AES London 2011
Saturday, May 14, 11:00 — 13:00 (Room 5)
T4 - In-Ear Monitoring—Past, Present, and Emerging Developments
Stephen Ambrose, Asius Technologies LLC
In the 1970s, sound engineer and performer Stephen Ambrose began pioneering work experimenting with the use of sound isolating earphones as a better means of hearing himself and others during live performances. This form of monitoring was in sharp contrast to the norm at the time, which consisted of an array of dedicated on-stage loudspeakers. Unlike with loudspeakers, performers with isolating earphones could hear their own unique mix, separate from others. As an additional benefit of in-ear monitoring, stage monitors are no longer present to leak output into the house sound system or recording mixes. Early work of Ambrose, with a wide range of well-known performers, established the basics of in-ear monitoring but was challenged by technical barriers and acceptance issues. Today, however, IEM (In-Ear-Monitoring) is in widespread use in many product forms. This tutorial, punctuated with a variety of demonstrations, will cover key developments responsible for the growing acceptance of IEM systems. Additionally, new improvements in the areas of sound isolation, comfort, occlusion effect suppression, and reduction of hearing fatigue, most of which are not yet commercially available, will be discussed.