Ultrasonic Sound Gun Precisely Aims Your Music

When listening to music you sometimes cannot avoid the situation where other people get annoyed because they feel it disrupts their important doings or they do not share your taste in avant-garde doom metal. Of course one could just use headphones. But a hackier way would be to build a parametric speaker that focuses soundwaves into a narrow beam like [Shane] did with this ultrasonic sound gun.

As the directivity of a soundwave depends on the size of the source and its frequency, a directed beam can practically only be achieved with ultrasound. Even though we are not able to perceive frequencies above ~20 kHz, the nonlinear properties of air make it possible to hear the audio modulated onto an ultrasonic carrier signal. For his sound gun [Shane] was inspired by another parametric speaker project. It took him some time to get the 555 timer circuit oscillating at the right frequency and he fried a cheap Bluetooth audio module while trying to increase the output volume but in the end, he managed to get everything working. As the project name suggests, he also 3D printed a gun-shaped enclosure. The video below shows that the sound from the gun behaves really similar to a beam of light and can, for example, be bounced off other objects.

If you are looking for other inspiration there is a whole list of cool ultrasonic projects from distance sensors to acoustic levitation.


25 thoughts on “Ultrasonic Sound Gun Precisely Aims Your Music

    1. Sorry, it would be banned under the Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects.

      1. Weren’t those a toy called something like “Magic Mike” that used to be sold I think in the 80’s, and I’ve seen for sale on eBay before, that could tune into a radio station and transmit to? Forget the exact name if not Magic Mike though I recall could tune into a radio station so the user could talk on while someone had a radio station receiving.

        On another note… the more advanced version seems to be this:

  1. You could do some serious gaslighting with that device if you were so inclined, making someone think they are crazy, but that is a dick move…

    Convincing your girlfriend she’s a robot with artificially implanted human emotions, It’s a Phillip K. Dick move…..

  2. From the article: “As the project name suggests, he also 3D printed a gun-shaped enclosure.”

    That enclosure has more in common with the packages sitting on my porch for the recommended 3 days than it does with a gun.

    Sticking two boxes together at right angles is a waste of your design time and your 3D printer. If you’re going to use a fantastically expensive prototyping machine from the future, at least figure out how to do it well.

    1. They got too cheap. When classified line ads were a buck a word, ppl sweated over them at length to get the best information density possible in the 20 word minimum or with only a couple of bucks extra. Nowadays that’s all free on FB marketplace and similar, so you get a blurry* picture and “TV LOL”

      * Back when it cost $3 for a film and 25c a print…..

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