Idiot-proof wake-up alarm: Screaming Meanie


I hope you’re aware that the usual guidance is that more than 85 db can permanently damage your hearing.

But foam earplugs can reduce db by 15-30 or so, so he’d be fine.

Not at 220.

170db is measured right next to a launching space shuttle, and while it hasn’t been proven, it’s likely at 220db the world disintegrates into subatomic particles. I’ll take the 110db version.


If I recall correctly, at about 194 dB the transducer is drawing vacuum on one side, so it ain’t gonna get much louder than that.


yeah, 220. 221. Whatever it takes.

Or just get a Fitbit. Other than the data-collection and tracking benefits, you can set vibrating alarms via the iPhone/android app.

It is easily the most pleasant way to wake up I’ve found in years, and I sleep like a brick.

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I think that’s a typo-- the louder version is 120 dB-- psychoacustically, twice as loud as the 110 dB model-- and ten times as powerful.

this chart says

Level at which sustained exposure may result in hearing loss 90 - 95dB
Power saw at 3’ 110dB
Sandblasting, Loud Rock Concert 115dB
Pain begins 125dB
Pneumatic riveter at 4’ 125dB
Even short term exposure can cause permanent damage - Loudest recommended exposure WITH hearing protection 140dB

NIOSH Daily Permissible Noise Level Exposure
.25 hours or less 100dBA
0 112dBA

Now, how that’s mitigated by earplugs, I’m not exactly sure.

The closest I’ve been to a launching space shuttle is 7 miles, and at that distance it is a full-body, thundering, crackling eruption of awesome. It’s hard not to literally cry at the raw power on display. If your alarm was even half that loud and you used it in an urban area, I’m pretty sure it would count as a WMD.

I agree that the poster probably mistyped. 120 db is twice as loud as 110 db, not 220. It’s a logarithmic scale.

So, when traveling, you wear earplugs, and subject everyone in the surrounding rooms to a 110dB alarm when you want to wake up. Did I get that right?


you can have 110dB of higher-frequency sound that’s mostly blocked by even a thin motel wall.

i have a (claimed) 113dB alarm clock, and while it’s quite hard to sleep through, the sound decays pretty fast even within the apartment. you can barely hear it at all in the hallway.

anyway, sometimes you really do need earplugs to go to sleep, and an alarm clock to wake up. :-/

If yor alarm went off in most hotels I stay in (medium good business types) you would soon find yourself sleeping rather more soundly than you wanted. This is not a good idea outside your own, well insulated dwelling.

A sweeter idea, presuming you do not sleep with a mask on is a wake up lamp. I personally find light a very soothing way to awake.

I don’t know what crap hotels you all stay in, but the places I stay have wakeup masseuses.


Precisely my first thought: so YOU’RE the asshole I periodically encounter in hotels who blithely disregards the impact he has on everyone else in the vicinity.


:beer: Beer?

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it’s probably harder to carry around a wake-up lamp. also when i checked them out (i was literally living in a closet), they were stupidly expensive.

really, a high-pitch alarm won’t penetrate very far even at 110dB, and the “Screaming Meanie” even has a negative review on Amazon from an older gentleman who can’t hear it at all! i doubt you’d even notice it.

Personally, I am not nearly that into being awake, especially when it’s heralded by loud unpleasant noises.

Anyone remember when hotels would wake you up, even going up to knock if you didn’t answer.