I won an auction on eBay yesterday for the Orbitor Nature Nature Observation and Play Back Dish. The blurb states that it can:
"Hear and Record Sounds over 300 Feet!!!",
which is a comfort to me, as I have always suspected if I could just hear 300 feet away, the doors of perception would be opened to me and the gates of insight would fall away, as if scrubbed clean by Brillo pads.
The device goes further. It assures me that it can:
"See 8 Times Closer with Built-In 8X Monocular!",
which puzzles me, somehow, because if one is going to add an inexpensive monocular, then one could easily add an 8 x 30 binocular, so that the blurb could have been:
"See distant birds, animals and unsuspecting friends in Eight Power Stereo!"
instead of the hip but somewhat more prosaic:
"Observe Birds & Animals in 8X Magnification"
Still, it's hard to argue with the virtues of any device whose main promotional feature is that it permits you to:
"Hear Sounds over 300 feet away", especially when it goes on to offer you the chance to:
"Digitally record sounds",
as well as to
"Playback sounds or transfer them to your tape recorder"
Just the "kit list" of what comes with this treasure alone inspires me. It includes, first and foremost, the
"Parabolic Sound Collection Dish"
because if you're going to be convinced that a mic works, you need a parabola that looks like a cross between the tiniest radio telescope in creation and a cheap police plastic bullhorn to really pull it off.
The gear also includes:
"Microphone, On/Off Switch, 8X Monocular, Frequency Controller, Record Button, Playback Button, Headphones, Instruction Manual".
Best of all, when I spotted this on amazon.com a few weeks ago, it retailed for 79 dollars and 95 cents. I bought it on eBay for 3 dollars and 95 cents, plus six or so for shipping and handling.
"Requires one 9volt battery, not included", which is good, because it's not real unless it's 9V.
Apparently, this device will let me digitally record up to 12 seconds of bird or bug song. Then I can transfer the resulting sound to my home studio software. Then I'll take a set of such snippets, recorded onto the studio, and export them as a .wav document. I'll put the resulting .wav document into my softwware synthesizer, Slicer.
Then I'll record again the sound of bugsong and birdsong being morphed and affected by Slicer. Soon nature will be nurtured into a naturalistic unnatural denatured nocturne. Then I'll put it on mp3 and post it on one of the sites I use for such things.
The only two anticipations I have include whether the mic really works with the precision the advertising blurbs imply, and whether the 12 second digital recorder (which could have been 60 seconds, I suspect, without undue product realingment) will work as planned.
Still, I look forward to becoming a backyard nature recordists, ready to songcatch cardinals and mockingbirds, and then slice and dice the resulting sounds into weirdbient splendor.