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Sound Meter - Measure your car noise (exhaust, etc)

Discussion in 'Engine, Drivetrain, and Exhaust Discussion' started by StungnTn, Dec 2, 2018.

  1. StungnTn

    StungnTn United States Active Member

    Knoxville, TN
    My wife complained that her Model 3 was louder or had more road noise than my Stinger. I didn't believe it so I downloaded the Sound Meter app for my phone and measured the sound in her car and my car at 55 mph over a period of time.

    With my car that is stock with winter tires averages 60dB while her Model 3 averaged about 61dB. Which is interesting as her car has virtually no engine noise, but a ton of wind/road noise.

    Anyways that brought up an interesting idea, everyone wants to hear what a certain exhaust or car configuration sounds like. Why not measure it with a sound meter to have an idea how loud different exhaust configurations are?

    So, lets measure our ambient noise at 55mph averaged over several minutes, 70mph and 80mph. Post up your noise levels, and your car's configuration. I know that this isn't a perfect experiment.
    • Like Like x 2
  2. Grewzuff

    Grewzuff United States Member

    Western North Carolina
    I think this is a great idea. Not sure if you would have variations from phone to phone but just include what phone was used.
  3. MisterMac

    MisterMac United States Stinger Enthusiast

    El Paso, TX
    I like this idea, yet there are two variables what will make this comparison less than ideal: Wind speed/direction and the road surface. Perhaps you should establish some guidelines, such as wind speed less than 10 mph. Road service texture, smooth asphalt or smooth concrete, etc...
  4. StungnTn

    StungnTn United States Active Member

    Knoxville, TN
    Okay, so this is completely open for input. Here is my first stab at the controls and information to record for this test:

    Road Conditions: Test under dry road conditions
    Wind: Test with minimal wind speed, less than 10mph (Use for windspeed: ASCE 7 Windspeed)
    Direction: If possible test going in both directions
    Level: Test on a level road / highway
    Duration: Test for 3 minutes, avoiding high traffic areas and stop lights to minimize background noise, and during the cold start test, for 15 seconds
    Speed: Perform the test at cold start, 55 mph, 70mph and 80mph

    Tools: Use Android Sound Meter App or Iphone equiv, Place phone in cup-holder, microphone facing up

    Information to record:

    Model Year:
    Coldstart db:
    55mph db:
    70mph db:
    80mph db:
    Downpipe: Y/N
    Downpipe Model/Brand:
    Resonator: Y/N
    Resonator Model/Brand:
    Exhaust: Y/N
    Exhaust Model/Brand:
    Muffler Delete: Y/N
    EVC: Y/N
    EVC Bypass: On/Off
    Intake: Y/N
    Intake: Brand:
    Chip: Y/N
    Chip Brand:
    Chip Mode:
    Tires (Winter/Summer/All-season):
    Tire Brand/Specs:
    Surface Condition: (Rough, Smooth, Concrete)
    Octane (91/93, etc):
    Approximate Mileage:
    Sound Meter Tool Used:

    The ultimate goal would be to provide a useful data-set that one could use to determine which combination of equipment yielded the optimal sound level, or didn't exceed a certain sound threshold.
  5. Expert4

    Expert4 United States Active Member

    Prior lake MN
    Your first concern should be the type of sound meter you are useing being a phone is not capable of measuring below 400hz and any real accuracy that is why you only expierenced a 1db difference between the cars when it typically takes a woman ( it’s a fact they hear better than men) at least 2-3db to perceive a difference. I would suggest a better meter and one that measures 1/3 octave bands as a RTA so u can compare frequency and not just decibels. I suspect you will find the Tesla has a big peak between 150 hz to 300hz because of the design of their floor structure and lack of damping materials from the factory. The cause is the structural floor vibration causing the metal floor to resonate creating a louder cabin noise than the stinger which has a better floor design, damping materials and overall a more solid interior.
    • Informative Informative x 1
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