Wednesday, February 04, 2015

2396 Faux Roar

I was reading an article the other day about the sounds coming from under your hood.  Hood as in hood of your car not hood as in where you grew up.

The article said if you have a very modern car the engine noise you hear may not actually be engine noise.  It could be a recording.

No, you don't have to be driving a Chrysler Milli Vanilli. It could be any car.  BMW, Volkswagen, Toyota, Porsche, and Ford are all actively working on making the sound sound as authentic as possible. 

The article said that for the 2015 Mustang Ecoboost, Ford sound engineers and developers worked on an "active noise control" system that amplifies the engine noise through the car's speakers.  They then surveyed Mustang fan clubs to ask which "sound concepts" they most enjoyed. 

Volkswagen has a similar idea but uses something called a sounddaktor, a hockey puck shaped device that plays sound files in the GTI and Beetle Turbo.  Lexus worked with Yamaha sound engineers to direct sound towards the driver seat. 

All this because auto designers have made the interior of cars so soundproofed and, with superior engineering, the noise of the engine so quiet.  But it turns out the smooth-running, hyper-fuel efficient, super silent cars we've sought for so long don't offer up an "authentic driving experience."  So you know what to do.  If consumers want authentic, then find a way to fake it. 

Get that new slick fifteen-speed bicycle and clothespin a playing card to the spokes. 

What the heck, everyone uses enhancement these days, to get that modeling contract, or even sweeten out those vocal flat notes in a Top 40 hit.

But in a car?  Gives a whole new meaning to the term auto-tune. 

America, ya gotta love it. 

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