Conduct Your Very Own (Non-Scientific) Hearing Test!

Hearing TestHow Good Is Your Hearing?
If you plan on using your ears for the rest of your life make sure you’re taking all the necessary precautions to protect them – especially if you’re a guitarist. We six-string-slingers are prone to hearing loss and a life-long case of chronic, amp-at-eleven induced tinnitus is enough to make you go mad — literally.

How to conduct the test:
Click on the MP3 files below to conduct your very own hearing test. Most people over the age of 25 cannot hear frequencies past 15 kHz. The author cannot hear above 12 kHz. Scary. How high can you go?

We recommend you conduct this experiment in a relatively quiet space with earbuds or headphones on.

8 kHz – Everyone should be able to hear this one

10 kHz – This is where the tones start to get a little painful

12 kHz – Imagine having this sound ringing in your ears 24/7 — as in having Tinnitus

14 kHz – Can’t hear this one? Start wearing earplugs ASAP

15 kHz – Most people can’t hear past this frequency

16 kHz –
You’re above average if you can hear this one, congrats!

17 kHz –
Ooh, you’ve got good ears — don’t ruin them

18 kHz – You tell us what this sounds like because we can’t hear it

19 kHz – Getting close to the maximum hearing range of human beings

20 kHz – If you can hear this you deserve a Golden Ear award

If you’re freaked out by this hearing test, don’t take it to heart – this isn’t scientific or meant to be a medical diagnosis by any means. If you suspect hearing loss or damage, have your hearing tested by a licensed audiologist.

There are 8 comments for this article
  1. Pingback: My Guitar Isn’t Loud Enough | The Punch-In
  2. Tony Z at 4:33 pm

    I’m 28 and I can actually hear them all… I guess those metallica concerts when i was younger didn’t ruin my hearing.

  3. Kent McAlister at 5:37 pm

    Phew. 35 and 10 years of touring and I still scored well on your test. Still gonna’ get pro earplugs though.

  4. Pingback: My Guitar Isn’t Loud Enough: The Science of Sound
  5. murrayatuptown at 5:12 pm

    Interesting…12 kHz was quite loud but >14 totally gone…I wonder if my ratty little PC speakers can reproduce the 14 and up tones.

    I can’t hear below ~ 400 Hz in one ear…the one with tinnitus

  6. tensity1 at 3:09 am

    Yep, I have constant tinnitus in my right ear and occasional in my left. 14 kHz was a no-go.

    1. Do not fire assault rifles (or any other boomsticks) without earplugs.
    2. Do not drive on the freeway with your windows down, no matter how broken your AC is in desert heat. Tons of noise to bring on the tinnitus.

  7. Steph at 1:36 pm

    I didn’t make it past 12kHz either. of course, I’m over 40 and still going to concerts… definitely will not be forgetting my earplugs at home anymore. Although, could be my old computer speakers, too. :)
    Here’s another hearing test I found online with a link to help finding a hearing expert if you need it.

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