Human ears are able to perceive the sound having the frequency in the range of 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz. But as we age, the range seems to narrow down a little. When we get very old, we cannot hear the low frequency sound at all. You have to go to a doctor and have your ear examined if you want to find out if you can hear in the usual 20 Hz-20 kHz range. We can even generates tones of various frequencies on our PC to see if we can perceive them clearly.
For generating tones of different frequencies on a Windows PC, we can use a freeware software called “PC Sound Card Tone Generator”. It is a small tool that can generate tones of any frequency between 100 and 15,000 Hz on your PC ad play it back using your PC’s sound card. Obviously, the accuracy of the output depends on the PC sound card as well as the output device such as the speaker.
In the user interface of PC Sound Card Tone Generator, we have to enter a frequency in terms of Hertz. It has a numpad of its own for entering the frequency. Then we can change the volume level and the output device on which the sound will be played. After choosing a frequency, output device and audio volume, you can click on the Tone On button to start listening to the tone. Clicking on the same button again will stop the sound.
According to the developer, the tones with lower frequencies are much more accurately generated using this program. As we increase the frequency, the output becomes more and more inaccurate. This could be because of the sound card used in the PC is not meant for generating tones and meant only for playing back music.
You can download PC Sound Card Tone Generator from http://www.ringbell.co.uk/software/audio.htm.