3G Sounds has introduced its first iOS app for iPhone, the Sample Delay Calculator, a quick and easy reference calculator for time-aligning loudspeakers and microphones in the free-field, for both live sound and recording applications.
The app tackles problems caused by the difference in the propagation speed of sound through air and electricity down a copper cable when dealing with a coherent sound. This causes audible blurring of transients and comb filtering, or even a distinct echo in the instance where the time of arrival differences are greater than 50 ms.
The problem also effects recording, whereby microphones capturing a single source may have great distance variations between them, for example in orchestral applications. By delaying the spot mic on an instrument to the main array, the engineer can ensure that the sound will arrive time coherently when printed onto tape, thus improving the clarity of the mix.
Developed by Chris Kalcov and Grace Zarczynska, the app works based on the simple Speed = Distance/Time equation, but fully expanded using the most accurate derivations to compensate for other imperfections including air temperature. It specifies the required delay in milliseconds and samples, which can then be input into a digital mixer, DAW or loudspeaker management controller. More importantly it streamlines workflow and saves having to carry a scientific calculator to the next gig.
The Sample Delay Calculator app will be available for £1.49 beginning August 30 (tomorrow) at the Apple Store here. (direct link)
An Android version of the app will be available soon.