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robertogreco : microphones   10

Landscape Circuitry – Nick Sowers Architecture
"What happens when you wire up parts of a landscape and amplify its own remixed sounds? This is the next iteration of my series with SEAP : Sonorous Environment Amplification Panel. I have set up this four channel audio installation on the edge of Seaplane Lagoon on the former Naval Air Station in Alameda to explore the sonic textures in magnified detail.

Through live amplification of sounds picked up by a variety of microphones (contact, omnidirectional, shotgun, and hydrophone) I am able to reveal elements of the landscape which may otherwise go unnoticed. The sounds of birds, waves, pebbles, electricity, and wind through a security fence travel through the wires and merge digitally before being projected through the acrylic sound panel.

Even the more visible and audible parts which pass through such as Southwest jets taking off from nearby Oakland Airport are filtered through the sound installation, mixing and resonating with bird sounds and howling wind. We can hear all of this without augmentation, yet the ability to turn the dial up or down on certain sounds gives the observer a new form of participation in the landscape.

The forms of participation enabled by SEAP can be unexpected. One thing that surprised me is how the slight delay between the sounds initially heard and the sounds played back through amplification immediately creates a new atmosphere. The delay is like what you hear in a hard concrete alley, your own footsteps bouncing back to you in a kind of pangy-hollow sound. But you wouldn’t expect to find that echo effect in an open landscape. When a security guard pulled up to ask me what I was doing, his own voice was thrown back to him. He seemed satisfied with my description “Just testing out an art installation” and drove away.

Another unexpected sound comes from this security fence blocking access to the breakwater. I wired up a contact microphone to the galvanized steel post supporting the fence. The wind which slips through the fence is not audible to the naked ear, yet the metal absorbs the sound and can be amplified and mixed in with the rest of the environment. Listen:

In the recording you’ll hear the sounds of birds picked up by this omnidirectional microphone aimed down into the rocks. Crevices contain their own little sonic worlds. The space between rocks shelters a bowl of stiller air. In this placement, the microphone avoids clipping from wind. Tinier sounds like pebbles trickling down and birds whose calls would otherwise be drowned out are easily picked up.

I found myself thinking about artist Jenny Odell‘s practice of observation at the Morcom Amphitheatre of Roses in Oakland, about how this place on the fringes of a former Navy base could be my rose garden. From the perspective of an architect, I’m not doing anything here. I’m not analyzing a site as a precursor to making a building. Yet I am doing more than bird watching or walking or fishing– all fine activities for absorbing the nuances of a place and experiencing the passage of time. SEAP is an evolution of the many years I have walked landscapes and recorded sounds. Now I have an apparatus with which to gauge the subtle textures of a soundscape and add my own interpretation back into it. I expect to return to Seaplane Lagoon with an ever evolving set of processes to fold in between the processes of erosion and construction."
nicksowers  sound  audio  landscape  listening  2019  microphones  jennyodell  oakland  morethanhuman  recording 
june 2019 by robertogreco
Austin Kleon on Twitter: "I think a lot about how the phone call — hearing the sound of a real human voice — is becoming a more intimate, meaningful option in the face of 24/7 text/image connection… https://t.co/dDx24gJ62v"
"I think a lot about how the phone call — hearing the sound of a real human voice — is becoming a more intimate, meaningful option in the face of 24/7 text/image connection

There’s a really interesting part of @dada_drummer’s THE NEW ANALOG, where he talks about how different phone calls became when they went digital — background noise was reduced, and so the sense of distance https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1620971976/

He points out that the iPhone has 3 microphones, but they're not used to capture extra sound, they're for noise-cancelling — they're used to isolate signal from noise [image]

On the iPhone, “*what* is being said is very clear — but *how* the message is delivered is lost. Is the voice loud or soft? Are we being addressed intimately or publicly? Can we hear hints of other meanings in the speaker’s voice, or does the delivery match the words exactly?”

There’s a “cell yell” that @dada_drummer points out: when we're out in the world on the phone, we tend towards shouting — even though we can be clearly heard in a noisy environ thanks to noise cancellation — b/c the phone doesn't feed our voice back to us, so we can’t regulate it

"essay idea: how the rise of podcasts corresponds to the decline of (personal) phone calls for millennials"
[https://twitter.com/popespeed/status/971940280709603328 ]

This is an interesting point. When I do podcast interviews, I have an extremely good USB mic and headphones to monitor my voice, so I can move closer to the mic, speak softer,

Maybe people like podcasts so much because they replicate more of what a real world or analog telephone conversation sounds like? Something to ponder!

Oh, I’m reminded now: @cordjefferson told a beautiful story at @PopUpMag about a voicemail message his mother left him, and how it changed the way he thought about phone calls. (I don’t think it exists online, or I’d link to it.)"
austinkleon  audio  microphones  mobile  phones  telephones  intimacy  voice  sound  recording  noise  noisecancellation  analog  conversation  phonecalls  humans  connection  2018  digital  iphone  podcasts 
april 2018 by robertogreco
Ban boring mike-based Q&A sessions and use index cards instead | Valerie Aurora's blog
"If you’ve ever been to a conference, you know the problem: A brilliant and engaging talk is coming to a close, and already a line of fanatic wild-eyed people (okay, mostly men) is forming at the audience microphone. Just by looking at them you know they will inevitably start their questions with, “This is more of a comment than a question, but…” Actually, you are grateful for the ones who are that self-aware, because most of them seem to genuinely believe that their barely disguised dominance play or naked self-promotion is an actual question that the rest of the audience would like to hear the answer to. So you scooch down lower in your seat and open your Twitter client so you can complain about how awful Q&A sessions inevitably are.

Fortunately, there is a way to prevent this situation entirely! Here is the formula:

1. Throw away the audience microphones.
2. Buy a pack of index cards.
3. Hand out the cards to the audience before or during your talk.
4. Ask people to write their questions on the cards and pass them to the end of the row.
5. Collect the cards at the end of the talk.
6. Flip through the cards and answer only good (or funny) questions.
7. Optional: have an accomplice collect and screen the questions for you during the talk.

Better yet, if you are a conference organizer, buy enough index cards for every one of your talks and tell your speakers and volunteers to use them.

Why is the typical line-at-the-mike style of audience question so productive of bad questions? To start with, it gives the advantage to people who aren’t afraid to put themselves forward first and rush to the mike first. This means most or all of the questions are from people with relatively little self-doubt and a high opinion of themselves. Another draw for the self-centered overconfident type is the chance to be the center of attention while asking the question using the audience microphone. Then there is the lack of built-in limit on the time the purported question-asker is speaking. Finally, there is no way to screen the question for quality until the question has been fully asked (sometimes taking minutes). The end result is a system that practically invites self-centered, overconfident, boring, long-winded people to dominate it. (And you wonder why women almost never ask questions at your conference?)

By contrast, writing questions on index cards appeals more to quiet, thoughtful, self-effacing folks who are considerate of those around them. It allows you to screen the questions for quality. It limits the length of the question. It encourages actual genuine requests for clarification on the subject of your talk.

Get rid of line-at-the-mike style Q&A sessions. Replace them with index cards. Your conference attendees will thank you."
q&a  conferences  commenting  microphones  audience  indexcards  events  valerieaurora  2015 
july 2015 by robertogreco
Throat microphone - Wikipedia
"A throat microphone, also laryngophone, is a type of contact microphone that absorbs vibrations directly from the wearer's throat by way of single or dual sensors worn against the neck. The sensors, called transducers, can pick up speech even in extremely noisy or windy environments such as on a motorcycle, or in a nightclub. Other types of microphones do not function well under these conditions because of high levels of background noise. Advanced laryngophones are able to pick up whispers, and therefore perform well in environments where one has to keep quiet while communicating with others at a distance, such as during covert military operations. Throat microphones are also very useful when helmets or respiratory protection is required. Many full-face SCBA, CABA, SAR, PAPR or re-breather masks do not have a provision for a microphone inside the mask. The throat microphone can be used safely, as it is positioned outside the mask's face seal and as such does not compromise the respiratory protection provided by the mask, nor does it violate mask approvals and certification."
microphones  sound  via:soundscrapers  laryngophones  audio  recording 
may 2015 by robertogreco
Rev Dan Catt: RDCXAD #007, the binaural episode.
"The latest experimental audio diary is out and this one is a bit of fun (for me). For this week it's all about the binaural recordings.

I was introduced to binaural recordings for the first time back in 2008 by Scott while working at Flickr. In short you record with microphones positioned at ear distance apart, with a head like object between them to block the sound from one side of the head directly reaching the other. A good way to simulate this head like object is to use your actual head, easy huh!

Then when someone wearing headphones listens back to the recording they end up with the slightly freaky experience of essentially ending up in your head. The effect isn't so great on stereo speakers, but I figure most people listen to podcasts with headphones.

Anyway, wearing a pair of handy in-ear microphones we all set off on a family walk around our local deer park, with the intent of getting some nice nature/field records. Turns out as a family we don't really shut up for more than 20 seconds at a time, I blame the kids."

[Direct link to the podcast: https://soundcloud.com/revdancatt/rev-dan-catt-experimental-audio-diary-episode-7 ]

[Hardware:

Zoom H1 Handy Portable Digital Recorder
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003QKBVYK/

Roland CS-10EM Binaural Microphone Earphones
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B003QGPCTE/ ]
revdancatt  fieldnotes  fieldrecording  audio  sound  soundscapes  2014  classideas  projectideas  microphones  binaural  binauralrecording  zoomh1 
november 2014 by robertogreco
Rogue Amoeba | Piezo: Charmingly Simple Recording From Applications and Audio Devices
"Piezo makes it a snap to record audio on your Mac. In seconds, you'll be recording audio from any application or from audio inputs like microphones.

Piezo requires almost no configuration, and it's a blast to use. Simple and inexpensive - that's a winning combination."
via:nicolefenton  applications  mac  osx  audio  recording  piezo  skype  microphones 
january 2014 by robertogreco
TidBITS iPhone iPad iPod: iOS Hearing Aids... or, How to Buy Superman’s Ears
"Use Megaphone with the normal iPhone earphones, and the mic pickup sits just below your chin; you’ll hear only sound that’s directed at you. But switch your iPhone earphones for the standard iPod earphones, which don’t have a mic, and now you’ll be using the rather sensitive omnidirectional microphone that’s built into the iPhone and fourth-generation iPod touch.<br />
I tried this out for the first time while standing outside of a Starbucks, and suddenly I could hear the footsteps of anyone walking by. Snatches of a conversation at a 20-foot distance. I heard a siren, and then was shocked to see an ambulance pass by three blocks away. Traffic and ambient noise are also amplified, of course, but our brains have had a quarter-million years to learn how to separate out important sound frequencies, and that, plus my lip-reading abilities, turned me into a rather powerful eavesdropper."
iphone  ios  hearing  eavesdropping  sound  trythis  perception  hearing-aids  megaphone  applications  microphones  classideas  via:britta 
march 2011 by robertogreco

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