A new device is aiming to do for audio recording what the GoPro did for video recording. The Instamic is a small, self-contained, high-quality sound recorder. It is aimed at musicians, filmmakers, journalists, bloggers and other people who need a simple and effective means of capturing sound.
About a year ago, audio manufacturer Denon released its HEOS Wi-Fi music system, one of the latest members of a burgeoning market of Sonos competitors. Now it's added the all-new HEOS 1 speaker, bringing the buy-in price for the system down while throwing in a bonus: it's weather-resistant and designed to be used outside as well as inside. With the new Go Pack, it even becomes a fully portable Bluetooth speaker.
Canadian loudspeaker maker Axiom Audio reckons its new AxiomAir brings something new to the wireless speaker system table. It's been designed to liberate listeners from the single user, low powered, low fidelity confines of Bluetooth portable speakers into the higher quality streaming world of Wi-Fi. But what really sets this speaker apart is the fully functional Raspberry Pi computer beating at its heart. While this allows future Axiom updates to be installed with the touch of a button on the user interface, it also opens the door to user-created applications.
The StoryHome is aimed at helping families to connect via storytelling. it allows family members to share stories with each other wherever they are in the world. If a grandparent records a story on one StoryHome device, it can be relayed to their grandkids as a bedtime story on another.
Binaural recordings use two microphones to capture sound in the same way it is captured by human ears. The spatial depth of the resulting 3D sound is often impressive, but it can only be fully appreciated when wearing headphones and the recording process tends to be reserved for professionals as it usually involves a dummy head with a microphone placed in each ear. A German company called Binauric is looking to bring binaural recording to a wider audience with its OpenEars Bluetooth in-ear headphones that feature a microphone in each earpiece.
We've already heard about electronic earplugs that only block sound when loud noises occur, or that amplify human voices.
Doppler Labs' Here Active Listening system, however, takes things a
step further. Consisting of an app-controlled pair of wireless earbuds,
it lets users filter out or enhance audio frequencies in real-world
ambient sound before it reaches their ears.
Hong Kong-based Zorloo headed to Indiegogo earlier this year to crowdfund some next generation earphones that integrated a digital-to-analog converter (DAC) and headphone amp into the inline controller. By the time the campaign closed on February 22, the campaign had attracted over US$85,000, nearly four times the funding goal. Now, after a slight production delay, backers are starting to receive their Z:ero in-ear headphones and the company's Andy Ho sent Gizmag some to try out.
For its first foray into a crowded earphone space, PSB Speakers is aiming straight for the audiophile jugular with a combination of hybrid dual-drivers and its own Roomfeel technology. When the source audio signal reaches each M4U 4 in-ear monitor, the lower frequencies are directed to a dynamic driver while the higher end head for a balanced armature driver. This hybrid system has allowed the company's designers to add back the acoustic signature of a typical listening room for greater space and true-to-life presentation of recorded music.
Many of us enjoy listening to a good tune or two when out and about, and a goodly proportion of that mobile music will likely be sourced from a smartphone or tablet. For those who prefer high quality sounds though, dedicated players like Neil Young's Pono and those from iRiver's Astell&Kern are probably going to be on the menu. The latter has announced a new flagship portable audio player aimed squarely at audiophiles and sound professionals, which is capable of 32-bit/384 kHz bit-to-bit decoding without the need for conversion but comes at a rather high cost.
The Smart Fortwo might be one of the smaller cars on the road, but fill it to the brim with audio equipment and it can still be one of the loudest. Working with audio equipment firm JBL, Smart has kitted out a one-of-a-kind "Forgigs" concept. It has ear-splitting maximum outputs of 5,720 W and 150 dB.