FREE White Paper - "Quantifying Acoustic Sources through Sound Power Measurements"
There are many ways to measure sound power and several standards exist to guide engineers and technicians in this measurement. Find out which sound power measurement technique is the most appropriate for your product test. In this white paper, you'll learn how to choose the right sound measurement technique for your testing. Free-field, reverberant field, and in-situ testing methods are explained along with the standards for measuring the sound levels of a source.  Download the FREE White Paper Here


StageTec Introduces AVATUS IP-Based Audio Production Console in Cooperation with DirectOut
StageTec, the Berlin, Germany-based manufacturer of professional audio equipment, introduced its new AVATUS IP mixing console at IBC 2017, featuring a new Router InterFace AES67 (RIF67) board, designed in cooperation with DirectOut Technologies. Using multiple 21" multi-touch screens for display and control functions, the impressive AVATUS offers an IP-based connection to the audio processing, combined with a workflow-oriented operation, in which only the relevant, context-related functions are displayed on the touch screens.   Read More

Dusun Announces New Bluetooth Audio Module for Smart Speakers and Voice-Based Assistants
Dusun Electron announced a new Bluetooth audio module based on Qualcomm aptX low latency audio technology, designed for wireless speakers and voice assistant product development. According to Dusun, with the new DSI-0095 module, audio data can be preserved with less than 40 ms transmission latency, ideal for voice-based designs that can also be used on hands-free control to effectively interact with visual media devices, home appliances, or car equipment.   Read More

MStar T12 UHD TV SOC Platform Incorporates Fraunhofer MPEG-H TV Audio System Decoding
World-renowned experts in audio and media technologies, Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS and MStar Semiconductor, specializing in application-specific ICs for the consumer and communication product markets, announced the immediate availability of the MPEG-H TV Audio System decoder in MStar's 4K mainstream TV system-on-chip (SOC) platform T12, leveraging the company's highly integrated ICs.    Read More

SOUNDBOKS' Ridiculously Large Portable Bluetooth Speaker Powered by Merus Audio eximo Amplifiers
Here is an interesting story both from the loudspeaker design and marketing perspective. Copenhagen, Denmark-based SOUNDBOKS recently released a follow-up version of its "popular party speaker," known among music festival participants and other party goers as "The loudest battery-powered speaker." Among other improvements, the updated version features two Merus Audio MA12070P amplifier ICs, allowing higher power and long battery life.   Read More

New Meyer Sound Bluehorn Monitor System Provides Phase Accuracy from 25 Hz to 20 kHz on Large-Format Loudspeakers 
Meyer Sound unveiled its new Bluehorn System development, which the company is now starting to commercialize as complete monitor systems for critical applications. After more than six years of intensive research, Bluehorn applies advanced proprietary algorithms to cancel out the non-linearities inherent in all mechanical transducers and loudspeaker cabinets, resulting in flat amplitude and phase response from 25 Hz to 20 kHz in a large-format loudspeaker Read More

FABRIQ Chorus Speaker Offers Voice-Activated Alexa Service with Multi-Room Connectivity
FABRIQ unveiled the next generation of its Alexa-enabled, multi-room speaker. Named Chorus, the smart speaker combines the voice-activated Alexa service powered by far-field voice recognition with high-quality sound and multi-room connectivity. The development was once again based on Linkplay's AVS platform, which uses Conexant's microphone solutions and Sensory's voice awake technology.   Read More

Genelec Unveils Flagship 7380 Smart Active Subwoofer
Genelec introduced its new 7380 Smart Active Subwoofer, which delivers both high SPL and an extended low-distortion low frequency response in an impressively compact enclosure. The new flagship of the Smart Active Monitoring subwoofer range, the 7380 can be simply and seamlessly integrated into any monitoring system - from stereo to multi-channel, as well as part of a large-scale 3D immersive setup - yielding a level of performance normally associated with much larger enclosures.   Read More


Editor's Desk

AoIP Meets the Video Challenge

I have spent the past few days in Amsterdam, Netherlands, attending another edition of the International Broadcasting Convention (IBC) 2017. As usual, this was an exciting event, providing a broad picture of the current complex media technology landscape, on a global level. There is much to talk about, so many things happened there. But I will discuss what is happening in the transition to IP, because that was the historical moment.

The RAVENNA booth at IBC 2017. RAVENNA's message is that its AoIP technology is already ST2110-compliant. We also have to highlight Merging's new ANEMAN audio network management software that enables networked audio devices to connect seamlessly with each other.

IBC 2017 celebrated the 50th year of this always-evolving conference and trade show, providing a valuable insight on current and future technologies. From IP production and distribution infrastructures to the latest sound and picture standards, this IBC provided some exciting technology previews in things such as cloud, augmented reality, audio-to-text conversion, object-based audio, voice interfaces, and much more (and those were just some of my personal focal points).
IBC 2017 also confirmed a year-on-year increase in visitor numbers, marking a record attendance of 57,669 across the six-day event. There were more than 1,700 exhibitors this year, and 264 new companies exhibiting, many of which from segments as diversified as social media, over-the-top (OTT) services, VR, or 5G networks, adding to the immense variety of traditional manufacturers, from cameras and microphones, to satellite services and outside broadcast vehicles. In some of the areas, visitors could witness world-first demonstrations (Future Zone), while many start-ups had the opportunity to reach the global market at the IBC Launch Pad. Conference speakers included experts from Facebook, Google, CNN, HTC, Dolby, and most of the leading broadcast and media production organizations, discussing the industry challenges, media convergence, and technology evolution.
As expected, repeating the trend initiated at IBC 2016 and NAB 2017, the IP Showcase provided a real-world demonstration of a complete IP environment from production to playout, also featuring a continuous program of presentations by the world's leading experts in the field. This year, the interesting story was the fast pace at which companies from all application segments in the media industry are putting together the pieces of the IP puzzle, while quickly improving on the much-needed industry standards.
Just like what happened with the audio industry, which started with a series of incompatible protocols and implementations, the rest of the media industry is now following a standards-based approach to complete the transition to IP and networked infrastructures for radio, television, and all types of content production and distribution. In the audio industry, the adoption of the AES67 audio interchange standard was the first step, and more recently the new complementary standard, AES70 - originally proposed by the OCA Alliance - is providing interesting developments to supplement AES67 audio transport with a protocol for device control, network discovery, and monitoring.
The problem is that the video side of things - as demonstrated at IBC 2017 - involves a much complex equation. But at the same time, it serves to prove the validity of the undergoing audio efforts. The AES70 standard is now being implemented on AoIP and video networked systems, not only working with AES67 (the now consensual audio transport part) but also to provide integration of existing protocols, such as Dante, Ravenna, and even AVB, together with the new SMPTE standards.

The new SMPTE ST2110 standards were a primary focus of the IP Showcase at IBC 2017.

From previous audio-centric forums, such as the Media Networking Alliance (MNA) or the Avnu Alliance, the audio industry is now joining the work of the Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS), or the Advanced Media Workflow Association (AMWA), creating open specifications for complete networked media workflows - carrying video, audio, synchronization control, and file transfer. AMWA has already developed the Networked Media Open Specifications (NMOS) to support management of software and equipment on a network, and there are a series of efforts to extend its scope to cover transition scenarios from current technologies (e.g., SDI), as well as future fully IP-based systems. For a complete overview of that effort, check the website www.nmos.tv.
The complexity of the ongoing work is simply too vast to address in this space, but the important thing is how virtually everyone is onboard and how more and more companies are joining the effort. The challenge for the audio industry, at this stage, is how to monitor and manage devices in this complete audio, video, and data infrastructure, ensuring that current existing systems and solutions that have now been widely adopted within audio-only production environments can still work. For that, interoperability demonstrations such as the IP Showcase are vital to understand what needs to be done. For instance, the same companies and experts that are working on AES70 applications, need to closely follow the work of the AMWA on the new connection-management specification, IS-05, which will be complementary to the existing IS-04 registration and discovery specification. I honestly tried to understand what the implications were, but I was told, "too soon to say."
That same effort was visible in demonstrations taking place in the booth of several companies. Canadian company Ross Video, that now owns Coveloz, did a joint demonstration of AMWA's latest specification for open connection management in IP control systems, in collaboration with another leading Canadian company, Evertz. Systems from both brands were used to demonstrate the AMWA IS-04 and IS-05 specifications for NMOS discovery, registration, and connection management APIs. Both companies have also supported the demonstrations of the recently published SMPTE ST2110 standard, that most audio companies are now implementing.
All the meetings I could get with experts from all those companies confirmed that, around the globe, large scale IP-deployments are already happening and that the industry is moving fast. Those deployments need to be "vendor neutral," in terms of network control, but in practice the engineering effort is still ongoing. And that's clearly visible in the audio industry, where I learned that all companies are joining the AMWA, AIMS, and ST2110 workgroups to complete the process.

Measuring signals over the IP infrastructure according to the new standards brings a whole new set of challenges. Companies such as Phabrix are already working hard on that mission.

The RAVENNA booth, in particular, had demonstrations with equipment from Sonifex, Merging, Lawo, DHD, Digigram, DirectOut, Lawo, and Riedel, while sound was played using the new Genelec 8430A IP SAM monitors. All already ST2110-compliant. As the RAVENNA experts explain, "the clocking principle and transport protocols defined in ST2110-10 and ST2110-30 are fully in line with RAVENNA technology. The RAVENNA system timing was designed on the principles of IEEE1588-2008 (PTPv2), as is SMPTE ST2059-2 which is the fundamental timing standard for ST2110; consequently, RAVENNA fully supports the requirements of ST2059-2."
The IBC IP Showcase provided integration with both Dante and RAVENNA AoIP solutions, all part of a ST2110-based workflow. But there were still many systems connected with the current ST2022 set of standards for Real-Time Video/Audio Transport Over IP Networks, which is what allows SDI-based systems to interoperate - if we want to extract audio from most current IP networked systems based on ST2022, we need to extract everything back to SDI, and only then de-embed the audio channels. ST2110-based installations put each part of the signal into a different stream and make video, audio, and ancillary data (e.g., subtitles) all separately routable. Instead of feeding the whole bandwidth, an audio system is able to request only the intended audio channels. And we need to consider that "audio" in the new production, broadcast, and media distribution formats means new things like immersive audio channels (e.g., Dolby AC-4), or object-based audio (e.g., MPEG-H), both already part of the new ATSC 3.0 and UHD DVB television standards.
The SMPTE published the approved ST2110 standards document precisely while IBC was ongoing (September 18, 2017). The new standards suite specifies "the carriage, synchronization, and description of separate elementary essence streams over professional internet protocol (IP) networks in real-time for the purposes of live production, playout, and other professional media applications," and is described as essential to support "an entirely new set of applications that leverage information technology (IT) protocols and infrastructure."
Understandably, the new SMPTE ST2110 standards were a primary focus of the IP Showcase at IBC 2017, where SMPTE joined with the Audio Engineering Society (AES), Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS), Advanced Media Workflow Association (AMWA), European Broadcasting Union (EBU), IABM, Media Networking Alliance (MNA), and Video Services Forum (VSF) to support the event.

As part of the IP Showcase, audio companies were demonstrating a connection management based on the latest AMWA NMOS IS-04 and IS-05 specifications, toward the integration of AES67 and ST2110 products.

Make no mistake. What happened this year at NAB 2017 and now at IBC 2017, and all that is happening at these industry forums, is history in the making. Anytime we connect our IP-speaker directly to a network cable coming from a system rack and we hear audio playing, we will have to thank all the amazing engineers and company executives who have dedicated the talent, hours, and resources to make it a reality. And the IP future promises to be truly exciting!
We are fast approaching the 143rd International Audio Engineering Society (AES) Convention, taking place October 18 to 21, 2017, at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City. The event will be co-located with the NAB Show New York 2017. The IP revolution will continue there, providing a unique chance for all audio experts to get engaged.


From the Vault
Mini Single-Ended Amp
By Rick Spencer
Keeping things small and inexpensive - and at the beginner's level - Rick Spencer shows you how to build your own single-ended amp. For about $10 worth of tubes and some small transformers, you can build this neat little amp in one weekend. "One day while trying to think of a new project to build, I remembered reading an audioXpress letter a while back from a reader who had requested an article about a small single-ended Class A amplifier that used parts available from local electronics stores. I have always been a fan of SE amps -
and of odd tube types - so I decided to see what I could find on the shelves in my hobby room that might fill such a request," Spencer writes. "After searching for a while, I decided to build an SE project with the 12L6s I had found. Now, first of all, don't get excited and think that a 12L6 is the same tube as a 6L6 with a different heater rating! This tube is in the same basic category as a 12W6, a 12CS5, a 12DB5, and - except for the heater - a 6DG6. The normal operating voltages are 200 VDC on the plate and 125 VDC on the screen. It was frequently used in many old television sets as the audio output tube and is capable of nearly 4 W of single-ended power. (I can still remember the great sound that came from an old Zenith set my parents used to own.) The mini-sized amp discussed in this article is only about two-thirds the size of my "little amp" project (audioXpress, December 2001) and uses a very simple circuit." This article was originally published in audioXpress, April 2004.  
Read the Full Article Now Available Here

Voice  Coil Test Bench
B&C Speakers 6MBX44 MBX Mid-Bass Woofer 
By Vance Dickason
This edition of Voice Coil Test Bench characterizes the 6.5" 6MBX44 driver, from Italian pro sound OEM, B&C Speakers. The new MBX series of pro sound mid-bass woofers from B&C Speakers offers acoustic designers a new range of high efficiency, wide bandwidth alternatives that were not previously available in the B&C Speakers range. The MBX Series, which includes the 8MBX51 (reviewed in the November 2016 issue of Voice Coil) and the 6MBX44, are especially well suited for small two-way loudspeaker applications. Features for the 6MBX44 are similar to those found in the 8MBX51. The frame is a proprietary four twin spoke cast-aluminum frame incorporating a series of four 40 mm × 1 mm rectangular vent holes in the area below the spider mounting shelf for enhanced voice coil cooling. This series of cooling vents moves air past the voice coil and across the front of the neodymium motor assembly. Additional convection cooling is provided by a 22 mm pole vent. The cone assembly consists of a curvilinear paper cone with a front side waterproof hydrophobic coating and a 3" diameter inverted paper dust cap, likewise with a waterproof hydrophobic coating. Compliance is provided by a triple roll "M" shaped pleated coated cloth surround with the remaining compliance comes from a 3.5" diameter elevated cloth spider. The motor design on the 6MBX44 utilizes a neodymium ring magnet, T-shaped pole piece fitted with an aluminum shorting ring located below the yoke. Motor parts, the return cup, and the front plate are coated with a black heat emissive coating for improved cooling. Last, the voice coil is terminated to injection-molded terminal block with solderable terminals. Cosmetically speaking, this is very good-looking driver. This article was originally published in Voice Coil, January 2017.   Read the Full Article Online

AX October 2017: Digital Login
Audio Product Design | DIY Audio Projects | Audio Electronics | Audio Show Reports | Interviews | And More 

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VC September 2017: Digital Login
Industry News & Developments | Products & Services | Test Bench | Acoustic Patents | Industry Watch | And More