Are my headphones STILL too loud? (warning: long read and lots of pictures inside)


Hi. I’m a 32 year old male and I like to listen to music. It’s almost an addiction that I can’t live without. Well I have a slight hearing loss in my left ear and I have always listened a bit loudly.

Well in the last year I’ve really tried to change that seeing as how I have unilateral hearing loss. I bought a sound level meter back in October (link: that i’ve been using to test decibel ratings with. I’ve gone around and tested sounds with this.

It comes with two different “weightings”. One is A which is apparently what the ear is more sensitive too and C which takes lower frequencies into account. I have tested this all around and found out the following:

Bedroom Fan decibels 58 to 60 dbA, 65 to 67 dbC. Bathroom sink 73 to 75 decibels dbA, 70 to 72 dbC. Bathroom vent fan 58 to 60 decibels dbA, 65 to 67 dbC. Toilet after flushing 60 to 62 decibels both dbA and dbC. Stove fan 70 to 72 decibels dbA and 72 to 74 decibels dbC.

Now I can hear all those sounds somewhat except for my bedroom fan and the toilet after it’s flushed (but I can hear it while its flushing) above my music. I listen at 60% of the volume on my note 8 and have the volume limit set so I can’t turn it above 60% (or 9 steps out of 15). I use Spotify and use the following settings. (Note: there’s 8 pictures and they are kind of out of order so please look at them all.) At times I’ve listened for three hours, a fifteen minute break than another three hours. Since then I’ve listened for 80 minutes, 100 minutes, and 60 minutes. Here is the detail at what settings i’m listening to my music to:

Imgur link: Imgur: The magic of the Internet

The headphones I mainly use are Sony mdr-zx300 (24 impedance, 102 sensitivity), Creative Aurvana live 1 (32 impedance, 103 sensitivity), and the monoprice 8323 (40 impedance, 100 sensitivity). Same settings with all three headphones.

Could it be that even with these settings that I could be damaging my ears? I mean I can hear sounds in the low 70s decibel wise ok over it but I still have what seems like a temporary threshold shift when I’m done. What can I do? I’m going nuts. I have two bluetooth speakers but I can’t use those at night as I have a roommate and live in an apartment. So any suggestions would be great! Thank you very much!


You need to get a professional hearing test from an ENT or an audiologist. Don’t bother with online or DIY.

There are guidelines your audiologist can go over with you about safe thresholds. For example the recommendation is 85 db for 8 hours or less, with 10 hours of recovery (which means no loud sounds). It is not linear. For 95 db the safe time is much, much shorter, and a quiet recovery time is needed.

My advice, as someone who has blown out their hearing with loud sounds, is fix it now!