General Question

9doomedtodie's avatar

Why don't the echoes remain forever?

Asked by 9doomedtodie (3113points) January 13th, 2011

I have been trying to find out the answer of this question. The case is, I and my friend shifted to our new 2BHK flat 6 months before. Actually, when we went to see the flat first time, at that time when we were talking to each other, we could listen the echoes of our sentences. Also, the people who came to see our new flat, while talking to each other the echoes of the voice could be heard at least 3 to 4 times regardless of the state of the doors and windows (Open or Closed). Now, It has been 8 months since we came here. We no longer hear the echoes now a days. What is the reason behind this? Why don’t they remain forever?.

Anyone know the scientific reason behind sudden last of the echoes?

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22 Answers

Arbornaut's avatar

Something is absorbing the sound. How much crap have you got in the apartment now compared to when you first moved in? Id say theres just not as many flat hard echo’y surfaces as there was without something in between them. Drapes, wall art, furniture?

9doomedtodie's avatar

There was nothing when we first moved in.Walls were coloured, Doors & windows were painted. The materials we have moved is one dinning table & with chairs & a lot of wooden & iron things i.e. cupboards, chairs, bed etc. We bought this flat in ready possession, so we got those things which builder gave us. i.e. nothing :(

anartist's avatar

Have you filled up your apartment with stuff since then? Especially soft stuff like padded furniture and rugs.

Nullo's avatar

It doesn’t take much to absorb sound.

It’s also perfectly likely that you gradually modified your speech so that it wouldn’t produce so many echoes.

9doomedtodie's avatar

@anartist : Yes. We have had a sofa set, 2 beds 1 in each bed room.

Arbornaut's avatar

All that stuff is pretty good at absorbing sound.

9doomedtodie's avatar

@Arbornaut : Maybe, This stuff is enough sound absorbent.

Arbornaut's avatar

@blinkErri Hmm, it seems this maybe the case.. Shall we make a conclusion then?

9doomedtodie's avatar

@Arbornaut : Yes, but proof less conclusion or what?.

Arbornaut's avatar

@blinkErri What what? More stuff less echo. Yeah? or no…..?

9doomedtodie's avatar

Umm! Hmm. More stuff less echo is the one of the main reasons.

9doomedtodie's avatar

@Arbornaut : Agree or Disagree? .

Arbornaut's avatar

@blinkErri Agree! have we solved it then?

9doomedtodie's avatar

@Arbornaut : Yes. Partially solved. Need to find out other reasons, if any.

Arbornaut's avatar

@blinkErri Well maybe we can do a little you experiment to clear this up, it’l only take a few moments. You take all the stuff out of your apartment that wasn’t there before, then tell Me what it sounds like. And we’l go from there, break it down bit by bit. See if we can really crack this nut. What do you say?

9doomedtodie's avatar

@Arbornaut :Great idea. We can find out the solution. If yes, then will be great.

Arbornaut's avatar

@blinkErri Cool Bananas! Im gona head off and read a book about the ocean now, so you do the experiment when you have the time and just PM me when you have the data. Then we can sit down and get to the bottom of this one, really nail it. Ok cool. see ya

9doomedtodie's avatar

Yes, but it won’t take a few moments, taking all the stuff out is quite difficult task for me. Scientists can do all such kinda work to achieve their goal. Huh!! I am not a scientist, but I will definitely try to find out the solution.

Arbornaut's avatar

@blinkErri Ok ok hold on. So what your saying here is that you really do have lots and lots of stuff in your apartment because it would take more than a few moments to remove.
This adds weight to my hypothesis you see, because it tells me that there are LOTS of things to absorb the echos in your apartment. Im thinking we could fairly safely draw a conclusion here, and maybe save you the hassle of emptying all your belongings onto the street.
What do you think?

9doomedtodie's avatar

@Arbornaut : Hmm! It will be better to say this after it is done. Right?. I don’t say that you are wrong. You are right indeed. What do you say?

cazzie's avatar

Hubby is a sound tech. I can verify that if you’ve put curtains up, a rug on the floor and some soft furnishings around the place, you’re going to lose the echo. Perhaps you’ve got a bookshelf with some books on it as well? We just moved into a new house and I can’t decide on curtains yet and it’s driving him crazy with the extra bouncing sound in the room.

When sound bounces of an cave wall, not all of it bounces off, but the harder the surface, the more bounce. In a cave, the sound will bounce from wall to wall, giving you a lovely echo effect, especially if it’s a nice big, empty cave. As each bounce of sound waves occur, more is lost, lessening the waves strength (volume), so it fades.

If you padded one side of the cave with pillows, or even just ¼ of it, you would lose the previous echo effect because the sound would be absorbed but the pillows and not bounce off. Soundwaves=good fun=physics.

Thammuz's avatar

Mainly entropy. Sound is the consequence of the movement of air, whether it is caused by us expelling it or by something that moves/vibrates/collides with something else/etc, which means it takes energy for it to be generated.

That energy is all the energy that sound gets, and it dissipates over time, plus, the more it reflects on surfaces the faster the energy disperses. The vibration becomes weaker and weaker (with or without echo) and after a while the fluid (air in this case) goes back to its state of rest.

No vibration means no sound and there you have it.

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