Sono: noise cancellation for your windows

sono noise cancellation windows

Your house, with all it’s sheetrock, insulation, wood panels, and siding, would be an impenetrable fortress if it weren’t for your windows. Those thin panes of molten silica sand are a chink in your home’s armor, letting in all kinds of noise from the outside world.

Sure, if you live out in the country and the only noise pollution you deal with are songbirds and the sound of wind blowing through trees, this might not be much of an issue. But if you live in a more urban environment, under the constant drone of traffic, pedestrians, and other miscellaneous street noise, sound leaking through your windows can be a massive disturbance to the peace and quiet of your pad.

The problem is that your big, flat, windows – despite being relatively solid and sturdy – behave like big membranes when hit with vibrations, and tend to transfer sound pretty readily. It’s especially bad if you’ve only got a single-pane glass between you and the outdoors. If that’s the case, you may as well be living next door to a 24-hour karaoke bar. 

sono technical setupNoise pollution is everywhere, so wouldn’t it be nice if you could get rid of all that extraneous sound, much like a pair of noise-cancelling headphones nullifies the sound of a jet engine? Well good news – that’s exactly what Sono, an upcoming sound neutralizing device for you windows, does. 

The device is still just a prototype at this point, but it works almost exactly like the active noise cancellation module you’d find in a pair of high-end headphones. It uses a microphone to pick up incoming sounds, and then sends out sounds of the exact same frequency and wavelength, but 180 degrees out of phase. When these outgoing sound waves collide with the incoming ones, they effectively cancel each other out, so no noise ends up reaching your window.

But it’s also a bit more sophisticated than that. Instead of just blocking out everything like a pair of noise-canceling cans, Sono allows users to isolate specific noises they want to hear while simultaneously filtering out the ones they don’t. For example, lets say you want to block out the sound of traffic and people’s voices, but still want to be able to hear the sound of birds chirping. Thanks to Sono’s ability to discern between a wide range of frequencies and selectively neutralize them, this is totally possible. 

Unfortunately the product isn’t yet past the prototype stage, but the good news is that the design is currently a finalist in contention for the prestigious James Dyson award. If it wins, designer Rudolf Stefanich will be awarded prize money to help accelerate the product’s development. We’ll keep you posted on availability, but until then you can find out more about Sono here.

Product Review

Simple and reliable, Apple's AirPods are among the best fully wireless earbuds

Apple’s AirPods wireless headphones have dominated the market essentially since they hit stores in December 2016. Though not without some faults, they cracked the connectivity code to rank among the best fully wireless earbuds you can…
Gaming

Here's our Champion's guide to picking the best character in Apex Legends

Apex Legends' use of heroes with different abilities helps separate it from other battle royale games. To help you choose your legend, we've put together a legend guide detailing their abilities, strengths, and weaknesses.
Emerging Tech

Researchers gave alligators headphones and ketamine, and all for a good cause

Researchers in Germany and the United States recently gave ketamine and earphones to alligators to monitor how they process sounds. Here's what it reveals about alligator evolution.
Deals

The best Apple AirPods alternatives for Android, Windows, and iOS devices

Apple AirPods might be new and improved, but they aren't the only game in town. Other makers are offering their own truly wireless earbuds, with attractive features. These are the best AirPod alternatives on the market today.
Deals

Walmart slashes prices on iRobot Roomba and Shark Ion robot vacuums

Walmart slashed prices of top robot vacuums from iRobot, Shark, Eufy, and Ecovacs just in time for spring cleaning season.  With a robot vacuum on the job you can retire that old upright and let a robot vacuum take over floor-cleaning…
Deals

Amazon slices prices in half for AeroGardens smart indoor garden, today only

AeroGardens can grow up to six plants at one time. The plants grow in water, not soil, so you never have the mess of outdoor gardening in your clean home. This method allows the plants to grow five times faster than if they were planted in…
News

LG’s SnowWhite is a Keurig for lovers of homemade ice cream

LG's SnowWhite conceptual countertop appliance, on display at this year's South by Southwest, is like a Keurig machine for ice cream lovers that produces your favorite frozen desserts from nothing but a little pod.
Deals

Amazon shaves $50 off the Coway Mighty air purifier ahead of allergy season

When it's allergy season, a good air purifier is a must-have for sufferers. The Coway Mighty air purifier (now on sale from Amazon) is one of the best, greatly improving the air quality inside your home by removing dust, dander, pollen, and…
Smart Home

Dyson’s newest products strive to keep your home cool, clean, and well-lit

Dyson launched products to keep your home cool, clean, and well-lit. A Dyson intelligent task light cycles with nature and a personal air purifier harnesses unique airflow. Microprocessors in Dyson's vacuum self-adjust 8,000 times a second.
Smart Home

Smart light switches have become more affordable: Here are the best ones

The ability to control the lighting in your home can have a big effect on your living space. To have more control over your lighting, check out the best smart light switches on the market. 
Smart Home

Update your kitchen with the best refrigerators you can buy in 2019

There are tons of factors that go into buying a fridge, from size and capacity to color. It takes lots of testing and research, but we've chosen the best refrigerators to get you started, regardless of what you're looking for.
Smart Home

Walmart serves up a rare deal on the Google Home Max at $100 off

Some deals are predictable and others are pre-announced, but today Walmart posted a rare deal: $100 off the powerful Google Home Max. Since it rarely goes on sale, waiting may not be prudent. If you want one, grab it.
Smart Home

The best smart locks to increase your home security in 2019

A good smart lock should offer a combination of security and convenience. Fortunately, these devices keep your home protected, your family safe, and your belongings secure from possible intruders.
Deals

Suck up the savings with these vacuum cleaners on sale for $100 or less

Keeping your floors clean around the home is a constant chore. To help make things a whole lot easier, we've picked out some great vacuum cleaner deals available right now, from full-sized upright models to robot vacs.