About this project
“Soon, the Here bud may be a big part of how we interact with the world.” - .mic
“Two wireless earbuds and a smartphone app may soon change the way we hear our favorite bands and concerts.” - Rolling Stone
“The world sounds a lot nicer with Here in my ears .” - Wired
HERE IS A WIRELESS INTERACTIVE LISTENING SYSTEM
Through two truly wireless, in-ear buds and a smartphone app, Here allows you to instantly control real world audio so you can hear what you want to hear - no matter the situation - and be fully immersed in your audio environment.
Here does not stream or play recorded music. Instead, the Digital Signal Processor (DSP) inside Here acts as a studio in your ears by providing you with a volume knob, equalizer and effects to transform real world audio. Use this “remote control for your ears” to have an optimal listening experience every time.
HERE PROVIDES AUDIO CURATION TOOLS FOR EVERY LIVE ENVIRONMENT
Here has been engineered to give you control of any and all live listening experiences: Suppress the jet engine on an airplane. Reduce a baby crying. Boost the bass at a club. Live mix a concert by adding reverb. Enhance your senses and personalize every listening experience.
The technology used in Here is fundamentally different from any audio technology that has come before it. Here uses a variety of signal processing algorithms that target specific frequency ranges to modify sound as it enters your ears. Each Here bud captures incoming sound waves, processes the audio, and then plays back the desired result with no perceivable latency (i.e. in under 30 microseconds).
HERE LISTENING (SIMULATED)
Although nothing compares to actually experiencing the live curation provided by the Here system, we’ve put together a clip (an original track by our very own graphic designer, Geoff Lynn of the Newcomers Club) that simulates some of its functions.
The track below illustrates how a few features that will be available in the Here app—Bass Boost, Treble Boost, Reverb, and Flange—are intended to sound when you use the Here Active Listening System:
THE FIRST TRUE HEARABLE
Here is not meant to replace your headphones, headsets, or earbuds. The Here Active Listening System is designed for live listening environments, and is optimized for targeted, episodic use in live scenarios (e.g. concerts, stadiums, flights) where you can control and curate what’s happening in real time. Put simply, earbuds are for listening to recorded audio. Here buds are for engaging with real world sound.
CURATE LIVE MUSIC AND CREATE YOUR OWN SONIC WORLD
The Here system has been optimized for live music, so we invited two of the world's top violinists to our NY office to put it to the test. Watch Charles Yang and Tessa Lark demo an early Here prototype and experiment with live EQ:
HANS AND HERE
Hans Zimmer, legendary film composer and music producer, has been an invaluable partner in helping us ensure that Here’s functionality is optimized for live music listening. Watch below as he explores an early Here prototype and talks about the future of sound, music listening, technology, and the vast potential of what Here could mean for the future of how we hear the world:
Given that it's the first product of its kind, Here presented a unique challenge for our design team. We wanted to create a wearable that you would be proud to wear - something that was both functional and elegant. To achieve this, we developed a product architecture that optimizes battery power and efficiency, while being discreet enough to allow you to bae yourself in social settings.
The simple shape of the Here buds masks the complexity of its many components. It took us months to figure out how to fit so much tech into a small form factor that sits comfortably and securely within the ear. The inner shape of the Here buds is the result of countless iterations and prototypes, tested and evaluated hundreds of times. To further optimize comfort and performance, Here has three interchangeable sizes of custom designed silicone tips.
Here is redefining the limits of low-power signal processing and in-ear audio computing. We’ve chosen a comprehensive combination of hardware components and features for optimal live audio processing (and listening): a low power ARM processor for effects and EQ calculations, an ultra low latency audio input/output system, and a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) radio for control via smart phone. Our premium low-noise MEMS microphones handle massive SPL, while the powerful driver can add or subtract wide-band audio so that you can tailor your sound experience in even the loudest of acoustic environments.
On the mechanical side, we carefully selected materials and engineered complex internal air spaces to allow for maximum sound reduction, targeted signal processing and deep bass. We ran tests in simulation on our boards and on our early “Franken-Here” models (see below) to ensure the highest quality performance.
After countless months of testing the Here system in our lab, Jacob (our Director of Design) and Andrew (Senior Product Engineer) went undercover with an early working prototype to try out the Here buds during our partnership activation at Coachella 2015. It was important for us to make sure that Here worked in a loud, real world music setting, and we couldn't think of a better environment than Coachella. Check it out!
THE DOPPLER LABS VISION: IMMERSIVE WEARABLE TECHNOLOGY
At Doppler Labs, we believe in a post-mobile future where tech gets out of the way of the human experience. We believe wearable technology should integrate seamlessly into our lives and enable us to curate our environment to our liking. In service of that vision, we build products that give you the tools to engage with the world around you without removing you from the moment or experience.
The Here Active Listening System is the first step in pursuing that vision. We wanted to provide the best sound quality at shows, remove unwanted noise, and fix sleepless overnight flights, so we created an elegant solution to give you control of your audio environment.
As our technology becomes more powerful with each iteration (and each additional user), we open up doors for future innovation. The possibilities of what we can do with a speaker, microphone, and computer in your ear are limitless, from using voice as an input modality and speech as an output modality to transforming the fundamentals of human communication.
WHERE WE'VE BEEN: DUBS ACOUSTIC FILTERS
We launched DUBS Acoustic Filters in September 2014 and since then have sold hundreds of thousands of DUBS, won several design awards, and most importantly have gained the praise of audiophiles around the world, with some even claiming that the DUBS Acoustic Filters were "the best thing I bought this year".
By creating the DUBS, we were able to gain valuable experience. We assembled a team with proven expertise in launching new products, forged partnerships across the music space (e.g. Coachella, Tao Group, SoulCycle, Bonnaroo/Outside Lands, AM Only, Tiesto, Hans Zimmer, Quincy Jones), learned valuable information about our ears (their shape and how they perceive sound), and worked out the kinks of manufacturing products in China.
This experience has proven invaluable to the development of our team as we begin to ramp up for production of the Here Active Listening System. Given our track record, we are highly confident in our ability to deliver a great product and deliver it in the projected timeframe.
MEET THE HERE TEAM
Our confidence in our vision is founded in the expertise of our highly experienced team of designers, engineers, technologists and business leaders.
Doppler Labs is dedicated to our vision of enhancing all aspects of the listening experience by building immersive wearable technology. Each team member plays a critical role in helping us achieve our vision, drawing on their own personal experience building and shipping products for major tech companies like Apple, Amazon, Google and Microsoft, and disruptive start-ups like ClassPass, Dropbox, Palantir, Sonos, and Tesla (via Interlink Electronics).
We are launching the Here Active Listening System on Kickstarter because we believe in cultivating a community who can contribute to the development of Here. Through Kickstarter we are able to reach the most forward-thinking, passionate people who can provide us with valuable feedback that will help make our product great. Launching a new technology is hard. And we can use all the help we can get.
So if you are interested in music, sound, wearables, the future of hearing, bionics or computing, join us in the movement to optimize the way we experience real world audio, and help us change the way we all hear the world.
Are you a software developer?
Join us in making Here more than just a product. If you are a developer, we would love your help in growing the Here system into a platform for your ears.
For priority access to our forthcoming developer platform and first tier support from the Doppler Labs team, be sure to choose one of the two developer package options when selecting your reward.
Are you a producer, musician, or artist?
We want Here to redefine the way we listen to live music. As music lovers ourselves, we have optimized the Here system for live music and surrounded ourselves with some of the foremost composers and producers in the world.
Our team at Doppler Labs has made huge strides but we can only get better with the input of sound designers, engineers, producers and musicians. Choose our producers package or sign up to get involved and stay up to date.
We expect to deliver Here to you in December 2015. We have calculated this date based on years of manufacturing experience. Your Here t-shirt and limited-edition numbered Here prints will be delivered to you by August 2015. If you’re a developer, we plan to ship your DVT pair in late October. All deliveries to US addresses will be completed free of charge. Backers shipping to addresses outside of the US should add $30 to their pledge amount for shipping.
Each pair of Here buds comes with a 30-day (after we ship it) money-back guarantee and a 1-year limited warranty. You can find more information on our Return and Warranty Policy page.
Questions? Shoot us an email at email@example.com.
Something else you're wondering about? Contact us.
- Fit Style: In the ear
- Driver Size: 8mm
- Frequency Response: 20 - 20,000 Hz
- Cable Type: None
- Microphone: MEMS omni-directional
- Output: Peak SPL TBA (starting at ~100dB)
- Bluetooth: Bluetooth Low Energy 4.0
- Battery: Lithium ion rechargeable battery, 4-6 hours depending on usage
- Weight: 9.5 - 10g
- Compatibility: Any iOS or Android device that supports BLE (Android 4.4 and up)
Risks and challenges
Here is a completely new technology and as with any product manufactured for the first time there is a possibility that unforeseen bugs, challenges and delays will occur.
That being said, we have already completed most of the design and engineering for the Here system and have a fully working prototype which we have tested with close partners, friends, and colleagues.
We have identified our suppliers and CM and have already started planning production timelines and processes. Moreover, through the executional success we've had with DUBS, we have proven our ability to deliver hundreds of thousands of great quality products in short timeframes.
As we prepare to scale production, we continue to optimize our digital processing systems and maximize every inch of component space to bring you the best version of Here possible.
We pride ourselves on over-delivering and on relentless execution. Even after this Kickstarter project ends, we plan to send out continuous updates and announcements regarding Here (and beyond!).Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
The Here Active Listening System will ship to the US, EU, and following countries: Canada, Norway, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong.
The Here Active Listening System is an in-ear system that lets you curate your live audio environment. The Here system does not play or stream recorded music.
The Here Active Listening System is not designed to be a hearing protection device though it does allow you to reduce the volume entering your ears.
Is this the same technology used for Active Noise Cancellation (i.e. adding inverted sound signals to the original signal to nullify the effect)?
Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) is one of the technologies used within the Here buds, but is only a part of the magic which lets you curate your real-world audio experience. Unlike other ANC systems, the Here buds use a targeted process that selectively reduces specific frequencies instead of simply muting all of them.
The Here Active Listening System is designed to reduce volume by up to 25dB and increase volume by up to 6dB.
No. The Here app controls settings for both Here buds at the same time.
Will you be including filters that optimize for the range of the human voice to make it easier to follow conversations in crowded/loud environments?
The scenario you describe is definitely something that we'd like to eventually help solve with the Here Active Listening System, but differentiating between different human voices is a really tough signal processing challenge. While the initial release of Here may help somewhat, we are aiming to solve that problem more fully in future software updates.
We have done a lot of testing to ensure quality of fit across a wide range of ear sizes and will offer multiple silicone tip sizes when we ship the Here buds, but we cannot guarantee that they will fit all ears.
The Here Active Listening System is not designed to be a hearing protection device and we do not recommend it for use with firearms.
The Here Active Listening System is designed to reduce particular frequency ranges and allow you to apply particular effects to your environment (such as white noise), but is not a medical device. Because we haven’t done any medical testing, we can’t comment on how it may affect the symptoms of tinnitus. That being said, we are looking forward to hearing about your experience and hope it helps.
Given our limited resources, we’ve decided to focus our time and energy on creating the Here app for iOS and Android devices. We’re really confident about our December 2015 delivery date and decisions like this help us stay on track. Of course, this is not to say we won’t create a Here app for Windows phones in the future!
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