Listen to Drew Weber’s audio overview of the newly released HookeAudio Verse Bluetooth Binaural Microphone.
Read Weber’s text review below:
Find more info about the Hooke Verse at the Hooke Audio Website.
To the Hooke Audio team.
I first learned of the Hooke Verse, in Summer 2015, from an article at the Apple Vis website, written by one of it’s developers Anthony Mattana.
I honestly can’t tell you guys how proud I am for your perseverance, for at least 2 years. I have watched as closely as I could as this product came from an amazing idea, to a wearable reality. I also can’t tell you how thankful I am to have been able to test a beta hardware unit for a little over a year, and watch as the iOS app grew into what it is today. The Hooke Verse, has, in fact, changed the way I record 3D Audio into my smart phone. As a totally blind user, I appreciate the fact that accessibility was definitely not an after thought, but was built-in to apps for various platforms from the outset of the project. That is rare, and for that I thank you.
Description of Hooke Verse from Website.”
Hooke Verse is a pair of Bluetooth headphones that incorporate binaural microphones designed to capture 3D audio. Specially placed mics allow you to capture sound like you actually hear it. Once captured, Hooke Verse’s 3D audio can be experienced on any pair of headphones or two channel system, no special speakers or algorithms required. Your listeners will feel like they’re there.
With the free Hooke Audio mobile app, you can capture 3D audio wirelessly to your iOS or Android device using Hooke’s proprietary Bluetooth recording codec. With the Hooke Audio recording cable, you can capture 3D audio to any device, even if they don’t have Bluetooth.
With the Hooke Verse, your videos and recordings can have professional binaural 3D audio.
Description of the Hooke Audio iOS app.
Record WIRELESS binaural 3D Audio and 3D Sound using the Hooke Verse available at www.hookeaudio.com. Turn your device into a professional field recorder with the Hooke Audio app.
3D Audio is sound captured identically to the way your ears hears audio. When you listen back (with headphones) you’ll feel like you’re there.
The Hooke Audio app accesses your camera to bring your smartphone videos to life in 3D Audio. It also doubles as a field recorder, put your device in your pocket and record 3d audio on the fly. Seamlessly pair high-quality audio to your video camera with zero latency and listen to concert videos, podcasts, adventures and home videos come to life like never before.
For Visually impaired users, Hooke Audio is 100% accessible using Voiceover. Visually impaired users can find helpful recording tips by pressing the settings button inside the app.
Share your 3d audio videos and sound recordings via email, social media and text message straight from the app. No special speakers or algorithms required as long as you’re wearing any pair headphones.
Sound matters. Be hear. Change the way you record the world.
I received my beta Verse unit in April 2016. I have heavily tested for the past year+ and feel that this gives me enough experience to give my honest opinion about the product.
I was amazed as I listened to the development team talk about plans for the product on an internet radio show some time before, developing a Bluetooth profile to record HQ stereo for one thing, creating a product to record binaural 3D audio that would pare with my Smartphone was the icing on the cake. I can honestly say after the year+ of testing that this product has in fact, changed the way I record mobile audio. It’s really as easy as turning on the unit, opening the app, and placing two fingers on the screen to start/stop recording.
Listen to how the App works with Apples Built-in Voiceover Here
The Hooke Verse sets out to improve the quality of Video and Audios taken on ones mobile device, and it seriously does just that!
I give the Hooke verse **** (4 out of 5 stars).
Super ease of use:
I love how easy it is to start recording and capture something good. I have used standalone field recording equipment for years, as well as iOS interfaces and it can not get easier than the hooke.
Incredible purchase price:
A package that gives you Binaural recording, preamps and ear buds wireless? for around $200.00? That blows me away!
No computer needed to push content to the web:
This is a big deal for me, It’s something I’ve wanted for years! It’s amazing to push my audios up to Drop box or Audioboom, or shoot to a friend in a I Message, without needing to take a recorder back to a computer and upload.
Great battery life:
The dataflow does not drain my mobile devices battery. If I start recording at 100% I can care free record for 2-3 hours and still have 70% battery left. The Hooke Verse battery easily lasts 6-8 Hours between charges.
The microphones can handle moderately high SPL levels before clipping.
The unit is built extremely well:
Mine has been through hell, including a wash cycle, and it still working hard!
The Hooke Verse is unobtrusive, and looks just like headphones.
Recording audio quality is less than I might expect:
I really want to address this con, gently.
Do you remember the first field recorder?
The first generation IPod?
I believe all devices start somewhere, and grow, from there.
I believe there are two groups of people who will latch on to the Hooke Verse. The first, the sighted video enthusiast, who wants to upgrade there recording audio quality on YouTube videos and other media. All they have used for recording is the internal microphone on there phone or camera. I think the Verse is super amazing for that. I wish everyone owned a Hooke Verse because dude YouTube would sound epic!
The second group, audio enthusiasts. Let’s remember, You can not compare wireless to wired, in any medium.
You can’t expect to purchase this microphone, and expect to capture super quiet events with next to no noise. No, instead purchase this device, for capturing every day moments, quickly. As an audio junky, there are two things I put in my left pocket daily, an extra NFB White cane tip, and my Hooke Verse.
Okay, so why did I purchase the Hooke Verse again? Why of course, to record. For playback, you will want to have another pare of ear buds/headphones with you for any serious listening.
The tips don’t really fit my ears:
I’m coming from a beta unit standpoint, but I feel it worth mentioning. All the tips I received are a bit small for my ears and the unit easily moves/would fall out if I didn’t catch it.
However, it’s good to note that the public release comes with multiple types of ear tips. This might very well have solved this issue.
Other notes worth reading:
Recordings from The Hooke Verse are best in an environment that is medium to moderately loud.
I find it challenging to set the input gain in loud environments as there is significant leakage through the ear buds. (real time/monitor) Phone does not vibrate when levels peak.
As a blind Voiceover user, if you give the app access to the microphone, this gives access to the devices internal microphone. In this case, when you open the app, you will not see any buttons on screen. I only use the Hooke mobile app to record from my Hooke Verse, so I do not give the app Microphone access. This, allows me to see the settings and other app buttons/controls, and go to the recording level screen only when my Verse unit is switched on.
As a blind Voiceover user using this product. At the time of writing, the public release of the iOS Hooke Mobile app, (version 1.0.4) is a bit spotty when starting recording. The phone should vibrate, both when starting/stopping recording. My IPhone7 only vibrates when recording has stopped. The last version of the app when it was in beta was very solid/good in the regard of vibration in both start/stop record. I have no real worries, as I’m sure this will be corrected in a future version.
It is a nice edition to see the Gallery button made accessible. If you also come from a beta standpoint, no longer is there the need to make a recording, just to see your previous recordings.
The app currently only records audio in Apples M4A format.
You will get better audio quality, if turning on airplane mode, and activating Bluetooth while recording.
I am very happy with the Hooke Verse. I look forward to making a second purchase of a release version in the future to see/hear any differences from beta to final.
The Hooke Verse is a device I use on a daily basses in my life, and I highly recommend to anyone looking to upgrade the audio recording quality on there mobile device.
I’ve been planning on posting this review for some time now, so have tried to capture a number of varying environments to hear.
Check them out at the end of podcast!
Spoken word in huge cathedral
Medium size room, low to hush talking 30-40 people
Bike ride, tandem bike (No wind screens)
Medium volume,, live music, outdoors
Medium volume, live music indoors
Very loud! rock concert!
Very loud! Electric guitar
Very loud! Acoustic drum kit
Hail storm Outdoors
Ice catastrophe in kitchen
Old truck start and leave
Friend punching speed bag in gym (pans around you)