Born from a successful crowdfunding campaign in 2015, German company Soundbrenner has been working hard to create hype around its inaugural product, the Soundbrenner Pulse.
Since its launch early last year, the wearable metronome has received glowing testimonials from high-level drummers such as John ‘JR’ Robinson and Brian Frasier-Moore.
The device centres around a 2" diameter disc that features a black plastic face with a small Soundbrenner logo in its centre and a clear rotary wheel around the outer rim.
Despite the lack of screen, the surface is touch-sensitive and responds to a multitude of commands such as a long press to turn the device on/off, a quick double-tap to toggle the metronome function and a tap tempo function. The rotary wheel can also be used to change and fine-tune tempo.
The Soundbrenner Pulse uses a “7G ERM vibration motor combined with a cutting-edge haptic driver” to deliver a pulse seven times more powerful than the average smartphone. The outer wheel also flashes in sync with the tempo, and in various programmable colours, to add an extra visual element.
Included with the Pulse are two basic black plastic straps. The short strap is suitable for your wrist or perhaps an ankle, and the longer option allows the metronome to be worn on the upper arm or further up the leg. Also in the box is a magnetic charging station complete with a braided USB cable.
We have also been sent the brand new body strap accessory which opens up additional options for positioning the Soundbrenner on the thigh or torso.
The Pulse is designed to be used with The Metronome companion app, available for iOS and Android devices. This neat software allows users to change time signatures, alter vibration strength settings, choose different colours and even create libraries and set-lists.
The app also allows for up to five Soundbrenner Pulses to be connected and synced - ideal if you’re working with a band. Despite our initial excitement for this new gadget, it has not quite matched expectation.
Even when setting it to full power, we found ourselves relying primarily on the flashing light due to my drums almost completely masking the vibrations of the Soundbrenner. The body strap helped a lot but, short of wearing it on my neck, the pulse was still a challenge to lock-in with compared to my usual audio metronome.