Sabin (unit)

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The sabin is defined as a unit of sound absorption. Sabins could be calculated with either imperial or metric units. One square foot of 100% absorbing material has a value of one imperial Sabin. One square metre of 100% absorbing material has a value of one metric Sabin. The unit is named in honor of Wallace Clement Sabine. The total absorption in metric sabins can be calculated by:



A = the absorption of the room (m2 metric sabin)

Sn = area of the actual surface (m2)

αn = absorption coefficient of the actual surface

Sabins are used in calculating the reverberation time of concert halls, lecture theatres, and recording studios.


  • Definition
  • Davis, D. and C. Davis. (1987) Sound System Engineering 2nd ed. Page 168.