David A. Nelson
Acoust. Systems Acoust. Res. Facility, P. O. Box 3610, Austin, TX 78764
Music is often perceived as noise pollution, especially when it invades one's solitude or one's own music making. This is generally a major issue in multiunit residential buildings and in music facilities for rehearsal, broadcast, and recording. However, current noise control methods of design and classification do not address the ongoing trend in popular music toward strong bass content. Analysis of broadcast music signals using unbiased annoyance [E. Zwicker, ``On the dependence of unbiased annoyance on loudness,'' Proc. Internoise 89, pp. 809--814] indicates that (i) contemporary music can be adequately modelled as pink noise from 50 to 4000 Hz, (ii) after passing through a partition the 63-Hz octave band dominates loudness and unbiased annoyance, (iii) existing single-number ratings (such as STC) cannot identify structures with critical low-frequency resonances, thus potentially overestimating performance against this type of noise. Ramifications for noise control practice and effective single-number ratings are explored.