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Best decibel meter 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]

Last Updated September 1, 2023

Arnold SimmonsI’m Willow Arnold Simmons. My friends call me “stone” and it just kind of stuck. After spending over 37 hours comparing at least 19 decibel meter, I am recommending the best decibel meter of 2018

I will go through the main features and what you should consider when deciding which one to pick over the other. In this section we provide our readers with a comparison table of our top picks. Scroll past the table for a closer look at each of the 3 best decibel meter in our review section.

Best decibel meter of 2018

However, after giving you the TOP list, I will also give you some of the benefits you stand to gains for using it. Now, let’s get to the gist of the matter: which are the best decibel meter for the money?

Below you can find 3 reviews of the best decibel meter to buy in 2018, which I have picked after the deep market research. If you’re reading this, it is very likely that you’re scouting for the best decibel meter.

Test Results and Ratings

Rank №1 №2 №3
Total 4.8 4.5 4.3
5 points
4 points
4 points
4 points
5 points
4 points
5 points
4 points
4 points
5 points
5 points
5 points
Awards 1
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How to save up to 86%? Here is little trick.

You must visit the page of sales. Here is the link. If you don’t care about which brand is better, then you can choose the decibel meter by the price and buy from the one who will offer the greatest discount.



№1 – Meterk Digital Sound Level Meter

Meterk Digital Sound Level Meter

Large LCD backlight display for clear reading, convenient to use at night.
Wide measuring range: 30-130dBA, Fast Responding.
Sound level measurement with stable and reliable performance.
Nothing, except that I wasted too much time making my choice.

Why did this decibel meter win the first place?

The material is stylish, but it smells for the first couple of days. I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch! I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing!
















№2 – Sound Meter

Sound Meter

PERFECT EXTERIOR DESIGN – COLEMETER Sound Level Meter Comes with Compact and Lightweight Design , Professional Designed to fit Comfortable in your Palm
SIMPLE OPERATION & WIDE APPLICATION – Battery Plug and Play ,There is NO NEED TO CALIBRE AGAIN BEFORE USE , Great for Sound Quality Control in Factory , Office , Home , Car , School and other Construction Site
Limited official sellers leave room for fakes.
Heavy and big.

Why did this decibel meter come in second place?

Managers explained me all the details about the product range, price, and delivery. I like this product. For such a low price, I didn’t even hope it to be any better. It’s decently made. The material is pretty strong and easy to wash if needed. The design quality is top notch and the color is nice.
















№3 – BAFX Products – Decibel Meter / Sound Level Reader – W/ Battery!

BAFX Products - Decibel Meter / Sound Level Reader - W/ Battery!

Measurement Range: 30dBA ~ 130dBA
Accuracy Within +/-1.5dB; Sample rate of 2x/second
Measures in dBA Frequency – Accounts for the relative loudness perceived by the human ear
Soft parts prone to damage.
Not very flexible.

Why did this decibel meter take third place?

It is inconvenient to use due to the size. I am going to get something different next time. A very convenient model. It is affordable and made of high-quality materials. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new.
















decibel meter Buyer’s Guide

If you keep the before points in mind, you can easily go out to the market and buy decibel meter, right? No!

Noise Output

For the third and fourth test we placed the sound meter feet away from the dehumidifier to record noise output levels. For the third test the dehumidifier was set to the high fan speed setting and for the fourth test the unit was again set to the low fan speed setting at the same distance.

Before we show you the results of our testing we need to discuss the sizable advantage certain units had in each noise output test we performed. All dehumidifiers come equipped with an intake fan on the front of the unit and an exhaust fan on the top or side of the unit. These fans, in addition to any compressor noise, are the primary culprits in producing noise as a dehumidifier operates. While all dehumidifiers have their intake fan on the front of the dehumidifier, the location of the exhaust fan varies.

Keep this information in mind as you study the comparison charts below.

Important Notes

Sound is basically an oscillation in the air. Sound travels in the form of pressure waves, increasing and decreasing as it moves through the air. The strength of the pressure waves determines the volume of the sound. Sound is measured in terms of Decibels (dB). Decibels do not increase in volume linearly, rather logarithmically. This means if a sound is decibels more compared to another, it means it has times more pressure. High volume sounds have so much energy wave pressure that it can damage the ear drums.

How Sound Pressure Is Determined

Sound Level Meters have microphones within them, much like recorders. They also include screens or grill as means of protecting a membrane or a movable cartridge inside. As sound pressure waves collide with the membrane inside the sound level meter, it causes the membrane to move back and forth. The membrane then creates an electric current. The more the membrane moves, the more electric current it creates. The sound level meter then measures the strength of the electric current being produced by the membrane and converts it to a number display.

Since most sound level meters are used to determine the sound safely levels of a given area, determining safely levels may be a bit tricky since few sound spikes may not cause permanent hearing damage if only exposed to a fraction of a second or a few seconds. It is the constant exposure to loud sounds that can cause long-term hearing damage.

The values are

Upper exposure action values (daily or weekly average noise exposure above which the employer is required to take reasonably practicable measures to reduce noise exposure, such as engineering controls or other technical measures. The use of hearing protection is also mandatory if the noise cannot be controlled by these measures, or while these measures are being planned or carried out.) peak sound pressure of 13dB. peak sound pressure of 140 dB.

L  = Low

The terms refer to the noise reduction of the chosen hearing protector at High, Medium and Low frequencies.

What are dBs (decibels)? dB (decibel) is used to measure the sound intensity. Because the human ear can register sounds across a huge range of intensities a linear scale is not suitable for measurement.

Selecting ear defenders for your workforce

Every person will have different requirements when it comes to ear defenders. It is essential to get the right fit, the right protection, and ensure the user understands how to use and maintain their ear defenders.

Consider the frequency, pitch and intensity of the noise hazard. In industries such as mining workers can be exposed to very low frequencies.

Selecting ear defenders for your industry

Music, construction and airport workers are exposed to different noise and therefore have very different requirements. There are many ear defenders and headphones specially designed for musicians so that the full range of frequencies can be heard and there are specialist hearing protectors for use during firearms practice. Some ear defenders will only be suitable for indoor or outdoor use – so check before you buy.

Selecting ear defenders based on your risk assessment

Your risk assessment should look at the task, the user, the environment, the exposure action values and limit values. The assessment should also identify what you need to do to comply with the law and identify any employees who need to be provided with health surveillance.

As with any personal protective equipment that you procure, ear defenders should meet the requirements of international standards and relevant legislation. CE markings, EN, ISO and BS codes show which equipment meets standards for safety, design and performance. See the legislation and standards section of this guide to understand more about the exact standards and markings you should be looking for.

Also consider decibels, Single Noise Ratings and frequencies as detailed above.

Remember some headphones will not meet the criteria of ear protection.

Touch controls

You’d want to pick these Sony headphones over the Bose because not only do they provide the same level of awesome noise-cancellation, but they have three neat tricks that Bose just doesn’t have on its headphones: One is an ambient noise mode that only lets in mid-to-high frequency tones (announcements over a loudspeaker, for instance) and another being Quick Attention mode that allows you to let in all outside noise without taking off the headphones. (The latter is perfect when giving a drink order on a plane or speaking to a coworker for a brief moment before diving back into your work.) The last trick Sony has up its sleeve is the LDAC codec. Alongside the widely adopted aptX HD standard, LDAC enables Hi-Res Audio playback using the 1000XM2.

Great-sounding, feature-packed and just as affordable as the competition? The Sony WH-1000XMare our all-around pick for best noise-cancelling cans.

Still wired

A few years ago, the Bose QuietComfort 2are the best noise-cancelling headphones we’ve ever used. The lows, mids and highs came through clear as day, never stepping over each other. Music of all sorts sounded predictably incredible. With the noise-cancellation turned on, we never felt further immersed and concentrated than when we let the QC2engulf our ears.

But that was a few years ago and time has moved on since. Bose has released not just one sequel to these headphones, but two: the QC3and QC3II with Google Assistant built in, both of which we’d recommend above the QC25.

Sound lacks definition

The Samsung Level On Pro Wireless are one of the few headphones we’ve tested that feel like they’re meant as a package deal for another device. Yes they’ll work with every Bluetooth and 3.5mm jack-equipped handset on the market, but you’re better off sticking to a Samsung device in order to squeeze every ounce of aural goodness from the Ultra High Quality (UHQ) audio codec.

It’s one of the comfiest pair of cans on the market, and they’re also much cheaper than a lot of the competition. If it had a better sound quality for the vast majority of cell phone users it would be an easy recommendation but, as it stands, really makes the most sense at checkout when purchased alongside Samsung’s Next Big Thing.

Looking for some headphones you can take in the pool or on a run? Check out our guide to the best swimming headphones and best running headphones.

We’re constantly reviewing new noise-cancelling headphones, but let us know on Twitter if there is a set that you’d like us to take a look at.

Use a single source for your low frequencies.  Unless you have a massive room to cover and can use delays to bring your subs into perfect alignment, try taking your two subs, and putting them in a single location.  I guarantee it will sound better than a sub on either side of the stage.

Setting the Volume

The simplest way to set the volume on headphones at a safe level is to slowly turn them down until it’s obviously too quiet, then turn it back up a notch or two. Try to resist slowly creeping up the volume over time. Here’s an encouraging note: At volume levels above 90dBspl, the small bones of your middle ear begin to automatically tense to limit damage to the inner ear (called the stapedius reflex). This reflex adds both noise and distortion to the music heard. Yes, your music will actually have better sound quality if the volume remains at a moderate level.

Signal to Noise

Open headphones don’t offer any isolation. So people tend to listen at louder levels to overcome interference from background noise. Sealed headphones, and particularly noise-cancelling models, should require lower levels to get the same music signal to environmental noise ratio. That doesn’t necessarily make them safer in all cases, but it might help for some users.

In-ear monitors are noteworthy in that they require an extra degree of maintenance not needed by larger headphones. Since their tips insert into the ear canal itself, they require cleaning on a regular basis. Use of dirty tips could result in irritation or even infection in some cases. In-ear monitors tend to isolate fairly well but are also very sensitive and thus easier to accidentally play at extreme levels. A good practice is to completely lower volume on the playback device before inserting the monitors, then slowly raise the volume to comfortable levels.

Recommended Noise Exposure Limits

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) establishes guidelines for how long we can tolerate noise, and at what levels, before putting ourselves at risk. Higher volumes equal shorter allowable exposure time, but it can also be dangerous to play moderate levels for lengthy periods.

A white noise app for Android

We don’t like Noisli as much as myNoise, but it offers four layerable white noise frequencies and is the best of the Android apps we tried.

If you need a white noise machine only occasionally, such as when you travel, you may be satisfied with a smartphone app. For iPhone, we love the free myNoise app, which offers a customizable medley of white noise tones. While the other iPhone apps we tested offer limited sound options, myNoise’s clever interface lets you adjust specific frequencies to create your own blend of white noise. For Android, we like Noisli. It isn’t quite as good as myNoise (which is available only in beta for Android), but it does allows you to layer white noise frequencies, and it’s easier to use than other Android apps we tried. Both apps sound similar to the LectroFan, just with fewer frequency options. The sound quality for both will depend on your phone’s speakers.

Who should get this

If your bedroom isn’t as quiet as it could be, and you think the noise is affecting your sleep, you may want to try a white noise machine. Medical studies have shown that white noise machines can help people stay asleep in noisy environments such as an ICU, and some sleep researchers suggest them to patients who find ambient noise at night bothersome.

If you already use a sleep machine with prerecorded sounds such as waves or rain, consider one of our picks, which produce random, constant white noise. Such invariant white noise is better at blocking sounds and is less likely to itself disturb your sleep.

Pull Quote

Random, constant white noise is less likely to disturb your sleep than sounds such as waves or rain.

If your sleep quality has changed suddenly and you’re not sure why, don’t immediately run out to buy a white noise machine. “Sleep is likely a very sensitive barometer of your health status,” U Penn’s Michael Perlis told me. Unless you know for certain that environmental noise is the culprit (a new neighbor started blasting music at a.m., your partner started snoring, or the like), it’s best to talk with your doctor first.

How we picked and tested

We tested six white noise machines (from left to right): the Marpac Dohm DS, Homedics Deep Sleep II, ASTI LectroFan, Sleep Easy Sound Conditioner, Marpac Hushh, and Marpac Rohm.

The best type of white noise machines for sleep create “meaningless, nonrepetitive sounds, complex frequencies, and invariant volume,” said Perlis. This type of noise is the most likely to block disturbing noises while not itself creating meaningful sounds that could wake you.

White noise machines fight noise with noise, sound engineer Stéphane Pigeon explained to me in an email. They produce low-volume, constant, random, meaningless sound across all audible frequencies, from very low (20 Hz) to very high (20,000 Hz). The white noise basically creates a wall of sound defense, protecting you from intruding noises that could engage your brain during sleep.

Many sound machines marketed for sleep offer recordings of birdsong, rainfall, crashing waves, or other natural sounds, but Perlis said this type of sound could actually disturb your sleep. Even sudden noise that doesn’t jolt you awake can still cause “microarousals” in your brain. “This can make your sleep less nutritious and more shallow, even if you don’t perceive it,” Perlis told me. You want noise that is as meaningless—and, frankly, boring—as possible. For that reason, we stuck to machines whose primary sound offering was random white noise.

Our pick

The LectroFan has white noise settings. In this video, the lowest frequency (“dark noise”) is softer and rumbly, while the highest frequency (“white noise”) is about as loud as a garbage disposal.

We think the LectroFan by ASTI is the white noise machine you’ll want on your nightstand. Our testing showed that the LectroFan’s random, nonrepeating white noise settings allowed it to mask intruding noises as well as or better than the other machines in the group. It’s the second-smallest machine we tested, too, so you can pack it for travel in addition to using it at home. The LectroFan is also one of the easiest models to use, with a simple three-button interface to toggle among random, nonrepeating white noise offerings and 30 volume settings in one of the widest volume ranges we found.

To be honest, all the machines we tried sounded more or less alike (except the Dohm DS, which had a more complex, layered sound). The LectroFan didn’t sound better than the other machines, but it was just as capable or slightly better at masking sound during our noise tests. It generates white noise electronically using algorithms, so the sounds it produces are truly random and won’t repeat, something that Michael Perlis, director of the behavioral sleep medicine program at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, told me is a good feature of a white noise machine for sleep. The LectroFan’s white noise settings, ranging from “dark noise” (low frequency) to “white noise” (high frequency), sounded like variations of low rumbles, rushing wind, or static—neither pleasant nor unpleasant, and definitely random and meaningless.

This video demonstrates how the LectroFan has a much higher white noise frequency than the Dohm DS, our runner-up. It’s also about half the size.

According to our sound-level tests, the LectroFan’s 30 volume settings ranged from a whisper-quiet 3dBa to a thoroughly loud 80 dBa (about as loud as a garbage disposal). All the machines we tested measured under 8dBa at their max setting (when we measured sound from 1inches away). A machine that allows for fine volume control, like the LectroFan, can be at its lowest possible setting yet still block noise. By comparison, some of the other machines we tried had a narrower volume range that we found more difficult to adjust. To be clear, we didn’t notice a huge variation in the sound-blocking performance among the machines, and they were typically within a few decibels of one another for the minimum volume required to mask the offending noise.

The LectroFan takes little space on a nightstand. It’s even small enough for you to pack it away for travel.

Flaws but not dealbreakers

Since the LectroFan is so small, we wish it had a built-in battery, which would be helpful for travel or if you don’t have an outlet nearby.

The Marpac Dohm DS sounds more like what you’d hear when cupping your hand or holding a seashell over your ear. It didn’t mask shrill sounds as well as the LectroFan.

The Marpac Dohm, which the company touts as the original white noise machine, has had a devoted following for more than 50 years. Relying on a fan to make noise, the Dohm DS (the two-speed version) produces a slightly more pleasant sound than the LectroFan, something akin to what you hear when you hold a shell over your ear, or to the sound of wind rushing through a field. In contrast, the LectroFan and other electronic white noise machines produce sound that is more like a soft static or “shhh.” We found that the Dohm DS performed slightly poorer in our sound-masking tests than the white noise machines that generated noise electronically. We also noticed a slight whining undertone when running the Dohm DS on its high setting.

We do understand why the Dohm DS has a loyal following: There’s something innately appealing about its low-tech, no-frills, analog build. It has a single button that lets you switch between low, high, and off, and you can make subtle adjustments to the tone and volume of the noise by twisting the plastic housing, which opens or closes the cutouts.

The Marpac Dohm DS features a fan encased in a smooth, domelike plastic housing with cutouts that you open and close to adjust the noise level.

While the simplicity of the Dohm DS’s design makes it a great choice if you want to keep your bedroom a tech-free haven, adjusting the volume and tone on the Dohm DS is a bit more difficult than on the LectroFan. The Dohm DS also has a narrower volume range than the other machines, so its lowest setting, at about 6dBa measured 1inches away, is louder than the softest setting on the other machines (our pick, the LectroFan, goes down to 3dBa). On the higher end, it can reach only 6dBa—other machines can run louder, but we doubt you’d want a white noise machine louder than that.

At inches in diameter and inches high, the Dohm DS is bigger than the LectroFan but still small enough to fit comfortably on a nightstand (though we don’t think it’s packable for travel).

The competition

The Homedics Deep Sleep II is the largest machine in our test group, measuring inches tall and inches wide. It commands a lot of space on a nightstand, and the blue-lit digital display (which you can dim) and the plethora of buttons on its face make it seem more gadgety than practical. It also comes with a number of superfluous nature, ocean, and “sleep therapy” sounds, which, as we note above, are not ideal for sleep. Its 11-button interface is complicated to use and was occasionally unresponsive in our tests.

The Marpac Rohm, which blocked sound well in our tests, has 40 volume settings, allowing for precise adjustments. But it has just two white noise options (and a crashing-waves setting), and the controls are on the side of the machine, meaning you have to pick it up to make adjustments. We found the buttons a bit stiff, too. Although it’s designed as a travel device, it’s not much smaller than the LectroFan, which we think is already small enough for travel. If you need a white noise machine only for travel, you’ll probably be fine with a smartphone app.

We also looked at the Marpac Hushh, which is identical to the Rohm except for a few baby-specific features (a nightlight and a lock). We didn’t test it with babies.

The Homedics Deep Sleep I is a pared-down version of the Homedics Deep Sleep II, lacking the digital display and some other features. We didn’t test it, because at nearly inches high and inches wide, it’s still quite big.


MeterPlugs is a company that was founded in 2009, around the time the loudness war was at its peak. The company develops high-quality and affordable loudness meter and analysis plug-ins that are suitable for both mixing and mastering engineers. MeterPlugs is best known for their Dynameter, Perception, K-Meter, and LCAST line of products.

Nugen Audio

NUGEN Audio makes professional audio tools for music producers, (post-production) mixing engineers and professional broadcasters. Their line of products has a focus on mixing, mastering, and stereo width enhancement tools. Their most popular plugins are Halo Downmix, Mastercheck, Monofilter, and Stereoizer.


Both HOFA plugins are for Mac and PC, 3and 6Bit DAWs. Audio Unit, VST, VST3, RTAS and AAX.

Registration via email is required. Installation of the plugins can be done via the handy HOFA-Plugins Manager application.

MLoudnessAnalyzer is an ITU-R BS.1770-and EBU 334compliant loudness metering plugin.

TBProAudio dpMeter II dpMeter II is a multi channel meter including RMS, EBU R 12and TruePeak (intersample) measurement.

Shure SM5Dynamic Vocal Microphone Features

Shure SM5vocal microphone is designed for professional vocal use in live performance, sound reinforcement, and studio recording. Rugged construction, a proven shock-mount system, and a steel mesh grille ensure that even with rough handling, the SM5will perform consistently, outdoors or indoors.

If you are someone who is very particular about noise or get easily distracted by these nuisances, then you should consider owning a sound meter (also known as sound level meter). These easy-to-use gadgets come handy as it can precisely determine the loudness of sounds around you.

There are a lot of different brands and models of sound level meters. Often, comparing and picking the best one can be a challenge. It surely helps to read reviews about these different models.





How to save up to 86%? Here is little trick.

You must visit the page of sales. Here is the link. If you don’t care about which brand is better, then you can choose the decibel meter by the price and buy from the one who will offer the greatest discount.



Final Word

First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.

Most important, have fun and choose your decibel meter wisely! Good luck!

So, TOP3 of decibel meter



Questions? Leave a comment below!

Chatting about decibel meter is my passion! Leave me a question in the comments, I answer each and every one and would love to get to know you better!

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