Definition of decibel in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈdɛsɪbɛl/
(abbreviation dB)


1A unit used to measure the intensity of a sound or the power level of an electrical signal by comparing it with a given level on a logarithmic scale.
Example sentences
  • Because the range of sound pressures that can be heard is so large, a logarithmic scale of decibels is used to measure sound intensity.
  • Intensity is measured in decibels, most commonly using the decibel ‘A’ scale (dbA).
  • Sound pressure against the ears is measured in decibels.
1.1(In general use) a degree of loudness: his voice went up several decibels
More example sentences
  • But the three or four populated tables were generating very few decibels, either out of respect for the luxy environment or because they couldn't.
  • Well, it wasn't rock and roll as you would recognise it but there was certainly enough power and decibels to give the lugholes a good stinging.
  • The whine level reached decibels previously unheard of.


Early 20th century: from deci- 'ten' + bel (the unit being one tenth of a bel).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: deci|bel

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