MEL conversions

This script (modified by JT from a semitone conversion form written and provided by J.R. de Pijper, IPO, Eindhoven) allows you to convert frequency values expressed in Hertz to a mel scale, which expresses frequency in terms of psychophysical metrics (i.e., perceived pitch). The formula mel= 1127.01048 * log(f/700 +1) is used here (which apparently was not provided in Stevens & Volkman, 1940 but from tabulated data from L.L.Beranek (1949) Acoustic Measurements. New York: Wiley, see Hartmut Traunmüller's page). Another formula is mel= (1000/log(2))(log(f/1000+1)) (Fant, 1968).

For your information, 
the Auditory list contains a very informative discussion regarding the origin of the mel scale and also the formula used above and the relationship between the mel scale and cochlea (see specifically Donald Greenwood's message on 23 July 2009). My take on the discussion is that the mel scale is problematic and to approximate an auditory scale Equivalent Rectangular Bandwidth (ERB) is better.

For a more complete and user-friendlier conversion page, please consult Hartmut Traunmüller's page at

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Usage: Fill in one of the fields, then press the "Calculate" button to calculate the second (conversion "MEL to HZ" is also possible).


Send comments etc. to:
Click here to access "Semitone conversion"-script.
Click here to access "ERB (equivalent rectangular bandwidth) conversion"-script.