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xMEMS has developed a new vent-based passive isolation system

Control noise around you without the need for ANC or transparency mode.

Published onJanuary 12, 2024

xMEMS Skyline
The xMEMS Skyline DynamicVent.
  • xMEMS has revealed Skyline DynamicVent, a new adjustable passive isolation system.
  • The vent automatically closes when in a noisy environment to create a passive seal, and opens when in a quiet environment to reduce occlusion.
  • xMEMS showcased the technology in a sleep buds reference design, but it is not available on the market in any consumer devices yet.

We’ve seen many attempts to control environmental noise using microphones to create ANC or transparency mode effects. xMEMS has a new solution to control environmental noise passively, using a vent system. It’s called Skyline DynamicVent technology, and it uses a physical vent with DSP noise detection.

xMEMS Skyline DynamicVent
In a closed state, the vent passively isolates significantly more noise than when open.

We had the opportunity to test the Skyline DynamicVent in a demo product at CES 2024, and were very impressed. A simple button press was used to open or close the vent, with a very noticeable difference in environmental noise when triggered. As long as your earbuds have a good seal for passive isolation, you can easily switch from blocking out noise to being able to easily hear what’s going around you. With the DSP noise detection, the vent can be set to open or close automatically depending on the level of environmental noise. The Skyline DynamicVent can also be used in conjunction with ANC using the xMEMS’ Cowell MEMS micro speaker.

xMEMS demonstrated a potential use case for the technology at CES in reference sleep buds. Opening the vent helps to alleviate the occlusion effect from self-generated noise such as your own breathing, snoring, or ear rubbing against the pillow. When outside noise is detected, the vent closes to passively block out noise and ensure you get a sound sleep.

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