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Connections and Battles

So I have been working on a few new projects, one is an Audix to Shure Adapter that allows an Audix wireless mic capsule to mount onto a Shure wireless transmitter. The concept originated from our friend George Squires that mixes monitors for REM. Though Audix makes a wireless unit, it just is not of the caliber of the deep pockets Shure products. While Shure makes many very high quality mics, they just do not make a high gain before feedback mic that can keep up with the some of the Audix offerings. So, when you have a band that relies on the assets of an Audix mic yet needs wireless, it has been a bit of an issue. Switching to a different mic type mid show when the singer wants to wireless wander really sucks. So we made a couple prototypes for REM's last tour but they were just metal threaded adaptors and needed to be soldered to work. Now we have made a batch that just screws right on and allows any Audix capsule make a connection with any Shure transmitter. If you are interested, there is more info at

Okey Dokey Smokey. Plants not Animals!

Speaking of making connections and solutions, though I never mentioned it, for the past two years I have been battling a miserable on and off increasing bummer of a building sinus issue. It started pretty mellow and gradually built into headaches, blurry vision, light sensitivity and constant sleepless pressure that left me always tired and never fully coherent feeling. Five doctors, 2 MRI's and a Cat scan, antibiotics, a pile of natural based neti pot concoctions, cameras in the head, steroids, hot steam and on and on and on. That helpless unsolvable dredge of a feeling where everyday feels like rubbing bicycle brakes on an uphill pedal. Aaaargh! So once again I reach one of the many, "Hey, wait a minute, this is just not right, this is not normal, I must attack once again" points, calling the doctor, fed up I tell them I want to go the hospital or whatever this takes. So they give me an appointment right now and less than 30 minutes later I am in the his office hearing the same old rap. "Hmmm, yes, hmmm, ok, well I am going to prescribe blah blah blah." Hey wait, that's what you and every other doc has told me before but with no other immediate option I humor the response and whilst I try and form a new plan. But this time he says something different. "Hmmm, it's not bacterial, so antibiotics wont help, it's fungal based." Going to give you a seven day prescription that should clear it up. Oooooh, fungal is plant, and all this time everything has been focused on fighting little critters as bacteria is animal. Well new is good and worth a shot I guess, so I get to the pharmacy and they hand me these packets of huh? "For Vaginal Yeast Infections!" Yikes, that caught me off guard and sent me mind a wandering. I did a bit of research and found:

That was 4 days ago and though I am not fully head pressure free, damn I feel a million times better like I no longer live my life walking around in a bowl of jello with spike in my cheek. I just hope it lasts but for now I am sure happier.

Lets see what else. The Mighty Headphone Quest continues and I have put up a few Youtube videos on the subject. You may notice a bit of difference in the readings as I have switched to a different microphone that is smaller and seem to read the HF a bit better on some headphones. It is interesting how some of the headphones are really sensitive to slight placement variations while others are not.


Hey, I have been getting requests to test some more headphone models which I will gladly do. But, since I do not have an unlimited budget on this and getting demo's can be tough with companies Rat is not a dealer for, I figured I would send a shot out:

If you have a pair of headphones you feel are worthy contenders and do not mind sending them to me for a 4 or 5 days, I will add them into the test mix and youtube the results. And thank you Bob Rice for the Sony MDR-7509 non HD's!

More audio nerdery! Hurray! Want a super cool free downloadable sine wave generator? Check out

Or how about a free version of Electri-Q' - posihfopit edition' is a simple, intuitive, but powerful minimum phase EQ?

Or perhaps a parametric graphic equalizer with excellent response all the way up to Nyquist?

And nothing like a trip to the beach with the pooch to bring a smile.

Dave Rat

Oh, and since not everything can always run smoothly and issues are bound to occur, please view the following instructional video teaching advanced troublshooting techniques.


And double oh, Greg Cameron sent me this link to a Pro Sound News article on Blink 182.


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Moritz on :

Uuhhh, your affliction sounds like a "Dr. House" episode. Maybe next time, ask him first ;-) ... what doesn't kill you, can only make you stronger! Headphonequest: I'am happy seen the AH2000 in the finals! I'm curious about the result. Greatings from Germany!

Bob Howes on :

I've been following your headphone quest with interest and noticed you comment about the positioning of the measurement mic affecting the response curve. If it's this critical, do you think that maybe the "fit" of the headphones on a person might also affect what they hear and, therefore, partially explain why 'phones can be such a personal thing?

Dave Rat on :

The mic position does effect the response a bit. What I am finding though is that poor sounding headphones are impossible to get a good response from and good sounding phones come up looking pretty nice. The main thing though is that the variations seem to come from two things: 1) HF changes as you get near the center of the headphone driver 2) LF drops off if you break the seal of the pad. I do not think ear shape and skin texture will make much of a variation compared to the huge variations I am seeing between headphones. Or put differently, the great sound headphones tend to measure well regardless and with the poor sounding or ones with tilted responses I am not able to get good measurements no matter what I do.

Mollie Vail on :

Dave, if that "unusual" (lol) medication doesnt solve the whole issue, you might want to check out a chiropractic opinion. Im not sure if you have tried that yet. But I had sever migrain and sinus pressure that would make my teeth hurt and it was caused by my C1 vertibrate. The second after it was adjusted, I got a crazy head rush from the pressure release and then the sinus (gross lol ) just drained from everywhere in my face. OMG Holy Crap! My life hasnt ever been the same. I hope you dont need this info and that the problem is solved, but if not you could try. Congrats on the running too, its one of my new fav hobbies. I adopted a black lab/great dane and he absolutly loves running with me. Anyway, always glad to see you are living life to the fullest and that you continue doing so. -Mollie Vail (post-PMP worc. MA, now in RI.)

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