Decibel Scale - Amazing Decibel Infographic

Our initial attempt to explain how loud air conditioners are via an internet page was, in our opinion, a minor disaster.

An indisputable fact is that 99.999% of us haven’t got a clue what a decibel either sounds like or looks like! Let’s be honest, we didn’t even know ourselves precisely what a decibel was!

So we started to delve into the dark world of decibels to make the blinking things easier to understand. We initially wanted to create an amazingly informative infographic to best explain how loud our air conditioners are. However, we didn’t know where the ‘cut-off’ point should have been and we got somewhat carried away until we found the worlds loudest noise!

Despite all of our in-depth research, noise levels and decibels are still controversial and subjective. We found so many different accounts of how loud the same sound was. Indeed, most of our research showed that an aeroplane taking off is louder than a spaceship launch and surely this cannot be the case. Further investigation revealed that people forget to mention how far away they were when actually measuring the sounds. Also, based in London, we don’t live close enough to Cape Canaveral to run around waving our own decibel meter…..

Have some fun clicking around on our all-singing-and-dancing infographic below. Those of you who wish for a more academic approach can scroll to the bottom to check out our initial research.

Please leave feedback in our comments section below and we promise to keep this fully updated!


As air conditioning units have become more technologically advanced, our demands of our air conditioning have similarly increased. Whilst the efficiency of our air conditioning systems is still a primary concern, the noise level the air conditioner emits is also increasingly important.

The intensity of the noise emitted from air conditioning units is measured in decibels (‘dB’). On the decibel scale the smallest audible sound of near total silence is 0 dB, whilst a sound ten times more powerful is 10 dB, and a sound 100 times more powerful than near total silence is 20 dB.

Depending on where you intend to use your air conditioning unit, the decibel level emitted from the air conditioner can be incredibly important. In an office or bedroom setting it will be vital that the sounds of the air conditioning unit do not overpower the sounds or relative quiet in the room. In an industrial or factory setting a loud noise from your air conditioning unit will not be so important.

Whilst normal breathing can emit 10 decibels, normal talking will emit between 40 and 60 decibels, and a gunshot can emit up to 140 decibels. Air conditioning units, fans and evaporative coolers will emit between 37 and 82 decibels, depending on the model.

The quietest fixed air conditioning, such as the Unico Star, will emit between 37 and 46 decibels, which is less than the average desk fan. Even a larger tank fan, such as the 3076 Tank Fan, will emit the same level of decibels as an office desk fan, both ranking at around 46 decibels. The Airconco 6.5 Kw Split Water Cooled Portable Air Conditioner similarly ranks at around 49 decibels.

The smallest air conditioning units will generally emit less noise than a TV. A TV emits 60 decibels, whilst the Airconco 3 Kw emits just 51 to 55 decibels of sound. The larger industrial air conditioning units such as the Airrex HSC-2500 Portable Air Conditioner emit up to 68 decibels, and the larger industrial fans such as the Blue Max 950 can emit between 70 and 82 decibels depending upon the speed setting. An evaporative cooler will emit a similar level of around 72 decibels. These are all around the same decibel level as a domestic vacuum cleaner, which emits about 70 decibels of sound.

These decibel levels are taken when standing next to the air conditioning units, fans and evaporative coolers. As you get further from your air conditioning unit the relative noise level emitted will decrease. As is illustrated here, several portable air conditioners, fans and evaporative coolers are now no noisier than your TV set, and many are just as quiet as normal conversation. Many of the new fitted air conditioning systems and even the Airconco 3Kw Portable Air Conditioner are now described as ‘whisper quiet’, making them ideal for any environment in which the level of noise from your air conditioner is crucial.

One thought on “Decibel Scale

  1. ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
    where’s jimmy connors fall in this scale? or john mcenroe? ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! crazy that they’re not listed! too funny!

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