Home PageResearch & TechnologyDr Gerald Oster – Auditory Beats In The Brain

Dr Gerald Oster – Auditory Beats In The Brain

Having read our ‘How it Works‘ page, you've probably got a good idea of how binaural beats work, and tested the science for yourself using the sample provided and a pair of headphones.

If you're anything like us here in the ‘BBM lab' (as we like to call it) you are probably itching to find out more on the history of binaural beats and the scientific evidence that led to the creation of today's brain entrainment movement.

Of course the best place to start is from the very beginning, which is actually a bit problematic because Heinrich Wilhelm Dove's (the original founder) documentation isn't widely available.

Dove was a Prussian physicist and meteorologist, who, in 1839, discovered slightly different frequencies heard simultaneously cause the brain to produce a slightly different frequency (tone) that sounds like a beat.


Heinrich Wilhelm Dove:  1803-1879

But it was Dr Gerald Oster , a biophysicist who, in 1973, presented a paper in the Scientific American that sparked further research and interest into the binaural beats phenomenon.

It should be noted that Gerald Oster did not invent binaural beats, nor did he use the term brainwave entrainment.

His paper simply documented how the brain interprets frequency signals and produces the binaural beat effect, and suggested the possibilities of hormonally induced physiological behavior changes:


Dr Gerald Oster: 1918-1993

The measurement of binaural beats can explain the processes by which sounds are located — a crucial aspect of perception. It is possible that hormonally induced physiological behavior changes may be made apparent by measuring the binaural-beat spectrum.

It makes perfect sense when you think about it. We hear sounds and the brain responds with a feeling, an emotion, a ‘state'. Actually, when you break it down like this, the science behind binaural beats becomes a no-brainer – pardon the pun.

We grow up listening to music,; being influenced by it's sounds. We know that different types of music (sound( is capable of making us feel different feelings.

Think of how Heavy Metal makes you feel compared with meditation music; one makes you feel like jumping around and the other like closing your eyes for a while.

auditory beats in the brain

An original page excerpt from Dr Gerald Oster's paper. Scientific American, 1973.

Hearing Auditory Beats In The Brain

The fact is, music is made up of a complex soundscape of frequencies that interact and entrain the brain in different ways.

So if you consider what would happen if we took a frequency that made us feel really chilled out and sent that to the brain in an extremely concentrated format, you basically understand the process behind brainwave entrainment.

And this is what Oster was presenting a possible case for; that it could be possible to diagnose and address neurological problems using binaural beats/brainwave entrainment.

And so it was Oster's paper, ‘Auditory Beats In The Brain' that sparked subsequent research into binaural beats, and led to the amazing natural science that is helping address numerous human problems such as stress and anxiety, insomnia, ADHD, learning difficulties, behavioural problems and more.

Not to mention helping people attain deeper meditation experiences, better focus and concentration,  higher spiritual awareness and more.

You can read Dr Oster's paper in full by clicking here. And you can download two 10-minute binaural beats and a free user guide by clicking here.

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