Tweets from the right


#1

It wasn’t that way during the first days of use, but now everytime I hear a bird sound it comes from the right (stereo). Today’s 45 minutes session had 150 of them, all were from originating from the right.

I remember being startled by a loud tweet originating from the left that felt as if it was very close. Could it be related?


#2

I was hoping this question would get a response because it’s something I’ve wondered about too.

In version one of the app, the bird sounds were spread across the stereo spectrum. But since (Android) version two, all the bird sounds have been coming from within the right side of the stereo spectrum.

I could be wrong, but I don’t think this is a right brain/left brain thing because both sides of the brain process audio. There must be a reason for the change in the app, though. I’ve never been able to figure it out.


#3

Thanks for reporting this, we will look into it!


#4

A new Android update was just released (version 4.2), and it includes three new soundscapes – Desert, Ambient Music and City Park. In all three of these soundscapes the birds are appearing across the entire stereo spectrum. It’s just the older soundscapes – Beach and Rainforest – where all the bird sounds are appearing on the right half of the stereo spectrum.


#5

I’on on IOS – two upgrades to the soundscapes were released since my original post – and I can confim that the birds are also now heard across the whole stereo space. I will pay attention to “rainforest” and “beach” to see if they have not benefitted from the update in that regard.


#6

@Worn-out_Amygdala, can we know which device & os are you using? Do you have another android device to try out? I’m wondering if it’s a problem happening at specific device.


#7

Hi Cliff,

BTW, I’m the guy who’s been emailing you bug reports for a couple of years.

Before I answer your questions, I should clarify something: in my post above, I wrote that this update is version 4.2, but it’s actually version 5.0.122.

I’ve been hearing this problem with two phones – a Nexus 5 (the 2013 model, not the Nexus 5X) and a Nexus 6P.

Because they’re Nexus phones, they both receive the latest OS updates as they’re released. I first started hearing the problem when version two of the Muse app was released (I think that was February 2016), so both phones were running Android 6.something at the time. They’re currently running Android 7.1.1.

As long as you’re here, I might as well mention a new audio bug I discovered this evening. This one was introduced in the new app update (version 5.0.122) and I heard it while using the Nexus 6P with feedback version 3.3.

I began a session with the new Desert soundscape and started hearing the birds (in stereo!) almost right away. But after about a minute, all the bird sounds stopped and I didn’t hear any more for the rest of the session (the other sounds continued to play normally). Here’s the session graph:

This was a 60-minute session, but I stopped after 20 minutes because I wanted to see if I could replicate the problem. So I started another session with the Desert soundscape, and the same thing happened: 60 seconds into the session, all the birds stopped.

Next, I did some short session tests (halting each session after about three minutes) with all the other soundscapes, and mixing in two additional tests using the Desert soundscape. The bird sounds kept playing when using the other soundscapes, but the birds stopped after 60 seconds in all four sessions when using the Desert soundscape. I know this isn’t conclusive, but this is what I’ve got so far.


#8

Sorry for hijacking zAgue’s thread, but I wanted to add some more information about the disappearing birds.

Turns out this problem is not specific to the Desert soundscape.

This morning, I attempted to do four sessions with a Nexus 6P and a Muse 2016 headband. Two of the sessions used the City Park soundscape, and the other two sessions used the old Beach soundscape. In all four sessions, the birds stopped playing some time between one and four minutes. Rebooting the phone between sessions didn’t help.

Then I switched to a Nexus 5 and a Muse 2014 headband (the 2016 headbands don’t work with the Nexus 5), and did a session with the Beach soundscape in version 5.0.122 of the app. This time, the birds stopped playing after 14 minutes. I kept going, though, and finished the session (60 minutes with a score of 100%).

This is just a guess, but it might be worth checking the sampling rates of the Muse app’s audio files. When programming desktop applications that played multiple audio files simultaneously, I would sometimes run into problems if the audio files were using different sampling rates. I would also occasionally run into a problem when using an audio file with an oddball sampling rate, such as 48 KHz.


#9

@zAgue and @Worn-out_Amygdala, thank you for keep trying, the birds files app’s using are 44 khz cross beach, forest and other scenes.

Following file are what’s app is using for birds :
https://www.dropbox.com/s/d2uj0l283ntnuhx/beach_bird_01.mp3?dl=0,
https://www.dropbox.com/s/qzr7emfxtwr8rob/beach_bird_02.mp3?dl=0,
https://www.dropbox.com/s/uzn4bunkflvm6dv/beach_bird_03.mp3?dl=0,
You could give them a try.

We’re also investigating bird stopping playing issue. Will try some devices include the one you mentioned, Nexus 5.

As for other problems, please contact customercare@interaxon.ca for better tracking case by case.


#10

Hi Cliff,

Thanks for the response.

I downloaded the mp3 files you uploaded, and I don’t see anything unusual about them: 44.1 KHz is the standard sampling rate for computer audio, and 192 kbps is a standard compression rate for mp3 files. So these files are probably not the reason the birds are stopping in version 5.0.122.

But getting back to zAgue’s reported problem: I noticed all the sounds are in stereo…I can’t check this right now, but are these three mp3 files the only bird sounds used in the Beach soundscape? If yes, then I see the problem. Please let me know if this is the case.


#11

@Worn-out_Amygdala, do you mean we only use them in Beach? Yes, each soundscape has its own birds files.


#12

Cliff,

Sorry, what I meant was: How many different bird sound files does the Beach soundscape use? Does the Beach soundscape use any other bird sound files in addition to the three bird files you posted?


#13

Oh, that, we have 7.


#14

Well, in the three mp3 files you uploaded, the panning for each bird sound is hard-coded into each file. This is done by creating an empty stereo file, copying the same audio to both the left and right channels, and then lowering the volume of one of the channels.

You can see this by bringing any of your mp3s into an audio editor and looking at its waveform. Here’s the stereo waveform for beach_bird_03.mp3:

The left channel is on top and the right channel is on the bottom. The audio is the same for both channels, but the volume of the left channel has been greatly reduced, to the point where it’s barely audible. If you listen to this mp3 with headphones on, it will sound like the audio has been panned far to the right.

In beach_bird_01.mp3, the volume of the right channel has been reduced slightly. If you listen to this file with headphones, it will sound like the audio has been panned a little left of center.

In beach_bird_02.mp3, the volume of the left channel has been reduced. With headphones, this one sounds like it has been panned to the right.

So if none of the other four Beach bird sounds were hard-coded to pan to the left, that would explain the problem.

Looking at these files reminds me of an idea I had a while ago. In addition to hard-coding the panning positions of audio files, it’s also possible to use code to dynamically pan audio at runtime. What if you were to create a feedback system where the panning of multiple sounds would change depending on how active your brain was? As you became more calm you could have, say, musical notes converge or form groups or form different patterns, where each group or pattern let you know how calm or active your brain was.


#15

Yes, track bird_3 is one of the file we lower down left channel to generate effect like bird chirping at right ear.

I was suspecting if problem was happening at listening on that bird. But when I set to play only bird 3, I can still hear both channels.

Also bird 1 is the one with strong left channel, while app is always playing as much as possible random bird to play. It’s unlikely to say bird_3 was the root cause.

But we could change left channel of bird 3 to see if it will make any difference.


#16

Hi, I updated Muse app with new bird file https://www.dropbox.com/s/atspoay1zr44bem/beach_bird_03_new.mp3?dl=0

Please download app through https://play.google.com/apps/testing/com.interaxon.muse to try it out and let me know.


#17

Ok, le me see if I can catch up with you guys.

I checked the latest version of “Rainforest” on IOS twice. It still places all the birds on the right stereo channel (predominantly). This morning there were 200+ of them during a 45 minutes session.

As for the mp3 birds files that Clff provided, I concur with WOA.

I opened the files in Audition.

Bird 1 is stronger on the left side. Used as is and unless the app is meddling with the channels while running, this bird should appear as being on the left side of the stereo space. If I’m not mistaken, it isn’t used in Rainforest.

Bird 2 is stronger on the right side.

Bird 3 is almost all on the right side. It must sound near the right ear in the earphones – I’m listening on my computer) – whereas Bird 2 is placed right-center.

Bird 3 New is stronger on the right side (as is Bird 2, right-center)

Z.


#18

Cliff, of the seven bird mp3s used in the Beach soundscape, is bird 1 the only sound that’s panned to the left side?


#19

Yes, the other four are sort of balanced, links (updated):
https://www.dropbox.com/s/v1qj5nqluh86i8t/beach_bird_04.mp3?dl=0,
https://www.dropbox.com/s/aiscetxps5sd4qj/beach_bird_05.mp3?dl=0,
https://www.dropbox.com/s/l7qlup42i4zlce7/beach_bird_06.mp3?dl=0,
https://www.dropbox.com/s/74rbysvoalyo7kt/beach_bird_07.mp3?dl=0.


#20

I’m getting a browser “Invalid source” error for all four links. Tried Chrome, Firefox, Edge and IE.