Sound quality analysis is a tool designed to help determine customer preferences, which can be used to help the designer improve product quality. Many industries desire to know how the consuming public perceives their product, as this affects the product life and success. This research investigates which of the six sewing machines provided by Viking Sewing Machine Group (VSM group) consumers find most acoustically appealing. The sound quality analysis methods used include both jury based listening tests and quantitative sound quality metrics from empirical equations. The results from both methods are completely independent and are shown to have a very strong correlation. The procedures and results of both methods, jury listening tests and mathematical metrics, are presented. Near field sound intensity scans identified acoustic hot spots and give direction for possible design modifications to improve the acoustic signature of the two top tier machines, the Designer 1 and Creative 2144 (Husqvarna Viking and Pfaff respectively). This research determined that the entry level Pfaff Select 1530 has the most acoustically appealing sound of the six machines evaluated. In addition, it was also determined that a reduction in the higher frequency sounds produced by the machines is preferred over a reduction in the lower frequency sounds. Further investigations, including an evaluation of machine isolation and startup sounds, were also performed. The machine isolation results are highly dependant on the individual machine being evaluated and would require independent evaluation. In the machine startup sound assessment, it was discovered that again the Pfaff Select 1530 has the preferred sound. Near field acoustic intensity scans provide additional information on locations of strong acoustic radiation. The near field scans provided valuable design information. The acoustic "hot" spots were discovered to exist in the lower portions of the machines near the main stepper motor in the Designer 1, and radiating from the bottom plate of the machine in the Pfaff Creative 2144. This analysis has led to various design modifications that could be implemented to improve the sound quality of the machines, specifically the Designer 1 and the Creative 2144.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Mechanical Engineering



Date Submitted


Document Type





sound quality analysis, sewing sounds, jury listening tests, sound quality metrics