Nura headphones – a billion dollar idea
Did you know that your hearing is as unique as your fingerprint, your face or your voice? Each one of us has different sensitivities to different frequencies of sound. This means that the same pair of headphones sounds pretty different for each person. This difference is significant in the same way as a listener’s experience.
For less than 12hrs from the announcement, NURA has pledged more than $75.000!
After the calibration process, these headphones will deliver the perfect sound to the listener’s ears. Sounds amazing, right?
Nura headphones integrate unique soundwave technology automatically to measure a listener’s hearing from the outer ear all the way to the brain, and to perfectly adapt music for him.
As we’ve mentioned it before, just like each human face and voice are unique, so is the structure of everyone’s inner ear. These variations in anatomy result in us hearing sounds differently.
There’s a very wide range of our sensitivity to different frequencies – an average hearing range is >20dB at each frequency (that’s about seven clicks on a smartphone).
When soundwaves enter your ear canal, they vibrate the eardrum. These vibrations are transferred through a series of small bones to the cochlea. The cochlea converts these vibrations into electrical signals which are sent to the brain. Our brain then interprets these signals as a sound.
Incredibly, at the same time, signals are also sent back out through the ear creating a very faint sound.
Nura uses a microphone to know exactly which sound went in, and also uses the same microphone to listen to faint sounds our ears make. This makes Nura very different from any other type of calibration.
It knows the response of the inner ear. The inner ear detection is performed using an adaption of OAE (otoacoustic emission) – an incredible phenomenon well described in the literature.
The sound that is produced by our ears and detected by our headphones’ internal microphone is encoded with information about how well you actually heard the sound that went in.
How it works
Nura headphones connect to the lightning/USB port of your smartphone. You press go, they sweep through a bunch of sounds for about 30 seconds. At the same time, they listen to the sounds your ear is making.
By processing these signals, it works out how well specific frequencies of sound got through to your brain. Once they know this, they sonically mould to match your ears perfectly and provide rich, balanced sound for you.
The team behind NURA headphones
Nura is a Melbourne-based team of experts in engineering, acoustics, biology, hearing science and product delivery. Founded in April 2015, the company is on a mission to unite people through music. Nura has received funding from the Melbourne Accelerator Program and is a graduate of the HAX Accelerator.
Kyle Slater, Co-Founder & CEO
Kyle has spent his life immersed in music, science and technology. His PhD focused on psychoacoustics, human machine interfaces, and integrated circuit design. He has built directional sound beams and even designed the electronics for Australia’s first bionic eye.
Luke Campbell, Co-Founder & CTO
Luke is an MD, who has spent his career studying hearing – from doing surgeries on people’s ears to a Ph.D. in hearing science. He’s also an expert in firmware and app development
Dragan Petrovic, Co-Founder & COO
Dragan followed up his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from UC Berkeley with a 10-year industry career in Product Management and Business Development where he was responsible for shipping millions of product units into the market.
Wilson Shao, Engineer
Wilson brings a strong mix of bio-engineering and electronic engineering to the team. His skills and dedication turn many concepts into reality.
Nura launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $100K over 60 days for its flagship product – a headphone with both earbud and over-ear cup design that perfectly adapts music to match the way you hear. It is now available on Kickstarter starting at $179 USD.