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Past Event: Electrostatic Drivers for Earphones: Navigating the Potholes

November 28, 2018 at 7:30 pm

Location: Shure Incorporated, 5800 W. Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714

Speaker(s): Roger Grinnip, Principal Acoustical Engineer at Shure Incorporated

Electrostatic transducers are mechanically simple and can provide a number of performance benefits when used in acoustic applications.  However, electrostatic transducers carry a stigma, are viewed as exotic, and have not found mainstream acceptance except in condenser/electret microphones.  To most, the complication seems to stem from the unique electrical requirements, but a close look at the basic operation uncovers additional complications that can impede the performance benefits.  To shrink the electrostatic transducer down to an earphone driver, with optimal performance, requires recognizing these “potholes” and finding the path to compromise.

About The Presenter


Roger Grinnip is a Principle Engineer with Shure Incorporated.  He’s been with Shure Incorporated for 17 years and worked exclusively on acoustical transducers, with his most recent designs ultimately becoming the KSM8 dynamic microphone and the KSE1500 electrostatic earphone.  His interests include physical acoustics, structural acoustics, computational acoustics, (a little bit of) circuit design, and most other things related to electroacoustic systems.

Other Business: Dinner (optional, but please RSVP) will begin at 6:30pm. Contact Giles Davis (gilesdavis@motorola.com) by Tuesday, November 27 if you would like to join us. Sandwiches and chips from Jimmy John's will be provided. Please let Giles know if you have a preference for vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash).

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Posted: Thursday, November 15, 2018

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Past Event: "Mic It for the Mix!"

October 29, 2018 at 7:30 pm

Location: Flashpoint Chicago, 28 N Clark St #500, Chicago, IL 60602

Speaker(s): Dr. Ian Corbett - Coordinator, Audio Engineering Program, Professor of Audio Engineering and Music Technology, Kansas City Kansas Community College

Whether you have only one microphone and one recording room, or have a variety of microphones and different rooms available, it’s essential to think about the final mix well before you even get into the recording studio. Join Ian as he presents some of the ideas and concepts from his Focal Press/Routledge book “Mic It! Microphones, microphones techniques, and their impact on the final mix”. What do you need to think about before and during the recording process to optimize your tracks for your mix? What are you trying to control and capture when you record? What should your priorities be? What are the sonic, artistic, time and financial benefits of miking for the mix? Real world and every-day situations will be presented, with plenty of audio examples. For students and professionals alike, understanding these issues and techniques will increase the variety of mix styles and sounds you are able to produce, making you a more versatile audio engineer ready to meet the needs of clients and employers today and tomorrow.


ABOUT THE PRESENTER:

Dr. Ian Corbett is Coordinator and Professor of Audio Engineering at Kansas City Kansas Community College. He also owns and operates "off-beat-open-hats - recording and sound reinforcement", specializing in servicing the needs of classical and jazz ensembles in the Kansas City area. Ian's book "Mic It! — microphones, microphone techniques, and their impact on the mix" was published by Focal Press in 2014, and he also authors articles for Sound On Sound ("The Worlds Best Recording Technology Magazine"). Since 2004 he has been a member of the Audio Engineering Society's Education Committee, and has presented, mentored, and served on panels at local, regional, national, and international AES events, as well as many other professional industry events throughout the USA, Europe and Central and South America, and Asia. He has also been a member of the Producers & Engineers Wing of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Ian holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in composition from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and he can frequently be found playing saxophone in Kansas City's jazz clubs and restaurants.


 

Other Business: Dinner (optional, but please RSVP) will begin at 6:30pm. Contact Giles Davis (gilesdavis@motorola.com) by Friday, October 26 if you would like to join us. Pizza and salad from Lou Malnati's will be provided. Please let Giles know if you have a preference for vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash).

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Posted: Saturday, October 13, 2018

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Past Event: Can a do-it-yourself hearing aid be a good thing?

September 12, 2018 at 7:30 pm

Location: Shure Incorporated, 5800 W. Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714

Speaker(s): Mead C. Killion, PhD, ScD(hon), Founder, Etymotic Research & Stavros Basseas, PhD, Founder, Sound World Solutions

DESCRIPTION:
Starting in the early 1990s, FDA received repeated requests to create a category of OTC hearing aids. Mounting pressure came from consumers, consumer-advocate organizations,  Institute Of Medicine (Now part of National Academy of Science), President’s Council of Advisors, several task forces, and concerned hearing professionals.  Even among those adults who saw a medical or hearing professional, a recent study by Northwestern University MBA students found that 55% left the office with nothing:  Eighty percent said hearing aids were too expensive and 60% said cost was the primary reason for non purchase.  Finally, in August 2017 a bill establishing OTC hearing aids was signed into law.
    
This talk will cover the efforts of two manufacturers to bring OTC hearing aids to market, the difficulties in honestly labeling Personal Sound Amplifier Products (PSAPs) that "are not intended for hearing loss" according to FDA,  and the extensive experimental evidence that the better quality one-size-fits-most PSAPs can perform nearly as well as much more expensive hearing aids for many persons. In some cases, do-it-yourself hearing aids can be easily programmed by the purchaser. At the same time, the professional input can often be as important to satisfaction with hearing aids as the doctor can be in the success of medication.

Other Business: Dinner (optional, but please RSVP) will begin at 6:30pm. Contact Ross Penniman (rosspenn@gmail.com) by Tuesday, September 11 if you would like to join us. Pizza and salad from Lou Malnati's will be provided. Please let Ross know if you have a preference for vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash). -- Post-Meeting Reception: Please join us immediately following the meeting at Wildwood Tavern (6480 W Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714)

View Official Meeting Report


Posted: Wednesday, September 5, 2018

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Past Event: Balanced Armature Transducers: Evaluation and Simulation Techniques

Balanced Armature Transducers: Evaluation and Simulation Techniques

May 30, 2018 at 7:00 pm

Location: Shure Incorporated, 5800 W. Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714

Moderated by: Charles King

Speaker(s): Knowles Electronics

DESCRIPTION:

Balanced armature transducers (also known as receivers) are a loudspeaker commonly used in hearing aids, hearables, earphones and in-ear monitors. The presentation will give an overview of the balanced armature drivers, how they operate, and will be followed by an introduction to the simulation techniques that can be used to evaluate their performance.

Electrical and acoustical measurements are very reliable and can define the input and output from a real device or a simulation. These results help ground a simulation and ensure it is behaving like a real device. Full validation of the internal portion of the model can be difficult: these are very small devices, designed to fit inside the ear canal, and thus measurement of some very basic quantities can be physically difficult.

Just like traditional loudspeakers, dynamical analogies and SPICE simulations can simply model complete linear systems in the frequency domain. This is computationally very fast and can provide insight into the electrical, magnetic, mechanical, and acoustic components.

Finite element solvers can be used to model stiffness, mode shapes and magnetic non-linearity.  As FEA contains the actual part geometry and non-linear material properties, it is well suited to study how the device will function under a static load. Often these solutions will have millions of degrees of freedom and can take a long time to solve.

Algebraic differential equation solvers can be used to combine SPICE, FEA, and measured data into a single simulation. With this tool, the amplitude response, frequency response, and distortion caused by the non-linearities can be studied. 

The talk will examine strengths, weaknesses, and appropriate application of each of these individual techniques.
 

ABOUT THE PRESENTER:

Charles King is a Sr. Principal Engineer at Knowles Electronics in Itasca. He has worked for 20 years in research, simulation, product design and testing of a wide range of specialty transducers; developing products ranging from large outdoor warning sirens to ultra-miniature speakers used in hearing aids and in-ear monitors. He has designed balanced armature receivers, voice coil loudspeakers, compression drivers and horns as well as working with condenser microphones and optical devices. Prior to his formal engineering career he could be found in less formal locations as a live sound engineer. Charles has several patents, a degree in Electrical Engineering from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, and previously served as Chair of the Chicago Section of the Audio Engineering Society. 

 

Other Business: Dinner (optional, but please RSVP) will begin at 6:30pm. Contact Giles Davis (gilesdavis@motorola.com) by Tuesday, May 29th if you would like to join us. Pizza and salad from Lou Malnati's will be provided. Please let Giles know if you have a preference for vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash).


Posted: Wednesday, May 16, 2018

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Past Event: "Auralization as a Design Tool" at Threshold Acoustics LLC

The National Arts Centre, Southam Hall Credit: Diamond Schmitt Architects (rendering and architectural design), Fisher Dachs Theatre Consultants, Engineering Harmonics, and Threshold Acoustics

The National Arts Centre, Southam Hall Credit: Diamond Schmitt Architects (rendering and architectural design), Fisher Dachs Theatre Consultants, Engineering Harmonics, and Threshold Acoustics

March 28, 2018 at 7:30 pm

Location: Threshold Acoustics LLC 141 West Jackson Blvd, Suite 2080 Chicago, IL 60604

Moderated by: Scott Pfeiffer

Speaker(s): Scott Pfeiffer, Nick Dulworth, and John Strong

NOTE: Due to space, this event will be limited to 36 participants. Attendees must RSVP to request a spot. Please send an email to Giles Davis (gilesdavis@motorola.com) to be added to the list. Please RSVP by March 26 (event may fill before then).

DESCRIPTION:

Auralization is used regularly in acoustic design, and is often over-hyped. It is not like hearing it before you build it, or a miracle of real-world fidelity. It is however, a way to bring musicians, owners, architects, and others into the conversation. Instead of discussing STC, RT, Clarity, Bass Ratio, Running Liveliness, or EDT, now we can listen together and explore – understand how changes in design become audible and meaningful.

We put the controls in the hands of the users. We present the capability and the shortcomings of the techniques, and we share all of the decisions we make on the way to the final outcome – there is no salesmanship in our technique.

John Strong, Nick Dulworth, and Scott Pfeiffer, with support from others on the team, will share the auralization process as implemented by Threshold Acoustics, you’ll get a chance to hear some auralizations that have moved projects toward their successful completion, and be invited to share your critiques and ideas for how it could be improved.

 


ABOUT THE PRESENTERS:
Scott Pfeiffer
For over two decades, Scott has participated in virtually every aspect of the acoustical consulting profession, from modeling and measurements to leading the design of complex rooms, audio and video installations, and electronic enhancement systems. He entered the field with a Bachelor of Science in Physics with Honors in Music from Moravian College, and then moved on to graduate studies in the Acoustics Laboratory at the Technical University of Denmark. Scott has been honored as a Fellow in the Acoustical Society of America for his accomplishments in the design of worship and performing arts spaces. He was keynote speaker at the University of Michigan’s 2013 Saturday Morning Physics conference, lecturing a rapt audience of 1,000 on physics, perception, and uniqueness.

Nick Dulworth
Nick has a background in classical recording, music composition, and mechanical design. As a recording engineer, he has recorded over 200 concerts including performances by the Emerson String Quartet, Emanuel Ax, Zuill Bailey, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, and Daniil Trifonov. Nick holds a master’s degree in Acoustics as well as bachelor’s degrees in Music Composition and Recording Arts from The Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. 

John Strong
John’s career in acoustics comprises design of facilities for performing and recording arts, education, and worship, across the US and internationally. He holds Bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering and music theory from the University of Notre Dame, a Master’s degree in architectural acoustics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and lifelong experience as a performer in numerous musical genres. As a multi-instrumentalist, science lover, and compulsive tinkerer, he finds perpetual inspiration at the intersection of art and technology. He has presented to the Acoustical Society of America, Audio Engineering Society, and American Institute of Architects, and is a guest lecturer at the University of Notre Dame.

 

 


MAILING LIST:

Feel free to drop us a note at chicago.aes@gmail.com if you'd like any changes to how you receive our meeting announcements. As always, both members and non-members are welcome.

Other Business: Dinner (optional) will begin at 6:30 pm. Pizza and salad from Lou Malnati's will be provided. In your RSVP, please let Giles know if you will join us for dinner and if you have any dietary restrictions (vegetarian, gluten-free, etc). Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash).

View Official Meeting Report


Posted: Sunday, March 11, 2018

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Past Event: Structural Acoustics: A Technical Review (or, "What Do You Mean That Partition Is Actually a Loudspeaker!?!?")

Structural Acoustics: A Technical Review (or, "What Do You Mean That Partition Is Actually a Loudspeaker!?!?")

January 31, 2018 at 7:30 pm

Location: Shure Incorporated, 5800 W. Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714

Moderated by: Steve Rittmueller

Speaker(s): Masonite

 DESCRIPTION:

 

Structural acoustics is the study of how sound is transmitted to and within structures, both airborne and structure-born. The presentation includes 1) a review of the mechanisms of the propagation of sound within the built environment (primarily air-borne), 2) the derivation of the first-order as well as some more advanced approximations to the acoustical performance of structures, and 3) a review of published data for some common construction configurations, including comparisons to theoretical results.

ABOUT THE PRESENTER:
Steve Rittmueller is an acoustical engineer with 20+ years of experience across various fields of acoustics. He started his career in acoustics working for US Robotics with a focus on the interaction between the mechanical design and the performance effectiveness of speakerphones. This was preceded by a stint in the automotive world where he worked on analog electronics and DSP algorithms (noise cancellation, acoustic echo cancellation, speech recognition, etc.) to improve the in-vehicle experience for Motorola and a startup in Southeast Michigan. Steve spent several years developing acoustic transducers and methods of quantifying their performance for Knowles Electronics.  Steve is currently a research engineer for acoustics for Masonite, the leading supplier of doors to various markets with a wide variety of acoustically rated products. Steve is active within the ASTM and is currently the chair of subcommittee E33.07, “Definitions and Editorial” within E33, “On Building and Environmental Acoustics”.

 

Other Business: Dinner (optional, but please RSVP) will begin at 6:30pm. Contact Giles Davis (gilesdavis@motorola.com) by Tuesday, January 30th if you would like to join us. Pizza and salad from Lou Malnati's will be provided. Please let Giles know if you have a preference for vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash).

View Official Meeting Report


Posted: Wednesday, January 24, 2018

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Past Event: Jazz and Classics in Surround

Jim Anderson

Jim Anderson

November 30, 2017 at 7:30 pm

Location: Shure Incorporated, 5800 W. Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714

Speaker(s): Jim Anderson Professor, Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music Tisch School of the Arts, New York University

 

Recording Engineer/Producer Jim Anderson will present an evening of his recordings of jazz and classical music in surround sound. Musical artists will include saxophonist Jane Ira Bloom, Chicago vocalist and songwriter Patricia Barber, US Army Jazz Ambassadors performing compositions by Sammy Nestico, and the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra of Norway.

Genelec has graciously provided a 5.1 monitor system for listening.

Jim Anderson is an internationally recognized recording engineer and producer of acoustic music for the recording, radio, television, and film industries. He is the recipient of numerous awards and nominations in the recording industry: his recordings have received ten Grammy and Latin Grammy awards and 27 Grammy and Latin Grammy nominations; his radio recordings have received two George Foster Peabody Awards and there have been two Emmy nominations for television programs. In 2013, Jim won the Grammy for Best Surround Album and was nominated for Best Surround Album in 2014.

A graduate of the Duquesne University School of Music in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Jim has studied audio engineering at the Eastman School of Music and Sender Freies Berlin. During the 1970s, he was employed by National Public Radio. Since 1980, Jim has had a career as an independent audio engineer and producer, living in New York City. He has been a frequent lecturer and speaker for the Audio Engineering Society (AES) and master-class guest faculty member at leading international institutes. He is a professor of recorded music with the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music in the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and was the department’s Chair from 2004 – 2008.

He has served as Vice President for Eastern Sections of the AES, chaired the NYC Section and was Chair of many AES conventions. Jim is a Fellow of the Audio Engineering Society, has received five AES Board of Governors Awards, and was President of the Society in 2008-2009.

Jim and his wife, tonmeister Ulrike Schwarz, collaborate as Anderson Audio New York 
www.andersonaudiony.com and specialize in surround and immersive recording.

Other Business: Dinner (optional, but please RSVP) will begin at 6:30pm.Contact Giles Davis (gilesdavis@motorola.com) by Wednesday, November 29th if you would like to join us. Sandwiches and chips from Jimmy John’s will be provided. Please let Giles know if you have a preference for vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash).


Posted: Tuesday, November 7, 2017

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Past Event: Perception and Measurement of Headphone Sound Quality: Is There a Preferred Headphone Target Response?

October 12, 2017 at 7:30 pm

Location: Shure Incorporated, 5800 W. Touhy Ave, Niles, IL 60714

Speaker(s): Sean Olive, Ph.D. Past President, AES Acoustic Research Fellow, Harman International

DESCRIPTION:

A recent paper by Jeroen Breebaart* reported no correlation between the retail price of 283 models of headphones and their measured frequency response (i.e. the single best predictor of how good it sounds). Clearly, the headphone industry has decided sound quality doesn’t matter or else they haven’t a clue what it is or how to measure it.

Dr. Olive’s talk will summarize Harman’s 5-year research effort towards better understanding the perception and measurement of headphone sound quality. Hundreds of listeners participated in controlled listening tests where different models of in-ear and over-ear headphones were rated based on preferred sound quality. From these studies we’ve discovered (much like loudspeakers) most listeners prefer neutral sounding headphones, with some small variations in preferred bass and treble that are related to the quality of the recording, and age and training of the listener. Most importantly, listeners’ headphone preference ratings can be accurately predicted based on how far the headphone’s frequency response deviates from a preferred target response. In summary, the science exists to improve the consistency and sound quality of headphones, but do consumers and the industry care enough about sound quality to affect change?

*in The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America

 


ABOUT THE PRESENTER:

Sean Olive is Acoustic Research Fellow for Harman International, where he has worked since 1993. He directs the Corporate R&D group, whose research has mainly focused on the perception and measurement of sound reproduction including loudspeakers, room acoustics, automotive audio, and currently headphones. From 1986-1993, he was a research scientist at the National Research Council of Canada where he worked with Dr. Floyd Toole.

Sean received a Bachelor degree in Music from the University of Toronto, and his Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Sound Recording from McGill University in Montreal. Dr. Olive has written over 50 research papers on his research for which he was awarded the Audio Engineering Society (AES) Fellowship Award in 1996, and two Publication Awards (1990 and 1995). In 2012, Sean received the Harman Achievement Award, and in 2013 the ALMA Titanium Driver Award for scientific contributions to the loudspeaker and headphone industry. Sean is active in several AES Technical Committees, has co-chaired two AES conferences, and is Past AES President. He currently serves as an AES Governor.


DIRECTIONS:

Driving:  When arriving by car, approach from the east by heading west on Touhy, then turn right into the parking lot just east of the Shure building, which is on the corner of Touhy and Lehigh. DO NOT turn left into parking lot from Touhy heading east, as this is illegal and you may get a traffic ticket.

CTA Blue Line:  Get off at Jefferson Park transit center, and take bus lines 85A, 225, or 226 to Shure (be sure to check the bus schedules for return trip).

 

CTA Red Line:  Get off at Howard and take bus line 290 to Shure (be sure to check the bus schedules for return trip).

 

Other Business: Dinner (optional, but please RSVP) will begin at 6:30pm. Contact Giles Davis (gilesdavis@motorola.com) by Wednesday, October 11th if you would like to join us. Pizza and salad from Lou Malnati’s will be provided. Please let Giles know if you have a preference for vegetarian, gluten-free, etc. Price is $10 for non-members and $8 for members and students (please bring cash).

View Official Meeting Report


Posted: Monday, September 25, 2017

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Chicago AES Section on Twitter

 The Chicago AES Section is now on Twitter.

Chicago AES Section on Twitter


Posted: Thursday, September 21, 2017

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Chicago AES Section on Facebook

A Facebook page has been created to augment our section's digital presence.

Chicago AES Section Facebook


Posted: Wednesday, September 20, 2017

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AES - Audio Engineering Society