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Sound Level Meter and Noise Monitoring Rental FAQ

What type or class sound level meter should be rented to satisfy the requirements of the relevant noise standard or noise ordinance?

Rental meters all comply with current IEC, ANSI and DIN standards* for Sound Level Meters. In general, the “Type” designation has been superseded by “Class” designation, with higher accuracy, performance and calibration requirements. A Class 1 meter is more accurate than Class 2, and therefore a Class 1 meter is generally preferred in a wide range of testing including Environmental Noise Monitoring, Building Acoustics, for Consulting Projects, and even Workplace Noise testing. Class 1 is also a requirement for any case that may involve litigation. All 831C, 831 and LxT1 meters meet current Class 1 standards. [*Specifically IEC61672-1, IEC60651, IEC60804, IEC61260, ANSI S1.11, ANSI S1.4, ANSI S1.43, DIN 45657 with additional details available.]

What sound metrics or acoustic parameters can be measured with rental SLMs?

We offer for rent Sound Level Meters that measure:

  • Acoustic levels including Lmax, Lmin, Lpeak with occurrence date and time
  • Acoustic Averages (Equivalent Level Leq, Sound Exposure LE)
  • 1/1 and/or 1/3 Octave Band (Leq, Lmax, Lmin) on any meter with OB3 option
  • Simultaneous RMS and Peak Frequency Weighting: A, C and Z (unweighted)
  • Simultaneous RMS Detectors: Slow, Fast, and Impulse
  • Statistical Ln (6 user-selectable Ln s), including spectral Ln on 831C and 831
  • Community Noise (LDN, LDEN, LDay, LEve, LNight) on LxT with CN option or all 831C meters
  • Sound Exposure including LXVE, Lxavg, TWA(8), Dose, Projected Dose, SEA, and more on LxT and 831
  • Record audio files to determine noise source on 831C and 831
  • Weather parameters including wind speed, gust speed, direction, temperature, humidity, barometric pressure on 831C and 831 with appropriate weather sensor
  • Location latitude, longitude, elevation on 831C and 831 with GPS

How is measurement data stored?

Data is stored internally or on USB flash drive.

How often are sound measurements stored?

Three separate “bins” of data can be collected and stored simultaneously if needed

  • Time History: stores fast measurements, available in a selectable time range from 100 ms to 24 hr. Many parameters also available in 2.5 ms to 50 ms blocks on 831C and 831.
  • Measurement History: long-term trends over time, selectable 1 m to 24 hr.
  • Events / Exceedances: collects and stores additional data when user-defined sound levels are exceeded for a minimum duration, based on fixed or dynamic threshold levels

Can other sound and acoustic parameters be measured?

Likely!  Sound Level Measurements and Metrics are sometimes defined and named in multiple ways.  Let us know what you are trying to measure, and we can help with meter selection.

How can sound level meters or outdoor noise monitoring systems be powered?

Rental meters can power via internal AA-Lithium or NiMH batteries (provided), AC wall power, or USB port of a computer with included adaptors. Outdoor systems have options to power via external DC, sealed lead acid rechargeable or D-cell packs. 831C-based units can also power via solar panel.

Can I rent an acoustic calibrator (field calibrator)? Can I rent an extra-long microphone extension cable?

With any sound meter rental, an accessory kit is provided at no additional charge. This includes a link to electronic manual sets, utility software to set up meters, calibration certificates, and a single-point acoustic calibrator. A 10 ft (3 m) cable is typically included for handheld rental meters, 20 ft for outdoor kits, but specify if a particular length is required. Additional items are available for rent.

How is data accessed from rental sound level meters?

With adequate consideration for power and sound recordings if enabled, units can be left out taking data continuously for weeks or longer. Typically, data is downloaded via USB (cable or memory stick) via the included G4 software.

831C-based units can connect via cellular, WiFi, or wired networking. These meters can send real time email or text alerts when levels are exceeded and allow for remote data download data or automatic data file push to SFTP or Dropbox.

Is sound level meter setup and/or data download service available with rental meters?


Do you have any resources to help with understanding sound metrics and acoustic terminology?

Check out Larson Davis' Sound Measurement Terminology page.

Other questions? Call 513.351.9919 or email The Modal Shop’s Rental Team!