why do auditory neuroscience talks always have bad audio?

It never fails.

I show up to a presentation by an auditory neuroscientist that wants to show an example of their stimulus. Maybe its some crazy synthetic stimuli or an ultrasonic frog call or maybe they just want to play some music. And the audio doesn’t work. Someone runs to get a pair of cheap speakers off of their desk and fiddles with the poser and audio cables for 3 minutes. Then the speakers buzz or crackle.

A labmate and I were lamenting this the other day when I remembered the little expandable omnidirectional speaker my friend plugs into his iPod. Would something like that work for a smallish presentation, like a journal club, lab meeting, or brown bag? Maybe for researchers in the auditory sciences, a nice portable speaker should be as critical a part of a one’s presentation arsenal as the laptop, VGA converter, and laser pointer.

That said, I think I’m going to get one of these:

This is like what my friend used for his iPod and it certainly worked well…
However, this Altec Lansing version looks pretty solid AND it’s usb powered…
This one doesn’t look as convenient on the portability front (0.8 lb)…

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  • http://neurobonkers.com Neurobonkers

    I use the ball, the spring-for-a-subwoofer concept is outright genius and the (rechargable) battery life is outstanding, charges via USB too!

  • http://justinkiggins.com neuromusic

    I ended up getting the non-usb Altec Lansing speaker… my wife uses it for music when teaching yoga and I’ve used it for a couple of talks in smaller venues.