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Movie Theatre Sound Levels

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  • Movie Theatre Sound Levels

    Do you find that in far too many cases movie theaters in your area BLAST you out of the theater and especially the previews? Around here AMC is really loud and Regal can be OK, too loud and now and then not loud enough where the room is full of people that just can't help but raise the background noise level.

  • #2
    Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

    Originally posted by Woussko View Post
    Do you find that in far too many cases movie theaters in your area BLAST you out of the theater and especially the previews? Around here AMC is really loud and Regal can be OK, too loud and now and then not loud enough where the room is full of people that just can't help but raise the background noise level.

    Believe it or not, and even the FCC has confirmed this, that the volume levels has not, and do not increase during previews or commercials, even through your televisions. Instead, those behind the commercials play this wavelength trick through your speakers that cause the sound to carry on further for the same volume. Creative Labs pulled this same trick with their "Soundblaster 64/32 SWE" soundcards in the late 90's. Made every game I ever played sound so much better even with a cheap set of speakers.

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    • #3
      Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

      The volume needs to be that loud. If it wasn't, you wouldn't be able to hear the movie over all of the cell phones ringing and inconsiderate people talking.
      Teach your kids about taxes..........eat 30 percent of their ice cream.

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      • #4
        Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

        Originally posted by BadgerDave View Post
        The volume needs to be that loud. If it wasn't, you wouldn't be able to hear the movie over all of the cell phones ringing and inconsiderate people talking.
        I remember reading about how National Amusements installed was is basically a Faraday Cage around some of their theaters to block cell phone signals.

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        • #5
          Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

          Originally posted by tailgunner View Post
          I remember reading about how National Amusements installed was is basically a Faraday Cage around some of their theaters to block cell phone signals.
          No need for the Faraday cage, they can do it with paint now. Many hospitals have been using this paint that will keep cell phone signals from working in certain parts of the hospital.
          Ron Hasil Lic #058-160417
          A-Archer Sewer & Plumbing specializing in:
          Tankless Water Heaters | Drain and Sewer Cleaning
          Sump and Ejector Pumps | Backflow RPZ Testing

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          • #6
            Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

            I like theatres loud but only for subsonic capabilities, and only so loud so that the transducers can reproduce sound without distorting. Some movie theaters I have been to do have harsh distortion during loud levels.

            The FCC monitors the stations that transmit over the public airwaves, those stations in my area are well behaved. The ones that annoy me are CATV stations, these stations have a very crapy, over-compressed digital picture and the volume of their commercials do seem much louder than the event. With cable, as well as satellite, during some station breaks, the commercial is inserted by the service provider and not by the network, those are really out of adjustment. My amp has meters that display its output in WATTS and some stations really make those needles move during commercials. I used to think that it was intentionally done, since I tend to walk away, either to the kitchen or to the bathroom during the break, these louder volumes allow you to continue listening to the announcement even from a few rooms away.

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            • #7
              Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

              Originally posted by BadgerDave View Post
              The volume needs to be that loud. If it wasn't, you wouldn't be able to hear the movie over all of the cell phones ringing and inconsiderate people talking.
              People that just can't behave need a dose of EJECTOR SEATS that Loews theatres used to have in a special announcement trailer before the main feature started. In my area they (under law) had to run the EXIT notice so the Ejector Seat one came just before the EXIT signs.

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              • #8
                Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

                I stopped going to the movies quite a few years ago, mostly because of the poor audio. I too think they are much too loud and, at least in the poorly built cinemas in the Corning area, you can easily hear any loud action in the adjoining theater, especially if the movie you are watching has a quieter moment.

                Movie theaters have continually gotten cheaper and less comfortable in their construction and the price of admission is gone "through the roof", IMO. On top of that, the concession cost has become a major expense.

                I'm a big movie fan and have been since I was a kid, but I just don't find it worth it anymore. I'll wait for the DVD.

                (Hey when I was kid, I'd go to a double-feature at the neighborhood theater on Saturday afternoon and it would cost me 15 cents to get in and a big box of "freshly-made" popcorn for a dime... butter was optional, but at no charge. So, I guess I just got spoiled at an early age!)

                CWS

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                • #9
                  Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

                  Something that may be happening in the older theaters that may not have been a great idea in my opinion is the "upgrading" to THX standards. If a theater is originally built to house a THX screen, there's a lot more attention to detail on the architecture, layout, materials. A retrofitted theater that is adding THX may be shoving high power audio equipment in a space not really designed for it. Even if they add recommended acoustic materials, etc. It really isn't quite the same.

                  Regardless, there's plenty of reasons to pass on the movie theater going experience, ticket prices jump up faster than ever. Even "matinee" prices aren't really a deal anymore. With all the 3D craze that the entertainment industry is forcing upon us, I predict there will be scores of poorly made 3D movie fodder to continue justifying the $15-$20 movie tickets, and get people used to the idea of paying even more than that. Yes Avatar was a good movie experience, and you can argue that 3D added to it, but really the movie was still just about as good in 2D. Given the number of years, amounts of money, and care that went into its making does not happen very often in Hollywood.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

                    Here is a hint about high prices at the concession stand: Get something to drink and eat on the way to the theatre so you're not wanting anything when you get there. At the market get some good microwave popcorn and enjoy it at home for about 1/10 the price!!!

                    As for the experience of sight and sound, I find theatres and each room varies. I'm lucky in that in many cases I have my choice of which theatre I go to. There still are a few pretty good ones.

                    As for sound levels the management needs to check it frequently and make needed adjustments. The projection crew do NOT hear what's going on in the theatre other than on a crappy monitor. The kids that sometimes do a theatre check only care that there is some noise and something on the screen. They don't know what it should be like and really couldn't give a damn if it's good or poor.

                    I have found that if I can go on a week day in the afternoon when there are few customers if there is a problem I can ask that it be fixed and usually it is.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Movie Theatre Sound Levels

                      Fortunate to still have 1 independent in the middle of our small town. $3.00 nighttime admission.

                      Small drink and popcorn about $5.00, which is too much, but free refills on both and cheaper than some.

                      The movie they carry will not be the current "hot" one. Usually one at the end of it's run at the big business theaters. (Just finished a week run of The Blind Side) But I have to say that really doesn't matter to most.

                      Sound is usually good (no movie next door) and the screen is the older large ones.

                      J.C.

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