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Where are the graphene headphones & speakers?!

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by kingkrush, Jan 11, 2017.
  1. bigshot
    My brother has an all McIntosh system and these speakers were part of that for many years. He babied his equipment. When they were made, the guy designing them cherry picked components from JBL... the same stuff that went in their pro line. The woofers are 15 inch D300s with the cloth surrounds. They're tanks, rated up to 100 watts. It's the speaker that Fender would put in their guitar amps. The cabinetry is a little worn, but functionally the speakers are perfect.

    There are big differences between headphones and speakers. It's possible with room treatment and care in selecting and setting up speakers to achieve as much audible detail and clarity as headphones. But no headphone will ever match the dimensional aspect of speaker soundstage or the visceral sound pressure of a good subwoofer. I used headphones for many years because I lived in an apartment and didn't want to bother the neighbors. But when I bought a house and set up a dedicated theater/listening room, I put the cans in a drawer and never looked back. There is no question that music has more vivid impact with speakers than it does with headphones.

    I'm interested to see what digital signal processing can do to narrow the gap between speakers and headphones when it comes to soundstage. It would especially be interesting if you could tune the processing to simulate different kinds of synthetic spaces.
  2. Roll

    McGill-born technology aims to revolutionize headphones, speakers


    Video with a bit more questions and answer..


    Their pitch...also they had some concrete answers under comments..


    Does Xiaomi's new earphone use a graphene membrane for improved sound quality?

    Am I gullible? Any question you want me to post on their kickstarter?
  3. Whitigir
    Lol, fancy graphenes, and yet they still sticking it on magnet ?
  4. Roll
    They have a patent

    and Apple Inc also have a patent

    Ora answered when someone question re Apple patent:

    There are a few patents out there related to Graphene audio transducers including Alex Zettl’s patent on pristine Graphene in an electrostatic application and a KAIST filing on Graphene Oxide in a thermoacoustic transducer. Our core patent on the application of Graphene Oxide to dynamic transducers pre-dates Apple’s patent. Also, Apple’s patent is specific to using a small amount of Graphene flakes to selectively stiffen a base of another material. We also have peripheral patents on the method we use to deposit our membranes and the formula we use… So don’t worry, we are covered!
  5. AlwaysForward
    Pretty freaking excited about those Ora headphones. I backed them and it looks like the exact product I didn't know I was looking for, haha. At the worst, I imagine they'll perform quite competitive with other $250 cans if not absolutely destroy them. They Beryllium comparison has my highly excited. The exact verbiage Focal uses to describe their driver material performance is echoed in the Ora, likely due to the scientific underpinnings of both design choices from a performance perspective.

    My biggest concern was how the team intended to tune the drivers outside an anechoic chamber for the human ear. It sounds like they're using Sean Olive's research as their North Star and I hadn't realized that Sean Olive came up with the Harmon Response Curve. I also find It highly encouraging that Sean Olive and the Ora team come from the same University. It all sounds very synergistic and applied research in nature, which is absolutely exciting. I also am very encouraged by the way they describe the material science behind GrapheneQ and it's sound performance properties as well as it's inexpensive manufacturing feasibility. The raw material, carbon, is readily available so we could be looking at the start of a Driver Material that takes the industry by storm.

    On that note, they're quite vocal about licensing the technologies to a wide variety of OEM partners for their products. It'll be very interesting to watch which product verticals they keep in house. For example, will they allow other headphone companies to use the material if they have a competing product?

    All in all, I can't wait to hear these things and hope that more audiophile people get to hear them and post impressions between now and next spring.
  6. AlwaysForward
    I did quite a bit of research before backing and ordering a set. Apparently there's a term which covers stiffness, lightness, damping, thermal performance etc and it's called the "Figure of Merit"

    Apparently GrapheneQ outperforms Beryllium on that spec somewhat handedly because of thinner and lighter properties in the aggregate.
  7. Roll
    I backed them. Not crazy with the electronics part. I am sure they will accomplish a 'good' headphone that another company will take over after the Kickstarter. Who knows, maybe B&O will take it up. They seem to know the people at B&O who probably suggested the manufacture plant in China.

    What would be interesting if the new Mysphere could use the GrapheneQ.
  8. AlwaysForward
    Technical concerns? The only one I can see is scaling the driver material's manufacturing process. Very curious if I've missed something
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2017
  9. Roll
    I just meant I would be happy if they forget the electronics (touchpad controls to skip songs, control volume and answer calls, a built-in electret microphone for hands-free calling) and spend the time and the money on the physical product.

    And we do not know yet if they can produce 'many' of the membranes - “Our biggest challenge is making the leap from the lab to the factory,” Gaskell said. “We have yet to take it from making five or 10 at a time in a lab to making 500,000 at a time in a factory.”

    At least this current model looks better than the one shown in January

  10. AlwaysForward
    Oh the Bluetooth and touchpad shouldn't be considered much of a time/effort cost. Those are both established technology and will have instructions/tools from the OEMs (Qualcomm and whoever makes the capacitive touch controls pad) on how to integrate things. Whatever software was needed is done and ready to ship, waiting on a hard drive somewhere. Adding ANC would be a potentially delay causing technology challenge.

    It also fits a very important business case for them: demonstrated battery efficiency. They want GrapheneQ in consumer electronics and audio products.

    But yes, the driver manufacturing for the first time, at scale, could pose an unexpected problem/hiccup with elements outside of control or expected process. That said, they're done Manufacturing feasibility research and seem to have a manufacturer in place who's taking on the new process and both parties seem to expect success.
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2017
  11. Roll
    Check page 129 of "2017 Loudspeaker Industry Sourcebook"


    Re: GrapheneQ: Graphene Composites for Improved Sound Quality and Increased Efficiency in Portable Devices
    Arpiben likes this.
  12. AlwaysForward
    Super awesome article, really fun read for inquiring minds. Thanks for sharing!
  13. ahmadfaizadnan
    the ora looks interesting but I might gonna wait until it launches first.
  14. tjc303
    Agreed. I'd be more willing to pay more knowing that they are better at representing sound as a comparable headphone at that price point than to roll the dice and purchase without first hearing them.
  15. ahmadfaizadnan
    True. It might be good in theory but we never how the end products turn out. A comparison with other headphones and reviews that drive us to buy one; at least, that's what it is for my case.

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