MPEG-based Surround Sound demo at AES Paris

A new MPEG-based Surround Sound system is being demonstrated by Agere Systems, Coding Technologies, Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS and Philips at AES (Audio Engineering Society) Pro Audio Expo in Paris.
Combined with an underlying audio codec such as MPEG-1 Layer-2, MPEG-4 AAC or MPEG-4 HE-AAC (aka aacPlus), MPEG Surround fundamentally reduces bit rate requirements for high quality multi-channel audio compression and maintains backwards compatibility to existing stereo equipment at the same time.
“MPEG Surround is a great example how innovatively engineered solutions directly cater to the requirements of the market,” says Leon van de Kerkhof, Program Manager Audio, of Philips Applied Technologies. “Surround sound has proven to be a huge success in packaged media, and has an even stronger potential in new entertainment services. MPEG Surround creates added value and new opportunities for all parties across the chain, from content providers, to device manufacturers, to consumers.”
MPEG Surround includes a full set of tools enabling the representation, reproduction and rendering of multi-channel audio for a broad spectrum of applications, from digital broadcasting, to mobile entertainment, to Internet music distribution.

“After mono and stereo, MPEG Surround is the next step for sound quality in today’s media entertainment”, said Dr. Peter Kroon, Chief Multimedia Architect of Agere Systems Mobility Division. “It brings true surround sound to any media system at next to no overhead in transportation and storage, and preserves consumers’ investment as existing home stereo equipment can stay in use. This level of flexibility will be the key for MPEG Surround to be deployed on a global scale.”
Juergen Herre, chief scientist at Fraunhofer IIS, says MPEG Surround easily outperforms any conventional technique with regards to features, performance, and flexibility. “We are proud of our contribution to this exciting new standard,” he said.

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