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Voice Tracker I Array Microphone

SKU: VAM101
Price: $376.65
$338.85

Model:
6 Foot Audio Cable:   YES (Add $12.15)
3.5mm Stereo Splitter:   YES (Add $12.15)
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Voice Tracker I Array Microphone

The Voice Tracker I Desktop Array Microphone (USB or 3.5mm) contains 8 separate microphones that work together to form a “listening beam” focussed on the talker. The listening beam creates spatial filtering, causing outstanding signal to noise ratios. The beam automatically and electronically steers to new talker making the Voice Tracker ideal for recording large groups as well as individuals.

Locates and automatically follows talker

Electronically Locates & Automatically Steers Toward The Talker

Freedom of Movement

• Works at long range
• Suppreses Interfering Sounds
• Headset Quality WIthout the Headset 

The combination of these innovations allows the Voice Tracker to have extremely long pick up range. The ability to “hear” talkers throughout an entire room results in a strong economic advantage over the alternative of using several conventional microphones, coupled together through a mixer.

Automatically steers towards the talker

Freedom of Movement

• Works at long range
• Suppreses Interfering Sounds
• Headset Quality WIthout the Headset 

The combination of these innovations allows the Voice Tracker to have extremely long pick up range. The ability to “hear” talkers throughout an entire room results in a strong economic advantage over the alternative of using several conventional microphones, coupled together through a mixer.

Voice Tracker I Product Details

The Voice Tracker I Array Microphone was the original implementation of our patented, automatically and electronically steering, “listening beam” technology. It has been in production since 2002, and has proven to be extremely rugged and reliable.

The Voice Tracker I Array Microphone was designed with two objectives.  The first was to provide coverage throughout a large room for recording or conferencing applications to eliminate the need for multiple microphone/mixer setups, which require expert installation and are expensive. The second was to provide high quality audio for automatic speech recognition without the encumbrance of wearing a head set mic or holding a handheld mic.

Pick up over an entire room is accomplished in two ways. First, sensitivity was increased compared to conventional microphones by constructively adding the output of eight separate always on microphone elements. Second, spatial filtering and background noise reduction are used to eliminate sound from all areas in the room except that space around the active talker, so the increased sensitivity is not corrupted by noise.

As a consequence, the Voice Tracker I Array Microphone can pick up talkers at ranges of 30+ feet in meeting/classroom recording or conventional conferencing applications. It can work effectively for command control automatic speech recognition application at the same distances, and full vocabulary ASR at ranges of a few feet.

The Voice Tracker I Array Microphone has an analog audio output at mic level, and is powered by a wall power converter so there is no risk of loss of performance as batteries run out. A USB adapter is an available option for use with MACs, and laptops with low performance sound cards.

The Voice Tracker I Array Microphone has a built in ceiling mount capability, which removes the clutter of mics on the conference table.

The Voice Tracker I Array Microphone can be used in conventional conferencing systems that have AEC. The Voice Tracker II Array Microphone was designed for use with VoIP conferencing systems that need the AEC built in to the microphone itself.

Voice Tracker I Specifications

Range: 30+ feet for meeting recording (depends on acoustic characteristics of the room.)
Analog Output: (6ft male/male audio cable included)

Mic level
3.5mm ministereo jack
Same signal on tip & ring
500 ohm output impedance

Frequency Response: 100Hz to 11,250 Hz
Physical Dimensions

Length: 18″
Height: 2.5″
Weight: 2.5lbs

Power Equipment

(wall-powered converter included)
6V DC
400 ma
Center Pin Positive

Voice Tracker I Features

Automatic electronic steering of “listening beam” to talker location
Selectable steering limits (90 degrees and 180 degrees) for speech recognition and Meeting recording modes
Selectable LDS to reduce annoying interference of additional talkers during speech recognition or feedback during teleconferencing
Two stage noise reduction (spatial filtering and noise reduction processing)
8 element, 18 inch long array for maximum range
5 element “in range” light to indicate location of chosen talker and sufficiency of signal
Microphone tilt capability to facilitate desktop, monitor top, ceiling, or wall mounting
Weight: 1.5 pounds(excluding wall power supply)
Power: converter from 120V AC to 6V DC included
Compatible with a variety of operating systems including

Microsoft: Windows 3.x, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows ME, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
Apple/Macintosh: Mac OS, Mac OS X
Linux 

View Voice Tracker Instructions
Acoustic_magic_voice_tracker_1
Acoustic_magic_and_connect

More than 370 universities use the Voice Tracker I for lecture recording and distance learning.

A full list is at the bottom of our lecture recording applications page: https://www.acousticmagic.com/applications/lecture-recording-and-distance-learning/

The main attributes of the Voice Tracker™ I in this application are in the white paper attached, and also in a Video that I made at Towson University: https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/videos/#townson

The Voice Tracker™ I is recommended by the major suppliers of lecture recording equipment such as Tegrity, Panopto, Echo 360, etc. For example, see: https://www.acousticmagic.com/news/panopto-endorses-voice-tracker-for-classroom-lecture-capture/

You can get an idea of it's pickup range in the video done in a Stadium classroom at the Harvard School of Public Health: https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/videos/#bluejeans

Using the Voice Tracker array microphone for lecture capture

More than 350 schools and universities use the Voice Tracker™ array microphone for lecture capture. The Voice Tracker™ array microphone has proven to be so useful for lecture recording for the following reasons:

1) A single Voice Tracker™ can capture questions from the class as well as lecture from the Professor as he moves about the room. The Voice Tracker I has a pickup range of 30 feet and a 360° field of view.

2) The Voice Tracker™ array microphone is an extremely economic solution, especially compared to the alternative of several mics and a mixer.

3) The Voice Tracker™ array microphone is extremely easy to set up. Just plug it into the wall for power and connect its audio cable to the mic in jack on the PC. Support by IT personnel is seldom required. It is truly plug-and-play; no software needs to be loaded on the PC.

4) The Voice Tracker array microphone does not suffer from cross talk which can occur with wireless microphones, especially in areas where several classrooms are close together.

5) Since the Voice Tracker is powered by wall power, you never lose a recording because of dead batteries.

6) The Voice Tracker is extremely reliable. Many schools leave the Voice Tracker on in the classroom 24/7, to simplify setup, and have had very few failures over the course of several years.

The Voice Tracker accomplishes this outstanding pickup range and field of view because of its proprietary scanning beamforming technology. The Voice Tracker I contains eight always on microphones and a digital signal processor. The processor forms a “listening beam” and automatically (and electronically) steers the beam to the active talker. This creates "spatial filtering". The Voice Tracker picks up from the area around the talker and ignores sound from other parts of the room. The Voice Tracker™ also has noise reduction algorithms to eliminate stationary noise from fans and air conditioners. This low noise pickup, together with the constructive combination of the output of eight microphones, gives the Voice Tracker™ an outstanding signal-to-noise ratio.

Most users mount the Voice Tracker on a desk or podium in the front of the room, pointing towards the rear of the room. Voice Tracker is more sensitive from the front than the rear and this positioning allows pickup from students sitting further away from the microphone.

The Voice Tracker I has a built in ceiling mount and can be positioned on the ceiling, again towards the front of the room pointing towards the rear.

For larger rooms, two Voice Trackers can be combined using a simple 3.5mm Y, or a mixer.

Most lecture capture applications are for recording only. In some distance learning applications, the class can include off site participants. If the off-site students participate in the class by asking questions through a loudspeaker in the classroom, then it is necessary to accomplish acoustic echo cancellation. Acoustic echo occurs when the far end talker’s voice through a loudspeaker at the near end is picked up by an open microphone and sent back to the far end talker as an echo. If the Voice Tracker™ I is connected to a device that has acoustic echo canceler, it can be used for distance learning. If it is connected to a VoIP system that does not have a robust acoustic echo canceler, you can use the Voice Tracker II. The Voice Tracker II is a relatively new product from Acoustic Magic that has a built-in acoustic echo canceler. It can be used with products like GoToMeeting. The Voice Tracker™II has slightly less range than the Voice Tracker I, and is more expensive, but it enables full-duplex operation without expensive processors.

The audio output from the Voice Tracker I is analog at mic level thru a 3.5mm plug. If the Voice Tracker I is connected to a Mac, you should use our USB adapter (part 102) since the Mac soundcard needs line level.

The Voice Tracker II has both USB audio output and mic level analog output.

Mic’ing an Entire Middle School Stage with Two Voice Tracker I Array Microphones

Lecture recording

The major application for the Voice Tracker I is lecture recording because it can capture questions and comments from the class as well as lecture from the professor as he moves around the room. More than 300 schools and universities use the Voice Tracker I. A few have purchased more than hundred units. The Voice Tracker I is recommended by the major suppliers of classroom recording software such as Tegrity, Echo 360, Panopto, etc.
There are several value propositions leading to this:
a. 30 foot pickup range with a 360° field of view
b. low-cost. Eliminates the expensive alternative of several microphones and a mixer.
c. extremely reliable
d. easy to set up (no IT support required)
e. no cross talk from the adjoining classrooms (as can occur with wireless mics)
f. no batteries which can cause failed recordings if they die
1. https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/videos/#bluejeans
2. https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/user-comments/#burns

Meeting recording

This is similar to lecture recording. The Voice Tracker I is being used in town meetings because it can capture questions from the audience as well as speakers on the podium. It is also used for board rooms, focus groups, deposition recording, etc.
1.  https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/user-comments/#mperez
2. https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/user-comments/#emonti

Courtroom Recording

This is similar to lecture recording and meeting recording, but we separated it out because multiple units are usually involved.:
1. https://www.acousticmagic.com/news/

Conferencing

If the Voice Tracker I is connected to something that has a good AEC, it is even better for conferencing than the Voice Tracker II because it has longer pickup range. It is also easy to combine several Voice Tracker I's for additional pickup range. Most conventional conferencing systems allow for an external microphone connection. Even some VoIP systems (such as Zoom) have good AEC.
1. https://www.acousticmagic.com/news/acoustic-magic-certified-for-use-with-zoom/
2. https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/user-comments/#swright

Assistive applications and automatic speech recognition

Like Voice Tracker II, the Voice Tracker I can be used for hands-free, headset free automatic speech recognition. Compared to the Voice Tracker II, it is less expensive, but it is also larger.
1. https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/user-comments/#agould
2. https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/user-comments/#bauman

Home Automation

The Voice Tracker I can pickup voices at ranges of 30 feet for voice control, which means you can cover an entire room for home automation.
1. https://www.acousticmagic.com/about-us/user-comments/#rhelmke

NOTE: For the Voice Tracker I to work on a Mac you have to use a USB adapter.  There is nothing special about the USB adapter. Just connect the analog audio signal to the pink Jack and the USB plug to the PC or Mac

SKU: 101 - 3.5mm

The Voice Tracker I Desktop Array Microphone contains 8 separate microphones that work together to form a “listening beam” focussed on the talker. The listening beam creates spatial filtering, causing outstanding signal to noise ratios. The beam automatically and electronically steers to new talker making the Voice Tracker ideal for recording large groups as well as individuals. The output is through a 3.5 mm jack, at mic level. The Voice Tracker comes with a 6 foot audio cable and wall power converter for USA voltage/plug.

SKU: 103 - USB

Same as the Voice Tracker I (part 101) plus a USB adapter. (part 102A). Wall power to the microphone is still required

Using the Voice Tracker Array Microphone as an External Microphone to an iPhone

People use our Voice Tracker array microphones to record meetings, or for conferencing, because of its long pickup range (20 to 30 feet) and 360° field of view.

Our Voice Tracker array microphones are designed to be connected to PCs or other devices either through a 3.5 mm analog audio connection (through a soundcard) or a USB connection. The Voice Tracker I has only an analog output, but can he be easily converted to USB using a USB adapter like our part 102A. The Voice Tracker II has both an analog audio output and a USB audio output.

Their analog outputs are at mic level, with low impedance, and work well with sound cards. The boost in the soundcard is designed to bring the output up to usable levels. High levels of boost can be employed because of the good signal-to-noise ratio in the microphones.

From time to time we have received inquiries about connecting the Voice Tracker microphones to an iPhone (or other smart phones). Initially, this couldn’t be done because the iPhone required a very specific output impedance from the external microphone. If the impedance didn’t match what the iPhone was looking for, it would default to the built-in microphone.

Fortunately, impedance matching connectors have become available to eliminate this roadblock.

We have tested an “ iPhone 1/8 inch microphone adapter to 3.5 mm four conductor TRRS male” adapter from KV connection (part number code KM-iPhone-mic), and it works just fine. Similar adapters are available from other manufacturers. Rode has told us that their adapters also match the iPhone’s impedance requirement, but we have not tested one.

Note that when the KV connection adapter was connected to the iPhone, we lost the speaker output.

This can be corrected by first connecting a” 3 .5 mm 4 pin to 2 x 3 pin 3.5 mm headset splitter adapter” to the iPhone. This adapter is available from companies like StarTech. The arm labeled microphone was connected to the Voice Tracker, and the arm labeled headset was connected to our PC speaker to create a long-range speakerphone with the Voice Tracker I as the mic and the PC speaker as the speaker.

Source

Acoustic_Magic_Certifications

Consequently, the Voice Tracker can pick-up questions from the class as well as lecture from the professor, enabling more than 350 schools and universities to choose the Voice Tracker I for lecture recording.

Or, it can pick up questions from the audience in town meetings or comments around a board room conference table for meeting recording. The long pickup range and wide field of view make the Voice Tracker ideal for conferencing applications as well. The Voice Tracker I can be used as an auxiliary microphone with conventional conferencing systems that have a good AEC. The Voice Tracker II has its own built in AEC, and consequently can be used with VoIP systems that do not have a robust AEC. 

Voice Tracker Array Microphones can also be used for a hands-free/headset free automatic speech recognition with full vocabulary dictation products like Dragon NaturallySpeaking. The Voice Tracker’s long range make it ideal for home automation applications where a whole room has to be covered for command-and-control recognition.

Our Certifications

GRUNDIG Business SystemsDragon Naturally SpeakingZoom

PANPTOHomeSeer technologiesMacSpeech

SONICLEARecho active learningGoToMeeting

BlueJeans


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