AES New York 2009
Workshop W22

Monday, October 12, 4:00 pm — 6:00 pm

W22 - Microphones for Extreme Environments

David Josephson, Josephson Engineering - Santa Cruz, CA, USA
D. J. Atkinson, NTIA Institute for Telecommunications Studies - Boulder, CO, USA
James Johnston, DTS, Inc. - Kirkland, WA, USA
Kenneth Link, Dauntless Fire Company - Ebensburg, PA, USA
Ashley Strickland, Plainfield Fire Department - Plainfield, IN, USA
Don Wright, Glendale Fire Department - Glendale, CA, USA

Microphones are essential components in many places outside broadcast and studio recording. The quality and reliability of a microphone can be a matter of life and death rather than just a question of flavor of sound. Firefighters in a burning house have to rely on clear communication system and face new challenges with the use of low bitrate coders in their radios. The same need applies to divers, astronauts, pilots, tank drivers, bike riders, etc. However, many microphone designs now in use work poorly in high noise environments and cannot be depended on to play the role of being a lifeline. Why is that? Couldn’t this be changed? In this workshop a number of people who have studied the problem faced by emergency responders try to identify the special requirements for microphones used under these conditions.