Posts Tagged ‘Technology’

Our smartphones have come a long way when it comes to audio, but the problem is the thinner they become the less likely the audio quality will improve.

Take the iPhone for example, no one can argue that it is a superb phone and the audio output is pretty good, but it could be much better. Without a massive advancement in technology, this isn’t happening anytime soon.

Shure, the audio specialists, make some of the best earphones in the business, but even they think that plugging the Shure 535’s into the iPhone really doesn’t show off their potential. Try it, plug-in your best headphones into your iPhone and listen to a track, then listen to the same track with the same headphones on your computer with a dedicated sound card and you will very quickly hear the difference.

The only solution is a portable amp which magnifies the audio signal to amplify the sound. Otherwise without this, the louder you make the music the more distorted it will become. These portable amps need to be powered and are normally expensive and bulky and are aimed at the audiophile.

The guys over at UAMP want to change this with a Kickstarter campaign.

“We wanted to capture that premium sound you get from hi-end audio equipment and make it available on every device, without the complications, terrible interfaces, or exorbitant costs. Uamp provides the same hi-fi sound for a fraction of the price and size of standard amplifiers. The Uamp unit measures 43 x 43 x 9mm and weighs just 26 grams – we’ve crammed all the electronics of a hi-end amp into one tiny device. Its nano design means it can easily fit into the smallest of pockets, allowing you to carry it with you anywhere – walking, jogging and cycling, or travelling on the bus, train and plane. Combined with its ten hour battery life, Uamp is truly a portable device.”

The difference here is not only its size and ability to be recharged by USB, but also its price. With postage to the UK, this will cost you about £40 which for anyone who has spent £250+ on headphones it’s a small price to pay. UAMP have kept this simple and stylish, with little LED’s and a slick design. You simply plug-in your iPhone and then your headphones on the other side and away you go.

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With a 10 hour rechargeable battery and adjustable EQ levels, working with every device no matter the makers, this really is an amp for the budding audiophile. Priced at about £45 all in on this campaign, it really is worth a punt, especially if the manufacturer delivers as much as they promise.

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UAMP

leap-motion

Sorry about the title, but it just had to be done. When I first saw this technology a while back, it reminded me of the film Minority Report, in which Tom Cruise navigates a screen using his hands….amazing! It is interesting how much technology is born from films.

Back in March TheTechSpy looked at MYO, the gesture controlled armband which debuted on Kickstarter. Leap Motion have gone a step further, this device connects to your PC/Mac and senses your hand movements to translate this onto the screen without the need to wear anything.

The unit is 3″ long and fits in with most design conscious desktops with its sleek look. Imagine scrolling the web with a wave of your hand, or zooming in on Google maps with a pinch of your fingers. The device even allows you to hold a pencil and draw on-screen while just holding the pencil mid-air or even strum an air guitar with the sounds being outputted from your computer speakers.

The possibilities of this are superb and now you can truly manipulate a 3D object on your screen using your hands which will be great for designers. It is products like these that really show us how far technology is pushing the boundaries.

Shipping starts at the end of July and the Leap Motion controller can be pre-ordered here for $79.99. For delivery to the UK, expect to pay nearer the $107 mark as they are taking care of taxes and duties in that price.