Albert Blue …

It was all the  fault of one of the presenters at the Members’ Day last year … he discussed binaural recording … which caused some intrigue on my behalf … two months later and after many web searches a site was found that actually gave step by step  Ladybird 1a  style script and pictures on how to build a DIY dummy head … all you need to do is visit www.digdagga.com … its all there …

The head is made of fibreglass and hollow … so it forms a shell for the mics and cable … most GB dummy heads are solid and made of styrofoam …

Mics are Core System binaurals with 1.5m of cable complete with a box for a 9v battery … no limit to add ons if you visit their webpage …

Here’s Albert … every home should have one … initially he was to be consigned to the garage … things soon relented and he pops up all over the house …

He is built as spec from the detailed info … the original has ear canals with the mics at the end of  neoprene tubes  … they are then equalised using a computer program … mine are just inside the ears …

The ears are latex copies of the authors ears … it was seen as the only way as no other viable option seemed to work … making plaster casts of  ones own ears seems a limited spectator sport …

Some pros:   it has made me more aware of what stereo is or isn’t … hell its been fun … making things and stuff … opened up a whole new vocabulary … one sound recordist rolls up a towel and places mics either side of this flannel head …

Some cons:   the mics are quite noisy given sometimes they are at the extreme of their range … all the equipment had to be imported and being naive didn’t take into account import duty on the mics or ears … dummy heads don’t incur a levy … not so sure that the full binaural sound is produced because of the aforementioned lack of equalisation … left to right fine … above and below is rather dubious …

The present … Albert has been out and about locally … mounted on a tripod with numerous bungee hooks … wind proofing provided by an old reflector cover … and it works … went to the MotoGp at Silverstone … a group of silent and very bemused Belgians stood around as big A went in the rucsac … as with all interests frustration and enjoyment arrive in equal measure … currently have a lot of the soundscapes ‘synced’ to my Ipod …

The future … off to Mull and hopefully some blissful sound scapes … want to experiment with filling the head cavity … does it make any difference ..?  he might have more between his ears than yours truely … eventually …

Don’t forget it’s the distance between the ears that has it … 17.5cm … allegedly …

Immutabilis

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