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The Open Source, Hackable Parametric Speaker. Focus a beam of sound at objects or into your head! Read more

Burbank, CA Technology
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$126,473
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on May 19, 2012.

The Open Source, Hackable Parametric Speaker. Focus a beam of sound at objects or into your head!

Burbank, CA Technology
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Recent updates

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New Project Launch

Hello Backers.

I hope you enjoyed my last project, the Soundlazer.  Thanks the success from all of your support, I have launched a new project.

Lumapad - An open source, WiFI enabled ultra bright LED light pad

If you enjoyed experimenting with Soundlazer, please be sure to check out my new project

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1324892969/open-source-ultra-bright-led-light-pad-with-wifi-a

I hope to see you all as backers again!

Richard

Technical Update Regarding Soundlazer

Shipping Status

Now that many of you have received your reward levels, I wanted to give you some important information regarding setting up your Soundlazer.  If you haven't received yours yet, keep an eye out in the mail for it because they are on the way. Obviously, International backers will have a longer wait as they travel further, clear customs, etc.  99% of all packages have shipped.  Believe it or not, I still have a few people that didn't fill out their surveys or give me their address. If you are one of those remaining few, you only have a couple of more days until this project is officially closed.  

Using Soundlazer for the first time

When you first open the box, with the switch set to middle position, connect your iPhone / iPod, etc and power plugged in, you may think the Soundlazer works like a regular speaker.  If you move your head away from the beam, suddenly you will notice that the sound almost completely disappears.  The effect is one of the most interesting aspects of parametric speakers and one I hope you guys will experiment with the most.  Beam forming, horns and other tricks should produce some interesting results.

Try pointing the Soundlazer at a hard surface across the room and suddenly you hear the unique properties of ultrasonic waves.

Remember, if you don't have an audio source handy, just change the switch to the right position (test tone).

Firmware, case design files and other technical information can be found HERE

Note: Some people have noticed a low volume tone produced by the ultrasonic array. This is a result of the ultrasonic transducers “ringing” when they are in perfect tune. This tone is simply a subharmonic frequency of the 40KHz signal (20kHz, 10kHz, 5kHz, 2.5kHz, etc). To eliminate this tone follow the instructions on this Soundlazer Adjustment Post

Comments, Ideas, etc

Many of you have already contacted me and complimented the work I have done on this project. I appreciate all the kind remarks and I am leaving this post as the official publicly viewable one so that you guys can express your excitement, share ideas and simply leave a nice comment about Soundlazer.  Please note, that I am asking for nice comments here.  If you have any issues with shipments, etc, please email me directly using the Kickstart email contact system.

It has been very rewarding hearing all the nice compliments.  Once again, thank you to everyone for supporting me.

I hope to see you guys again for my next project.

Richard Haberkern

OK, guys - let's clarify.

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For backers only. If you're a backer of this project, please log in to read this post.

Shipping is almost Complete

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Shipping will start in a few days

Soundlazer boards waiting for the hand soldering of 39 piezo elements

As everyone now knows, manufacturing of the Soundlazers for Kickstarter is just about complete. I wanted to take this time to talk about Soundlazer and the future of this technology.

SOUNDLAZER IS FOR EXPERIMENTATION 

Soundlazer was created as an open source project with the intention of getting people involved with this experimental technology. As clearly stated throughout this project, Soundlazer was never intended to be a retail product and still has a long way to go before ever reaching that point. It is my hope that the online community will carry the "torch" further by experimenting and improving on the work I have already done.  Parametric speakers are an emerging technology with lots of physics involved in how the sound propagates through air and leads to the resulting information you hear. When you receive your Soundlazer, the first thing to note is that you can not overdrive the piezo elements and still expect to hear good quality audio. Ultrasonic wavelengths are very short and therefor are perceived as audio around the same level as speech. You will not be hearing audio that sounds as though it came from a rock concert when listened to the Soundlazer.


A WORD OF WARNING
I hope that the Kickstarter community is realistic in their approach to this technology and will use it as intended by me. Remember, ultrasonic energy can not be heard but the sound pressure will be felt by your inner ears. Prolonged exposure to the audio beam can result in earache and even hearing loss if precautions aren't taken. One of the features we added as a result of this project was a power level jumper which can be found inside on the circuit board. For long term experimentation and direct exposure to the beam, be sure to set the Soundlazer to the half power mode.

TO ALL THE BACKERS
Once again, thank you to everyone who supported Soundlazer. I look forward to seeing new websites and blogs on the internet dedicated to this technology.
Richard