Air quality and pressure in your room

I was recently reading some technical stuff about sound waves and realised that the most important component in a system might be the actual air being pressured?

I found a few articles talking about this such as this one
sweetwater /effects-of-temperature-humidity-live-sound

Does anyone else do anything special with their air pressure or filtering to get the best sound from their system?

Please tell me you are joking?


Humidity makes a big difference, i picked up on this a while ago.
A few of us have spoken about this a few times. Certainly don’t do anything to get it to the perfect point.

Of all the things we hobbyists worry about, this surely has no need to cause even the most paranoid a moment’s concern. At the risk of spelling it out:

  1. The article itself concludes that ‘temperature and humidity have very little affect on sound for most outdoor live shows’, so they will have even less effect within a home system.

  2. The HF attenuation effect mentioned, as in the example of thunder, clearly only has a noticeable effect over many kilometres. Even the most palatial accommodation seen in the System Pics thread isn’t going to be prone to this.

  3. And finally, the refraction effect referred to requires a noticeable temperature gradient. If you have a noticeable temperature gradient in your listening room, it isn’t filtering you need, it’s either a heating/insulation specialist or a priest to exorcise the ghost that’s causing it.

If I were you, @jay_raskolnikov, I’d find something more productive to invest in for your next upgrade!



A bit of humility often helps😉


I prefer to listen to my system in the colder months, as the air is dryer due to the furnace running. I keep my system shut off all summer long as I am in middle Georgia in the USA, where humidity reaches 80-90% on average over the summer. In the fall when it rains, my bass in the system is so bloated that I can’t stand to listen to it.

I play my music based on the dew point rating for the day. Lower dew point means system on. Also, barometric pressure and the affect on high frequency sound waves creates a lag in delivery to the seating position.



Sound improves considerably as pressure increases. When pressure is expected to be very low the following day we eat a lot of lentils on the evening before. Next day we seal the door to the listening room and let the natural emissions gently raise the pressure.


Surely we all have an ion meter in our listening rooms and move the kit to the area of least negative ions before listening? This will take care of humidity effects on the electronics. The damping effect of humidity and air pressure on mechanical vibration of sound waves is a step too far perhaps.

I feel a Naim branded HVAC unit coming on?

How about a NVAC 5xs and then a NVAC2 with optional power supply.
Then the NVAC 555. With its own extra special PSU.

And later on a statement HVAC with a no compromise ability to Dehumidify / rehumidify and temperature control ones local atmosphere.

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If you can’t stand to listen to your system when it rains don’t ever consider moving to the UK!


More hot air about tweaking :wink:

I find it easier and just as effective to use a flux capacitor. These are no longer available except by special arrangement.

There was a thread last year called humidity and sonics, in which I wrote this:

Does this means we will all need to live at the same height above sea level as the Naim factory is, to get the best sound? :wink:

Why do you think I buy all-English hi-fi? It’s nothing to do with my politics, it’s because I want something that’s been tuned to sound best on a rainy afternoon. :upside_down_face:


No not really, as the NVAC 555 will compensate for this. Allowing to to live where you do. Naim will add/subtract humidity, temperature and pressure. As if you were living in Salisbury.

Regarding air pressure, it, too, affects the speed of sound, though the percentage change is pretty small. However what is very significant indeed is whether the interal and external air pressure of your ears is balanced. This can and does make a huge difference to sound - very obvious if you suffer severe congestion due to a cold and clear it blowing your nose. More commonly you can often you can hear difference as you yawn, equalising pressure, and unless you do so regularly external air pressure changes can gradually build up the internal/external ear pressure differential (positive or negative).

The difference in hearing caused by physiological effects such as this is one of the very likely explanations of the changes in sound quality some people observe from day to day, otherwise sometimes ascribed to believed phenomena like burning in (even of things that just don’t burn in), or their system sometimes inexplicably being sub-par.

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The next time I listen to ‘Rainy Night in Georgia’ I shall be thinking of @334578, who won’t be listening on a rainy night in Georgia…

Here you are talking about the effect of air pressure on the human body, not the effect of air pressure on the transmission of sound waves. It is doubtful that the room can ever be equalised to an air pressure that is different to the surrounding environment without considerable expense. A diving chamber in the listening room perhaps?

Now that is a cunning plan Hungry (Baldric) Halibut!