Universal Vibration Listening Amplifier

1300 884 007
+61 8 9317 2000
Our Story

Our Story

Max Wishaw, Customer Support Engineer at Vitech Reliability tells his story about how vibration monitoring has developed.

1970’s early data capture procedures.

In the 1970’s collecting vibration data was done with tuneable filter analysers and, if you needed to record a spectrum, it took about 3 minutes to plot out right there by the machine. There was plenty of time to walk around the machine and have a good listen to the bearings and other noises with a rod or an acoustic stethoscope.

1980’s the post processing era.

By the early 1980’s on-site time was greatly reduced by using tape recorders to record data for post-processing in the laboratory. The data was played back and listened to for analysis on headphones or loudspeakers. Listening to the sound of the machinery became a very important dimension of understanding the analysis. Many of the ‘clicks’ and ‘scrapes’ heard in the data would never be seen in a typical spectrum. It played a vital role in ensuring the integrity of the recorded and analysed data.

Mid 1980’s the Digital data collectors arrive!

In the mid-1980’s digital data collectors arrived and now we were sitting in a silent laboratory analysing ‘dead’ data and missing the very important dimension of the sound of the vibration!

What to do? We asked our electronics team to design a simple amplifier that could be installed in the current circuit of the IEPE, an integrated electronic piezoelectric accelerometer, an electronic amplifier without affecting calibration and data quality. Early versions were attached to the front of the analyser with a volume control knob and a filter switch to change bandwidths. So, with a set of good headphones, the technician was able to listen to the data while it was being captured and note down any irregularities which could be significant in the analysis. Problems in the equipment, such as developing cable faults, could be picked up very early before data quality was significantly affected thereby saving costly re-work. Later versions of the amplifiers were designed to clip on the technician’s belt which reduced the weight on the analyser.

Listen to the effects of greasing!

Along the way it was found that the listening device was very useful to monitor the greasing of ‘noisy’ bearings. When the grease hit the bearing the sound changed very noticeably. This also indicated that sufficient grease had been applied and minimised the problem of over-greasing – especially important on TEFC, Totally Enclosed Fan Cooled electric motors. If we listened again, about 30 minutes later, we could easily tell whether the bearing was permanently damaged (the noise had returned) or the timely addition of grease had potentially extended the life of the bearing. It was only a matter of time before a special-purpose amplifier with a sensor fitted to the zerk adaptor on the grease gun would enable the greaser to ensure the grease was getting where it was needed and with minimal quantity.

UVLAs today!

The latest generation of the Baseline UVLA is a direct descendent of these early vibration amplifiers described above. More than 30 years of in-field experience has been built into the Baseline UVLA F-Pro which now, in one kit, offers the capability of being used for vibration data capture or lubrication monitoring. With comfortable noise-excluding and sound power limiting headphones, the quality of listening has never been better.

Please feel free to call our friendly customer service and request more information and a quote on the Baseline UVLA F-Pro, Universal Vibration Listening Amplifier.

1300 884 007 or International +61 8 9317 2000

Choose the dealer closest to you.


Baseline uvla

1300 884 007

PO Box 4091




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