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The term reverberation describes the sensation of an auditory event in which, in addition to direct sound, there is also reflected sound ( room sound ), but which is not perceived as a repetition of the sound signal.

What reverberation is can best be explained with an example:

If you enter a large room in which there is a speaker, singer or instrumentalist (sound transmitter) at a great distance, the sound performance is "Hallig". Here are speech intelligibility and clarity in music performances rather low. The closer you get to the “transmitter”, the weaker the perception of the reverberation becomes, until the sound presentation in the immediate vicinity of the transmitter appears almost “dry”. The reverberation depends on the ratio of the level of the late incoming sound (for speech> 50 ms, for music> 80 ms) to the level of the early components. A reverberation has a positive merging effect in music up to a certain volume .

The reverberation only has to do indirectly with the reverberation , as the level of the room sound is proportional to the square root of the reverberation time .

The reverberation is much stronger in all electroacoustic transmissions - except for binaural sound recordings for artificial head stereophony - than in natural hearing. In the case of voice recordings in very subdued rooms, it can be undesirably strong due to relatively weak reflections after 20 ms or later.


  • Hannes Raffaseder : Audiodesign. Acoustic communication, acoustic signals and systems, psychoacoustic basics . Hanser, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-446-41762-5 .
  • Helmut Stange: The influence of reverberation on speech intelligibility and hearing improvement with hearing aids . Dissertation, University of Bonn 1955.