SoundMeter 8.3 offers more powerful data logging

SoundMeter 8.3 and SoundMeter Pro 4.3 can now log sound levels at user-defined intervals for an arbitrarily long period of time. Each includes a new option to automatically export logged measurement data when the measurement duration is reached. If Auto Stop is disabled, SoundMeter will continue to save the current logged data to a new data file each time the duration is reached. This new Auto Save option has been added to both the Meter and Octave tools.

Data logs can be automatically saved to CSV, TXT, or MAT files.

MeterLogOptions Screen Shot 2016-02-24 at 11.08.26 AM

Also new in SoundMeter:

  • When logging, Leq, Lp_max, and peak sound levels can be reset each time they are logged. With this option, it is possible to log a short Leq of 0.1 seconds for up to 8 hours. With the new Auto Save feature, the logging can be extended indefinitely.
  • When logging Lx values in the Meter tool, the user-defined percentile value will be fixed at the time logging starts. It is still possible to view different user-defined percentile values in the live meter display while the fixed percentile values are being logged.
  • A bug has been fixed which could cause errors in the Octave data when logging was enabled.
  • The formatting of the HTTP file server pages has been improved.
  • Audio input management has been improved to avoid the potential for transient noise from the hardware when a new measurement is started.
  • SoundMeter Pro uses much less memory when exporting data logs to CSV and TXT files.
  • The Octave log surface plot uses much less memory when viewing large data sets.
  • Other cosmetic enhancements and stability improvements.

In SoundMeter, the new features will require the purchase of one or more upgrades, which are available via in-app purchase. They are included in SoundMeter Pro.

SoundMeter 8.3 and SoundMeter Pro 4.3 are now available for download on the App Store.

SignalSuite for iOS now sports a fresh UI and support for larger iPhone screens

SignalSuiteAppIcon120Version 1.5 of SignalSuite, the original stereo audio signal generator for iPhone, finally supports larger iPhone screens, including those of the new iPhone 6S and 6S Plus, with a fresh new look. Functionally, the new version of SignalSuite is equivalent to previous releases, although it is now possible to manually select from a list of available audio output routes (e.g. the iPhone speaker or an Apple TV on the local network). The user interface elements have been updated to be consistent with the changes made to the appearance of iOS since version 7.

SignalSuite047ScreenShot1 SignalSuite047ScreenShot2 SignalSuite047ScreenShot3 SignalSuite047ScreenShot4 SignalSuite047ScreenShot5

SignalSuite supports 3.5, 4.0, 4.7, and 5.5-inch iPhone screens and requires iOS 7 or later. SignalSuite 1.5 is available now on the App Store.

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SoundMeter now offers Octave data logging on iPhone and iPad

For some time, SoundMeter has offered an optional in-app upgrade that would allow users to log sound level and noise dose measurements for up to two weeks. Version 8.1 adds an upgrade to allow whole and 1/3 octave sound levels to be logged for similar durations. The Octave Data Logging Upgrade will be made available within SoundMeter to users who have already purchased the Octave Analyzer Upgrade.

OctaveSurf

When Octave data logging is enabled, logged levels are displayed in a 2D color surface plot below the standard Octave spectrum graph. The color scale is defined by the vertical scale of the spectrum graph. A data cursor may be placed within the log plot to identify specific levels associated with date,  time, and frequency band.

Octave data can be logged as often as every 0.1 seconds for up to 1 hour, every second for up to 10 hours, or every 10 seconds for up to two weeks. Larger intervals can also be specified in each case.

When data logging is enabled, logged levels will also be included when saving data to a CSV, TXT, or MAT
file. (Saving data in SoundMeter requires the Data Acquisition Upgrade, sold separately.)

SoundMeter Pro includes all the functionality of SoundMeter plus that of SoundMeter’s in-app upgrades. Current SoundMeter Pro users get the additional Octave data logging functionality for free.

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OctaveLog

SoundMeter 8 includes companion app for Apple Watch

SoundMeter 8.0 and SoundMeter Pro 4.0, which are both now available for download on the App Store, each include a companion app for Apple Watch. With the Watch app, you can monitor the current sound level, spectrum, and/or noise dose from your wrist (requires iOS 8.2 and iPhone 5 or later). These new versions of SoundMeter add other significant features, as well, including background sound level measurements and notifications of exceeded levels. The original sound level meter app for iPhone has now become the original sound level meter app for Apple Watch.

SoundMeter’s companion app for Apple Watch includes a separate screen for each of SoundMeter’s available tools running on the iPhone (new tools added to SoundMeter via in-app purchase are also supported in the companion app). Each tool can be started or stopped from the watch and current measurement values are updated on the watch display each second. The new notifications feature in SoundMeter allows the user to be notified on the Apple Watch when certain events occur. Notifications can be triggered when measurements stop (using the Auto-Stop feature) or when certain user-defined levels are exceeded. These notifications are supported in each of the Meter, Octave, and Dosimeter tools.

SoundMeter’s new ability to run in the background allows it to continue to run long-term measurements while other (non-audio) apps are in use. A complimentary new feature also allows the individual tools in SoundMeter to run independently. This means that users can run measurements in the Meter, Octave, and Dosimeter tools simultaneously. Users no longer need to worry about resetting the current measurement by switching to another tool (whether intentionally or accidentally). This makes SoundMeter more robust in terms of its ability to preserve acquired data until it can be saved more permanently in an image or data file.

Watch App Screenshots

SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch  SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch

SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch  SoundMeter Pro Screen Shot - Apple Watch

The new versions of SoundMeter also include the following improvements:

  • Lx (percentile-exceeded sound level) measurements now use the same time and frequency weighting as the Lp measurement, instead of automatically switching to Fast and A weighting.
  • Frequency weighting may now be set to Flat, A, or C in the Dosimeter options menu (previously, the Dosimeter only allowed A weighting).
  • Meter, Octave, and Dosimeter tools now use local notifications to alert you when a measurement has finished or when selected levels have exceeded user-defined thresholds.
  • This release corrects a bug that could cause the device sensitivity for the built-in mic or the headset input to get corrupted when changing input gain selection with device units set to “FS.”

Notes:

  1. Octave and Dosimeter tools, Lx measurement and data file export capability are sold separately within SoundMeter via in-app purchase. These capabilities are all included with SoundMeter Pro.
  2. This SoundMeter update will require you to restore your in-app purchases (you will not be charged again for upgrades you have already purchased).
  3. Apple Watch compatibility requires iOS 8.2 and iPhone 5 or later.

 

Download SoundMeter 8.0

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Faber Mac apps are all 64-bit, built for Yosemite

This week, all Faber apps for Mac OS received updates to improve their compatibility with Yosemite (Mac OS 10.10). Electroacoustics Toolbox 3.7, SignalScope Pro 3.7, SignalScope 3.7 and SignalSuite 4.7 are all 64-bit applications that have been built for Yosemite.

The Room Analyzer tool, available for in-app purchase in Electroacoustics Toolbox, now calculates room parameters in whole or 1/3-octave frequency bands from impulse response data that has been sampled at higher sample rates (88.2, 96, 176.4, and 192 kHz), in addition to sample rates of 44.1 and 48 kHz that were supported previously.

The Octave Analyzer tool, found in both Electroacoustics Toolbox and SignalScope Pro, also now supports the higher sample rates for real-time spectral analysis of input signals in whole or 1/3-octave frequency bands.

The Dual FFT Analyzer (only in Electroacoustics Toolbox) and FFT Analyzer tools now support additional dB vertical scale factors of 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, or 18 dB per division in the graphic display.

Various bugs and potential instabilities in each app have been corrected.

These new apps all require Mac OS version 10.7 or later.

Trial versions of each app may be downloaded from FaberAcoustical.com.

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 9.35.49 AM

SoundMeter Pro 2 is all about better hardware support

Like the recently released SignalScope Pro 4, SoundMeter Pro 2.0 can now uniquely identify USB audio devices attached to an iOS device and remember your settings for each audio device each time it is connected. Additionally, version 2 includes direct support for the miniDSP UMIK-1 USB measurement microphone. Sensitivity calibration and frequency response data for the UMIK-1 can be downloaded automatically, just by entering the UMIK-1’s serial number. Making calibrated sound level measurements is as easy as plugging in the UMIK-1 and typing in its serial number (the serial number only needs to be entered once, after which SoundMeter Pro will remember the microphone sensitivity).

SoundMeter Pro 2 supports manually switching between available audio inputs and outputs (i.e. if a headset microphone is connected, as well as a USB microphone, SoundMeter Pro allows you to manually switch between the built-in microphone, the headset microphone, and the USB microphone in the software without connecting or disconnecting any hardware). SoundMeter Pro 2 also supports manually switching between available microphones on devices, such as iPhones and some iPads, that have more than one built-in microphone.

Also new in SoundMeter Pro 2.0:

– Nominal input sensitivities have been updated for built-in microphones and headset inputs on iOS 8.

– On iOS 8, low, mid, and high input gain settings are available on all supported devices, for built-in microphones and headset input. Each gain setting now has an associated nominal input sensitivity. User calibrations are saved independently for each gain setting.

– A text formatting issue in MAT-file export has been corrected.

– Minor bug fixes and cosmetic enhancements.

– Apple’s Lightning to USB Camera Adapter or iPad Camera Connection Kit is required for connecting USB Audio devices to your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad.

– SoundMeter Pro 2 requires iOS 7 or later.

SoundMeter Pro Screenshot iPhone 1

Similar features have been added to SoundMeter 6.0, although select in-app upgrades may be required (available via in-app purchase).

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Looking for the best sound level meter app

Last year, researchers at NIOSH (the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) began looking at mobile sound level meter apps, hoping to find that such apps could be suitable for occupational noise measurements. After defining specific criteria to qualify sound level meter apps as suitable for their tests, they set out to find matching apps for  iOS, Android, and Windows-based mobile devices. Ten iOS apps, out of over 130 available, were examined as part of their research. Of 62 Android apps downloaded for examination, only 4 apps partially met their criteria. No Windows-based apps qualified.

The results of the study were recently published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America (JASA). According to the published article, “The evidence suggests that for A-weighted data, SoundMeter is the app best suited for occupational and general purpose noise measurements. In addition to having the smallest mean difference for the A-weighted data, SoundMeter had the narrowest distribution of differences…”

SoundMeter Screenshot iPhone 5

The article concludes, “This study showed that certain sound measurement apps for Apple smartphones and tablets may be considered accurate and reliable to be used to assess occupational noise exposures. Android and Windows developers do not offer apps that meet the functionality needed for occupational noise assessments.”

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Noted at the end of the article: “The findings and conclusions in this report are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health. Mention of any company or product does not constitute endorsement by NIOSH.”

JASA Article

NIOSH Blog Article (with images and video)

 

Faber Acoustical announces SoundMeter Pro for iOS

Building on the success of SoundMeter, which debuted on the iPhone App Store in August of 2008, Faber Acoustical has announced the release of SoundMeter Pro. SoundMeter Pro turns your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch into a handheld data-logging sound level meter (SLM), data-logging noise dosimeter, and real-time analyzer (RTA).

SoundMeter Pro works with built-in or external measurement microphones to deliver reliable sound level measurements, including time-weighted and equivalent sound levels in addition to percentile-exceeded sound levels and noise dose. Measured levels can be logged at intervals as small as 0.1 seconds for durations of up to two weeks (longer measurement durations may require larger logging intervals). The built-in Octave tool performs sound level measurements in whole or 1/3-octave frequency bands.

In a recent article published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, NIOSH researchers found that, out of over 130 sound measurement apps for iOS, “SoundMeter is the app best suited for occupational and general purpose noise measurements.” SoundMeter Pro builds on everything SoundMeter has to offer.

With the built-in or headset microphone, SoundMeter Pro can measure peak sound levels of up to approximately 130 dB. Results may vary between iOS devices and headset microphones. External microphones may enable the measurement of much higher sound levels.

SoundMeter Pro also includes various features that users have come to expect from Faber apps, including the ability to save measurement data to CSV, TXT, or MAT files, save measurement displays to high resolution PDF files, switch between three different color schemes, and calibrate microphone input sensitivity. Exported data files may be retrieved from the iOS device via iTunes File Sharing or by enabling the app’s built-in file server and downloading the files to another device or computer via a standard web browser. The built-in signal generator tool further extends SoundMeter Pro’s utility by producing any of various test signals, including white noise, pink noise, frequency sweeps, and periodic waveforms.

Faber Acoustical has simultaneously announced the availability of SoundMeter 5.0. The new version of SoundMeter adds support for a new Data Logging Upgrade, which is available via in-app purchase. SoundMeter Pro includes all the functionality of SoundMeter 5 with all its available in-app purchase upgrades. Although both apps run on iOS 6, each also features a user interface tailored for iOS 7.

NOTE: Although it has been designed to do so, SoundMeter Pro is not guaranteed to meet ANSI or IEC standards for sound level meters. These standards require conformance of the entire measurement system, including software, hardware and microphones.

The built-in and headset microphones are suitable for certain, basic sound level measurements, but high precision external microphones may also be used with appropriate audio accessory hardware. Even though default sensitivity values are included for the built-in and headset microphones, for best results, SoundMeter Pro should be calibrated before use. Sound levels may be off by a few dB when using the default microphone sensitivity.

   SoundMeter Pro Screenshot iPhone 1 SoundMeter Pro Screenshot iPhone 2

   SoundMeter Pro Screenshot iPhone 3 SoundMeter Pro Screenshot iPhone 4

 

Minimum Requirements:
* iOS 6.0 or later
* iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad
* 4.12 MB

Pricing and Availability:
SoundMeter Pro is now available for download on the App Store for $99.99 (USD). External hardware may be required for analog input capability. More information on SoundMeter Pro can be found at Faber Acoustical online. More information regarding suitable input devices for specific iOS devices can be found on the Faber Acoustical blog.

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Download SoundMeter 5.0

SoundMeter 4.1 offers percentile-exceeded sound levels

SoundMeter 4.1, which is now available for download on the App Store, offers percentile-exceeded sound levels (Lx) via in-app purchase.

With the new upgrade, SoundMeter can display L10, L50, L90, or any percentile between 1 and 99. Percentile exceeded sound levels are also available in the Octave Analyzer tool (sold separately).

Also new in SoundMeter is the ability to set the meter to automatically stop after an arbitrary amount of elapsed time from 1 second to two weeks.

The Dosimeter and Octave Analyzer tools (sold separately) can also be set to automatically stop after a user-defined period of time.

Lx IAP Upgrade screenshot

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SoundMeter 3.3 can turn your iPhone or iPad into a personal noise dosimeter

SoundMeter 3.3 offers users the option to add a noise dosimeter tool via in-app purchase. The new Dosimeter tool enables you to measure noise dose–the percentage of a maximum permissible daily noise exposure based on an 8-hour time period. The Dosimeter supports criterion levels of 80, 85 and 90 dB, exchange rates of 3, 4 and 5 dB, and thresholds of 40 to 80 dB. The new tool also displays the 8-hour time-weighted average sound level (TWA), as specified by OSHA.

As with other measurements in SoundMeter, the Dosimeter’s accuracy depends on the quality of the microphone used as well as the accuracy of the microphone’s sensitivity calibration within SoundMeter.

SoundMeter 3.3 also includes updated Help files, minor bug fixes, and stability improvements. SoundMeter 3.3 will also continue to run while the screen is locked, which is important for making long-duration measurements, such as noise dose, Leq, and TWA.

  SoundMeter Noise Dosimeter

 

Download SoundMeter 3.3 on the App Store.