AES Convention Paris, 3d audio, 3D sound labs

AES Convention Paris: Immersive Audio is hot!

The 140th Audio Engineering Society (or AES) Convention just wrapped up this week in Paris. It is the largest gathering of audio professional in the world. There is a wealth of technical papers, tutorials and workshops about the latest development of techniques and trends in the industry.

June 10, 2016 – 09:17 – 3D Sound Labs
 

It was the first attendance of 3D Sound Labs to this prestigious event, the AES. Although we were very busy on our booth showing our latest VR Audio solutions to a large crowd of professional, we managed to attend to some conferences and have discussions with several key industry players. We are happy to share our take away on “Immersive Audio”

 

Immersive audio is hot!

First, there was a large focus on immersive audio. All the session on this subject were packed! I guess the latest progresses of VR Audio and the promise of strong developments of this market are the main reason behind this. There were also many demos (I was particularly impressed by the BBC work).

This year keynote lecture chosen by AES Technical Council and the Board of Governors was entitled “The Immersive Audio Revolution: From Labs to Mass-Market” and was given by famous 3D Audio researcher Rozenn Nicol, from Orange Labs (the first women to give AES Lecture! Another sign that times are changing…).

All the exhibitors dealing one way or the other with 3D Audio had higher than average attendance at their booth (that included 3D Sound Labs ;).

 

The Rise of Ambisonics

In the wake of VR and immersive audio, there was another subject that was much talked about: High order Ambisonics. This paradigm is actually perfectly suited to the early development of VR audio: it is simple, free and scalable, and better suited to 360VR than object-based formats as the real world is more sound field based than object based … Even large industry players are using it for professional applications (Sony Playstation team uses Ambisonics for the audio engine of the PlaystationVR) or future consumer applications (Google has a roadmap to make Ambisonics the 3D Audio format of choice for youtube360).

 

Still some work to do!

There are still some improvements to be made to provide high quality immersive audio to the consumer. Our take away after this AES convention is that the high priority issues that need work are:

  • CPU and Bandwidth: reducing the cost of VR audio content distribution
  • HRTF individualization: dramatic improvement on the quality of experience
  • Binaural Near field rendering: new experience of closeby sound

 

Conclusion

In the end, it was pretty obvious that 3D Audio is the next big subject for the audio community. The best illustration of this trend is that the next AES International Conference to be held on September 30 and October 1, 2016, in Los Angeles will be about… “Audio for Virtual and Augmented Reality”. Don’t be surprised if you see 3D Sound Labs over there…

 

The latest release of our VR Audio Kit is available for download from our website.

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