“Let our rigorous testing and reviews be your guidelines to A/V equipment – not marketing slogans”
Facebook Youtube Twitter instagram pinterest

Recent Audio Technology Articles

4 Ways Dolby Atmos Can Gain Consumer Appeal

4 Ways Dolby Atmos Can Gain Consumer Appeal

Dolby Atmos is a fantastic tool for content creators. Being able to place sound "objects" in a three-dimensional space makes their jobs much easier. They no longer have to worry where the speakers are in a room. Instead, they just give the X, Y, and Z coordinates and let Atmos do the work. But the home version is focused on getting people to place more/different speakers in their home theaters at very specific places and heights. People are understandably confused and that confusion will lead to the ultimate demise in the Atmos as we are told it works today. But it can be saved. Here are four ideas.

Dolby Atmos is a fantastic tool for content creators. But the home version focused on ceiling speakers is confusing and alienating customers. Dolby can bring more appeal to Atmos. Here's how.

— August 25, 2014 10:00 in Audio Technologies

5 Reasons Why Dolby Atmos Will Succeed

5 Reasons Why Dolby Atmos Will Succeed

Unless you've been living under a rock, you're probably aware of Atmos, the next generation object-based sound format by Dolby. Due to take the home theater world by storm this fall, the home edition can be expanded up to a Cineplex-esque 34.1 setup. This has left some wondering exactly who is going to buy into the format, and how successful it will be in the long run. Here we'll offer a few thoughts and opinions on why Atmos will succeed in the home, even if everybody and their brother isn't necessarily going to rush out and buy a couple dozen speakers for their living room.

Audioholics give 5 solid reasons why Dolby Atmos will be a success at home, including backwards compatibility, benefits for film studios, and an easy upgrade path. 3D object oriented sound.

— August 19, 2014 10:00 in Audio Technologies

5 Reasons Dolby Atmos May Be DOA

5 Reasons Dolby Atmos May Be DOA

Everyone in the AV and home theater world is buzzing about Dolby Atmos. This object-based processing for sound allows sound engineers to move sound around the room three dimensionally rather than just pans. From the content creator side, there is no doubt that Atmos is a useful tool. For the home user, however, it is clearly stillborn. Here are five reasons why. Let us know if you agree or disagree in our forums.

Everyone in the AV world is buzzing about Dolby Atmos. For content creators, there is no doubt that Atmos is a useful tool. For the home user, however, it is clearly DOA. Here are five reasons why.

— August 14, 2014 08:00 in Audio Technologies

What is Dolby Atmos For Home Theater?

What is Dolby Atmos For Home Theater?

Two years ago, Dolby Atmos entered the commercial cinema scene, dramatically improving the level of surround sound audio immersion provided by theaters. Now Atmos is coming to the home, leaving consumers wondering what they'll need to enjoy the benefits of the new format. In this article and our recently added Youtube video interview we go over the requirements, including speakers, receivers, and Blu-ray players. In addition, we cover the possible configurations, which range from 5.1.2 to 7.1.4 and 9.1.2. This article has new updates on Atmos and their reflective speaker technology as on 8/9/14. There's only one question left: are you ready for Dolby Atmos?

Dolby Atmos, what is it? Our Guide to Dolby Atmos for home theater including AV receivers, and speakers explains it all. Learn proper speaker location for the best immersive surround sound experience.

— August 09, 2014 08:00 in Audio Technologies

Steerable Dolby Atmos Enabled Speaker Proposal with Video Interview

Steerable Dolby Atmos Enabled Speaker Proposal with Video Interview

With Dolby Atmos about to hit the home theater scene, manufacturers are gearing up to provide new speakers in order to allow consumers to achieve the Atmos experience. There are currently two options for realizing Atmos at home (ceiling mounted downfiring or Atmos Enabled Upfiring speakers). However, I propose a possible third option, or a tweak to option #2. Introducing the Steerable Dolby Atmos Enabled Surround Speaker! Imagine being able to wallmount a surround or front effect channel with an adjustable Atmos driver. Do you see this opening up more possibilities of integrating Dolby Atmos into your home theater? Be sure to watch our recently uploaded Youtube Video interview and try our experiment.

Dolby Atmos Enabled speakers are starting to hit the market. We propose a steerable wallmount Atmos surround speaker to increase placement options & acceptability of this new format. Please discuss.

— August 01, 2014 07:00 in Audio Technologies

Dolby Atmos for Home Cinema How is it Different?

Dolby Atmos for Home Cinema How is it Different?

To better understand Dolby Atmos and its potential integration into the consumer market, it's important to consider how its different than the “classic” 5.1 and 7.1 surround decoding schemes. Dolby Atmos is not just a system with more channels than 7.1. It works with three primary elements: bed audio, object audio and metadata. To get the real benefits of Dolby Atmos, more speakers are required in the house. The real paradox in the audio industry is, the progress on the technical side is “more speakers”, but on the commercial side it’s “less speakers”. Regardless, the future will be exciting as always!

This article briefly discusses how Dolby Atmos is different than conventional 5.1 and 7.1 surround decoding schemes. How will it be adopted to the home market? Read on.

Tony Verkuijl — March 07, 2014 08:00 in Audio Technologies

WiSA Demo (Aperion Audio & Klipsch) at CES 2013

WiSA Demo (Aperion Audio & Klipsch) at CES 2013

We covered WiSA back at CEDIA 2012, and wrote up an article about the details surrounding WiSA, but this year at CES 2013 we were able to get a hands-on demonstration. They were showing off two complete surround sound system, one by Aperion Audio and the other by Klipsch. We have listened to plenty or poor wireless systems in the past, but this was spot on. The sound was immerse and dynamic, without even a hint of pops, crackles, or hisses common with other wireless products. The picture on the TV was also flawless (but we had to resist from taking it off Dynamic mode) and synced perfectly with the sound. We know a lot of people scoff at the idea of wireless speakers in a high-end system, but we are convinced. We have always thought that WiSA looked good on paper, but now we can tell you it sounds good too.

We covered WiSA back at CEDIA 2012, and wrote up an article covering the details surrounding WiSA, but this year at CES 2013 we were able to get a hands-on demonstration.

— January 11, 2013 13:00 in Audio Technologies

Summit Wireless Technology Affordable Wireless Solution Could Revolutionize the Industry

Summit Wireless Technology Affordable Wireless Solution Could Revolutionize the Industry

Summit Wireless has announced a low cost speaker module design and companion amplifier targeting entry level home theater systems with its Summit Wireless technology. The new speaker module design is said to represent a 53% reduction in size over the current implementation, while still retaining the robust high definition link performance with built-in four antenna diversity allowing placement of a speaker anywhere in a room without signal loss or interruption. An OEM manufacturer can implement this technology into their speakers to provide a fully amplified and wireless hi-definition experience to their consumers. Summit Wireless is working on dongle that can connect directly to USB to pull audio from all sources attached to an HDTV display for surround decoding wirelessly to Summit enabled speakers. We saw a demo and and like of their prior demos, we were most impressed.

Summit Wireless announced a cost effective compact module to turn any OEM speaker packages into a wireless solution. They are even working on a way to directly interface their technology to TV's.

— September 09, 2011 01:35 in Audio Technologies

Wolfson WM8860 HD Audio with S/PDIF Transmitter

Wolfson WM8860 HD Audio with S/PDIF Transmitter

Wolfson Microelectronics plc announced the release of its new HD Audio product line for PCs and laptops. Wolfson's latest innovative technology brings exceptional High Definition (HD) Audio performance to PCs and laptops, modernizing a sector of the consumer electronics market where audio quality has often been overlooked. Wolfson's innovative new multi-channel HD Audio devices, the WM8850 and WM8860 deliver the best audio experience available in the PC market, enabling consumers, as well as music industry professionals, including producers, musicians and DJs, to experience audio through their PC or laptop as never before.

Wolfson Microelectronics plc announced the release of its new HD Audio product line for PCs and laptops. Wolfson's latest technology brings exceptional HD Audio where it's never gone before.

— January 06, 2011 08:49 in Audio Technologies

Summit Wireless Technology Delivers Uncompromised Wireless HD Audio

Summit Wireless Technology Delivers Uncompromised Wireless HD Audio

Summit Wireless™ is an audio integrated circuit solution that will be embedded in speakers, audio/video receivers, digital televisions, gaming devices, Blu-ray players, and set-top boxes, enabling them to broadcast high-definition surround sound wirelessly and simply. It has the potential to deliver where other wireless audio solutions have failed. It can be installed in less than 30 minutes and generates interference-free, low latency, uncompressed HD quality audio that today’s A/V systems are capable of decoding. Summit seems ideally suited for the retrofit and retail markets opening the door for new business models while taking home theater experience to a new level.

Summit Wireless is an uncompromised wireless solution to HD multi-channel audio for home theater, music, gaming, etc. It's easy to setup and has the potential to take wireless audio to a new level.

— July 07, 2010 22:00 in Audio Technologies

0dBFS & Bass Management of DVD / Blu-ray Players

0dBFS & Bass Management of DVD / Blu-ray Players

We've recently bench tested the HDMI and analog outputs of several Blu-ray players and noticed not all DVD/BD source devices handle 0dBFS in a similar matter. Our research thus far has revealed that there really is no standard 0dBFS reference level used in DVD / BD players. Some players will scale a 0dBFS signal back before summing it so the subwoofer output will not distort under this test condition while others will not. According to THX there does seem to be more care taken with multi channel movie mixes than music mixes to avoid this problem. At this point, we will adhere to the Dolby recommendation of testing at -20dBFS levels when evaluating the multi channel performance of DVD / BD players analog outputs. We do plan on investigating this topic further both with recording engineers and our own empirical measurements of source material to get a better picture on how this affects real world applications.

We've recently tested several BD players and noticed not all players handle 0dBFS in a similar matter. Thus we will be testing at -20dBFS levels when evaluating BD player multi channel performance.

— February 11, 2010 08:45 in Audio Technologies

Going to 7.1-Channel Surround Sound

Going to 7.1-Channel Surround Sound

Almost everyone loves surround sound, (except for an eccentric actor whom I know who actually prefers mono!) and what’s not to love? Our ears are on each side of our head, canted forward, but we hear sounds from every direction with almost equal precision. For that reason multi-channel sound reproduction is intrinsically more realistic and believable. But how many surround speakers are required to present a plausible illusion of the real thing?

Almost everyone loves surround sound, (except for an eccentric actor whom I know who actually prefers mono!) and what’s not to love? Our ears are on each side of our head, canted forward, but we hear

Alan Lofft — July 03, 2009 08:15 in Audio Technologies

Audyssey DSX 10.2 Surround Sound Overview

Audyssey DSX 10.2 Surround Sound Overview

Audyssey as a company is sort of a brain trust that creates and licenses signal processing solutions. They employ the sciences of psychoacoustics, acoustics, signal processing and use highly complex mathematical algorithms to put those Mega Flop DSP chips to work to do dynamic equalization and derive extra channels for surround sound.

Audyssey as a company is sort of a brain trust that creates and licenses signal processing solutions. They employ the sciences of psychoacoustics, acoustics, signal processing and use highly complex

— June 29, 2009 13:26 in Audio Technologies

THX Media Director

THX Media Director

THX Ltd. today introduced THX Media Director, formerly codenamed “Blackbird,” to simplify home theater set-up and operation. THX Media Director will enable movies, music and other digital media to communicate picture and sound settings directly to consumer electronics devices, dynamically configuring them for the best playback experience.

THX Ltd. today introduced THX Media Director, formerly codenamed “Blackbird,” to simplify home theater set-up and operation. THX Media Director will enable movies, music and other digital media to

— January 08, 2008 12:32 in Audio Technologies