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Old Jul 26, 2006, 07:16 AM   #1
PennyandMe
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Default Decibel Level at Beatles concerts?

I'm really curious HOW loud concerts were with the Beatles, especially in decibels. To tell you the truth, they may not have been able to record the sound level back then. Does anyone know or has anyone read anything close to this?
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 12:17 PM   #2
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I am sure the crowd decibels were LOUD at Beatles shows!
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 01:37 PM   #3
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I remember reading somewhere (?) about decibel meters actually breaking at some of the American venues.
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 03:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PennyandMe
I'm really curious HOW loud concerts were with the Beatles, especially in decibels. To tell you the truth, they may not have been able to record the sound level back then. Does anyone know or has anyone read anything close to this?
I just checked and apparently 120db is an "average" rock concert and, incidently, the pain threshold for the human ear.

I attended 3 Beatles concerts and my ears rang for at least an hour. In 1965 I was 3 rows from the stage, therefore pretty much in the direct path of not only the screams but the music...didn't hear a note from the stage. However, in 1966 seated slightly to George's left and several rows away, I could hear the songs. Fortunately, since Beatles concerts averaged only 28 minutes, I haven't sustained ear damage.

By the way, decimal measurements were used in the early days of radio, and my 1960s Philips tape recorder had one, so yes, we ancients could measure the sound (green was good, but if the needle moved into the red, bad)!!

C'mon to the Toronto Beatles Celebration Sept 16-17!!!
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 03:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
I just checked and apparently 120db is an "average" rock concert and, incidently, the pain threshold for the human ear.
That sounds about right. Even on TV the screams were so loud.
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 05:58 PM   #6
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Here's some comparisons I found:

60 dB - normal conversation
88 dB - motorcycle (10 m away)
100 dB - diesel truck (10 m away)
117 dB - chainsaw (1 m away)
130 dB - jet plane (30 m away)

If along was 3 rows back and didn't hear a note of the music, my guess would be at least equivalent to the jet plane.
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 06:04 PM   #7
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Oh, and I forgot to add:

120 dB - my 4-year-old the second a phone goes to my ear
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 05:37 AM   #8
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Beatles concert = Loud

(thats my answer)
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 06:28 AM   #9
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The Beatles = Not that loud.
screaming girls = Deafening, or "F****n' 'ell my ears are BLEEDING!!!!"
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 10:03 AM   #10
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Default

Thanks for sharing all that information. That was very helpful.
I just found a piece of an article that might be interesting:

Quote:
Anita Lawrence recalled: “Normally, noise reaching the ground from a Boeing jet plane is up between ninety and 100 decibels. But when The Beatles appeared, the pure screams alone showed 112 decibels on the recording apparatus. For the next half hour the needle never fell below 100 and many times leapt higher!”
http://www.beatles-discography.com/i....com/1964.html

Last edited by PennyandMe : Jul 27, 2006 at 10:13 AM.
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 06:38 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by digdad
Oh, and I forgot to add:

120 dB - my 4-year-old the second a phone goes to my ear

HAHAHA!
Been there, done that. Still doing that, actually.
No wonder it sounds like Hartsfield - Jackson in my house!

(Editor's note: Hartsfield - Jackson is the local Atlanta airport)
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Old Jul 27, 2006, 08:27 PM   #12
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the concerts were only around 20 minutes which kinda sucked, and if you had a bad seat you basically wasted your money. but i got a few good bootlegs of them live...
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Old Jul 28, 2006, 04:32 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Serena
the concerts were only around 20 minutes which kinda sucked, and if you had a bad seat you basically wasted your money. but i got a few good bootlegs of them live...
...20 minutes when the band was wired...the Toronto 1966 concert was 29:04
(I timed it). Serena is right...I was in the sky for the 1966 evening concert...
4 ants in suits, but...the atmosphere was fabulous. Didn't go to hear 'em anyway!

But yes, living in New York's midtown with fire trucks and ambulances, the
20+ minute wave of screams was overwhelming.
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