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neighbour friendly sound levels ???

I can only turn my amp up to around about 9 o'clock on the dial before i have my neighbours bangin on the walls and screaming at my door . What are my legal rights as regards to decibels played , is there anyway of testing ????? I have always been under the impression that an amp doesn't really start singing until it has hit half 9 on the dial , am i losing out on what my system can do or should i perhaps get smaller speakers to combat the situation . I live in a maissonette so i have an empty room below me and wooden flooring , my room size is 5mx5m approx . Any help ???

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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Noise regulations and their enforcement varies between local authorities, but in general terms if you are annoying your neighbours then you may face a visit from the noise police.

How to test? Get a sound pressure meter and go into your neighbours' place and measure the sound levels, I guess, after checking with your local environmental health people what limits they enforce. But whether your neighbours will be up for this is a diffrerent matter.

If the sound is 'going through the walls' it's probably actually going through the floor joists, as mechanical transmission of bass is usually more efficient than airborne - you could try putting the speakers on solid paving slabs to damp out some of this by sheer mass, or a more hi-tech approach such as the isolation products from Auralex, sold in the UK by Audio Agency, but these aren't a cheap option.

Yes, smaller speakers might help a bit, but the 9.30 effect you mention is as much about the speakers shifting air as it is about the volume level setting - that's why some equipment has a loudness button to boost bass and treble at low levels.

However, most amps do start sounding better at about the 9-10 o'clock position, so you could try using devices such as the Rothwell Attenuators, which reduce the signal coming from your source component and thus let you run the amp at a higher volume setting for a given sound level.

Good luck - and try to keep friendly with the neighbours. 

Anonymous
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

I'm in the process of having my living room re-plastered and altough I don't have a noise/neighbour problem I though I'd try and add some soundproofing along the common wall. The plasterer added a 30mm airgap behind the plaster board and used Soundbloc boards (the blue ones) :

http://www.british-gypsum.bpb.co.uk/products/plasterboard___accessories/gyproc_acoustic/gyproc_soundbloc.aspx

Aparently these are only slightly more than normal boards, plus the main expense is manpower, fiting skimming etc.

I'll report back when the works are finished.

jules.

Anonymous
Anonymous's picture
Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

 You need to be careful here.  Whatever your local authority allows may still be annoying t your neighbours, and yuo have to live next to them. Whether you like them or not, life is more pleasant for all if you don't have fights with the neighbours!

Depending on the construction, it may be difficult to get any realistic level without upsetting the neighbours. In that case you may need to either move or use headphones.

Alternatively talk to them - if you and they work different hours, when they are at work may be your listening time.
 

Anonymous
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Sound proofing is the only way to go as has been said, noise transmission is a PITA to be honest, be it music, women walking around in high heel shoes, people scraping chairs and so on, and it is......A) hard to prevent and Dirol very exspensive to be it properly, as sound is like air, if there is a crack it will find itself traveling through.

If I was you, I would at least try to fix the offending wall by adding rockwall or the other product mentioned, then plaster board, then see how it goes, my room is treated but I still get some transmission, I need to do the ceiling, but that will be with diffusion and absorbtion.

Anonymous
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

well it's looking like i'm losing the battle , i have just received a letter from my landlord saying the the enviroment agency has been brought in :-S i have tried putting stone plinths under my speakers and although they seem to have improved the sound somewhat , I dont think it's helping much with my problem. As for Rothwell attenuators , the idea does appeal to me as my friend has a Roksan Caspian amp which has a mode button which attenuates the sound by 20db , the only thing that puts me off the rothwells is upon reading a few reviews they get somewhat mixed ratings , the most worrying being that the music loses all it's sparkle and can seem dull and not as clinical or detailed. I was wondering if there are any other attenuators out there that dont lose as much of the musicality . Has anyone heard the russ andrews attenuators or any other manufacturer for that matter . I am also thinking that smaller speakers wont really help me either , which regrettably is leading me towards headphones , which is a bloody shame Sad although i dont mind headphones , they are only for personal listening , which aren't feesable when friends are round Sad Roll on winning the Lotto and getting a detached house Sad

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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

I've got the detached house, now I need a lottery win to afford your system!! Seriously, I feel your pain. I've lived in a flat before and know what it's like. Six months in my new house, home cinema done and the hifi system is getting there. I demo'd MA RS6s and had them thumping. Very nice. Just got to decide on my amp and cd. Creek Evo amp at £350 seems like a deal worth doing and I'm really close to calling between Pioneer PD-D6-J and Marantz CD6002 as I want mp3 and wma playback too.

Anonymous
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Smile sounds like you got a lot of fun ahead of you Smile I have heard a lot of good reviews about the RS6s it must have been gr8 pleasure for you to hear a system at the levels they should be played at . It has taken me some 20yrs to get where I am hifi wise , and I have a long way to go yet Smile With lucky finds on ebay(DAB tuner £300 cd £800 and in 2nd hand shops (audiolab £200 5yrs ago)plus some lucky swapping (gale 4 speakers for kef q55s:-)) I have come to what i own for less than half price , so ya dont need the lottery win Wink I would certainly look into it as you can get some very nice deals , hence improving your setup double fold if not more for the price you would pay from shops. Rotel seem to be getting good write ups of late and i can vouch for their sound and performance as my previous system was the 965 cd player (early nineties up until about 3 mnths ago )and the rb970 pre/power combo and the sound was pretty awesome considering the price Smile I wish you well in your hunting and listening and hope you have many a fine hour in audio eutopia Smile

Anonymous
Anonymous's picture
Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Neighbour was banging on my wall at 3 am yesterday, could hardly hear my stereo above the noise he was making, I'm in the same boat having lived on a farm in the middle of no where i now live in a terrace house, takes some getting used to

Anonymous
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Your not kidding there I down/side stepped from a semi did not even think about neighbours,Until I set up my kit in the end I spend 50%of the times listening with headphones But I have good neighbours and its give and take.I had 6months of hell from the one side [building work] so I suppose I get away with it from that side,the other side said to me while I was renewing the fence,I hardly hear your music now we sleep in the front bedroom and shut the door! but please dont turn it up any louder.There going to have it one night! Good luck.Chris C.

Anonymous
Anonymous's picture
Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Smile same ere really , lived with parents on a farm but i have had semi's since until splitting up wiv gf hence now in a flat lol There should be rules and times where ya can play your music within reason as loud as you want upto a certain time or something , would make life a hell of a lot easier . At the moment my amp is barely turned on ( about half 7 quarter to 8 on the dial ) but i aint gunna let em grind me down Smile there must be ways and I am in the process of trying as many as i can , I have just acquired 2 slabs of stone 75mm thick by 300x300mm for under my speakers hopefully they will help a little Smile

Anonymous
Anonymous's picture
Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Got grannite plinths under my spendors all spiked I dont think it makes that much difference to be honest ,same here amp hardly on.anyway dont let um beat you enjoy the music thats what you got it for!

Anonymous
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

hmmm I was wondering whether i should spike my plinths or not ???? I dont intend to let em beat me just yet , still trying Smile thing is I dont know why they dont say something when I pass em in the street or owt , surely thats the easiest n most friendliest way of doing things without involving landlords and the enviroment :-S

Anonymous
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

has anyone heard of the goldenjacks attenuators ???? how do they compare to the Rothwell ones ??? is there more to the db side of things , does it mean the more db for the attenuator the quieter it will be in effect or is it more to do with maths and compatability????? The Rothwells are -10db but the goldenjacks have the option of -14db as well and also the russ andrews attenuators have -11db, -14db, -16db, -19db and -22db all quite baffling . I understand kinda what they do but there is more choice than i imagined :-S Also i have noticed that russ andrews do attenuators as an extra fitted to their interconnects would this be a worthwhile examination as i am looking at upgrading my interconnects as well so would i be killing 2 birds as such or should i stick to keeping the attenuators seperate incase i get that detached house lol Smile

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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

I moved to the middle of no where because my love for music Smile

Anton90125's picture
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Re: neighbour friendly sound levels ???

Thaiman - your back!

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