DTS and Yamaha recently launched the first soundbarthe YAS-207 — to include support for the new DTS Virtual:X surround sound system, designed to produce virtual object-based audio-like effects from almost any content, without the need for special height-channel speaker configurations.

DTS processing creates an immersive surround effect from object-based DTS:X soundtracks. The processing includes an upmixer that simulates immersive sound with a height dimension from any stereo or multichannel content.

With DTS Virtual:X, a soundbar, receiver, television or other device virtualizes sound in multiple dimensions, supports any input source from stereo to 7.1.4 (11.1 channels), and works with all DTS codecs, including DTS:X. Among the new processing technology features is support for virtual height, virtual surround, bass enhancement, and multiband hard limiter.

To find out more about this new virtual surround sound system, we sent some questions off to Joanna Skrdlant, general manager, home audio and solutions licensing at DTS, to find out where we can expect to see DTS Virtual:X next and what it will mean for high value immersive home theater experiences going forward.

See more about what’s coming from DTS Vitrual:X after the jump:

HD Guru: How does DTS Virtual:X differ from a full-fledged DTS:X experience?

Skrdlant: DTS Virtual:X is audio post-processing and DTS:X is the codec. First the audio needs to be decoded in order to hear it, and DTS Virtual:X technology makes it sound much better on systems without discrete height and/or surround speakers.

HD Guru: Do you plan to offer DTS Virtual:X as a feature along with a full DTS:X implementation in future products?

Skrdlant: We do plan to offer DTS Virtual:X as a feature along with DTS:X in future products. Product makers are opting to add DTS Virtual:X as a new feature to their products to enable consumers to enjoy immersive content, whether they have a full 7.1.4 or 5.1 speaker layout or even just a sound bar.

HD Guru: Will this work effectively in products, like television sets, with limited speaker separation? 

Skrdlant: DTS Virtual:X is being implemented in TVs today to deliver an impressive surround and height image along with improved bass performance and speaker correction for TVs with challenging internal speaker locations. The end result is a much more enveloping sound image with better bass performance without clipping.

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HD Guru: Other than the obvious soundbars and AV receivers what are the product implementations you see being the most popular?

Skrdlant: We see TVs as another popular device for DTS Virtual:X implementation.

HD Guru: When will we start to see this arrive in other products?

Skrdlant: New products with DTS Virtual:X will continue to roll out in Q3 and Q4 2017 with broader availability in 2018.

HD Guru: Does this work equally well in two-channel systems and full surround sound setups?

Skrdlant: DTS Virtual:X has input and output modes that support stereo, enabling the technology to create an impressive immersive experience with stereo input and output.

HD Guru: Is this purely a software implementation, and if so, can it be added to any legacy products (like existing DTS:X enabled devices) via firmware updates? What would be required to add that, if special hardware configurations/processing power is required? 

Skrdlant: It is a firmware based solution which product makers can choose to license and implement for their products. It is up to the product licensee on whether they offer it to consumers as a firmware update or simply just make it a standard feature in new products. This is not a ‘direct-to-consumer’ software product.

 

By Greg Tarr

 

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