Binaural Beats

Binaural-BeatsThis podcast originally appeared on Pythagoras Trousers episode 135 on October 10th 2013

This is a podcast about binaural beats.

Binaural beats are created when two ever-so-slightly different frequency tones are listened to in the left and right ear. For example, if I have 440Hz playing in my left ear, and 444Hz playing in my right ear, I have a binaural beat frequency of 4Hz. Your ears won’t hear the difference, but our brain will.

And our brains seem to be tuned to these beats, which are grouped into 5 sets of frequencies: alpha, beta, gamma, delta and theta.

The frequencies at which the brain is operating can be manipulated using brainwave entrainment. This became a tool in the 1960’s for anaesthesia when they used light to tune the brain. Soon after, sound waves were used instead.

Robert Monroe, a radio DJ, was the first man to manipulate the brain with binaural beats, and so set up the Monroe Institute.

In this podcast I speak to Professor James Lane, the now director of the MI. He has been researching these beats in relation to behaviour.

I also speak to J Epperston, who has been creating music with beats like this for years.

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