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Christmas noise – what measures up in deci-bells

17 December 2015

Christmas is traditionally hard on the pocket but it turns out it can be quite hard on the ears as well.

UK noise measurement specialist Cirrus Research decided to see if Christmas did really measure up by putting some of the traditional yuletide sounds to the test.

Using the latest testing and noise monitoring equipment, Cirrus Research was able to accurately record noise levels to within a fraction of a decibel.

Top of the decibels came the singing Santa toy, bellowing out 90.2dBs, well above the legal requirement where noise protection is needed in the work place.

Second came the more traditional sounds of carol singing – a fraction under Santa’s singing at a respectable 90.1dBs.

The usual hubbub of a work’s Christmas party came in at 89.5dBs --still easily above the legal limit – and Christmas table favourites, the cracker and party popper produced bangs at 81.4 and 69.2dBs respectively. The final Christmas noise to make up the top seasonal sounds were jingle bells at76.9 dBs.

Marketing manager, Tom Shelton from Cirrus Research, said: “We wanted to try and capture the sounds that were most familiar at Christmas and just see if they were really crackers or more party poopers. The singing Santa was head and shoulder above most of the noises we tested but the traditional carol singers did give him a run for his money. The one which surprised us the most was how quiet the works’ Christmas party was, but then again it could well depend on what time of the night you did the testing!”

In summary The Top Five were:

  • Singing santa decoration/toy – 90.2dBs
  • Carol singers – 90.1dBs
  • Christmas party – 89.5dBs
  • Christmas Cracker – 81.4dBs
  • Jingle bells – 76.9dBs

Other noises tested but were well within the legal noise threshold of 80db included: champagne corks popping, the Queen’s speech and presents being unwrapped.