INNOVATION

Nura: Australia's Most Funded Kickstarter Coming To Ears Near You

Personalised sound, get around it.

04/07/2016 10:15 AM AEST | Updated 15/07/2016 12:56 PM AEST
NEW! HIGHLIGHT AND SHARE
Highlight text to share via Facebook and Twitter
shutterstock
Music on, world off.

The concept of "personalised sound" has been little explored, but thanks to two Melbourne-based entrepreneurs, the headphone experience as we know it is about to change forever.

So what is personalised sound anyway?

Just as no pair of glasses are the same, a pair of headphones should be matched to the individual listener.

Why? Because we all hear differently. Some people hear different notes, bass and treble than others but the problem is it's very difficult to know what's missing, until you are shown the difference.

Enter Nura: headphones that measure and adjust to your hearing.

Nura
Headphones can now learn your unique hearing and adapt sound perfectly for you.

Kyle Slater and Luke Campbell are the inventors behind the world-first innovation, which on Monday became the highest funded Australian Kickstarter campaign to date, a giant leap from when the idea first came to light 14 months ago.

The duo, who were strangers at the time, worked within 50 metres of each other and met by chance after co-supervising a project in the final year of their respective PhD studies.

"We realised that we had extremely complimentary skills. Luke knew a lot about how hearing worked and I knew a lot about electric engineering," Slater told The Huffington Post Australia.

I grew up in a musical family and had been asking the question for some time whether it was possible to make the perfect pair of headphones.

Slater, an electronic engineer in the medical space with a background in physics, and Campbell, a medical doctor by training with a focus on hearing for cochlear implants, would soon become the perfect team.

"I grew up in a musical family and had been asking the question for some time whether it was possible to make the perfect pair of headphones," Slater said.

Slater soon realised the redundancy of his question due to way we all hear differently.

"There is no way that you can make the perfect headphones because what they need to do is learn how you hear and then adapt to that by filling in your musical black spots," Slater said.

So it became a question of whether it was possible to put a hearing measurement machine inside a pair of headphones.

"I went straight to Luke and asked whether there was a way to work out how someone hears automatically, through a device inserted inside a pair of headphones" Slater said.

One day later, Campbell came back with an answer: yes.

What came next was a move to China, where they spent four months finalising their headphone prototype.

"Headphones were really treated as objects that weren't connected to the person. They have their own specifications and sensitivities but really those specifications and details mean very little if you don't take into account the person they are connected to," Slater said.

We're about music and preserving the quality of music and the hard work that musicians and sound engineers put into creating recorded music.

The duo then travelled to the U.K., Berlin, California and parts of Australia to show their product to musicians before launching their Kickstarter campaign.

"We heard from people that they were hearing new instruments in songs they've been listening to for 20 years," Campbell said.

Fast-forward to now, three weeks since launch and Nura has landed $1.2 million of funding -- more than eight times what they'd set out to achieve -- from almost 4,000 backers.

Only one percent of Kickstarter projects globally reaching more than $1 million.

"We're about preserving the quality of music and the hard work that musicians and sound engineers put into creating recorded music," Campbell said.

Visit HuffPost Australia's profile on Pinterest.

More On This Topic

Advertisement
Advertisement