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Wireless Microphone Identifier

Video assisted identification of wireless microphones
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(Apologies: I’ve posted this idea before, but took it down when I realized how poorly I had articulated the concept. It may not be much better this time.)

I have observed that in certain venues using multiple wireless microphones can cause a bit of a problem for a sound technician. In non-scripted or loosely controlled events, microphones are passed from one person to another or set down and picked up by several different people during the proceedings. This can make it difficult for the sound technician to adjust the level of a particular microphone when needed.

Due to the microphone being relatively small and usually a fair distance from the sound booth, it would be difficult to affix any sort of recognizable identifier to each individual microphone.

A possible solution: Track the physical location of the microphones by triangulation of the RF signal emitted by each microphone. Differentiate between the individual microphones by their unique transmitting frequencies (or other unique properties of their signals).

Feed the location data in to a computer.

Use a video camera and video capture card in the computer to create a visual image of the physical area in which the wireless microphones are located. If the camera has a known, fixed view of the area, it would be possible to use software to correlate the microphone location data with the video image displayed on the computer’s monitor.

Once the location data is correlated to the visual image, an indicator could be superimposed over the microphone in the image. This indicator would move with the microphone and allow the sound technician to identify the microphone in question by looking at the video display.

half, May 08 2003

Real Virtual Reality Real_20Virtual_20Reality
[bungston, Sep 16 2005]

Listening Microphones Hit Streets Of Rochester http://infowars.com..._listening_mics.htm
Democrat and Chronicle | December 15, 2004 [half, Nov 12 2007]

Sound source location http://www.acoustic...7th/liu-albert.html
Relevant ASA paper [csea, Nov 12 2007]


       I find that small square of silver duct tape and a Sharpie marker works just fine.
(speaking to stage through talkback mic)
"Say what number is on your microphone?"

       Many wireless receivers have audio level meters as well, giving you visual feedback of the microphone in use.
Cedar Park, May 08 2003

       Couldn't you just paint them different colors or something? It seems kinda pointless.
Chickenbreadthe1st, Jul 17 2005

       What [Cedar Park] said. If I can't see the mic, I'll just watch the meters on the desk. Decent desks have small led meters next to each fader which will show you who's speaking and if you've been saddled with a rubbish desk you'll find a meter or at least an "audio signal present" led on the receiver for each mic.   

       Sound problems are usually due to the sound operator, though if you ask them you will invariably find it is due to the equipment.
wagster, Sep 16 2005

       How about tying a length of different coloured cable to the base of the microphone so that it is easily visible from the desk? Three or four metres should do it, maybe longer for larger venues.
coprocephalous, Sep 16 2005

       It would be really cool to see that on a monitor the same way that they track the nascar drivers on TV. Generally the pros will use colored tape or colored wind screens as a very distinguishable identifier even from long distances.
Jscotty, Sep 16 2005

       I like this for the BUNGCO Real Virtual Reality concept. Rather than see pictures of your teammates and opponents on your RVR helmet screen, you would see graphic representations of them placed on the virtual field at the positions they occupy on the real field, using this microphone triangulation scheme. The microphone would serve the dual purpose of being a microphone, and you would hear their real voices. Thus in your RVR world your friend Phil would keep Phil's mellow voice, but look like a cybernetic Marine instead of a bearded dufus in an old Foreigner concert Tshirt.
bungston, Sep 16 2005

       I received this email recently and am posting it here in it's entirety with the author's permission. Beyond his misconception about what I was proposing, does anyone have any specific knowledge or references they'd like to share with a university student on the subject of triangulating audio sources?
half, Nov 12 2007

       "Hello, My name is Erick Bernedo and I am currently a senior at the University of Arizona, studying aerospace engineering. I am currently working with the Micro Air Vehicle Club (MAV) and we are researching possibilities for our competition.   

       I saw this on the site: http://www.halfbakery.com/ idea/ Wireless Microphone Identifier and you talked about audio triangulation with different microphones to detect location of sound...you seemed like you were very knowledgeable about this subject   

       I am in charge of the audio/visual portion of the project. To quickly summarize, in the competition we are to find "hostages in a building and find out where exactly they are at" this is where audio microphones and sensors are needed, Our goal is to try to figure out how this audio triangulation works and how can we hook it up to a laptop and what software to use. The article I used on the website was: http://itp.nyu.edu/ physcomp/ sensors/Reports/Triangulation   

       So if you guys have any information on this it would be great. Because our goal is to have three MAV aircrafts flying around, park them somewhere and have each of them have microphones/audio sensors and pinpoint where the sound is coming from and of course to listen to it and be able to do this on a laptop.   

       Also and this is the main thing, We already purchased a 200mW 2.4 GHZ transmitter that has a built in micophone...the one on this site here: http://www.blackwidowav.com/ bwav240200components.html   

       anyway, we want to know what microphones were used because we need to test different microphones and see the differences, so if you could let me know what microphone is used (manufacturer) name or if you guys made it, just wondering because we want one that is light and can hook up to your 200mW transmitter, and we want to see if we can get more powerful microphones.   

       so any help would be great   

       Thank You In Advance, -Erick Bernedo"   

       ebernedo @ email. arizona. edu
half, Nov 12 2007

       I remember seeing a commercially produced system that triangulates the location of gunshots. (link)
half, Nov 12 2007

       Place two microphones on one MAV. You know...like ears.
4whom, Nov 12 2007


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