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The Project AUDIENCE

Sounding with AUDIENCE

Scientific and Technological Production

Call for Works, Contributions and Opportunities

Team, Colaboration, Support, Partners, Associated Projects and Groups



Project General Objectives

The research and development of solutions for immersive audio aims at implementing a flexible and scalable system for spatial audio production and reproduction (2D and 3D audio).

Flexible in the direction to offer a minimum set of alternatives for audio spatialization and auralization that can take care of the applications supporting sound in diverse formats, from stereo/binaural to the most sophisticated 3D/multichannel audio coding formats in development (multi-format support).

Scalable in the sense that it can concurrently use different formats, schemes and/or methods for sound display, can change the reproduction array configuration by changing the number of used loudspeakers and their localization depending on the auralization method, can employ additional techniques or tools even in cummulative ways, as for example associating commercial reverberation machines to model envelopment, or in the sense that it can use diverse computational systems (hardware and software) at the same time (multi-configuration support).

Scalability in AUDIENCE is also associated to the capability to increase the complexity of an auditory scene, by adding new objects and sound sources.

A more complete version of the architecture of sound production, distribution and reproduction is in development, encompassing characteristics such as support for open standards, modularity, reconfigurability and recursion in the implementation of auralization machines.

Project objectives include since the implementation of transcoding systems for the traditional surround formats and configurations (e.g. 5.1, 7.1, 10.2) up to the development and deployment of more sophisticated formats for generation and reproduction of 3D audio, still restricted to the high-fidelity applications and research environments, in frank development. For these formats not only the reverberation and envelopment are important, but also the localization of sound objects distributed in a three-dimensional scene (perception of the sound directivity) as well as the synthesis of the acoustic environment. In this category we include the Ambisonics and the Wave-Field Synthesis.

The immersive audio project for the Digital Cave also foresees a line of activities focused in the research and development of software and hardware (loudspeaker arrays and multichannel platforms) for the implementation mainly of these two formats of 3D audio.

Formally, the general objectives of the AUDIENCE project are:

  • implementation of flexible and scalable sound systems for spatial (surround, 2D and 3D) audio reproduction
    • flexible: multiformat - capable of dealing with multiple formats for recording, compression and 2D/3D audio (ex: AAC, AC-3)
    • scalable: multiconfiguration - capable of adapting to diverse configurations (geometries) and number of loudspeakers (multichannel modes)
  • deployment of a modular and reconfigurable reference architecture for the implementation and integration of functions related to the process in the audio chain - from production to final consume
  • deployment of a development plataform based on free/open software, to prototype the components of the functional layers proposed in the AUDIENCE architecture
  • development of a complete spatial sound system for environment auralization, with software and hardware
  • initial usage scenario aiming at auralization for immersive virtual reality environments, and then at auralization of audiovisual 3D scenes
  • focus on the research/use of 3D soundfield production techniques, more accurate and realistic than surround 5.1, such as Ambisonics and Wave Field Synthesis
  • validation of an architecture/system that make possible the integration of different techniques for 3D audio, including the most popular formats/techniques, such as Dolby 5.1 and DTS.


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