Sound Waves, Resonance, and intensity

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Main Question or Discussion Point

"If two flutists play ther instuments together at the same intensity, is the sound twice as loud as that of either flutist playing alone at the intensity? Why or why not?"

I know that the answer has something to do with the sensation of loudness being logarithmic in the human ear, but I guess I don't really understand the concept.

Any help is greatly, greatly, greatly appreciated! :smile:
 

Answers and Replies

dst
376
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The sound will be 1dB louder, I think (using the original as a reference). Either way, it will not be twice as loud. You already gave the correct answer.
 
Last edited:
Thanks!
 
458
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Well, the equation for the sound level is:

[tex]\beta=10log[\frac{I}{I_o}][/tex]

Where [tex]I_o=10^-^1^2\frac{W}{m^2}[/tex]

So you can just plug in values for varying intensities and see.
 
Cool - thank you guys. It's good to have some help because my teacher just gives us the assignment without doing much lecturing or anything, then won't really help us at all, so you guys are life savers!
 
Claude Bile
Science Advisor
1,471
19
The sound will be 1dB louder, I think (using the original as a reference). Either way, it will not be twice as loud. You already gave the correct answer.
A doubling in intensity is about 3 dB as a rule of thumb.

Claude.
 

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