This question relates to this one:

Why and how can you hear explosions in space in Star Wars?

Among the answers are this one and this one, among others, that simple put, point out that just because we, the audience, can hear the sounds, doesn't mean they exist in universe.

There are entries, like this comment which assert it is something the TIE fighters are artificially generating to make use of more of the pilots sense and give them situational awareness.

But amost all these answers, the point doesn't appear resolved.


Do we have evidence in-canon about whether the characters can hear other ships and/or hear explosions as depicted to the audience?

In other words, are the sounds diagetic ?

clarification: It matters whether they react to the sounds, not how the sounds are generated or get to their ears.

  • I just answered this on the linked question. They cannot. – Null Sep 16 '15 at 17:36
  • @Null: Does not address TIE fighters. – ThePopMachine Sep 16 '15 at 17:47
  • Yes, it does: the space in Star Wars is a vacuum and is unable to transmit sound, whether from an explosion or TIE fighter or whatever. – Null Sep 16 '15 at 17:50
  • @Null: No, because of the suggestion that the TIE fighter can be generating artificial sound to give the pilot situational awareness. The pilots would still hear this in the cockpit even if not transmitted through space. – ThePopMachine Sep 16 '15 at 17:51
  • 1
    @Null I posit that space in Star Wars is either not a vaccum, or a vaccum that can transmit sound. It matters not whether this is possible in the real world; Star Wars is a highly fantastical space-opera. Space combat itself, as presented in Star Wars, is not physically viable... no need to worry about the transmission of sound :) – Andres F. Sep 16 '15 at 20:06

No, sound can not naturally be heard in space in Star Wars.

The novel Lords of the Sith (which is canon) states:

[Vader's] ship slammed into the gun bubble and the transport, the inability of the vacuum to transmit sound causing the collision to occur in eerie silence. (Page 16)

This pretty clearly shows that space explosions can't be heard in-universe.

  • This looks suspiciously like my previous answer. – Null Sep 16 '15 at 17:41
  • @Null I started writing this before you posted your comment. – Rogue Jedi Sep 16 '15 at 17:58
  • If Vader's ship physically collided with something shouldn't there have been sound inside both of the ships, transmitted through the hull? – Xantec Sep 16 '15 at 18:13
  • @Xantec Vader was outside of the ship at the time, which is why he couldn't hear it. I've updated my original answer to include more context and make this clear. – Null Sep 16 '15 at 18:46
  • @Null I see. Thanks; I've not read the book in question. – Xantec Sep 16 '15 at 18:47

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.