Oct 20, 2009

More Ubuntu Startup Sounds...

First of all, thanks for all the amazing feedback in my earlier post "New Startup Sounds".

At the moment 71 people has cast their vote and so far sound number 5 has 29 votes (40%). If you're hoping to hear this sound in a future Ubuntu release, don't get your hopes up. Sound number 5 has already been suggested, but was rejected because it sounded too much like Vista and too little like Ubuntu.

In my previous post the five ideas were very different unlike this post, where I'm again seeking your amazing comments and feedback. I've worked on ideas using the "melody" from sound number 5. Although Alan Pope makes some very good points in the comments, I've still used the same base for the new sounds. So for Popey this will sound like a plinky plonky nintendo DS weather report. I know it can be dangerous to use sarcasm when communicating over the web, but I'm sure Alan will know I *really* do appreciate his feedback.
The reason I've used the Kalimba sound, it because it's the only melodic instrument I know from Africa. This is all part of the quest to capture the spirit of Ubuntu. Although a clean synth sound might sound more modern, it lacks a bit of Africa so to speak. Personally the "startup_distant_drums" is my favorite at the moment, but I'll let you judge.
I should also mention the filenames are weird because it help me to keep track of the files. Also the files have not been mastered, so the volume is very low in these snapshot versions.

Listening to startup sounds can be very strange, because it is the entire boot experience (boot splash, login and so on) that counts. I suggest setting the sound you like best as your default startup sound for a few days before judging.

Grab the files here and please do post your feedback below: http://dl.getdropbox.com/u/175241/lyde/MadsRH_startup-sounds.tar.gz


  1. Hi, just found your blog recently, and I'm enjoying reading very much.

    As far as the sounds go, I chose 5 beforehand for a number of reasons, one of which being that it was the most pleasing to my ear (probably a combination of the instruments, the key, etc). 3 Was my second choice, if it has any bearing at all. While it uses the kalimba like most of your new batch do (I'm not a big fan, I think it sounds a bit childish), you used it in a wildly different manner to the way you used it in the newer set. The initial batch has a couple of sleeker ones (with a few weird outliers), while your new batch are all in the same (different) key, which I'm not a fan of for some reason... and they just don't sound serious enough. I think the reason simpler instruments (generally with slower attack) are used on a lot of OSs may be because someone doesn't want to be startled as they start up their computer. If you forget you have your volume up high when you restart in the middle of the night, you're likely to fall off your chair when the kalimba erupts from your speakers. That's just my two cents.

    That said, would you mind doing me a favor? Could you take the new sounds and move them up (I believe) a whole step? I think that puts them in the same key as the first batch. I don't know why I like that key better, but if these are really our options, I think it'll sound nicer. And I'd still root for number three from the old batch, if it's still in consideration.

    Sorry for talking so much! Thanks for all the awesome posts.

  2. My favourite ones are startup_kalimba_echo_and_drum_120BMP and startup_kalimba_slow_echo_110BPM.

  3. I prefer the startup_kalimba_with_bas.ogg

  4. I like startup_kalimba_with_bass. It's rich, but calm and not irritating to the ear.

  5. I agree with Nir, +1 for startup_kalimba_with_bass.
    Imo your favorite, startup_distant_drums sounds a bit scary, as well as the startup_djembe. It makes me feel like something is hunting me xD

  6. Almost forgot, i think the volume is a bit low for some of the sounds, comparing to the sound of other apps.

  7. I like the startup_djembe best.
    But hey, I love that drum, so that may color my opinion :D

  8. My favorite sound: startup_kalimba_echo. It's not too long or too short, it's not too ornamented, it doesn't have deep sounds, which makes it ideal for laptop speakers. It is cheerful and welcoming.

    Warning: all your sounds are too low. I set my laptop volume at max, but I still have problems to hear them. Not a problem with my laptop, because all the other sounds (including music) are OK.

  9. I actually think #5 sounds more Macish than Vistaish...? But I think that #1 is the one on the right track, except that the high-pitched tone is WAY too high pitched. To the point of hurting one's ears. I would suggest working on that one. You could end up with something truly amazing.