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What is Binaural Audio? Its Recording Techniques and Benefits

What is Binaural Audio
When we capture the sound in a way that is recorded in the same environment as the listener, then it is called binaural audio. By using the binaural audio, we can create a real-life experience in the movies. Some of the artists also use them in the songs and videos for a better experience of the user.

Basically, the goal with this sound is to create a 3D sound effect the can be simulated to give us a real-life hearing experience. For a long time, these binaural beats are used in the entertainment industry.

History

Binaural Audio was first invented long ago in the 19th century, but at that time, there were no amplifiers or proper speakers to listen to these audios. At that time, audio (electrical waves) was just heard through the telephone earpiece. And even radio at that time was used to come with the pair of headphones to listen to them.

But in the 1920s when moving coil speaker was introduced (are still used in this era), everything was changed. People can now hear audio whenever they want. And in 1930s proper use of binaural sounds was started.

People started to use binaural beats in the movie. But now gaming, VR and even your headphones use the concept of Binaural Audio. So, this concept is a lot older than you think it is.

How is it Recorded?

How is binaural audio recorded

There is a different way to record the binaural sound as compare to simple audio. This type of recording requires more time and effort both in setting up the things and in the editing as well. There are two ways of recording binaural audio and old school and a new way which is a lot easier than the old school method.

Following are the methods:

  • The first method is the old school method. These multiple microphones are arranged in a different position in the space where you are recording the audio. By using this method, each microphone records the same audio in different locations of that space. By using this method, users can create a 3D sound in the area as will be called binaural audio. But this method is a little time taking, and you have to set up the microphones manually. So, there is also a new way of doing this too.
  • Science has made everyone’s life easy and has given us many new technologies that can make our life better. So, they have introduced a new type of microphone that can record binaural beats by itself. The perfect example of this is Hooke Verse Microphone”. You have to place it on the point from where you are capturing audio, then the rest of the work will be done by the microphone. The Hooke Verse microphone can record 360-degree audio and can record the exact location of every sound and where it is coming from.

By using these methods, you can use record the binaural sounds.

Playback of Binaural Audio

So, you have recorded the binaural beats with the help of several instruments and the methods we have discussed above. Now the question is how we can hear binaural audio. So, if you are trying to listen to it on one speaker or with mono playback, then it will not work.

For hearing this 3D audio, you need to have at least a type of headphone that can play stereo sound (more on that later). A stereo headset can also help you to listen to this audio. But some companies are making headsets just for listening to the binaural audio.

If you are listening to the binaural audio using your simple headphones, then it will not work because the sound recorded by the microphone has a very different frequency spectrum as compared to simple headphones.

Stereo Sound Vs Binaural Audio

Most people mix stereo and binaural audio with each other, but they both are entirely different things. Stereo sound is to listen to the sound, which can differentiate between left and right. But with the binaural audio, we can differentiate between whether the sound is coming from the back, front, from up or down. We can locate that from which position of the room the sound is coming from.

Stereo sound is mostly used in music, and so, they can control the intensity of the sound in each ear (if listening on the pair of headphones), so they can bring and make better beats for us. And the binaural audio is mostly used in movies and gaming. It is essential in gaming because this will help us to locate our enemy more easily, especially in the battle royal games.

Role of Binaural Audio in medical and gaming

Binaural audio is also used in many ways to help in medical fields. We will discuss both of them separately

Binaural Beats           

A physicist and meteorologist Heinrich Wilhelm Dove In 1839, Prussian discovered that when you hear two-wave frequencies at different frequency in each our mind will simulate those beats and will produce a third beat at the difference of those beats this phenomenon is called as the entrainment and the third beat produced in this by our mind is called as the binaural beat.

You care listening to two different wave frequencies at 195Hz in one ear and 205Hz in another ear. Then your brain will produce the third beat of the frequency of 5Hz. A binaural beat is only produced when the difference of those beats if less than or equal to 30Hz. If the difference increases, then the brain will not create a binaural beat. Binaural Beats headphones are used to listen to these type of beats.

Benefits

Binaural beats also have a lot of benefits of its own. Listening to a binaural beat help to meditate, and it also helps to relax our mind and help us to get through the anxiety. There are a good number of binaural beats app available for both android and iOS.

ASMR

What is Asmr

 

ASMR stands for an autonomous sensory meridian response. Today, mostly binaural audio is used in gaming this helps a gamer to explore the gaming world much more and the sound helps us to indicate different things and you can also feel where the thing or object is located.

The real benefit of binaural audio comes when you are playing a battle royale game. Because it will help you to find your enemy player more easily with the binaural audio.

You can find the whole gig which can help you to emerge you more in the game. Sometimes a binaural beat is also sent through the headphone (especially built headphone for this kind of purpose) which will send the shiver down the player spine and can interact with the game.

Of course, these kinds of features will not make you better in gaming, but it will you a better experience while playing a game.

Future of Binaural Audio

We have seen binaural audio in all things like movies and even in music. But what is the future of the binaural audio, where will be the future of binaural will lead to us.

So according to me the future if binaural audio is in VR headset. Now VR is becoming more and more popular every day, and people are also expecting more and more in it. There are a lot of companies that are making these VR headsets like Samsung, Google, Vivo, Oculus Rift, and many more companies.

In VR, the basic idea is to see and have a feeling that you are in the real world. And to make it possible is the sound. Like in VR if you go near to some object, the go far form an object that there should be a change of sound in that because it will have more sense than having simple stereo audio.

Well the user of the VR is increasing day by day but not all the people will like the binaural audio but the gamers would like it the most and will help them in a great number of ways to have binaural audio in it.

Conclusion

In this article, we have learned about the binaural audio how these are recorded and how they can affect the experience of a person he is watching a movie or playing a game doesn’t matter. In short binaural audios are great and are helpful. If you like this article, then please leave a comment on this article.

About the author

Smith

Smith is an ASMR lover. In his leisure time, he likes to listen to ASMR Podcasts. His favorite ASMRtist is Gibi ASMR.

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