of heat a stove can produce. Have manufacturers regulate the flame to half the size in case people can't resist the urge hurt themselves.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Oct 2008 @ 11:56

1114.10.2008 12:06

this is a good regulation.

but many ignorant people will just get angry with this regulation. My friend always max the volume when hearing music on earphone. i can clearly listen the lyrics. and he got angry when i tell him to lower the volume :(

1214.10.2008 12:16

Originally posted by jutsu:
this is a good regulation.

but many ignorant people will just get angry with this regulation. My friend always max the volume when hearing music on earphone. i can clearly listen the lyrics. and he got angry when i tell him to lower the volume :(
Not much you can do really. Encourage him to learn sign language, as it will come in handy for him.

1314.10.2008 12:30

I don't mind if they lose their hearing but when they sit next to me on the bus they have a serious risk of contracting a bloody nose

1414.10.2008 15:43

Quote:
Originally posted by P51ride:
Typical of GOVERNMENT mandating what you can do in you own life.
Maybe so, but they're right.
Not to mention, it's only a matter of time until this problem arises and someone decides to raise a lawsuit despite warnings. Companies implementing this would be covering their own a$$es in advance.

1514.10.2008 16:31
Kerpalguy
Inactive

I never listened to my parents either. Pounding Megadeth and Metallica till my ears hurt. Yeah, really cool. Now I have 2 hearing aids = not cool :-(

1614.10.2008 16:52

how can i tell how many decibels im listening to?

1714.10.2008 20:05

Originally posted by sandeep14:
how can i tell how many decibels im listening to?

That's a good question, sandeep. Wikipedia has a listing of approximate sound pressure levels of various sounds. Your best bet would be to listen to some of these sounds and then compare them to what you hear in your earphones (preferably a recording of the SAME sound, if possible). Then you can determine an approximate safe volume level for your music device.


Unfortunately, taking an accurate sound pressure reading from your earphones may prove to be a daunting task. One can procure a simple spl (sound pressure level) meter for about 50 bucks, but I doubt that would be particularly accurate in measuring the output of earphones.

The shape of your ear canal and the depth to which the earbud is inserted will both have dramatic effects on the sound pressure level as the waves hit your eardrum.

You can demonstrate this effect by pressing into your earbuds with your fingers as you listen to your music player. You will notice that the sound becomes louder and the low frequencies especially become much more pronounced.

I think that a comparison test and a bit of consciousness and good judgment will keep your ears safe, though. Happy listening.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 14 Oct 2008 @ 20:10

1814.10.2008 20:22
varnull
Inactive

I worked in the music industry for 10 years.. 7 nights a week full on rock concert volume. Nothing wrong with my hearing, but like both my parents the eyesight is starting to go.

As with most body function, damage or loss in later life is as much set by genetic factors as by environmental ones. You may aggravate a genetic trait by constantly being in high noise levels bringing on the damage earlier, but usually it will happen regardless.

Whatever happened to common sense? If you have tinnitus for a day or so after loud noise then obviously you should avoid further exposure to those noise levels, or use protection until things return to normal.
Unfortunately.. ears have had millions of years or relative quiet to evolve.. They have a pretty good "ow.. that hurts" response to overload, but like with anything else constantly abusing them with high sound levels.. like straining to see in poor light or wearing stupidly high heels, will have consequences.

We need information not regulation.. Too much "dictating" about petty gong on these days for my liking.. while the really important things like discrimination and environmental pollution are being pushed aside.

1914.10.2008 22:30

Oh really?! Tell that to the millions of New Yorkers that have to sit through subway noise for more than an hour a day.... I'm sure that's over 89 decibels, but honestly I wouldn't know. No real frame of reference to go by you know?

2014.10.2008 22:47

That is so autistic no goverment body has the right to regulate what kind of output must be emitted from a personal music player that you own WTF. If i said for example i wanna listen to the song on THAT volume than there is no reason for me to be denied to do so.

2115.10.2008 11:04

hearing loud sound in environment is different with hearing loud sound from earphone.

with earphone (or the in-ear earphone), the sound it produce go directly to ear.

in environmental sound, our ear will filter the sound using the ear.
i mean the big thing sticking out from our head. (sorry, cant find the engilsh word).

try listen max volume on earphone, it will make your ear hurt.
then try a lot louder volume using loudspeaker, its a lot louder but your ear wont hurt.

or try turn on your motorcycle, set to 0 gear. then throttle 100%.
the sound is very loud, but your ear wont hurt.

2217.10.2008 6:41

Originally posted by jutsu:
this is a good regulation.

but many ignorant people will just get angry with this regulation. My friend always max the volume when hearing music on earphone. i can clearly listen the lyrics. and he got angry when i tell him to lower the volume :(
This really isn't "good regulation". The government has no right to tell people at what volume to listen to music. I personally think that people who listen to music at max volume are stupid, but hey, thats their choice. They have every right to ruin their future with hearing loss. The EU has absolutely no right to tell people to turn down their music to prevent hearing loss.

Comments have been disabled for this article.

News archive