Meyer Sound turns up fear-factor for Halloween Discovery Channel show

A Halloween edition of Discovery Channel programme, MythBusters, has drafted Meyer Sound to help it detect whether subaudible low-frequency sounds near 19 Hz can instil feelings of discomfort, dread, and terror.

The show enlisted 10 volunteers to spend time in four abandoned cabins at a secluded forest resort in Northern California.

"One cabin was subjected to infrasonic sound while the other control cabins had no sound," said Dr Roger Schwenke, staff scientist at Meyer Sound. "Although the cabins were essentially identical, the idea was to ask the participants if one cabin seemed more eerie or frightening than the others."

Unbeknown to the subjects, a U-shaped array of nine modified Meyer Sound 1100-LFC low-frequency control elements was hidden behind one of the cabins to create the ultra-low sounds.

"We used the U-shape to get the 1100-LFCs as close together as possible," explains Schwenke, "and to direct any higher overtones away from the cabin so we could get the infrasonic level as high as possible without anything being audible.

"We had to be careful with the level because, at around 95 dB, we started rattling the cabin walls," recalls Schwenke.

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