we listen
vintage classroom
Dynamix Productions, Inc.
  • © 2003 - 2022 Dynamix Productions, Inc. Contact Us 0

A Sound Education

SOFAR So Good

UFO cloud


As terrible as war is, it often brings scientific discoveries to the masses in peacetime. One such discovery from World War II is the Sound Fixing and Ranging channel, or SOFAR channel for short. It's not a TV channel, but an ocean channel. In 1944, geophysicist Maurice Ewing discovered a hidden horizontal oceanic layer about 1,000 meters (3,300 feet) deep under the ocean's surface. It's sandwiched between warm, less salty and lighter upper waters, and cooler, more salty denser lower waters. What's unique about this layer is its ability to trap sound waves and channel them over vast distances.

Read More...

Is the Wax Cylinder the Next Big Thing?

edison_and_phonograph_edit1

If we look back over the last 140 years of sound recording, it seems that formats come and formats...come back. I've written many times in these newsletters about nearly dead technologies that seemingly get resurrected out of nowhere, such as the vinyl record, the cassette, and AM radio. The younger generations are partly responsible for breathing new life into these old formats, but most stand on their own merits. Read More...

Sound Farming

Farm

Today's farm is not at all like your grandfather's farm. It's a high-stakes business for farmers who expect high-yields. And what's driving up those yields? Technology. Since the Newcomen steam engine of the late 1700s, the agriculture industry has been progressively adopting new technology and science to feed the world. And now high-tech farming is getting even more high-tech. Farmers are using exciting new sound technologies and practices to coax more out of their crops, keep their livestock happy, and keep themselves safe. Read More...

What's New in '22!

22 nixie tubes copy

PART I

The year '22 ushers in an exciting new technology. Here's what has been said about it:

"The newspaper that comes through your walls."

"Anyone with common sense can readily grasp the elementary principles and begin receiving at once."

"It will become as necessary as transportation. It will be communication personalized. There will be no limit to its use."

Read More...

Requiem of the Bells

Christmas toast copy

"Ding-dong, ding-dong
Ding-dong, ding-dong
Hark how the bells
Sweet silver bells
All seem to say
Throw cares away"

Peter Wilhousky / Mykola Leontovich


This time of year can be joyous, especially for holiday music lovers. Christmas tunes flow out of stores and TV sets, and holiday concerts fill December's weekends. But one carol, "Carol of the Bells," may be based on a centuries-old doom and gloom song.

Read More...

Sick and Tired of Sound

a2598e1d-32b0-4606-d983-2010e805a6c3

"A hospital is no place to be sick."

Samuel Goldwyn

Getting hospitalized can be bad for your health. There's an old saying that patients can't wait to go home so they can get some rest. They're losing a lot of sleep for two reasons: the constant poking and prodding at all hours; and the overwhelming cacophony of sound.


Read More...

When Old is Old Again

BufordTJusticeCB2

Buford T. Justice: Breaker, breaker for the Bandit.
Bandit: Come on back, breaker.
Buford T. Justice: Bandit I got a smokey report for you. Come on!
Bandit: Well, talk to me good buddy.
Buford T. Justice: You got trouble comin...
Bandit: Well what's your handle son, and what's your twenty?
Buford T. Justice: My handle's Smokey Bear and I'm tail-grabbin yo ass right now!

Smokey and the Bandit (1977)


Just when you thought CB radio was dead, the Federal Communication Commission passed a rule that might have every "Smokey and the Bandit" fan yearning for another sequel. The FCC is allowing FM transmission on CB radio!

Read More...

Sub Sonic

submarine MASTER copy

Captain of the 'Weser': What's it like down there, in a submarine?
Der Leitende: It's... quiet.”
Das Boot, 1981



Submarines need to be stealthy...and quiet. New technology like acoustic cloaking is on the horizon.

Read More...

Fantasound

content_marquee

Mickey Mouse: Mr. Stokowski. Mr. Stokowski! Ha! My congratulations, sir.
Leopold Stokowski: Congratulations to you, Mickey.
Mickey Mouse: Gee, thanks. Well, so long. I'll be seein' ya!
Leopold Stokowski: Goodbye.


In 1940, before the world would be plunged into a half decade of devastating conflict, a larger-than-life cartoon creator teamed up with a wild-haired orchestra conductor and unleashed a fantastical film that would forever change the way we experience movies. The morning after the gala event at the Broadway Theater in New York City, The New York Times critic Bosley Crowther said, "The music comes not simply from the screen, but from everywhere; it is as if a hearer were in the midst of the music." Even with all the wondrous characters, vivid animation, and whimsical storytelling of this new film, it was the sound that stole the show.

Read More...

Now Ear This

best-spock-leonard-nimoy-star-trek-episodes

"There is no reason that function should not be beautiful. In fact beauty usually makes it more effective."

Spock

Function and beauty can coexist, especially in headphone design.

Read More...

Ear Training

train-NBK

"I hear the train a comin', it's rolling round the bend
And I ain't seen the sunshine since I don't know when."

Johnny Cash
"Folsom Prison Blues"


A train horn can be musical, loud and annoying, or even whimsical. But above all it's a communications device.

Read More...

For the Love of...

painter

"If our condition were truly happy, we would not seek diversion from it in order to make ourselves happy."

Blaise Pascal
French mathematician, physicist, inventor, philosopher, writer and Catholic theologian
(1623-1662)


Are you working in a job that you love? Are you doing a skill that comes naturally to you? Can you imagine doing anything else? If you answered Yes, Yes, and...Yes, then you must be insanely happy. It could be healthy to daydream of doing something else, or even partake in different kinds of productive activities that are wildly different from your career. Studies of scientists have shown that the more varied their hobbies, activities, and other professional pursuits are, the more important and numerous their breakthroughs may be. Performing the same task over and over again becomes drudgery, no matter if you're a widget stamper in a factory or a recombinant DNA engineer in a lab. Our minds need diversion in order to focus when it's important.

Read More...

Chocolate Milk

chocolate milk

"All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt."
Charles M. Schulz

Chocolate MilkThere's a phrase we use in the audio industry to explain to someone that doesn't understand that when something's been mixed down, like a song, it can't be unmixed. In other words, once all the elements have been married together, we can't easily pluck out the vocals and replace them. The phrase goes something like, "Here's a glass of milk, and here's chocolate powder. Mix the chocolate into the milk and you have chocolate milk. You can't take the chocolate out and just have milk."

Well, we are all eating a big ol' crow sandwich with chocolate sprinkles on top right about now.

Read More...

Big Mac

big mac

"Music's always been at the heart of Apple. It's deep in our DNA. We've sold Macs to musicians since the beginning of Macs."

Tim Cook



Twenty years ago this month, Apple officially launched OS X. Apple finally had a legitimate PC killer that would kick the Mac vs. Windows debate into overdrive. In 2001, many studios and video editing companies were already using Macs as the foundation for their digital production systems when OS X dropped, but it literally changed the game.

Read More...

♪ ♫ Hot Pockets ♪ ♫ ™

Piano

"Simplicity makes me happy."

Alicia Keys


Comedian Jim Gaffigan has a classic gut-busting routine about Hot Pockets. After expounding on the unsophistication of eating them, he envisions the meeting with the jingle writer:

Do love that jangle.
Do you think they worked hard on that song?
"What do you got so far, Bill?"
"Uh... uh... (sings) hot pocket?"
"Thats good, thats very good.
The jingle is almost as good as your "By Mennen"


Our daily life has us ingesting "jangles" and other ear worms that have become part of our subconscious. Maybe you've heard these simple sounds over and over again:

"Liberty, Liberty, Li-berty, Liberty"
"Nationwide is on your side"
"Double-A, TOOT-TOOT, M C O"


These sounds are almost as familiar as a logo like the Facebook F, the Micheline Tire man, or the Disney mouse ears. These are all trademarked logos and visual advertising devices. Sounds can also be trademarked as well.

Read More...

The President's Speech

TR

"Well-timed silence hath more eloquence than speech."

Martin Farquhar Tupper


For the first century of our nation's existence, a very select few ever heard their president speak. 130 years ago, technology changed that.

Read More...

Crank Up the Old Gramo-Grapho-iPhone-a-Graph

His_Master's_Voice

"It is easily overlooked that what is now called vintage was once brand new."

Tony Visconti


Which name will stick to a new technology? It's usually not the one given to it by the inventor.

Read More...

It's For the Birds

Pasted Graphic

“In order to see birds it is necessary to become a part of the silence.”
Robert Lynd


Though we may seem as different as night and day, avians and humans may be more connected to each other than you think.

Read More...

Recycling Audio Cycles

Pizza-Turntable

"I think reincarnation is possible. Hopefully, we all get recycled."

Christina Ricci



We all should recycle. A look at repurposing old audio gear into funky new uses. Plus find out the latest news from Dynamix Productions.

Read More...

Messages From the Deeps

Pasted Graphic

- Lt. Werner: What's going on? Why are we diving?
- 2nd Lieutenant: Hydrophone check. At sea, even in a storm you can hear more down here than you can see up there.”

Das Boot



In the near future, submarines might be using sound waves to communicate through ocean waves.

Read More...
GSN-354889-D