In this ipXperience interview, Guy chats with Sahil from Soundskrit about some relatively unknown MEMS microphones that feature a unique directional pickup pattern that has not yet been seen from the likes of competing manufacturers such as STMicroelectronics, Infineon, and Knowles.
Unlike standard omnidirectional MEMS microphones, Soundskrit’s solution provides clear voice isolation with a highly directional dipole pickup pattern, achieved within the hardware itself at the level of the silicon MEMS. This is in direct contrast to omnidirectional microphone solutions, which require arrays of devices and extensive audio post-processing to separate the ambient noise or room reverberation from the desired signal to achieve a similar level of directionality.
As Sahil demonstrates, Soundskrit’s solution aims to take the sonic performance of, for example, a headset and bring it to products like smart speakers or laptops, with reduced component count, power consumption, and processing requirements. Soundskrit’s MEMS microphones are available in analogue- and digital-output varieties which both feature a 20 Hz – 20 kHz frequency range, 63.5 dBA SNR (Signal-to-Noise Ratio), and a 2.65 x 3.50 x 1.10 mm package.
As a startup, Soundskrit’s main aim with their devices is to provide performance-based innovation rather than simple cost saving as user experience is a key driver in product evolution. Use cases such as AR/VR applications for real-time translation and hearing assistive technology that allows people to hear what is front of them but not the surrounding noise are two big focusses, but the automotive applications for reliable in-cabin voice commands is something that really got Guy excited. With the correct engineering, Soundskrit’s microphones would enable the car’s voice-command system to isolate which people in the car are talking and allow control of the car’s voice-activated features with extreme discretion, all thanks to that unique directionality – no more kids messing with the controls!
In addition to the MEMS-originated directionality of this technology, Soundskrit also provides software to make the most of what these microphones can bring to your application. The Horizon Evaluation Platform, described on our board page, makes testing Soundskrit’s technology fun and easy within a real-world application. This USB-C-connected board simply clips to the top bar of your laptop, and an array of microphones can be controlled via Soundskrit’s software to test a wide variety of audio pickup patterns and single- or multiple-user voice isolation in 360°.
We’ve got lots more technical details on the board page below, so follow the link, learn more, and apply to evaluate this technology today!