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I need help determining equipment


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I'm a student at Central Michigan University working on an independent study involving the collection and analysis of different signals. The study will involve collecting signals from known sources (piano keys, flutes, ect.) along with signals from snoring or sleep apnea patients. Using computer software, the signal will be transformed via the Fast Fourier Transformation to provide the fundamental frequencies of each patient or known source. Fractal analysis will later be used to quantify and compare the signals.


The goal of the experiment is to associate those fundamental frequencies or fractal number with a particular anatomy within the human respiratory system (for exmaple the larynx, pharynx, and uvula). This would allow easy determination of the source of the snore and leads into possible treatment.


So, I need help assembling equipment which I can use to accomplish this task.


I believe I need the following:


Microphone (capable of plugging into computer for instantaneous signal analysis but also recorder)

Recorder to record snores

Software capable of FFT (Fast Fourier Transformation)


I must be missing something else.



Could anyone recommend what would be suitable equipment for this experiment?


Budget is under $1500 please.



Thanks everyone!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yeah, gearslutz is probably a good recommendation.


For no more than you are describing you can do it for less than $1500.


Audacity is free sound software that will do an FFT. If that really is what you are sure you will use for analysis.


A $200 2 channel mic pre-amp with USB connection to record to computer would be more than enough. Something like a Focusrite 2i2 or 2i4. Maybe an E-Mu o4o4 as another alternative.


A good mic is all that is left. I am thinking something like a hyper-cardioid condenser mic would work. Some of these for your purposes are available for in and around $200.

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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Guitar center - although a bit lacking in knowledge and limited selection you can check gear out physically.


Call sweetwater.com . Very helpful and knowledgable. Also a great place to buy from.


Computer music and future music magazines. Also online.



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Call sweetwater.com . Very helpful and knowledgable. Also a great place to buy from.




I'll second Sweetwater—very knowledgable, and willing to help. I'm fond of Blue microphones—they have them at many price points. If you want one that can plug directly into your computer (via usb, rather than going through a separate adc/mixer), I have the Blue Yeti and while it's not instrumentation quality, it sounds nice, and is around $100.


I think the first thing you need to determine is just how much resolution you need in your samples. This will define the equipment you need. I can't imagine that you would need to go above 24/96, but there may be a reason that you need files with an even higher resolution. How portable does this all need to be? A laptop, with a small battery adc (I've borrowed a friend's Sound Devices USB Pre2, and been very impressed), and a good mike (along with a stand and Mogami or better cable) is pretty much all you'll need. But you may even find that something like the Yeti, with a built in adc, is all you'll need.

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