Sunday, June 28, 2015

How Do Passive Noise Cancelling Headphones Work

It is quite unfortunate that for most music lovers, there is a myriad of ambient noises and sounds that can really interfere with the music coming from your earphones, Now, if you have ever once tried to listen to music on a bus, train or airplane, then you are intimately familiar with this problem. The engine's roar and/or the incessant chatter from fellow passengers, make extremely hard to hear the sounds coming from your speakers, even if they are on or inside your ear. Fortunately, to combat this dilemma, innovators have come up with far more enjoyable way of listening to your music- Noise canceling headphones of which there are two types:

- the active- the passive types.



HOW PASSIVE NOISE CANCELLATION WORKS

The simplest type of noise cancellation is the passive noise reduction, sometimes called noise isolation. From a technical perspective, just about any kind of earphones are able to provide some degree of passive noise reduction (though some are designed for it more than others). This is mostly as a result of the materials used to make the headphones which block out particular sound waves, mostly those of a higher frequency. The absolute best type of passive noise canceling headphones are however the circum-aural types which are specifically engineered to maximize the amount of noise it filters. We will take a look at this some more in a bit. Essentially, where passive noise isolation, the head phones are so designed that they will fit snugly into or around each ear. This makes it significantly harder for noise to escape and bother others in your immediate environment, and it also prevents the noise in your environment from making it hard for you to listen to your music. Passive noise cancellation earphones tend to have very large ear pieces, with large pieces of foam wrapped around them. You need to squeeze the foam into your ear which them provides a perfect seal for the ear canal, or they fit just right around your ear.

All this is saying that passive noise cancelling earphones in essence imitate what happens when you choose to cover your ears with your hands or put some ear plugs in. The excess padding is always done with materials that naturally act as sound barriers- fitting into your ear and sealing off the ambient noise.

Supra-aural headphones, which are earphones placed over and around the ear, instead of in or around it, are probably the very worst at any form of sound cancellation. They tend to be low density, small and very light, as such there is really not much padding to block and outside sound or ambient noise from entering the ear. Furthermore, because they are only placed on the ear, there is a great deal of space for any external noise to travel around them and into the ear canal. It is on very rare occasions that you actually find a top quality supra-aural earphone, because they are simply unable to provide the kind of noise cancellation that circumaural or in ear headphones provide. Supra-aural earphones are lightly manufactured and as such are usually marketed for customers who are not particularly focused on headphone quality, but mostly looking for basic functionality.

Take for instance, most desktop or video game headsets tend to be supra-aural. They are mostly preferred because they are light and as such are suitable for the long, extended hours they will be used. Additionally, in cases like these audio quality is not of great importance since it they are mostly used for spoken communication, where clarity is the focus and nothing else really matters.

When it comes to passive noise cancelling headphones, circumaural or around the ear headphones provide a significantly better noise cancellation quality. They are bigger in size and as such they include more noise reduction material. This in turn creates a far better buffer against outside noise- think beats headphones. Essentially this means that they are heavily packed with layers of high top quality high density foam,, or some other sound absorbing material. Admittedly, this then makes them a bit heavier than the average headphones, but since they completely block the ear off, they keep out up to 95% of outside noise. Well, this is assuming that the circumaural earphones you choose, fit your ears snugly. If they are either poorly designed or not the perfect fit then ambient noise will still be able to make its way in.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Photographic Find of the Century Depicts Trench Life in WW1

Although it meant disobeying direct orders (and a court martial if he was discovered), Lance Corporal George Hackney obviously felt a duty to document The Great War from a soldier’s perspective. Now, to commemorate the centenary of the First World War, his incredible photographs are being displayed in public for the first time.

The astounding collection, which includes candid photographs taken in the British trenches - and at least one amazing shot of a German surrender in 1916, was compiled between 1915, when Hackney was first sent to the front lines, and 1918, when the brutal conflict finally ended, and the photographer returned home.

Before he was called up, Hackney was a keen amateur photographer, and it shows. His pictures demonstrate a very accomplished sense of composition, but never feel forced or especially posed for (as some photography from the era can). In fact, the images are easily among the most intimate and credible pictures that exist from the conflict.

Among the most remarkable shots is a poignant image of a lone soldier writing a letter home, as well as another showing a group of soldiers (in full uniform) casually napping on the deck of the ship that would eventually deliver them to the front lines.

At the time these photographs were taken, no unofficial photography was allowed on the front lines. However, using a portable folding camera about the size of a modern smart phone, the Northern Irishman was able to document the war effort discreetly and respectfully.

Hackney then gave the photographs to his own family upon his return. In addition, many of his pictures were given as gifts to the families of the men photographed, sometimes offering grieving loved ones a chance to see their missing husband, brother or son, one final time.

To cite one such example, Hackney’s Sergeant, James Scott, was killed at the Battle of Messines in May 1917. After Lance Corporal Hackney returned home, he presented Scott’s family with three pictures of him, including a striking depiction of the officer looking proud and dashing on horseback.

The Sergeant’s descendant, Mark Scott, was instrumental in uncovering the stories behind these wonderful, and often profound, images...

Hackney’s pictures also provide excellent accompaniment to the war records of the men in question, rendering them as much more than simply names and numbers, or even as symbols of pure courage and sacrifice. Hackney’s photographs present these remarkable men to a new generation as simple Human beings fighting through an incredibly difficult time to be alive.

A photograph taken at County Antrim, which depicts Hackney’s friend John Ewing writing a diary entry (or possibly a letter home), adds a Human element to the historical facts that Ewing was eventually promoted to Sergeant and subsequently won the Military Medal for bravery in the field...

Stories like this abound in Hackney’s work, which ably presents the war in a far more evocative way than the official press photographs and propaganda of the time could ever have hoped to.

When George Hackney passed away in 1977, his family donated the pictures to the Ulster Museum, where they stayed in the Museum’s archives for over 30 years. These unique, powerful documents were, in turn presented to TV Director Brian Henry Martin by museum curator Dr. Vivienne Pollock, in 2012. Martin was shown the images alongside a collection of Hackney’s personal diaries and was captivated by them.

Lance Corporal Hackney eventually became the subject of a BBC Documentary, directed by Martin, entitled, ‘The Man Who Shot The Great War’. The show aired in Northern Ireland earlier this month.

In addition, Hackney’s work is soon to be the subject of a major exhibition at the Ulster Museum.

Mr. Martin is now bringing 300 of Hackney’s images to the BBC for future use, although it is estimated that there are around 200 more that are undiscovered at the time of writing.

Amanda Moreno of the Museums of The Royal Irish Regiment, told Yahoo! News that, “As a collection of photographs of the First World War, they are totally exceptional.”

Interviewed for the film, Franky Bostyn, Chief of The Belgian Ministry of Defense said, "I think you made the photographical World War One discovery of the century."

100 years on, George Hackney’s unique, vivid and (above all) brave photography presents us with a deeply Human portrait of life in the trenches of The Great War.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

WrestleMania XXXI Surprises Fans

Despite claims that the WWE padded out its attendance figures from 67,000 to 76,000 fans, the eagerly anticipated 31st annual WrestleMania was generally well received by the majority in attendance, as well as those watching at home.

The event took place at Levis Stadium in Santa Clara, San Francisco, making it only the sixth open-air WrestleMania event in WWE history. The card featured, amongst other matches, a seven-man ladder match for the companys Intercontinental Championship, a dream match of sorts between WWE veteran Triple H and former WCW mainstay Sting and a main event of Brock Lesnar Vs. Roman Reigns for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.

The main card kicked off in spectacular fashion, with fan-favourite Daniel Bryan picking up the gold from defending champion Bad News Barrett. Bryan headlined last years 30th anniversary event, but was sidelined by a serious neck injury not long afterwards. His victory at WrestleMania XXXI marked a triumphant return to Championship form for the man known as much for his skilful wrestling as he is for his popular “YES! YES! YES!” chants.

Not long afterward, Bryan was congratulated backstage by a plethora of wrestling legends (and former Intercontinental Champions) including Ricky The Dragon Steamboat, Bret Hitman Hart, Rowdy Roddy Piper, Nature Boy Ric Flair and Pat Patterson, the first ever Intercontinental Champion.



Fans were also treated to a heated grudge match between Seth Rollins and former WWE Champion Randy Orton. The match was tightly contested, with Rollins security men causing regular distractions to Orton from the outside. At the climax of the fight, Orton managed perform his signature move, the RKO, almost from midair, as Rollins attempted his Curb Stomp finisher. Visually, this made for an incredible finish, as The Viper picked up the win.

The matchup between Triple H and Sting was billed as a dream match of sorts, and Sting was presented to fans as being the last survivor of the fabled Monday Night Wars â€" a period of time in wrestlings recent history marked by a ratings war between the then-WWF and its nearest rival WCW. This was rather odd, as Sting had in fact been competing for the TNA promotion for many years after the fall of WCW.

Triple Hs Terminator-themed entrance (complete with virtual ring announcement by Arnold Schwarzenegger) was an impressive sight to behold, but, despite this, the match didnt really find its footing until near the end. However, instead of a satisfactory conclusion to a one-on-one match, the WWE staged a microcosmic version of the ratings war by having its D-Generation X stable reunite in support of Triple H as WCWs New World Order group came to the aid of Sting.

Although well received by Attitude Era fans, this probably proved confusing for some of the younger audience members. At the finale of the match, HHH defeated Sting in fairly predictable fashion, but the pair shook hands when all was said and done, indicating that any animosity between WWE and WCW was finally over (of course, the company purchased WCW in 2001, so the point was actually moot before it was made).

Elsewhere on the card, WWE Divas A.J Lee (who retired from active competition shortly after the event) and Paige saw off The Bella Twins in an enjoyable matchup, whilst John Cena won the United States Championship from the (at the time) undefeated Rusev. In the storyline leading up to the event, Rusev and his manager, The Ravishing Russian Lana had been denigrating the United States in an angle not a million miles removed from the plot of Rocky IV, so it was up to John Cena to put them in their place â€" which he did.

Next up was the long-awaited return of The Undertaker to face the villainous cult leader Bray Wyatt. Fans were teased regarding Takers return, as announcers speculated that he might not actually show up at all.

Up until last year, The Undertaker had remained undefeated at any WrestleMania event, and, in fact had held a 21-0 win/loss record, known to WWE fans as The Streak. However, The Streak had ended at WrestleMania XXX, arguably the biggest shock in WWE history â€" and The Deadman hadnt been seen since. Many fans had speculated that he had actually retired.

Eventually, after much taunting from Wyatt, a loud bell rang and Undertakers entrance music began to play. The match was a far better showing from Undertaker than the previous year (probably because he was concussed for most of his WMXXX matchup), with both men working the crowd into a frenzy before Undertaker picked up a clean and decisive win (as it should be). Bray Wyatt was working hurt throughout the match, but both Bray and his opponent covered for it extremely well.

The main event was a match between WWE Champion Brock Lesnar and 2015 Royal Rumble winner Roman Reigns. Reigns, formerly a member of fan favourite stable The Shield, is the son of Wild Samoan Sika and is therefore a cousin to WWE legends The Rock, Yokozuna and Rikishi and a relative of multi-time WWE Tag Team Champions The Usos. WWE management was obviously very hot on Reigns being their next big star, but the fans had other ideas.

Unanimously booed after his Royal Rumble victory in January, Roman Reigns has been declared by wrestling journalist Dave Meltzer as the least popular wrestler ever to headline a WrestleMania main event. Perceptions of Reigns stem from his being unready and/or too inexperienced for a top spot within the company, to his simply not being a main event calibre-wrestler. In either instance, Reigns (booked to be the good guy or babyface in the match) was unpopular in the main event and actually had to be led to the ring by security guards.

Lesnar, usually a heel (industry term for a bad guy), found himself in an awkward position of garnering some cheers from the crowd â€" and, perhaps as a result, his offence eclipsed Reigns by a significant margin. The former UFC Champ, himself a target of much fan-criticism due to his status as a part-time WWE employee, threw Roman Reigns about like a veritable rag doll. Reigns signature moves (the spear and the Superman Punch respectively) were apparently ineffective against Lesnar, who simply kicked out of each and every pin attempt.

The feel of the main event struggled from the lack of the clear-cut good guy/bad guy dynamic so prominent in pro wrestling, but WWE creative had obviously anticipated this, so a genuine surprise was still waiting around the corner...

Seth Rollins, Reigns former tag team partner, emerged from the back brandishing his Money in the Bank briefcase - a storyline-item that grants the bearer a title match at any place or time of his choosing - and cashed in his contract, leaving WrestleMania XXXI as the new WWE Champion.

Rollins has long been regarded as one of the industrys brightest stars. From his days in independent promotions like ROH to his time in WWEs developmental series NXT, the man formerly known as Tyler Black has been a consistently impressive performer and had been nominated by many as a future World Champion.

Apparently, WrestleMania XXXI was his moment to shine â€" and he did, garnering more heat (industry term for fan reaction to a villain) than either Lesnar or Reigns had managed during the entire match. This set up an interesting story that could play out over the next few months, with Seth ducking and dodging challengers Lesnar and Reigns in his quest to keep the title.

Overall, WrestleMania XXXI received generally positive reviews from fans and critics alike, being named as one of the greatest Manias ever by more than one critic. From this fans perspective, however, it lacked the polish and power of WrestleMania XXX, being dragged down by an ambivalent main event reliant on shock tactics rather than wrestling. Having said that, this years WrestleMania was still a very well packaged and enjoyable Pay-Per-View event.

SOURCES

http://www.wrestleview.com/wwe-news/53869

http://www.f4wonline.com/component/content/article/112-wrestling-observer/41491

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WrestleMania_31#cite_note-42

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Review of the Motorola DP2600 Two Way Radio

When it comes to creating of digital communications throughout your company, MOTOTRBO digital radio solutions can help keep all your employees connected. The Motorola DP2600 is a hand-held two-way radio that comes with all the latest digital technological advances. These small portables deliver on affordability and high digital quality, allowing all of your employees to speak and hear clearly regardless the working conditions.

The Motorola DP2600 display model features programmable buttons, 16 channel capacity, and water protection IP55 specifications. The volume of the radio adjusts automatically to be able to compensate for any background noises. This best-in-class technology provides a scalable solution for any communication needs within the company. The crystal clear screen allows easy navigation and install call recognition.

The reason the DP2600 is so versatile is because it is available in both VHF and UHF frequencies, with a two-line display and simple to navigate keypad that is able to handle up to 128 channels. The three programmable buttons are simple to access, the tricolor LED provides crystal clear visual feedback on the status of the operating system of the radio. The screen is easily viewable day or night, and the large textured talk button is easy to find in any conditions.

Some of the reasons the DP2600 has become one of the popular choices in the construction and assembly line industry is the compact design and the noise reduction capabilities and safety features.. The ability to switch between group or individual calls is simple, while the PTT ID is designed to simplify the system disciple and efficiency of communication. The remote monitoring system ensures employee safety while on the job by enabling quicker assessment of the remote users status.



Calls received on the DP2600 connect on the first time thanks to the unique channel scanning technology. No tools are needed to attach remote accessories to the DP2600 because it comes equipped with an accessory connector. Through the software purchase you can upgrade the radio privacy feature, transmitting interrupt, and five tone signalling. The DP2600 comes with VOX capabilities and Intelligent Audio for automatic volume adjustment to compensate for any degree of noise within the workplace that could affect sound quality.

This hand-held two-way radio IP55 sealing ensures continued operation in the harshest of working conditions. Equipped to handle multiple site coverage with the IP site connector, the DP2600 will keep everyone in the pipeline in communications with each other via the Capacity Plus and Lined capacity Plus features.