Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Questions about products and technology

  1. #1
    frey Guest

    Default Questions about products and technology

    I am interested in purchasing a light and sound machine and after some search I came across the machines produced by MindPlace. Of course I now have some questions I would like to ask about the Proteus and the Procyon. First of all what kind of audio entrainment does the Proteus or the Procyon support (binaural, monaural, isochronic, etc...)?
    Secondly do any of them have the ability to separately stimulate the left and right visual fields?
    I am also very interested SynchroMuse, does it give full control of the glasses?
    If the Procyon does support separately stimulation of the left and right fields, would this be controllable by SynchroMuse?
    Also does either the Proteus or the Procyon incorporate a filter that separates the AudioStrobe or SynchroMuse signal from interfering static and other high frequency sounds?
    And does SynchroMuse work with compressed audio formats such as mp3 (even at the highest quality)?
    Another thing I am very curious about is what you mean when you state on your site that the Proteus has an analog audio interface, while the Procyon has a digital audio interface? What would the advantage of one be over the other?
    On another note, is SynchroMuse a proprietary system which you have no plans to share or license, or can we expect to see SynchroMuse support in software such as BWGen and Neruo-Programmer in the future, the same way we see AudioStrobe today (given that there is interest for this)?
    What about direct support for the Procyon, seeing as how you already give the software for free with a purchase of Procyon I would guess that allowing or licensing 3rd-party software to upload sessions to the Procyon would only beneficial. Is this something you are planning for the future, to allow 3rd-party software access and upload to the Procyon? If not what might the reason for this be?
    I know this became a lot more questions then I anticipated, but I am a curious person and I hope someone takes the time to answer.

  2. Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    I only own the Procyon so I can only answer the questions for this device.

    Quote Originally Posted by frey View Post
    I am interested in purchasing a light and sound machine and after some search I came across the machines produced by MindPlace. Of course I now have some questions I would like to ask about the Proteus and the Procyon. First of all what kind of audio entrainment does the Proteus or the Procyon support (binaural, monaural, isochronic, etc...)?
    Procyon is primarily binaural.

    You can modulate the tones using LFO that you use to control colour channels, I believe this might give you close to an isochronic effect to the sound (as much as I understand isochronic tones).

    I think Proteus had some more options in this area actually - but I'll need to leave further discussion on that to someone who knows that product better.

    Secondly do any of them have the ability to separately stimulate the left and right visual fields?
    This is an interesting question. From what little I know about visual fields - each eye has a left/right visual field. I would find it difficult to imagine that you could effectively pinpoint them separately, especially because you use these devices with your eyes closed.

    If you are just talking about left eye/right eye (which I don't think is the same thing) you cannot program these individually on the Procyon.

    I am also very interested SynchroMuse, does it give full control of the glasses?
    If the Procyon does support separately stimulation of the left and right fields, would this be controllable by SynchroMuse?
    Yes to the first question, no to the second question.

    Also does either the Proteus or the Procyon incorporate a filter that separates the AudioStrobe or SynchroMuse signal from interfering static and other high frequency sounds?
    This I don't know.

    And does SynchroMuse work with compressed audio formats such as mp3 (even at the highest quality)?
    I am yet to get SynchroMuse to work for me (I have a question in the Procyon forum), but Robert from MindPlace did say that it may not work with compressed formats. At this point I'm yet to see it work at all to investigate whether it indeed does not work with compressed formats - but that's where it is at the moment for me.

    Another thing I am very curious about is what you mean when you state on your site that the Proteus has an analog audio interface, while the Procyon has a digital audio interface? What would the advantage of one be over the other?
    This one I can't answer. At first I thought it meant that there was a digital input which really is something quite different (and not terribly useful I have to say), but then I found out it's just an ordinary stereo input. I'm lost on the significance of this feature. Maybe the Proteus didn't have an ADC at all and that's the difference - *shrug*

    On another note, is SynchroMuse a proprietary system which you have no plans to share or license, or can we expect to see SynchroMuse support in software such as BWGen and Neruo-Programmer in the future, the same way we see AudioStrobe today (given that there is interest for this)?
    I doubt it.
    SynchroMuse is basically just calibrating/aligning an input signal with a session in Procyon. Totally different than AudioStrobe which is embedding the complete light session within the incoming signal.

    So in the case of Procyon, you might have put together a session with light and sound with all your different segments over the course of one hour and you might have an external soundtrack that happens to go for one hour. With SynchroMuse all you are basically doing is organising it so that the incoming audio and the Procyon session start simultaneously.

    It is done with 1 or 2 seconds of audio that you insert at the start of your incoming soundtrack which basically tells Procyon which session to load and when to start.

    That's all - the rest of the soundtrack is "as is".

    Of course, you can program your Procyon session so that at very particular points in your sound track new segments are started etc... but in the end the soundtrack and the Procyon session remain two things that actually play separately.

    So from that, I gather that there isn't much point in BWGen etc... supporting this as a standard, because as far as I can see they would only be supporting the Procyon.

    What about direct support for the Procyon, seeing as how you already give the software for free with a purchase of Procyon I would guess that allowing or licensing 3rd-party software to upload sessions to the Procyon would only beneficial. Is this something you are planning for the future, to allow 3rd-party software access and upload to the Procyon? If not what might the reason for this be?
    I've asked for more information on this. I have heard whispers of an ActiveX control and have asked for more information on how to access the Procyon. I've also suggested the possibility of developing drivers for different platforms. I'm yet to get any direct feedback about my questions at this point. However, some of my questions were only in the last week, and Robert (from MindPlace) doesn't tend to browse the forum avidly so he may still respond.

    I know this became a lot more questions then I anticipated, but I am a curious person and I hope someone takes the time to answer.
    Sorry that I can only answer as a user - but I hope some of my answers made some sense.

    Regards
    Caleb

  3. #3

    Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    Hi, Frey--

    In addition to binaural beats, the Procyon supports "isochronic" (evenly spaced over time) pulses; the audio waveform is the same as the visual one for a given channel, and can be sine, pulse (square), triangle at present. The waveforms can be modulated, or 'squeezed and expanded' via the pulse width modulation setting.

    SynchroMuse was developed to get around limitations of AudioStrobe, and is offered as an open standard, no licences etc. Basically, it allows you to create a session which is synchronized with an audio file, and digital code on a CD will start the session together with the audio. There is a tutorial on www.mindplacesupport.com in case you'd like to review it in more detail.

    The brief digital signal which tells the Procyon which session to play won't make its way through MP3 compression--it was designed to work with CDs.

    Procyon (like Proteus) ships with multicolored glasses which affect both eyes simultaneously. However, you could use monocolor LightFrames and map one color channel per eye; the editor software allows full control over frequency and brightness, in case you want to stimulate one eye at a different frequency than the other.

    Both machines include AudioStrobe decoding--a high pass filter is used in that circuit to remove most audio material, harmonics from which could activate the lights.

    The Proteus uses an analog audio path--basically op-amp driven amplifier/mixer, while the Procyon uses a digital audio codec, designed for use in MP3 players etc.

    We think it's a great idea for others to create and share or even sell their sessions to others--again, royalty-free; we do regard this as a semi-open platform, which is in its infancy, and expect to see a lot of improvements in terms of new editor and OS versions as well as backward-compatable hardware upgrades.

    It may be possible that future versions of existing software from third parties may support creation of SynchroMuse--again, this is a brand-new concept, while for example AudioStrobe has been around for about fifteen years and so developers have had time to work with it in some depth.

    Hope this answers your questions satisfactorily (Thanks also to Caleb).

    --Robert

  4. #4
    frey Guest

    Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    Thanks both for the replies. I seem to have been confused as to what the SynchroMuse is, I thought it was a system similar to AudioStrobe, but it seems they are different. Thanks for clearing that up. When I was talking about the left and right visual fields, I was thinking of the left and right eye. I was kinda of disappointed that the Procyon does not support stimulating the left and right eye separately, is this a hardware limitation or a software limitation (OS in the Procyon)? Also Robert mentioned that I might get separate stimulation of the eyes using monocolor glasses, would someone be so nice to explain this a bit more in detail because I did not entirely understand it.
    I understand it that SynchroMuse is an open standard, does this mean that we might see devices from other companies supporting SynchroMuse? Or open in the sense that people or companies making audio files with SynchroMuse are free to do so without restrictions (even selling), as long as they do not create a SynchroMuse interpreter?
    This brings me to something else mentioned, sessions made for the Procyon are royalty-free without restrictions so that they can be shared or sold, did I understand this correctly (the semi-open statement confused me a bit)?
    Also why was not MP3 taken into consideration when SynchroMuse was made? Seeing as how CD is an out-dated format and the future seems to be online distribution, support for MP3, Ogg or AAC would have been an advantage.
    Caleb mentioned drivers for different platforms, which is something I did not think about. What platforms are supported? More specifically I am interested in support for the Mac, will I be able to use the Procyon on a Mac now or in the future?
    Lastly I was searching online and came across mentioning of the Procyon having an auto-off which limited the length of a session. Does the Procyon have any sort of auto-off which might limit the sessions in any way?

  5. Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    Frey wrote :"Also why was not MP3 taken into consideration when SynchroMuse was made? Seeing as how CD is an out-dated format and the future seems to be online distribution, support for MP3, Ogg or AAC would have been an advantage."

    I'm not sure exactly about the carrier frequency of synchromuse information, but I can't imagine it is any higher than Audiostrobe which is up in the 19 khz. I have no proplem with my Audiostrobe MP'3 , as long as they are encoded at 320kbps and no variable bit rate. I have 6 AS albums filling about 1GB of my tiny MP3 player velcroed to the side of my Proteus unit.

    I don't think the whole AS thing has got very far because the only Software that does exactly what you want ( ie to be able to graghically model what you want to do with the lights against a visual soundtrack on the screen costs Euro $500. Most of the AS CD's coming out are always from the same handful of people , and in IMHO is music for audio entertainment , not compositions with brain entrainment in mind, which would produce a deeper experience . The Mind Explorer Color Organ ia great and cheap way to put a AS light show to your favorite CD's.and only Euro 39

    Regards MACs, you'll notice that 100% of all the AVS software around is PC. With PC's so cheap these days its well worth it to get one to do a specific task if you are motivated .

    Mark

  6. Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    Quote Originally Posted by frey View Post
    Thanks both for the replies. I seem to have been confused as to what the SynchroMuse is, I thought it was a system similar to AudioStrobe, but it seems they are different. Thanks for clearing that up.
    Actually, when reflecting on Robert's comments, I think SynchroMuse could be a better solution than AudioStrobe.

    It doesn't have license fees, and given it's just a way to synchronise an onboard session with incoming audio it means the format theoretically is only limited by the device you're using.

    There are a couple of disadvantages:

    - it relies on a session id, which means if you just distribute a SynchroMuse audio file, it will impose a particular session id on anyone wanting to make a synchronised session on their own device. Which makes me start wondering how long it would take for duplicated session ids to become a problem.

    - you wouldn't be able to pause playback and just restart with everything perfectly synchronised because SynchroMuse relies on a signal at the start of the recording - not throughout. You'd have to basically hit pause on your playback device at exactly the same time as on your hardware and then restart them both again at exactly the same time. That can be a pretty imprecise method given that playback may start immediately on your device but not on your media player

    - only works with CD/uncompressed audio. This one's an obvious one.

    Lastly I was searching online and came across mentioning of the Procyon having an auto-off which limited the length of a session. Does the Procyon have any sort of auto-off which might limit the sessions in any way?
    From the manual:

    The system is turned on and off via the button on the right side of
    the console. In order to save power in case you forget to turn it
    off, it will automatically turn off in the following manner:

    ? In Session mode (display shows three digit session number):
    after three minutes of inaction.

    ? In PC, dL1 or dL2 modes, after 20 minutes.

    ? In AS or DAS modes, after 80 minutes (allowing time for a full
    CD to play before shutting off).
    I'm actually not sure why DAS (SynchroMuse) even has a limitation because it's actually playing back a session you've created on the device - which means that if you create a session that's 90 mins you won't actually hear/see the last 10 minutes of it. It should probably just keep going until the session is stopped like in session mode.

    There have been some recent petitions to ease the constraint particularly when it comes to AS (AudioStrobe) and DAS (SynchroMuse) modes. I wouldn't be surprised if MindPlace were considering it - but I'll leave it up to them to confirm/deny any rumours I'm starting here.

    I've left the other questions you had for MindPlace as they are more in the company realm.

    Regards
    Caleb

  7. Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    Quote Originally Posted by synaesthesia View Post
    I'm not sure exactly about the carrier frequency of synchromuse information, but I can't imagine it is any higher than Audiostrobe which is up in the 19 khz. I have no proplem with my Audiostrobe MP'3 , as long as they are encoded at 320kbps and no variable bit rate. I have 6 AS albums filling about 1GB of my tiny MP3 player velcroed to the side of my Proteus unit.
    SynchroMuse information is not encoded in the general audio signal like AudioStrobe. It's some sort of encoding in a created audio file that sits at the front of the recording used to synchronise Procyon session playback with the input signal.

    As for how the signal is encoded, I really don't understand how they're doing it, but I've been assured in another thread that it would not be possible to include compressed format support without actually changing the hardware (can't be done by an OS upgrade).

    Regards
    Caleb

  8. #8

    Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    Greetings--

    Actually I've gotten ahead of myself a bit: we are not yet offering monocolor or other left/right glasses for the Procyon as yet--you can use the Proteus this way (two colors to both eyes or left/right with one color).

    SynchroMuse is open in the sense that you and anyone else may create and distribute CDs royalty-free. The digital information that SynchroMuse requires cannot make it through the MP3 encoding process. Actually, we don't think of CD's as an out-dated format--though it's a mature technology, the media is very inexpensive and CDs still sound better than the highest quality MP3s, which discard lots of information (you may not hear this on headphones or PC speakers, but the difference is easy to hear on a good stereo system--loss of stereo imaging, phase, etc.).

    We don't plan to offer the hardware technology as an open platform to other manufacturers, though!

    We limit the shut-off time in audiostrobe mode to save battery life for users who have fallen asleep or have forgotten that their system is on, this is not a hardware limitation and no such limitation occurs for very long sessions if you chose to write some.

    I've been told that the Procyon Editor works on Macs running Windows emulation; with exactly one engineer working on both Proteus and Procyon, and with no income stream from software, we won't be developing for other platforms. We strongly encourge others to do so, though!

    -Robert


    Quote Originally Posted by frey View Post
    Thanks both for the replies. I seem to have been confused as to what the SynchroMuse is, I thought it was a system similar to AudioStrobe, but it seems they are different. Thanks for clearing that up. When I was talking about the left and right visual fields, I was thinking of the left and right eye. I was kinda of disappointed that the Procyon does not support stimulating the left and right eye separately, is this a hardware limitation or a software limitation (OS in the Procyon)? Also Robert mentioned that I might get separate stimulation of the eyes using monocolor glasses, would someone be so nice to explain this a bit more in detail because I did not entirely understand it.
    I understand it that SynchroMuse is an open standard, does this mean that we might see devices from other companies supporting SynchroMuse? Or open in the sense that people or companies making audio files with SynchroMuse are free to do so without restrictions (even selling), as long as they do not create a SynchroMuse interpreter?
    This brings me to something else mentioned, sessions made for the Procyon are royalty-free without restrictions so that they can be shared or sold, did I understand this correctly (the semi-open statement confused me a bit)?
    Also why was not MP3 taken into consideration when SynchroMuse was made? Seeing as how CD is an out-dated format and the future seems to be online distribution, support for MP3, Ogg or AAC would have been an advantage.
    Caleb mentioned drivers for different platforms, which is something I did not think about. What platforms are supported? More specifically I am interested in support for the Mac, will I be able to use the Procyon on a Mac now or in the future?
    Lastly I was searching online and came across mentioning of the Procyon having an auto-off which limited the length of a session. Does the Procyon have any sort of auto-off which might limit the sessions in any way?

  9. #9
    frey Guest

    Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    I understand there are both advantages and disadvantages to both SynchroMuse and AudioStrobe, but still I see much potential for SynchroMuse. Also it's a shame that you won't be licensing SynchroMuse to other companies, but I can see why you made this choice. Although I agree with the advantages of the use of CD's I still don't get why compressed formats were excluded because an average person cares more about the ability to use SynchroMuse sessions with their iPod then quality. Anyway there is no reason to discuss why compressed formats were not included, might have been that there was almost impossible to reliable include support for something like that, but that does not change the fact the SynchroMuse is what it is. I still have high hopes for SynchroMuse.

    Now to a more important issue, why was the decision to have auto-off while in AudioStrobe mode? This would limit any use of longer session which really is something I think many people might experiment with and I know that I would rather pay for more batteries then having a limit on how long an AudioStrobe session might last. I hope there is at least a way to disable auto-off, if not are you planning on adding such a feature?

    Lastly I guess if you are not going to develop for Mac's then encouraging others to do is a good idea, but I don't believe I will be changing back to a PC soon. I choose the Mac to get away from all the problems I had with Windows and if Procyon Editor works through Windows emulation then I do not see a reason for a PC.

  10. Default Re: Questions about products and technology

    Quote Originally Posted by frey View Post
    Now to a more important issue, why was the decision to have auto-off while in AudioStrobe mode? This would limit any use of longer session which really is something I think many people might experiment with and I know that I would rather pay for more batteries then having a limit on how long an AudioStrobe session might last. I hope there is at least a way to disable auto-off, if not are you planning on adding such a feature?
    Agreed - I have a 60 minute AudioStrobe session I'm working on at the moment which I'm intending to expand to 80 minutes or maybe even longer.

    It seems it will be a moot point if/when I manage to convert it to SynchroMuse, but while it's AudioStrobe I've got issues.

    Regards
    Caleb

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. The integrity of light and sound/ave technology
    By caleb in forum The Mind Place
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-24-2007, 11:52 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •