Truth and Lies of Brainwave Entrainment Revealed- What to Know Before Buying

Truth and Lies of Brainwave Entrainment Revealed- What to Know Before Buying

There are many claims being made about brainwave entrainment products.  Some of which are quite true and scientifically verifiable, and some of them border along the lines of dishonesty.  With the type of product we are looking at here, there is much gray area that is left open to be manipulated and taken advantage of.

For example, yes, we can prove that brainwave entrainment actually does guide the brain into targeted brainwave states.  This much has been shown time and time again with EEG data.  It is also proven through certain experiments to get certain results, like increasing IQ, improving test scores for students, and increasing the production of certain beneficial hormones and endorphins.

But brainwave entrainment is a very introspective product that leaves a lot up, ultimately, to the user’s own perception and internal experience.  Much of the biggest promises made by those selling this type of product deal in the realm of subjectivity.  We can show that the technology brings someone through a similar brainwave pattern to that of a 20-year Buddhist monk while they are meditating, but can we prove that this brainwave pattern is going to reap the same result that this meditation does for the Buddhist monk?  We can say that alpha brainwaves can help someone feel more relaxed, and even train the brain to relax more often and easily, but can we say that this translates into a more tangible result, like, improving confidence, or helping one feel more at peace with themselves or the world?

It is important when shopping for brainwave entrainment products, especially higher priced programs, that one is aware of what this technology can and can’t do.  It is also important to be able to have at least a basic knowledge of how it works, what factors go into its creation, and what it takes for an audio to be effective, or of good quality.


The Sad Truth of the Industry


Sometimes it really bothers me to see some of the claims and advertising agendas being used to get people to buy these types of products.  The reason it bothers me is that I DO believe that this technology is absolutely amazing.  Because of this it really bugs me to think that some people are giving others a false impression of what it is and isn’t, for one because it’s amazing enough that it doesn’t need to be lied about, and for two, because it would be such a shame for someone to get interested in this technology, only to be sold a sub-par product or to be lied to and then be given an inaccurate or negative representation about what it actually is and how much of a positive thing it can actually be.

In this article I want to point out a few sales tactics and claims for you to be aware of that especially fire off my B.S. alarm.  I’m going to do this without naming any specific names, and leave it up to you to think for yourself in this matter.  I’m also going to share some of the more important information for you to know when making a decision as to the quality or legitimacy of a product.  Again, brainwave entrainment products really are an amazing, almost miraculous thing.  But as with any industry that makes money, there will always be those out there that will take advantage, or smoosh the truth, or promise a little more than is realistic to make that sale.


If you use your discrimination and keep these few things in mind, you should be able to find a trustworthy, high-quality product without much hassle, while steering clear of the snake oil salesmen.


Tip #1

Understand How Brainwave Entrainment Products are Made

One of the biggest ways I see salesman and marketers taking advantage of people who purchase their product is through the misunderstanding of how brainwave entrainment is made.

There are a few software programs out there that can be used to make high-quality audios.  The majority of these are accessible to the public, and within reasonable pricing.  What does this mean?  Well, it means that any regular guy or gal can purchase this software and make their own audios.  It also means that any person can purchase this software and very well be using the same software that the latest up and coming brainwave entrainment marketer has used for the audios they are selling for an arm and a leg.

Does this mean that you shouldn’t buy brainwave entrainment products?  Not necessarily.  Just because you know how to paint doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy someone else’s painting.  But on the other hand, if you know how to paint a beautiful painting that you enjoy just as much as a painting someone else is selling for over $500, you may choose to paint yourself.  Or you may be able to look at a painting from that perspective and determine that it isn’t actually worth that much money.

There are a few reasons why it is still feasible to buy from someone else.  For one, someone else may have way more time than you to test, study, and play around with the stuff to get a really good audio.  Also, unless you are planning on being a brainwave entrainment geek like myself, you can still purchase a good program cheaper than brainwave entrainment software and get a lot out of it, not intending to continue to make, refine, test, and use multiple audios for the rest of your life.

But the bottom line is that a brainwave entrainment audio is not only reserved to be made by people with “inside access” or some type of secret knowledge.  This not only affects how much one should be willing to pay for an audio, but is also worth considering, as there may be many people selling these products out there that could be at varying skill levels and experience.  If anyone can make an audio, anyone can sell an audio, and that audio may or may not be a good one.


Tip #2:

You Do Not Need to be an Expert to Make Brainwave Entrainment

This goes along with the information above, but is good to really consider.  There are a lot of people out there that are working hard to make a name for themselves and stand above the competition by framing brainwave entrainment as some type of really technical, overly-scientific thing.  Pictures of EEG readings and other “sciency” things are shown and certain technological buzzwords are used to make you believe that this guy, or this company has something that the others don’t.

Like I said above, if you really wanted to, you could make your own audios.  Anyone could.  The software programs used to make brainwave entrainment have tutorials, classes, even certification to help people learn how to do it well.  There are a finite amount of variables involved (though there are some subtleties still) and much of what is done is in a drag and click, type the frequency you want kind of way.

It is NOT overly complicated or overly technical to the point that you have to have a degree, or be a lifelong student of it to make a good audio.  Be wary of people touting their “certification” or their edge above the rest of the competition.  One of the most popular, effective, and successful programs out there right now is one of the most basic audios I have ever come across.


Tip #3: 

Understand the Most Important Variables of a Good Audio

Like I said, when making a brainwave entrainment audio, there are only so many variables to be aware of.  Of course, the blending of these variables, the intention of the audio, the way it works with its soundtrack, and ultimately how it makes you FEEL while listening is more than just a procedure, there is a level of art to it.  This is why (in my opinion) passion is just as much a qualifier as some kind of certification or name dropping.

Here are the basic variables for you to keep in mind with brainwave entrainment audios:

The Frequency of the Beat/Tone: This is the actual rhythm with which the isochronic tone, binaural beat, or monaural beat is pulsating on and off.  This is the main variable in any audio, and this is what directly affects what brainwave(s) the audio gets your brain to produce.

The Type of Beat the Audio UsesRight now there are three main methods for producing this rhythmic pulsating that entrains the brain: binaural beats, isochronic tones, and monaural beats.  Regardless of these methods they can all basically be described as a beat that pulses on and off.  There are, however subtleties to each of them that defines their use and effectiveness.  Some will argue that one is better than the other, or more powerful than the other.  This is another advertising ploy to be aware of.  ALL THREE are powerful and effective, but each one has its own certain situation where it is more or less useful than another.  Neither is superior to the other, they are just different.  This is one reason why I use BOTH in my meditation program, The Missing Link.  The combination of the two gives the brain more variety in stimulation, and offers something that most products out there don’t.

The Frequency of the Sound Wave of the Entrainment (ie: Carrier Frequency)We have talked about the frequency of the pulsating rhythm of the entrainment.  There is one more frequency to be aware of, and that is the actual sound wave that is carried by the entrainment.  When you listen to an audio you will actually hear the sound of this rhythm.  It could be high-pitched, low-pitched, or incredibly bassy.  Some programs even require certain special headphones that can carry the designated pitch.  When considering that this sound wave could be almost any audible frequency, or any note on the musical scale, things get interesting.  Here you can begin to play around with things like sound healing, chakra tuning, schumann resonance, and solfeggio frequencies.  The possibilities are endless.  When I make my audios, I have a list of frequency research that I refer to, and intentionally pick a frequency that works well in conjunction with the overall mood and desired result of the audio.

This is something that a good brainwave entrainment audio creator will pay special attention to.  As it holds worlds of added potential to the total effect of any audio.

This frequency has also been shown to affect consciousness and the way the audio affects the brain.  Some programs base a large majority of their progression and effectiveness to this variable alone.  (One these said programs will charge you over $300 to progress through different “levels” where all they do is click a button a few times to adjust this frequency.)

Further Entrainment Protocols Embedded in the Soundtrack:  Most audios have a background track, whether it’s chanting, nature sounds, or music.  What some people don’t realize is that most brainwave entrainment software enables you to embed further entrainment methods into this soundtrack.  There are a few different ways that this is done.  Some audios may have a subtle modulation on the volume of the track, subtle enough that you don’t really notice it, where the volume is moving up and down at the rate of the entrainment.  Another method is panning, where certain frequency bands in the soundtrack are selected to move back and forth between the right and left ears.

When used properly, these methods can provide an immense amount of additional efficacy and potency to an audio, and again, a good audio creator will now how to use this function and when each individual method is most appropriate to really add to the audio.



Now that you are aware of this information you are ready to find a product or program that appeals to you!  Remember, don’t let anyone take advantage of you by making you think that there are variables you can’t understand about all this, or that they are such experts on a level that you should trust them more than you trust yourself.  Follow your own compass, and do remember that not everyone (even in the self-help and spiritual genre) is honest in their claims.  I do not mean to encourage anyone to be cynical, but again, it is important to me that people are educated on this amazing technology, and that they are led to find a product that IS of great quality, that really does deliver and help make a positive change in their life (without overcharging or breaking the bank for no reason).

Best wishes to you in your journey,

-Ashton A.


Add yours
  1. 1
    Justin L

    Hi, there has been a recent discussion about needing headphones that go as low as 5Hz, i.e headphones that have a frequency range of 5hz to 20,000Hz, as carrier frequencies go as low as 5Hz in an (un-named) meditation audio program. My question is: how are we supposed to entrain to a signal of 5Hz when we cannot actually hear down to 5Hz? Also, how are most people supposed to get access to playback systems, eg audio players, stereos etc, that go down to 5Hz? I am aware that most playback systems have a frequency response range of 20Hz – 20KHz. I am aware of only one system that supposedly goes down to 12Hz. Personally I think that telling us that we need headphones that go as low as 5Hz is just snake oil salesmanship, given that a) playback systems don’t go that low, so why get headphones that do, and b) I am told that entrainment is more difficult the lower the carrier frequency. Your thoughts? Thanks.

    • 2
      Ashton Brainwavelove

      Hi Justin,

      This is a good question. I think it is first most important to clarify and understand that when said program (or other binaural beats programs) talk about the carrier frequency, they are not talking about the frequency that the brain entrains to. The carrier frequency is the frequency of the sound wave itself, where the frequency the brain is entraining to is about the rate at which this sound wave is pulsating in a rhythm. So we can have a sound wave of 20 hz pulsating at a 2hz rhythm, or we can have a sound wave of 5hz pulsating at a 2hz rhythm. Either way, the brain is producing 2hz waves as you listen. The recommendation to get these headphones that can audibly produce sound frequencies as low as 5hz is all based upon the belief that the carrier frequency produces a more “intense” or “substantial” effect on the brain (even though it does not have to do with what actual brainwave it is producing) Though this theory is not scientifically verifiable, I do believe it, simply because I have had experiences with this approach that are impossible for me to deny. I have never gone low enough to need special headphones myself though, nor do I make or sell audios on brainwavelove that require these either. Unfortunately in these circumstances I think the best bet is to find someone who has been there, and see what their experiences were.

      As far as “difficulty level” goes with lower carrier frequencies, I’m not sure if difficult is the best word to sum it up. As the carrier frequencies lower, it is common for people to experience emotional upheaval for a period. However this emotional upheaval is not just emotional upheaval for the sake of it; it is a process by which junk from the unconscious mind is rising to the level of awareness where one can deal with it, and release it. Thus it is a purification process; similar to that of all natural meditation, but accelerated. This is more difficult indeed, but it is also an empowering and healing process that produces much greater results long term (in my opinion) than products that do not produce any emotional upheaval at all. Just as it is with any type of real self-growth, we do not get to have our cake and eat it to, and we must go through some “growing pains” to make real progress.

  2. 3

    Hello Ashton,
    I love this article because I feel exactly as you do when seeing fraud especially about this subject. You have confirmed my thoughts that brainwave entrainment is much simpler than many have made it sound. I use a few simple apps on my phone for now.
    This technology has been here scence the ancients. Indigenous tribes from every corner of the earth have used this. I find it interesting that they often used it in combination with a drug to reach an higher consciounsess usually to communicate. They knew what it could do. I grew up thinking that these indigenous had limited music ability but in fact they were doing something much more with sound than just clubbing.
    What do you think of the following as entrainment we usually dont think about: 1. rocking or patting a baby to sleep 2. The Schumann Resonance ( earth pulse ) 3. Crickets and frogs 4. flock of birds chirping in a tree in the morning. 5. nervous shaking of a leg ( maybe revealing that persons brain waver frequency? )
    With todays control over sound we can really put this brainwave technology to more uses. I am always wondering about its capabilities like can it help awaken people in a comma, can it help after any surgery, what does an eeg reading look like while someone is on dmt, an can there be a beat that influences production of dmt. Also lucid dreaming has recently been accepted as an official scientific study and is learnabale by everyone. It is also known to have very benificial values. I wonder what the marriage of these two technologies can do. I am thinking of creating a site for people to send in their eeg results for experimental questions that are not explored yet. Anyway thanks for writing your thoughts to the world and setting this record straight on this subject. Keep up the good work!

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