The purpose of our investigation was to determine whether it would be possible to increase the sound pressure level (SPL) produced by a smartphone inserted into the McDonalds BoomBox. Several aspects of the BoomBox were examined to determine if further improvements could be achieved. Various prototypes were designed and experiments were conducted in which SPLs were measured and recorded for each prototype.
There were 2 main prototypes considered:
- designs where minimal modification were considered in case the client wanted to maintain the original aesthetic appeal,
- designs where one speaker was removed.
For each prototype, we took measurements 15 cm away from the horn that encapsulated the phone speaker along the central axis. Experiments were conducted in noisy environments since the purpose of the McDonalds BoomBox is to be used in public.
This is a spectrogram of a song that was played at the CBC during an interview. On the left under "Without BoomBox" we see the spectral analysis as a function of time. On the right under "With McDonalds BoomBox" is the spectrogram of the song when the phone was inserted into the BoomBox. Notice that the colours on the right are much brighter and more saturated. This means that the SPL associated at those frequency components is higher (i.e., louder)
Our report along with our experimental results and analysis is posted below.
Our team also developed an AR app using @UE4 so that the sound transmitted from the speakers could be visualized by holding a smartphone over the BoomBox.
CBCNews: Cardboard drink tray boombox styled by Waterloo audio researcher
CTV News: Using Math to Turn Tray into BoomBox!
Kris Abel Technology: Creating McDonalds Booxbox with Janelle Resch, University of Waterloo
Media Links (Video):
Some Other Media Links:
- Old McDonald’s Drinks Trays Get a New Lease of Life as Recyclable Boomboxes
- A look at McDonald’s innovative Boombox McFlurry tray
- McDonald’s Canada is turning cardboard drink trays into speakers
- McDonald's is turning cup holders into boomboxes for your phone
- Mcdonald's metamorphoses cup holder into recyclable boombox
- McDonald's Is Turning Cup Holders Into Speakers Now
- Limited Edition McDonald's Boombox
- McDonald’s Giving Away ‘Boombox’ iPhone Speaker Tray in Toronto on July 28
- McDonald’s turns its drink trays into a limited edition, recyclable boombox
- McDonald’s Teams Up With Engineers to Turn Drink Tray Into Boombox