About Barry Ober - the Soundoctor

Barry's career covers nearly the entire spectrum of the audio world.

After getting his ham radio license at age 11, (K2YDD, Yankee Doodle Dandy) and building homemade audio tube amps at age 12, (inverted metal 6L6's in a tub of water...) he was the youngest DJ in the country on the Armed Forces Radio Network, broadcasting to the Veterans Hospital radio network stations a daily jazz show at the age of 12-15. His early interest in music, guided by his mother, a piano teacher, also led to learning the trumpet and drums and studying classical music, while his early interest in electronics and audio was guided by his father, also a ham radio operator. Of course he gave up the trumpet when they invented neighbors.

Special project US Navy electronics classes (at age 12) and high school stints at both Cass Tech in Detroit and the General Electric Company-sponsored high school in Schenectady, NY, provided an early electrical engineering background.

While a teenager he installed language laboratories in high schools and colleges, and on weekends worked for the local hi-fi stores, connecting the higher-end hi-fi home units of the day.

In 1964 he worked for a year+ at 73, (a magazine devoted to ham radio), learning publishing, printing, product photography and graphic arts photography, and helped build and install cutting edge (at the time) ham radio electronics projects from satellite communications to moonbounce antenna systems.

Engineering jobs with both Moog and Arp Synthesizer companies in the late 1960's and early 70's led to a move to Boston where he built a number of famous recording studios. While at Intermedia Studios on Newbury Street, using the original Modern Recording Techniques book written by Bob Runstein, Barry developed and taught the FIRST audio engineering classes, under the auspices of the RIA, The Recording Institute of America. The class outlines and teaching formula were subsequently adopted and copied (the sincerest form of flattery...) by just about every "recording school" in the country. His nearly four hundred students have gone on to win every audio/sound industry award, (Gold/Platinum records, Grammy, Cleo, Addy, Tony, Academy Awards/Oscars...) and he still keeps in touch with many of them.

He also played a part in helping to start the Boston Audio Society in 1972, and for 21 years has been the webmaster and a contributor.

Moving to Hollywood in 1977, Barry worked for many of the major recording studios doing electronic design, service, "maintenance", setup and audio mixing and remixing, disc mastering, and while at Crystal Studios, along with Andrew Berliner, co-designed and built two million dollar recording/mixing boards, each of which was many years ahead of what any other companies were even dreaming of doing: circuits that we now take for granted, such as digital attenuators, were first implemented in the Crystal board. See the article HERE !

For the Hollywood studios, in 1980 Barry started a custom wiring company, Zenotronics, which made studio interconnect harnesses, microphone cable sets and custom wiring harnesses — one of the first in what has become a major industry niche. The exemplary line of Mogami wire and cable, now as then, is still offered and suggested.

Venturing back into the non-audio world of electronics, Barry worked at a private division of Hughes Aircraft in the early 80's, setting up a futuristic developmental Faraday shielded test laboratory and low emf noise prototype shop, while bringing the Hughes engineers to Crystal Studios on the weekends to show off the audio end of the universe !

In Miami during the mid 80's, while working at Harris Audio, Barry built and set up the sound systems in many of the prizewinning discos in Miami Beach, Ft. Lauderdale, and New York, including Biscayne Baby, Club Z, OvO, Façade, and Visage in New York. Mostly using Meyer UPA cabinets, the unique feature was the phase coherent multi-cabinet rigging / splay system that Barry developed which insured ultra-smooth high frequency coverage on the dance floor, with no comb filtering. The white noise test procedures developed during these tests are the basis for the white noise tracks included on the Soundoctor Test CD.

In an era when installers were still using distributed systems, Barry pioneered the use of high-contrast on-and-off the dance floor pristine audio, where the bar and waitstaff were specifically in quiet areas and therefore could converse accurately in the acoustic shadow of the dance floor sound, while patrons who walked out onto the dance floor were literally bathed in a new level of sound coherency, carefully engineered to provide the maximum emotional response and benefit while NOT causing the patrons to become queasy from incorrectly tuned boomy bass.

After installing various legitimate theater sound systems, systems in houses of worship, systems in yachts and pleasure boats, 70 volt paging speaker systems in airports, many restaurants and night clubs, and some home multitrack studios and producers' screening rooms, Barry finally decided to open his own high-end audio salon, Inner Ear Audio, in Florida, in 1993. Way ahead of the curve as usual, a decision was made to move to California to become the mad-scientist-in-residence at Miller & Kreisel Sound, where Barry handled all manner of audio details, setups, recording studio tweaks, dealer training, the computer network, all the websites, email and phone tech support and way more, for over 8 years.

Once again an independent audio pioneer, Barry lives in North Carolina with his magical wife and MANY cats. Barry was the Senior Tech Support Engineer for JL Audio for the HOME products line of subwoofers, their installation, setup and service, for over 8 years.

Soundoctor is the culmination of the experience of a lifetime in audio coupled with the premise that YOU CAN GET THE MOST BANG FOR THE BUCK in audio. The equipment sold and the services provided focus on getting you, the end user, an incredible, emotionally fulfilling auditory experience, especially where others have failed or fallen short, and with absolute financial efficiency. Results are all that matter!

There is no plug-in for experience...
SOUNDOCTOR                  BARRY OBER               EMAIL: barry@soundoctor.com