Surround Sound

Jan 04 2012

News - Samsung Announces Audio Docks, Sound Bar, and HTIB Systems, Vacuum Tubes Included

Samsung HT-E5500W

Samsung has gotten the jump on CES with the announcement of several new products, including a few that Samsung probably hopes will lure in budding audiophiles. First up is the HW-E550 sound bar that is similar to the HW-D550, except that it can be split into two separate speakers. Seems to defeat the purpose of buying a soundbar, but I suppose it might suit some markets. The more interesting products are the new sound docks and home-theater-in-a-box systems. Both sound docks take the unusual step of supporting iOS and Samsung Galaxy devices and the higher-end DA-E750 model, along with the HT-E6730W and HT-E5500W HTIB systems, includes Samsung's Crystal Amp Plus hybrid vacuum tube technology. The goal of the tech is to meld digital clarity with the warmer sound that vacuum tubes are apt to impart. Can the inclusion of vacuum tubes overcome the stigma attached to the sound quality of these types of devices?

Samsung claims its vacuum tube setup offers "the best of both worlds," giving it the benefits of both digital and vacuum tube amplifiers. Samsung says that the system is of its own making, and is able to maintain the clarity of digital with the more natural sound of a vacuum tube. The company also says that the tech "offers an extra octave of sound without distortion."

The Verge

Oct 25 2011

News - First 7.1 Surround Sound Mix Available Via Online Streaming

One of the biggest reasons I am not a fan of many only streaming services is the lack of true surround sound, and high quality, high bit rate video. While I still subscribe to Netflix merely for the convenience factor for my kids, I honestly hardly ever use the service to watch movies myself.

Earlier this week Dolby Laboratories and Vudu started streaming Walt Disney Pictures' Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides with a Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 audio track the first ever movie available with true 7.1 audio streaming over the internet. This is some great news and hopefully signs that things are changing and we soon will see everything streaming in at least 5.1 audio.

Dolby Laboratories, Inc., just enabled the first 7.1-channel surround sound entertainment experience available to streaming media using Dolby Digital Plus audio. VUDU's video-on-demand movie service began streaming Walt Disney Pictures' Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides in Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 audio.To date, more than 30 films have been mixed in 7.1 for theatrical release. Dolby Digital Plus 7.1 allows content providers to enable these amazing 7.1 surround sound mixes created for the movie theater to be experienced in the home via streamed media.

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