Silenton brings selective noise cancellation to existing earbuds
While many earbuds now feature noise-cancelling technology, they typically block all noises, including people's voices. The Silenton device, however, is claimed to filter out most sounds while still allowing voices through to third-party earbuds.
Manufactured by South Korean company Suhyun Tech, the Silenton transceiver is designed to be clipped to the user's collar, hardhat, necklace or someplace else near their mouth. It's wirelessly linked to both their smartphone and their earbuds (or headphones) via Bluetooth.
A microphone on the device picks up the ambient sound, which is analyzed via an AI-based algorithm on an integrated microprocessor.
According to the designers, the result is that the voices of nearby people are relayed through to the earbuds, while all other noises are reduced by 25 decibels. That noise reduction is done in the traditional fashion, wherein the device produces sound waves with the same amplitude as the undesired sounds, but with inverted phase, cancelling them out.
The system reportedly also works for isolating the user's voice while blocking out background sounds, when they're taking phone calls via the Silenton's mic. And yes, the earbuds can still also be used to listen to music. A one-hour charge of the device's 3.7-V/230-mAh lithium-polymer battery is claimed to be good for up to 23 hours of use.
Should you be interested, the Silenton is presently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign. Assuming it reaches production, a pledge of US$89 will get you one – the planned retail price is $149. It's demonstrated in the video below.