Since I have used various brainwave entrainment products over the years, I thought it would be helpful to compare some top programs and give you my perspective from experience.
In this article, I will discuss and compare the best brainwave entrainment CDs, MP3s and others, the different types of brainwave entrainment technologies used in various products, benefits and warnings related to brainwave entrainment and meditation in general, and my recommendation for the best brainwave entrainment products for different individual situations and experience.
This is not an exhaustive review of every program on the market, by any means. I will be recommending and commenting about programs that I have personal experience with using, or have come highly recommended by others whose opinions I respect.
Benefits of Brainwave Entrainment
Why use brainwave entrainment products? The simple answer is that it can help you experience the benefits of meditation much more rapidly than just practicing meditation by itself. You can experience deeper meditative states fairly quickly that may take years otherwise – if you are ever able to get to it the “natural” way!
Introduction to Brainwave Entrainment Technologies
With the advance in technology, brainwave entrainment has come a long way in the last decade. So, there are very some sophisticated audio technologies that combine the latest in scientific research that go way beyond the basics. However, the most common audio technologies used in brainwave entrainment are binaural beats and isochronic tones. Some companies mix in subliminal messages (Verbal messages spoken below the normal range you can hear – designed to be absorbed by your subconscious mind) as well. My thought on the subliminal messages is that they can work – just make sure you know the exact messages being said and that they agree with what you want!
“A binaural beat is an auditory illusion perceived when two different pure-tone sine waves, both with frequencies lower than 1500 Hz, with less than a 40 Hz difference between them, are presented to a listener dichotically (one through each ear).” (Source – Wikipedia)
The basic goal, without getting too technical, is to tune your brain to the difference between the two frequencies.
“Isochronic tones are regular beats of a single tone that are used alongside monaural beats and binaural beats in the process called brainwave entrainment. At it’s simplest level, an isochronic tone is a tone that is being turned on and off rapidly. They create sharp, distinctive pulses of sound.” (Source – Wikipedia)
Here is what you need to know for practical purposes when evaluating different brainwave entrainment programs. You need headphones to experience the benefits of binaural beats, while isochronic tones can be played over a speaker and still benefit you. (Although, never a car speaker, please. You do not want to be driving while doing brainwave entrainment!)
Introduction to Brainwave States
Brainwave entrainment programs are customized to help you achieve various brainwave states for different purposes. Here is a brief summary of states:
Beta is between 14 and 40Hz and is most associates with normal awake consciousness
Alpha is between 7.5 and 4Hz and is a very relaxed but alert state. It can be very restorative and is not typically difficult to achieve with brainwave entrainment.
Theta is between 4 and 7.5Hz. This is most associated with light meditation and the state you are in right before you fall asleep.
Delta is between 0.5 and 4Hz) and is associated with deep sleep.
Gamma is above 40Hz and is associated with problem solving and getting in touch with your intuition.
Other, less commonly discussed states are hyper gamma (Around 100Hz), Lambda (100 – 200 Hz), and Epsilon (barely above 0 to .5 HZ). These are only achieved by very experienced meditators, Tibetan Monks, etc. But, they can be achieved with brainwave entrainment with time and patience.
General Warnings about Meditation and Brainwave Entrainment
In my experience, the same warnings apply to both mediation and brainwave entrainment. While you will almost certainly experience enormous emotional and spiritual growth over time with a regular meditation practice, it will not be a straight line up! What I mean by this is there will be emotional issues that come up along the way as you get to know yourself better. So, you may experience agitation, anger and frustration at times. You should be patient with yourself and expect issues to come up. If you want to read more about how I use journalling and other techniques to deal with these emotional issues, please check out my article on Emotional Freedom Techniques.
Knowing that emotional issues do come up, I place a high value on community support in my recommendations below.
Profound Meditation Program 3.0 by iAwake
This one is great for beginners or more advanced meditation practitioners. I thought I would start with this one first, because this is the main brain entrainment program I use in my own daily meditation practice. Why? Because, in my opinion, it uses the best combination of advanced entrainment technologies and comes with enough tracks to last for a lifetime of meditation. It is also flexible in that you can customize it based on your needs for a given day. For example, I have found that at times, I need a break from advancing my meditation and taking it to the next level. The Profound Meditation Program includes several relaxing restorative tracks that are wonderfully relaxing and allow me to recover from the emotional issues that can come up as I advance in my meditation.
It also includes tracks for the Gamma and Hyper Gamma states, which are great for gaining insights into your life. And, there are several tracks for the Epsilon state. This is typically for people with more experience with meditation. But it’s there when you are ready.
It is difficult to even articulate how advanced the technology is compared to the binaural and isochronic tones of most other programs. Here is a partial list of the technologies:
Unique auditory neural entrainment technology
A wide variety of powerful carrier frequencies
Proprietary biofield (subtle energy) entrainment technology
The user manual includes a detailed discussion of the advanced neural and biofield science behind the Profound Meditation Program. I have noticed a profound difference in the effects I experience with these tracks vs others I have used, including Project Meditation/LifeFlow, Holosync and numerous others.
Finally, the documentation and support is excellent with iAwake and the Profound Meditation Program. You can interact with serious and knowledgeable people in a private Facebook group and get a lot of questions answered in the extensive user manual.
Please note that iAwake recommends one hour of meditation daily. But the good news is that all the tracks are 20 minutes long. So, if you only have 20 minutes, you can have a complete meditation experience. You can also customize many different sequences of the 20-minute tracks if you only have 40 minutes or an hour.
I recommend that you check out a free demo of the technology.
Brain EV and Zen 12
The Brain Evolution System (Brain EV)
Brain EV is an impressive system for users of all levels of meditation experience. The product is endorsed by a number of well-known personal development and business legends, such as Brian Tracy of Brian Tracy.com, Mark Joyner of Simpleology.com, Dr. Joe Rubino of CenterforPersonalReinvention.com, and Kirsten Howe of GoBigCoach.com.
Here is how the program works. There are six different progressive levels that are designed to be listened to once a day for only 30 minutes, six days a week. So, it’s a very manageable time commitment. The idea is to listen to a level for one month, then progress to the next level, until the program is complete for 6 months. So, it’s very straightforward and modeled after the original Holosync program discussed below.
Their tests indicate that brainwaves of listeners of Brain EV go from a scattered, stressful state, to a much more relaxed and peak state after only 15 minutes of listening. Pretty impressive. I think this is a great program to get you from wherever you are right now to a more relaxed and high performing state in a reasonable amount of time and commitment.
Like many vendors of Brainwave Entrainment products, there is a free DEMO of the technology in action. So you can see for yourself how it works for you before buying.
The idea behind Zen 12 is to be able to enjoy the benefits of meditation in only 12 minutes. So, it serves a really important niche within today’s society. When I contacted Inspire3 to inquire about the differences between Brain EV and Zen 12, they mentioned that the main difference is that Zen 12 will get you to the same end goal as Brain EV. Brain EV will get you there in six months; Zen 12 will get you there in 1 year. So, it’s really a matter of personal preference on the amount of time per day that you want to spend on it.
So, Zen 12 is particularly good for beginners with limited meditation experience or those that just want a quick meditation session.
Zen 12 also offers a free DEMO of the Brainwave Entrainment technology. So you can see how it works for you.
Holosync by Centerpointe Research Institute
Holosync has been around for decades and I have used the product myself. So, I am familiar with it. This really started out as the pioneer in brainwave entrainment technology and offers excellent products and support. The founder, Bill Harris, passed away in 2018. While I think Holosync is an excellent product, I am of the opinion that other companies are now more advanced in the technologies they use. Holosync is also a larger investment than the other programs I mentioned.
In this article, I discussed several top brainwave entrainment products – Profound Meditation Program 3.0 by iAwake Technologies, Brain Evolution System (BrainEV) and Zen12 by Inspire3, and Holosync by Centerpointe Research Institute. In my opinion, the best brainwave entrainment product is Profound Meditation Program 3.0 by iAwake Technologies. Because, it uses the best combination of advanced entrainment technologies and comes with enough tracks to last for a lifetime of meditation. It is also flexible in that you can customize it based on your needs for a given day.
Please comment below with any questions or to share your experiences with brainwave entrainment technologies.