Since Android device can play music using in-built music player or using external apps such as YouTube or TuneIn Radio, I wonder if it is possible to "measure" the sound being played by Android through earphones/headsets?

For example: I am using Google Music App to play music through headset/earphone. Is there a way(any tool or app)to know how much sound in decibel it is generating? Already checked Sound Meter, but it seems to be monitoring only the external sound/noice around phone , not really catching the sound output from earphone.

As discussed in this Health.SE post, there seems to be health implications (related to hearing loss etc.) if one hears the music at higher decibel volume. Hence, its better to check what sound level you are hearing your music at for safer media experience.

  • 1
    Measuring the speaker would be a possibility but the earphones, no, different earphones have different inherent values (impedance, resistance, material etc) that makes it impossible for the phone to know how loud the sound may be. How you wear them also makes a difference. In fact the area of the highest decibels is very limited. Earphones are inherently quiet but due to them being in the ear canal they give most of there sound directly to the wearer instead of the surrounding air, like ordinary speakers do.
    – GiantTree
    Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 9:43
  • Based on my understanding, it's almost probably impossible to do that, because I don't think Android has control over external output. At best, you might know the voltage of the sound before it goes through external output, but due to speaker's impedance (and probably external volume control), the volume output may not be the same as what you expected. Take an analogy on PC: I play an audio file on Audacity, the software shows/tells the volume in decibel. Then I turn down/up the volume on external speaker. The decibel indicated on the software is not the decibel I hear. (cnt'd)
    – Andrew T.
    Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 9:49
  • So, the only possibility is to use external tool to measure the decibel just in front of the speaker/headphone/earphone itself.
    – Andrew T.
    Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 9:50
  • @GiantTree Sound Meter which I linked in the Q seems to be doing it for external sound around phone, and may work with speaker sound. But as you may agree, most of us consume the music via earphones as it offer better privacy :) and hence I was more interested in knowing how much LOUD I am hearing. Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 10:16
  • @AndrewT. only possibility is to use external tool to measure the decibel just in front of the speaker/headphone/earphone itself. So, if I hold the music playing earphone in front of decibel measuring tool, can we assume this to be equal to what our EARS are receiving in terms of loudness? As you said, except this awkward way, not much is there I guess to fall back upon... Commented Jun 1, 2016 at 10:20

2 Answers 2


If you could measure the power output of the headphone jack then look on the spec sheet of your headphone/earphone for the sensitivity, you would be able to determine how much decibels you are being exposed to.

  • 3
    Could you please explain how to do such a thing ?
    – Maxime
    Commented Jan 5, 2017 at 7:57

The easiest way by miles to do this is to borrow another Android phone and install the free (with ads) app Sound Meter on it. Then you can simply measure the decibel level using the borrowed phone's microphone.

You may also be able to install Sound Meter on your own phone and use that, but arranging playback at the same time as measurement seems like more of a fiddle (I don't use my phone to listen to music, so I don't know how to do this).

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