Can silence actually drive you crazy?

After his report on his “Inside Apple’s HomePod Audio Lab” tour, several commenters asked Jim what it sounded like inside the anechoic chamber. This video may help.



  • JimCracky

    I’ve been inside one and after a few minutes it can make you very dizzy.

    • Dana Pellerin

      Me too. It’s very unnerving.

  • Dana Pellerin

    Shutting the lights off would do me in. I’m amazed he made it so long. Great video.

  • Staying in an anechoic chamber room, I read somewhere that it was one of the main catalysts for John Cage’s radical ideas that changed modern composition/Music in the 20 century.

    • Katie

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  • Mo

    I can only guess how maddening my own tinnitus would become, without any other sound to compete with it.

  • James Hughes ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ”

    I would like to try this. But not in the dark. Too boring. I would do it with a book or something. Not so interested that I’d look anything up though. I don’t know if any anechoic chambers are around me anyway.

    • I imagine being in a anechoic chamber with ONE OTHER PERSON would become THE MOST RAGE THING EVER.

      • James Hughes ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ”

        Depends on who it is, that is for sure. Like, oh I don’t know, say Kate Beckinsale. I think I would be just fine, thank you very much.

        • I dunno. After a few hours “I can hear you digesting your coffee/breathing” might be a thing.

          • James Hughes ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ”

            It sure would start with a lot of “Excuse me” and then, after a while, “Oh my god, can you please stop farting?” 🙂 Reminds me of a terrible flight to Japan. I’ll just stop there.

          • Mo

            “What?”

            “Sorry.”

          • James Hughes ✓ᵛᵉʳᶦᶠᶦᵉᵈ”

            Squuuuuuueeeeeeeeke. Oops, sorry. My what an awkward day, is it day?

          • Mo

            “Um, I think I dropped one of my AirPods through the floor mesh.”

            “We get that a lot.”

  • As a parent I will NEVER need to worry about this.

  • GlennC777

    Pretty sure being stuck in any small, dark space with nothing to occupy my attention would quickly raise my boredom and likely my anxiety levels.

    I’ve been in one of these and agree it’s an eerie experience, but as the video explains, that’s mainly because it’s just a new sensory environment.

    If the acoustical experience were isolated as a variable I’m quite sure it would not be particularly significant to most people.

    • I haven’t been in an acoustic chamber, but I have been in a very quiet room and been put in a trance. It was one of the most peaceful and joyful experiences of my life, and one of the most refreshing.

      I was in the trance for just over an hour, but it felt like maybe 5 minutes at most.

  • The Cappy

    So there seems to be 2 groups. For one group, the silence creates a claustrophobia; for the other, the silence doesn’t drive you crazy so much as it opens the door to hearing things normally covered by background noise.

    • Mo

      At least. I wonder if there are more.