ISO 7779: Standard for Measurement of Airborne Noise Emitted by Information Technology

ISO 7779, intended for noise measurement, is often incorrectly also used for noise declaration. The reason for this is sometimes just simply a lack of knowledge, and sometimes due to a temptation to mislead customers to believe that products' noise figures are better than they actually are.

The part of ISO 7779 that can be of interest for non-acousticians is the one about operating modes. The two most well-known operating modes for personal computers, for example, are the Operating and Idling ones. ISO 7779, but not ISO 9296, defines these operating modes for information technology and telecommunications equipment. Noise declarations according to ISO 9296 must include the declared operating modes.

The A-weighted sound power level is supplemented by the A-weighted emission sound pressure level determined at the operator position(s) or the bystander positions, based on basic noise emission standard ISO 11201. This sound pressure level is not a worker's immission rating level, but it can assist in identifying any potential problems that could cause annoyance, activity interference, or hearing damage to operators and bystanders.

Methods for determination of whether the noise emission includes prominent discrete tones or is impulsive in character are specified in annexes. ISO 7779 is suitable for type tests and provides methods for manufacturers and testing laboratories to obtain comparable results.

The methods specified in ISO 7779 allow the determination of noise emission levels for a functional unit tested individually. The procedures apply to equipment which emits broadband noise, narrowband noise and noise which contains discrete-frequency components, or impulsive noise.

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