Song Meter SM2BAT 192kHz Stereo or 384kHz Mono

Song Meter SM2BAT
192kHz Stereo or 384kHz Mono
Ultrasonic Recorders
Wildlife Acoustics, Inc.
Copyright © 2009-2011 Wildlife Acoustics, Inc.
Rev. 5/17/11
All rights reserved. Wildlife Acoustics is registered in the U.S. Patent and
Trademark Office. Song Scope, Song Meter, SM1, SM2, SM2BAT, SMX, and
WAC are trademarks of Wildlife Acoustics, Inc. All other trademarks are the
property of their respective owners. Patents pending.
About This Document..........................................................
Overview ...............................................................................
SMX-US Microphone ..........................................................
Notes on Weatherproofing...............................................
Directionality and Frequency Response ..........................
Power Consumption ............................................................
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats......................................... 6
Simple One-Channel Configuration ................................ 6
Jumper Settings.......................................................... 6
Schedule..................................................................... 7
Audio Settings............................................................ 7
Stereo Ultrasonic Recording............................................ 9
Mixed Ultrasonic and Acoustic Recording...................... 9
Stereo Mixed Recordings........................................... 9
Scheduled Mixed Recordings .................................... 10
Post Processing ................................................................ 11
Copyright © 2009-2011
Song Meter SM2BAT
About This Document
About This Document
This document describes the use of the SM2BAT 192kHz stereo and SM2BAT
384kHz mono daughter cards for the Song Meter SM2 acoustic monitoring and
data logging platform.
Refer to the Song Meter SM2 User Manual for detailed information on using the
Song Meter SM2 platform. This document is intended as a supplement and
assumes you are already familiar with the Song Meter’s operation.
You will also want to download and install the latest Wac2Wav postprocessing
software and Song Meter Configuration Utility software from the downloads
section of our website at
The SM2BAT 192kHz stereo or 384kHz mono daughter card is installed on the
back of the SM2 motherboard and provides a high-speed 16-bit digital sampling
The audio input to the SM2BAT comes from the output of the two-stage
preamplifier on the SM2. Refer to the section on Amplifier Configuration
Jumpers in the Song Meter SM2 User Manual for more information about
configuring the analog high-pass filters and gain settings. Note that the
SM2BAT audio signal is not routed through the third-stage amplifier configured
by the left and right gain parameters in the settings menu. Therefore, the gain is
configurable only with the SM2 jumpers to +0, +12, +24, +36, +48, or +60dB,
and the third stage gain settings will have no effect. For monitoring bats with the
SMX-US ultrasonic microphone, the +36dB or +48dB setting is recommended.
Use +24dB on the first stage and either +12dB or +24dB on the second stage to
get the desired +36dB or +48dB amplification.
The SM2 automatically detects the presence of the SM2BAT daughter card. If
present, the 192,000 or 384,000 Hz sample rate choice is added to the list of
possible sample rate settings. In addition, the SET advanced scheduling
command can also configure the 192,000 or 384,000 Hz sample rate as part of
an advanced schedule.
When 384,000 Hz sample rate is selected, the SM2BAT 384kHz mono daughter
card is used to sample the audio stream from the left channel. When the 192,000
Hz sample rate is selected, the SM2BAT 192kHz stereo daughter card is used to
sample the audio stream from the left and right channels. Otherwise, the SM2
uses its on-board codec to sample at audio rates up to 48,000 Hz.
Song Meter SM2BAT
Copyright © 2009-2011
SMX-US Microphone
SMX-US Microphone
The SMX-US is an ultrasonic microphone designed for terrestrial monitoring
applications, specifically for recording the echolocation calls of bats.
Notes on Weatherproofing
The transducer inside the SMX-US microphone can be permanently
damaged if it is exposed to water in the event that the weatherproofing
To protect the transducer, there are trade-offs between ultrasonic sensitivity
and weatherproofing.
The SMX-US features several layers of protection. First, a porous
membrane transparent to ultrasound prevents unpressurized liquid water
from entering the microphone. However, the membrane is rated to only 0.07
lbs/in2 or 5g/cm2. This is easily exceeded by wind-blown rain. The foam
windscreen provides a critical second layer of protection to absorb the
impact of wind-blown rain so that only unpressurized water reaches the
membrane effectively protecting the transducer. When dry, the foam
windscreen is almost transparent to ultrasound with a loss of only 2dB.
However, the loss increases with frequency when wet, and will effectively
block ultrasound if it then freezes.
The membrane is also fragile. The foam windscreen adds a layer of
protection against insects, rodents and birds who will tend to nibble on the
windscreen instead of the membrane.
We strongly recommend operating the SMX-US with the windscreen, and
replacing the windscreen if it becomes fully or partially eaten.
We also recommend positioning the microphones so that they point parallel
to the ground, or even slightly downward. In this configuration, even if the
windscreen is absent and water penetrates the membrane, the water should
not collect in sensitive areas inside the microphone and there is a good
chance that the transducer will survive. If you suspect that water may have
entered the microphone, you should avoid handling it until it has
completely dried out. Otherwise water could change position and come in
contact with the transducer resulting in damage.
If you are deploying the SM2 in field conditions expected to remain wet or
frozen, you may want to operate the SMX-US microphone without its foam
Copyright © 2009-2011
Song Meter SM2BAT
SMX-US Microphone
windscreen and instead implement your own weather protection to protect
the membrane from wind-blown rain. Again, we recommend that you aim
the microphone horizontally or downward (not upward) to reduce the risk
of damage should weatherproofing fail.
Directionality and Frequency Response
The SMX-US is an omnidirectional microphone and is therefore ideally
suited to unattended monitoring in which the precise direction of bat
activity may not be known in advance. The following graph illustrates the
typical pick-up pattern:
SMX-US Directionality
Song Meter SM2BAT
Copyright © 2009-2011
SMX-US Microphone
Noise Floor
SMX-US Frequency Response
The SMX-US is sensitive to frequencies over 150kHz. The graph shows the
typical frequency response and noise floor of the SMX-US microphone.
Some additional attenuation can be expected if the microphone windscreen
is wet, especially in higher frequencies:
Copyright © 2009-2011
Song Meter SM2BAT
Power Consumption
The SMX-US is a powered microphone with low impedance and can drive
cables up to 100 meters without a preamplifier and without any noticeable
loss at frequencies up to 120kHz.
The SMX-US microphone can be either connected directly to the SM2
enclosure without any cable or extended on one or more lengths of our
standard one meter, ten meter and fifty meter cables up to the maximum.
For best results, the SMX-US microphone should be mounted on a cable
and placed away from the Song Meter enclosure or other hard objects in
order to reduce echos.
Power Consumption
The following table illustrates the typical power consumption for different
configurations and settings. Note that actual consumption may vary depending
on flash cards, variation in electronic components, and other variables:
Rate and
w/ Trigger
192kHz x 1
192khz x 2
384kHz x 1
High quality Alkaline D cells can deliver about 14,000mAh capacity at 20° C.
With compression and triggers, this translates to about 95 hours record time with
192kHz mono, 70 hours record time with 192kHz stereo, and 75 hours record
time with 384kHz mono. Longer deployments are possible with larger external
batteries using the Song Meter SM2PWR power adapter sold seperately.
When the SM2BAT daughter card is not being used, for example when the Song
Meter SM2 is configured for sampling rates at or below 48kHz, it will still
consume some additional current when recording compared to an SM2 without
the SM2BAT card installed. In the case of the 192kHz stereo card, 25mA of
additional current is used. In the case of the 384kHz mono card, 15mA of
additional current is used.
Song Meter SM2BAT
Copyright © 2009-2011
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
When the Song Meter is sleeping between scheduled recording events, the
SM2BAT is also powered down and total current consumption is typically less
than one milliamp.
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
Simple One-Channel Configuration
The configuration described below is available as an example configuration
in the Song Meter Configuration Utility distribution, “SM2BAT-192MONO.SET” for the 192kHz stereo model or “SM2BAT-384MONO.SET” for the 384kHz model. For the SM2BAT to be able to
determine your location's sunrise and sunset times, it is necessary to input
your latitude, longitude and timezone. These are found under location
settings. You may also want to set a device-specific prefix.
The SM2 Terrestrial Ultrasonic Packages come with one SMX-US
ultrasonic microphone. The easiest set-up is to connect the microphone
directly to the left microphone connector on the SM2 enclosure and mount
the SM2 on a tree or post at the field site. You can also extend the
microphone on a cable up to 100 meters away from the enclosure.
With one channel using compression and triggering, you can get about 95
hours of record time at 192kHz or 75 hours at 384kHz out of the internal
four “D” alkaline batteries, over one week of night time monitoring. In a
typical night with bat activity (and no rain or gusty wind), you will need
about 0.5GB per night for a stereo recording. But even with gusty wind
causing false triggers, you will probably only need about 2GB per night.
Therefore, a single 32GB card should easily last for 2-8 weeks.
For longer deployments, you can use a larger external power source. With
4x32GB flash cards, you should have enough storage to last 50-250 nights
depending on conditions.
Jumper Settings
You should configure the preamplifier jumpers with the analog highpass filter set to 1kHz and the gain set for +48dB or +36dB. Refer to
the Song Meter SM2 User Manual for details. The dynamic range can
be increased by using +36dB gain to avoid clipping stronger signals
without significant impact to quieter signals. +48dB gain will deliver
a stronger signal with a slight improvement to high-frequency signalCopyright © 2009-2011
Song Meter SM2BAT
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
to-noise ratio over +36dB gain. (When using +36dB gain, take care to
use the recommended jumper settings. Other permutations may not
provide as good signal quality).
The SMX-US microphone does not need the 2.5V 2.2K bias, but will
work with or without the bias jumper present. Note that the jumper is
required for the SMX-II acoustic microphones.
You can configure the Song Meter to record only from sunset to sunrise
each day in half hour segments as follows:
First, configure your latitude, longitude, and UTC offset in the
“Location” settings.
Next, enter the following advanced schedule:
01 AT SSET-00:00:00
02 DO
00:30:00 (recommended for 384kHz)
01:00:00 (recommended for 192khz)
04 GOTO LINE 03 00X
05 UNTSRIS+00:00:00
06 GOTO LINE 01 00X
The schedule above will wait for sunset, then record back-to-back onehour or half-hour segments until sunrise (the last segment will end
early at sunrise), and repeat daily. You can modify this example to suit
your own needs.
Note that the maximum uncompressed file length is 2GB which works
out to 46.6 minutes at 384kHz mono and 192kHz stereo or 93.2
minutes at 192kHz mono. If you use one hour periods instead of halfhour periods for 384kHz mono or 192kHz stereo, recordings would be
split into alternating 46.6 and 13.4 minute recordings which may be
Audio Settings
The audio settings should be set as follows:
Song Meter SM2BAT
Copyright © 2009-2011
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
Sample rate: 192000
(for 192kHz model)
(for 384kHz model)
(for left channel)
Compression:WAC0 (lossless compression)
Note that the 384kHz model can only be used with the left channel.
With +36dB gain, all 16 bits are needed to resolve fainter signals, and
so lossy compression is not recommended. At +48dB gain, WAC1 will
offer some improvement in compression without adverse effects.
Higher levels of compression with the SMX-US microphone are not
The advanced settings should be set as follows:
Dig HPF Left
Dig LPF Left
Trg Lvl Left
Trg Win Left
(16kHz for 192kHz)
(16kHz for 384kHz)
(low-pass disabled)
(adaptive +18dB)
The digital high-pass filter shown above is set to either 1/12th of the sample
rate for 192kHz / 12 = 16kHz or 1/24th of the sample rate for 384kHz / 24
= 16kHz. This will filter out frequencies below 16kHz. Higher or lower
settings are available to suit your needs. For example, if you have low
frequency bats echolocating near or below 16kHz, you may consider using
fs/16 for 192kHz and fs/32 for 384kHz for a 12kHz high pass filter.
Song Meter will measure the rolling-average power spectrum in the
frequency band (above 16kHz in the above example) for periods of the
trigger window setting 2.0 seconds in the above example), and if an onset
of signal is detected that exceeds this threshold by 18dB, a trigger event is
started. Recording will continue until no trigger is detected for a 2.0 second
period of time. Longer or shorter trigger windows are available. Longer
windows will increase card usage, but will allow further detection if a bat
is passing and becomes too faint to re-trigger.
You can increase detection rate on fainter signals by reducing the threshold,
but this may also increase the false trigger rate, especially in wind and rain.
More information on filters and triggers can be found in the Song Meter
SM2 User Manual
Copyright © 2009-2011
Song Meter SM2BAT
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
Stereo Ultrasonic Recording
The 192kHz stereo board allows for stereo ultrasonic recording. The
configuration described below is available as an example configuration in
the Song Meter Configuration Utility distribution, “SM2BAT-192STEREO.SET”. For the SM2BAT to be able to determine your location's
sunrise and sunset times, it is necessary to input your latitude, longitude and
timezone. These are found under location settings. You may also want to
set a device-specific prefix.
For stereo ultrasonic recordings, you can configure Song Meter to use both
channels and install a second SMX-US microphone.
Refer to the one-channel recording settings above. The Settings->Audio>Channels should be set to “STEREO” to enable both channels, and you
will want to set the digital high-pass filter and triggers for the right channel
as well.
Stereo recordings with compression and triggering consume about 30%
more power and will use twice as much flash storage as single-channel
The triggers act independently so each channel is compressed efficiently.
Mixed Ultrasonic and Acoustic Recording
The 192kHz stereo board permits two channels to simultaneously record
conventional audio on one channel and ultrasonic activity on the other by
using an SMX-II acoustic microphone on one channel and an SMX-US
ultrasonic microphone on the other.
The 384kHz mono board permits the recording of conventional audio on
one channel on one schedule and ultrasonic activity on the other channel on
a different schedule, but not simultaneously.
Stereo Mixed Recordings
One way to make a mixed recording is to sample both channels with
SM2BAT stereo 192kHz board at the same time to make a stereo
recording. But you can then use the digital low-pass filters to set a cutoff frequency on the acoustic side to filter out the ultrasonic sounds and
improve compression ratios. For example, setting a digital low-pass
filter to fs/24 will filter out sounds above 8kHz. An example of this is
Song Meter SM2BAT
Copyright © 2009-2011
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
available in the Song Meter Configuration Utility distribution
Scheduled Mixed Recordings
Another way to make mixed recordings is to use the Song Meter
advanced schedule “SET” command to make ultrasonic recordings at
some times and conventional recordings at other times. An example of
this configuration is available in the Song Meter Configuration Utility
distribution “SM2BAT-192-MIXED-SCHED.SET”
For example, the following schedule would make ultrasonic recordings
on the left channel at 192kHz at night, and then a 24kHz recording on
the right channel to record the dawn chorus for an hour after sunrise.
AT SSET-00:00:00
RECORD 01:00:00
SET 24000xMONO-R
RECORD 01:00:00
A similar example for 384kHz can be found in “SM2BAT-384MIXED-SCHED.SET”:
AT SSET-00:00:00
RECORD 00:30:00
SET 24000xMONO-R
RECORD 01:00:00
Copyright © 2009-2011
Song Meter SM2BAT
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
Post Processing
A .WAC file is created for each scheduled recording segment. In the
advanced program above, for example, a .WAC file would be created
every hour from sunset to sunrise.
The Song Scope software can open .WAC files natively. To quickly
locate and review potential bat echolocation calls in a long triggered
recording, you can set up Song Scope band-pass and detector
parameters and use the batch scan feature.
The WAC2WAV utility (available at no charge on our web site) can
convert the .WAC files into standard .WAV files for analysis by other
programs. Usually it is best when processing triggered ultrasonic
recordings to use the “Split Triggers” feature. This will take a mono or
stereo .WAC file containing possibly many individual triggered events
(e.g. bat passes), and break them out into many individual .WAV files
for analysis.
The max duration and min spacing parameters let you selectively
restrict the duration of each created .wav file and to optionally ignore
detections to satisfy the desired spacing in order to fit whatever
monitoring protocol you may be used to. For example, if you are used
to using Time Expansion detectors that only record for 5 seconds and
then pause for 50 seconds while the time expansion buffer is recorded,
you could select a max duration of 5 seconds and a min spacing of 50
seconds to simulate this behavior. By default, all detections are
included in their entirety.
The compensation filter may be selected to digitally alter the signal to
compensate for the SMX-US microphone by effectively altering the
frequency response to match approximately a 240X. This may be
helpful for analysis by automated classification software that relies on
the frequency response of the 240X to match known bat recordings.
The “Skip Noise” feature can be used to further analyze each candidate
trigger to determine if it contains actual bat echolocation calls (or other
biological activity) rather than just noise. The algorithm looks for the
presence of narrowband energy in the specified frequency band with at
least the minimum specified duration. Files that do not meet this
criterion are still split out as .WAV files, but the filename is prepended
with the prefix “NOISE_” so they can be set aside.
Song Meter SM2BAT
Copyright © 2009-2011
Using SM2BAT to monitor Bats
Finally, if you prefer zero crossing analysis over full spectrum
recordings, you can select “Output ZCA” to create zero crossing files
instead of .WAV files. In this way, the SM2 is like having a full
spectrum recorder and a zero crossing recorder in one device. The
division ratio can be specified as well as the sensitivity. The sensitivity
is specified in dB relative to a full-scale signal, or can be set to zero for
Copyright © 2009-2011
Song Meter SM2BAT
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