I'm working on a DPS software and I was looking at the entire time that my sound sample take from the moment it begin the processing until it reach the ear. I'm reaching something like 71ms, but I've no reference which could allow me to say if it's good or not.

So I was wondering : how many time does the sound take to reach the human ear since the moment where the hammer of a piano touch the wire ? I'm not talking about sound speed but the moment when we ear the piano key.

  • 2
    The question needs re-phrasing so we understand exactly what you need to know.
    – Tim
    Dec 28 '17 at 16:30
  • I agree with Tim, this is a bit confusing. The only thing that affects the amount of time between the hammer striking the string and our ears detecting it is the speed of sound, so what are you asking about if not the speed of sound? Dec 28 '17 at 19:59
  • By the way, the 71 ms between the initiation of the note and when it is heard is called latency. If you are trying to recreate the experience of a musician playing the piano, then 71 ms is way too long for a latency figure. Most musicians are uncomfortable with more than about 10 ms of latency, and others are bothered by latency as low as 5 ms. Dec 28 '17 at 20:10

The speed of sound is approximately 1100 feet/second at room temperature and at sea level. So, one just calculates time=distance/1100 where the distance is in feet. The pianist is about 3 feet from the striking point (more or less) so the time is 3/1100 seconds or 2.7ms. For the audience about 30 feet away, 30/100 gives about 27ms.

  • I'm not exactly speaking about the moment it reaches the pianist but more about the moment when the brain is aware that there is sound. Dec 28 '17 at 15:36
  • So you would need to measure the time necessary from when the ear drum vibrates to the moment someone recognizes sound. I anticipate it would be similar to a stop watch. Dec 28 '17 at 17:09
  • 1
    @JonOsterman Are you asking about the length of time between when the eardrum first starts to vibrate from the sound pressure and when the brain receives the nerve impulses and decodes it into a note? I believe there is research on that and it is a very short amount of time. Dec 28 '17 at 20:08
  • @ToddWilcox yep that's it Dec 30 '17 at 15:58

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.