Until now, the wearables revolution in technology has centered mostly on health and fitness devices. Today it enters the realm of music with the Soundbrenner Pulse, the world’s first wearable device designed specifically for musicians. Engineered in Berlin by a team of entrepreneurial musicians and designed to help musicians keep the beat and become better performers, the Soundbrenner Pulse is available now to pre-order on Indiegogo with special pricing of $129 USD. The retail price will be $149 USD.
Worn around the arm or leg, the Soundbrenner Pulse is a stylish wearable that enables musicians to feel the desired beat on their skin. Delivering subtle yet precise vibrations, the Soundbrenner Pulse features advanced technology that delivers haptic (tactile) feedback up to six times stronger than vibrational alerts commonly found in today’s smartphones and smartwatches. Measuring only slightly larger than a sports watch, the Soundbrenner Pulse provides the ability for musicians performing solo or in groups to follow the beat without the intrusiveness of an audible metronome. The Bluetooth enabled wearable device can be paired with the Soundbrenner smartphone app to offer multi-player synchronization, a customizable Rhythm Coach, rhythm exercises and more.
“Following the beat is fundamental to playing great music. It’s difficult for beginners and even for the most accomplished musicians who are aiming to achieve perfection. When you wear the Soundbrenner Pulse against your skin, you can literally feel and internalize the beat you want to follow, and it becomes the most natural feeling in the world,” said Florian Simmendinger, co-founder and CEO of Soundbrenner and a pianist.
How it Works
With the Soundbrenner Pulse, there are three ways that musicians can set the beat they want to keep. The first is Soundbrenner’s unique BPM Tap feature (beats per minute) that enables musicians simply to tap the desired tempo onto the face of the device. This activates the capacitive touch sensor that captures the tempo while a proprietary algorithm translates the tap into haptic feedback in the form of precise vibrations. Alternatively, musicians can rotate the BPM Wheel surrounding the face of the device or use the Soundbrenner app to decrease or increase the number of beats — up to 300 BPM.
Soundbrenner licenses a patented haptic driver to control an eccentric rotating mass (ERM) vibration motor that has a vibration amplitude of 6G. Compared to smartphones and smartwatches whose typical vibration motors are rated 1G to 2G and deliver long, drawn-out and weak vibrations, the Soundbrenner Pulse delivers strong, distinct and accurate vibrations that are easily felt on the skin.
The Soundbrenner App
In addition to being able to operate the Soundbrenner Pulse directly on the device through the BPM Tap and BPM Wheel, musicians can control it through the Soundbrenner app, which offers the following features to help musicians become better performers:
- Metronome — The Soundbrenner smartphone app is a highly accurate metronome that can be used as a stand-alone device when not in pairing mode. It lets musicians create their own custom rhythm patterns, customize accents, store presets in multiple set-lists and much more.
- Smart Music Coach — The app learns the musician’s practice behaviors and provides motivation to practice through the use of challenges and rewards. Musicians can set their own goals to personalize their approach to music practice.
- Rhythm Exercises — The app offers exercises specifically designed to help musicians develop a better sense of rhythm and help them enhance their speed, accuracy and endurance.
Other Soundbrenner Pulse Features
- Multi-Link — With the Soundbrenner Pulse, up to 10 musicians playing together and each wearing a Soundbrenner Pulse can use the Multi-Link feature to receive the same vibration/rhythm pattern in perfect synchronization. One smartphone serves as the hub to set the beat for all of the devices.
- LED — For musicians who also want a visual expression of the beat, LED lights that surround the face of the Soundbrenner Pulse can be turned on to blink in sync with the vibrational beat and customized to glow in any color. The lights can also stay turned off in discreet mode.
“As a drummer, I know how challenging it can be to set the beat. In developing the Soundbrenner Pulse we set out to change music forever by creating a smart device for musicians to improve their performance and get more out of the experience of making music together,” said Julian Vogels, co-founder and head of product at Soundbrenner. “Athletes have wearable fitness bands to help them improve their performance, and now we musicians have our own dedicated wearable to help improve our performance, too.”
- Diameter of the face: 1.93″ or 4.9 cm
- Black casing; water-resistant, adjustable silicon straps in two lengths
- Motor: Advanced high-quality Eccentric Rotating Mass (ERM) vibration motor; rated 6G
- Charging station: Universal Micro USB socket to recharge the lithium polymer battery; (each charge lasts 5 hours; 1 hour to charge)
- RGB LED lights: Illuminate the logo and wheel in user-definable colors and flash to the beat
- User Input: Capacitive touch sensor for tapping interaction; Discrete-step wheel to finely adjust the BPM
- Connectivity: Bluetooth Smart™, compatible with iPhone 4S and newer, most Android phones
- Mobile Apps: iOS 8 and newer; Android 5.0 and newer
Pricing and Availability
Starting today, the Soundbrenner Pulse is available to pre-order at international crowdfunding site Indiegogo.com at http://indiegogo.soundbrenner.com. Discounts are offered for early-bird backers. The device will start shipping in November 2015 and retail for $149 USD.
About Soundbrenner Limited
Soundbrenner Ltd. develops technologies and consumer electronics that facilitate musical expression. Its first product, the Soundbrenner Pulse is the first wearable device designed specifically for musicians. Strapped around the arm or leg, the Soundbrenner Pulse helps musicians stay on the beat by delivering silent, precise vibrations that let them feel the desired beat on their skin; the Soundbrenner app offers tools to help musicians improve their sound. Founded in 2014 by three entrepreneurial musicians, the Berlin-based company is backed by Hong Kong-based IoT accelerator Brinc. More information is available at www.soundbrenner.com.