Due to the nature of the sounds to be listened to (extremely low intensity and very localized) conventional microphone technology is not adequate to capture them. Instead contact microphones, similar to the ones attached on acoustic guitars, offer the locality and precision required.

Such microphones are essentially piezoelectric transducers which are pressure sensitive; they sense minute vibrations from the object’s surface and convert them into an electrical signal picked up by a pre-amp.

OTTO's adjustable microphone head.

A sprung hinge mechanism and the adjustable contact head enable the piezoelectric contact to be positioned against any object or surface, even under difficult angles.

OTTO's sprung hinge mechanism.

OTTO itself can be attached on a variety of surfaces through a suction cup which is at the rear of the device. The suction cup is activated by lowering the sensor arm 90 degrees towards the surface. This is supplemented with a couple of magnets for attachment on metallic ones.

 

OTTO's controls are intuitive and similar to classic audio equipment. They consist of just a volume and a frequency filter dial.

The filter technology used diverges from classic equalizer systems and may allow for total suppression of unwanted frequencies and noise, hence giving the listener an experience of unusual enhanced hearing and sensitivity. Thereby, one can explore the sounds to 'tune in' to specific frequencies and rhythms.

OTTO's filter dial (low frequencies).