Surf Series

by J.S. Epperson

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While I used to frequently test new binaural beat tone sets on myself, I never officially released any of them. I've always preferred to release binaural beats as part of larger musical projects to create a more interesting experience. (Binaural beats are dull to listen to, as this album will attest.) As I am now attempting to sell my 201B Hemi-Sync Binaural Beats Synthesizer (SN #297), I decided to put this set of tones on my website.

“Surf Series” is a relaxing, two hour set of binaural beats that features the gently rolling surf sounds of the 201B with multi-tracked layers of binaual beats, also generated using the 201B. There is an additional drone layer generated by a granular synthesizer to create a delicate shimmer

These tracks are also available on Amazon, Apple Music, Google Play, iTunes, Spotify and many more. For direct links to those stores, visit:

For best results, use headphones. But honestly, I just pop them over my speakers and play the audio very quietly so that I can barely hear it in the background. I find that I play Alpha Surf the most; I like the vibe it creates while I’m working.

Once upon a time, The Monroe Institute partnered with AWI electronics of Tacoma, Washington to create the Model 201B Hemi-Sync Binaural Beats Synthesizer. This cryptic, single-band binaural beats generator found it’s way into a few clinical research studies in the nineteen eighties and nineties, but it was abandoned due to a design flaw. 

By repeatedly multitracking the 201B at different carrier frequencies, I was able to get some interesting recordings. This machine excels at meeting the needs of the non-engineer: it is simple. The 201B does what it does extremely well, but the 201B does not deliver the nuance or complexity that I personally associated with true Hemi-Sync®. Or with my own computer generated brainwave audio tracks, for that matter.

But… the 201B is unique in that it is one of the few pieces of hardware designed to deliver binaural beats. 

When you use a single binaural beat frequency such as Alpha or Theta, the device works quite well. However, when you use a combination of multiple binaural beat frequencies, instead of a complex blend of frequencies, the flawed circuit design appears to cross modulate the beat frequencies resulting in something that is very much NOT a binaural beat. (It sounds a bit like an extremely primitive form of FM synthesis.)

The 201B is an anachronism, but just because it’s a little bit out of place doesn’t mean that it loses its significance. For the first time, the 201B allowed the non-engineers to experience, use and share binaural beats with others and it accomplished this at a time when sharing music and audio was a practical impossibility. It was truly innovative and ahead of it's time in spirit.

This album is also available on Amazon, Apple Music, Google Play, iTunes, Spotify and many more.


released June 24, 2016

Special Thanks to Barbara Bullard for putting me in touch with the brilliant Mark Certo, who filled in a few gaps on the instrument's history.



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J.S. Epperson Portland, Oregon

Independent purveyor of meditation music with binaural beats. For best results, use headphones.

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