SwiftOne – Terrestrial Passive Acoustic Recording Unit

SwiftOne: Next generation of terrestrial autonomous recording unitsSwiftOne: Next generation of terrestrial autonomous recording units

SwiftOne autonomous recording units are our main platform for collecting terrestrial passive acoustic data for research and conservation. The SwiftOne recording platform is the updated version of the original Swift units developed by CCB. The vision behind developing Swift units was to build a small, lightweight, and cost-effective acoustic recorder that is low cost and easy to use. The same ethos continues with the SwiftOne recording units. In addition to supporting researchers, the SwiftOne platform enables hobbyists and enthusiasts from around the world to collect acoustics data in support of wildlife conservation efforts.

 User feedback, continuous investments, and advancements in available technology have contributed to the development of SwiftOne. Amongst many improvements over its predecessor, the updated recording units offer better energy efficiency, a more precise clock, greater customization for frequency settings, voice memos, and greater microphone sensitivity. If you have any questions about SwiftOne or would like to lease these units, please contact us.

Swifts have already been deployed on every continent. We are proud of the fact that all of the components of the Swift recorder (electronics, microphones, etc.) have been developed in-house at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

In its regular configuration, the unit is powered by three D-cell batteries, which provide power to the unit and enable continuous data collection for 3 or more weeks at a sampling rate of 48 kHz. Currently, the maximum supported sampling rate is 96 kHz (16 bit resolution). Data are stored on a single full-size memory card (SD cards up to 512 GB). Daily recording schedules can be programmed through a configuration tool. We can easily make modifications (e.g., different housing designs) to the SwiftOne units according to the needs of the researchers. Following are a comparison between SwiftOne and the original Swift units.

Swift and SwiftOne: Features and Improvements

Additional SwiftOne Improvements

  • Updated internal clock keeps more accurate time of day
  • SwiftOne uses up to 40% less power than original Swift, resulting in longer record times
  • A new feature in the Configuration Utility supports saved configuration files. This allows for rapid configuration of multiple, similarly programmed recorders
  • Improved start/stop pushbutton is both waterproof and offers more tactile response

If you are interested in leasing SwiftOne units or have additional questions, please contact us.

Following are some samples of recordings from Swift units deployed in various locations.

Sample One: Twenty seconds recorded by a Swift in Sapsucker Woods, Ithaca, New York, USA at 04:35 local time on 24 May 2017. Background noise from wind and distant automotive traffic


Sample Two: Twenty seconds recorded by a Swift on the eastern slope of the Andes in southern Peru at 11:02 local time on 25 August 2017. No anthropogenic noise

Swift Frequently Asked Questions

Downloads (note: for SwiftOne related tools, please contact us)

Swift Recorder Configuration Tool (Windows only)

Introduction to the Configuration Tool (video)

Swift Recorder Users Guide (Version 2.1)

Swift Recorder Maintenance Suggestions (Version 1.0)

Swift SD Card Information and Formatting Protocol