The target users
The main target users of Spectra are young professional & non-professional music producers between the ages of 18-30. These users have a strong preference for fast, real-time actions, as they always look for new plug-ins, apps and features that can help them with the music production process.
I conducted user interviews with a group of professional & non-professional music producers who had previously used one or more spectrum analyzer apps. I learned from them that there’s quite a lot of spectrum analyzer apps out there, but they only provide a real-time analyzing feature - which means it can only analyse live sounds, but it cannot detect a specific song and show you its specs. When it comes to referencing a song, you want to get the most accurate results as possible, so using a real-time analyzer wouldn't be the best choice - not only that the microphones on standard mobile phones aren't good enough, the results you’ll receive will vary due to your distance from the sound source. To put it short, a real-time analyzer shows a live analysis of a certain sound, instead of the full ‘picture’ of a song - so it is not very useful when it comes to referencing. Spectra on the other hand, allows the opportunity to choose between detecting and analyzing an entire song, or using a real-time analyzer, while it doesn't rely on any technical or recording capabilities.
Here are the two main features that seems to be missing from spectrum analyzer apps according to the music producers I interviewed:
A song detector which analyzes the full picture of a song, showing its name alongside its analysis.
History feature which shows you the songs and sounds you've analyzed.
Quotes from my research study text group:
“I mainly used the app to analyze certain songs I heard outside the studio. The problem is that it wasn't accurate enough. I also kept forgetting which song it was, and I also couldn't remember how its specifications looked like.”
“ I think it could be very useful if one of the spectrum analyzer apps included a song detector that can give you the specs of the entire track, in addition to the real-time analyzer”.