by on October 8, 2017
If the specification level of a headset is an important factor that enables you to buy the headphones. This article would state the professional explanation of sensitivity. Get start to learn now.

Sensitivity is the efficiency with which an in ear headphone driver uses the power it receives to convert an electrical signal into an acoustical signal, resulting in clear sound without any distortion. It’s related to the impedance and it must be compatible with it for you to enjoy the ultimate audio experience.

Sensitivity could be measured by decibel (dB) of Sound Pressure Level per milliwatt. In some cases it might be seen as dB/mW or (dB SPL/mW).

Measured in decibels of sound pressure levels, it indicates the magnitude of loudness which can be achieved at a certain level of power from the source, usually 1 mili watt. Headphones usually have sensitivity ranging within 90-110db/mW so as to avoid volume decibel levels where music listening might become very painful.

An earphone's sensitivity is 122 dB SPL/mW. This means 1 mW of power will generate 122 dB SPL. This SPL level is over the threshold of pain and can cause permanent hearing damage in a short amount of time. Figure #2 shows different levels in dB SPL and the exposure time before hearing damage may occur. A typical headphone output could provide this level. Note that dB SPL do not sum in a linear manner,2 mW into the earphone will not generate 244 dB SPL. Doubling or halving the input power increases or decreases the SPL by 3 dB. A .5 mW input into the earphone will generate 119 dB SPL. A sensitivity rating doesn’t mean much until it is matched with the output capabilities of an audio system. If a system has low output level, using a low sensitivity earphone will result in low SPL. Increasing the amplifier level in this configuration will lead to distorted audio due to amplifier clipping. On the other hand, a high sensitivity earphone coupled with a high power headphone amplifier will force a low volume setting, and then can result in more noise. A classic case of this problem is connecting a pair of efficient earphones to an airplane sound system. Setting the volume at the first position, right above zero, gives enough level but is noisy. Increasing the volume makes it too loud to use. A simple, passive headphone attenuator solves this problem by reducing the level being delivered to the headphones, allowing you to raise the volume of the headphone amplifier to a setting that produces less noise. The following table shows the SPL output level for the different earphones at different source levels. Mixcder new HD601 NFC Bluetooth headphone, the sensitivity of the speakers is 96±3dB, which is a normal level within 90-110db/mW.

Higher sensitivity guarantees better driver performance without using a lot of power; however it also means there are chances of distortion at higher volumes (which might cause damage to the earphone and your ears). On the other hand, lower sensitivity earphones require more power and are a more durable option as compared to higher sensitivity ones as they don't damage the driver unit despite the amount of power they require. Hence, lower sensitivity over ear headphones should be paired with high power supplying devices to get good output sound quality.
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