When it comes to hearing popular music, we’ve come a long way since the days when your only option was to spend time with performers playing live.
As radios, record players, and then portable CD players hit the scene, individuals began using headphones for private listening experiences. Now, with inventions like the iPhone, we can listen to music through tiny corded earbuds or even wireless AirPods, making it way easier to hear songs while on the go.
And music technology continues to evolve and improve. Soon, we can anticipate being able to hear music that sounds like it’s inside your head, without using headphones.
Noveto Systems of Israel has just announced a new way to enjoy music. A desktop prototype of its Soundbeamer 1.0 device is set to be demonstrated in November.
The Soundbeamer produces 3D sound. An example of 3D sound is when you go to a movie theater or sit in a fancy home theater that has multiple speakers so you have a more realistic sonic experience.
You might hear the drums as if they’re right in front of you, while the guitarist is off to your left and the singer is prancing around so you hear him in front of you and then to your side and behind you. This makes for a much more immersive and realistic music listening experience, to be sure.
What’s more, when you listen to music with the Soundbeamer, it feels like the audio source is inside of your ears (as well as all around them), according to WTOP.
Keep in mind that this technology is still in the demonstration phase. It’s not available for sale yet and the manufacturer has not announced a release date but has indicated that a smaller version of the current prototype should be ready for sale to consumers by December 2021.
A major advantage of sound beaming is that you can still hear other audio in the room. For example, when listening to a song while working in a cubicle at work, you will be able to hear your colleagues talking nearby since there are no headphones to drown out other sounds.
Soundbeamer contains a 3D sensing module. It uses this module to find exactly where your ears are and then keeps track of the position of your ears as you move and walk around. The processor actually converts normal music audio into ultrasonic waves that generate “sound pockets” beamed directly to your ears.
If you activate the Soundbeamer to follow you, it will continue beaming music directly into your ears as you go for a walk or when you stand up or sit down while working. If the Soundbeamer is not set to follow you, you can stop listening to music simply by moving your head so it’s no longer in the path of the beam.
That can be a surreal experience, as people are not used to being able to cut off hearing simply by changing their position instead of sticking their fingers in their ears!
Stay tuned for updates on when the Soundbeamer is ready to go on the market.