Are subwoofers a risk for an unborn child?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Brian Perry, Apr 8, 2002.

  1. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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    My wife and I usually watch DVDs at 10-15 dB below reference. Since my wife became pregnant, we have cut back the volume to -20 or -25, which can still be kind of loud. My question is whether low frequencies are heard or felt by a fetus, and if so, should I turn off the subwoofer altogether?
     
  2. SteveA

    SteveA Supporting Actor

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    Fetuses can most certainly hear sounds from subwoofers. It's been proven that they hear sounds from outside the womb, and bass frequencies are the most penetrating frequencies of all.

    I doubt that a subwoofer at reasonable volume levels will harm a fetus, but wouldn't you rather err on the side of caution with your child? I was in your position last year, wondering the same thing, and I turned it down - just a little.
     
  3. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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    Steve,

    Yeah, I am trying to be on the safe side. The funny thing is I'm starting to notice all of these other loud sounds that bombard us and am fearful of their effects. We got off the Metra train the other day at Union Station, and the exit platform was right next to an Amtrak engine. I'm certain the rumbling from that engine and its proximity to us resulted in higher SPLs than my Velodyne ever put out.
     
  4. KyleS

    KyleS Screenwriter

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    Brian,
    Any sounds will get through the womb to the baby but its at what level? As Steve said above I would err on the side of caution. During my wifes pregnancy we just turned down the movies so that it isnt as loud and you should be fine.
    Worse for babies is when people put headphones around there belly and turn up the volume. We talked in depth with our doctors about this and they all said the same thing. The amneotic fluid (sp?) works as an amplifier so that the baby can hear things outside the mom but it muttles the noises. When people put the headphones up to their baby and turn it up loud it is not good.
    Best of luck on the new little one [​IMG]
    KyleS
     
  5. ace peterson

    ace peterson Second Unit

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    Heh, we watched movies at -18 to -15 all the time when my wife was pregnant. My son is 2 1/2 yrs now and he's not abnormal in any way! He is addicted to Toy Story, however!

    Don't worry about. As long as your wife doesn't lay on the sub while your playing U-571, you should be OK!
     

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