Wed February 08, 2012 By:

About reverberation and echo

Expert Reply
Wed February 08, 2012
Echo and reverberation (or reverb) refers to the effect of sounds reflected off solid objects, such as walls or ceilings in a theater or rocks in a valley. They are differentiated by the length of time between the initial sound and the reflected one.


  • If this distance is short, such as in a room or theater, the sound will be reflected back to the source in less than one-tenth of a second. This effect is reverberation. Because there is such a small delay in the sound repetition, sometimes only a few milliseconds, reverberation is often perceived by a listener as adding fullness to the original sound.

    Reverberation will often be added to recorded music to better simulate the sound of a live performance, or to enhance the tone by making a thin sound fuller.

Echo does not add to the original sound as reverberation does, but is perceived as a distinct repetition of the sound, usually slightly fainter than the original. The sound is weaker because of the energy lost as the sound waves travel the greater distance.

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