In an effort to demonstrate their commitment to unrivaled research – and silence their competitors – Microsoft has created the Quietest place on Earth at their headquarters in Redmond Washington, USA.
The computer company has built an anechoic chamber in which highly sensitive tests reported an average background noise reading of an unimaginably quiet -20.35 dBA (decibels A-weighted).
An anechoic chamber is a room insulated from exterior sources of noise and designed to completely absorb reflections of sounds inside.
Two tests were carried out by professional independent sound specialists and the test results were 20.6 dBA and -20.1 dBA – a considerably better figure than the creators’ hope for -16 dBA.
Above: Sound-absorbing wedges inside the chamber.
Microsoft wanted to build an incomparably silent place to use for audio and device testing and the company has proved itself by significantly bettering the record of -13 dBA which was recorded at the Anechoic Test Chamber at Orfield Laboratories, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA in October 2012.
The comparatively huge improvements to the record benchmark reflects how much noise isolation technology has improved in recent times, with the record first set in 2004 at only -9.4 dBA.
To find out more about the attempt, visit news.microsoft.com/stories/building87/audio-lab.php