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Multi Channel Audio

Purité Audio

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#1
I am in interested in multi channel audio , I heard a three front channel demonstration carried out by Illusonic a couple of years back, it was impressive, reverting backwards and forwards the stereo appeared completely flat in comparison. The Illusonic processors are capable of playing genuine multi channel or up mixing ordinary two channel.
Last year Grimm demonstrated a five channel set up in Munich , so
Music how much of there is it, format, hardware , set up?
Keith.
 

Purité Audio

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#3
Thomas Hi, it was impressive, the sound image filled the room, it was completely obvious when the centre channel was turned off!
They used three identical loudspeakers ,just placed in a straight line ,Illusonic have ,so they say that can split direct,reflected and ambient sounds.
The system is capable of as any channels as you like , at their place they have used up to 32 channels , including height channels to try and create an immersive
Grimm I believe used a modified OPPo player for their multi channel set up.
Keith.
 

Thomas savage

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#4
Yea directly driven multichannel channel 16 channels + installed in your room rather than just stuck about... That's a idea, what with modern software this should allow these speakers to be install either in wall or very close to wall and in ceiling. Even some kind of noise cancelling tech to kill native room noise would be cool.
 

NorthSky

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#5
Multichannel music is the future today...it's everywhere, even on headphones.

I think you can download 5.1-channel music. SACDs hybrid 5.1, BR Audio, BR Video, Auro-3D music (7.1.5 channel), DVD Audio, ...all hi-res multich. audio.
You like classical Keith? ...Or psychedelic music...Pink Floyd, Beck, Roger Waters, ...?
About jazz in 5.1?

Is that what you are referring to? Illusonic gear is expensive for most of us; so we buy receivers with multichannel music decoders for $300 and universal multichannel music BR players for $200. Add three more speakers and a pair of subs for few more hundreds and voila...heaven music in surround sound.

Would you like few links of multichannel music in several formats? ...Best labels, all genre, smartly recorded, and over your head mind blowing.
Keith, do you have a Blu-ray player for music concerts on Blu-ray?
 

Purité Audio

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#6
Yea directly driven multichannel channel 16 channels + installed in your room rather than just stuck about... That's a idea, what with modern software this should allow these speakers to be install either in wall or very close to wall and in ceiling. Even some kind of noise cancelling tech to kill native room noise would be cool.
The Illusonic does that too, you measure the room ,the Illusonic software talks you through that, and then send the measurements off to Christof and he creates the EQ for you, it is the best SQ I have enjoyed.
Keith.
 

NorthSky

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#7
But the price of admission is restricted to only the true hardcore surround folks.

This just for a small list (not for the prices): http://store.acousticsounds.com/c/10/Hybrid_Multichannel_SACD

Amazon has some good sales occasionally, and some titles are now very limited...so they are expensive today.
 

DonH56

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#8
An interesting tidbit of history is that the Klipsch Heresy was designed to be a center-channel speaker with a pair of Klipschorns, decades ago... At least that's what Paul told me, just slightly fewer decades ago, and he was showing it that way.

All that is old becomes new again...
 

NorthSky

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#9
If I was into exploring music recordings and reproduction; I might try a four-channel sound system.
The front left and right speakers, and two center channels, one more into the room and higher than the other one lower and right behind it; singer & drummer.
 

Fitzcaraldo215

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#11
The answer to the question of what Mch music is out there is best answered by this site, which I most highly recommend:

http://www.hraudio.net/

Believe it or not, this is a catalog of all known SACD and BD-A discs, > 10,000 of them, often with useful and credible reviews. All music genres are covered. Not all are Mch, but I believe the majority are. There is an indication for it and you can search by Mch or stereo, SACD vs. BD-A, genre, etc.

It was developed in Australia well over a decade ago and it is very up-to-date. There is nothing else like it in the world for any other recorded medium. It has been my bible and major reference for the past 8 years for my music selections.

SACD remains the overwhelmingly largest source of Mch music. BD-A offers perhaps less than 1/10 the catalog, though BD-A is almost always in Mch.

Mch downloads are still scarce. But, there are a few sites, likely more in the next few years for Mch.

The other source for Mch music is BD-V. Again, the numbers are small for music performances compared to SACD. There may be perhaps 500-1,000 classical Blu-ray videos, total. I think the number of rock concerts might also be less than you might expect. But, I am very fond of classical opera, concerts and ballets in this medium while watching and listening. Though I favor live music as best of all, opera on Blu-ray is really quite fabulous and it rivals live attendance, in my book.

BD-Vs are mostly audio recorded in 48k/24 bit resolution, which generally sounds very good to my ears. Some are at 96k/24, and a few are 7.1 rather than 5.1. The 7.1s are compatible with 5.1 systems.

Unfortunately, there is no good catalog of what is available on BD-V. There is an attempt at a complete catalog at bluray.com, including all movies. But, it pales by comparison to hraudio.net. It is very hard to browse for what you are looking for there. There is only a "music" genre, with no sub-genres for classical, rock, etc. It is a pain.
 

Kal Rubinson

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#13

Kal Rubinson

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#14
If I was into exploring music recordings and reproduction; I might try a four-channel sound system.
The front left and right speakers, and two center channels, one more into the room and higher than the other one lower and right behind it; singer & drummer.
The issue for me is whether one wants to recreate a real event from a discrete recording or to simply create an immersive experience with little relation to an actual performance.
 

Fitzcaraldo215

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#15
If I was into exploring music recordings and reproduction; I might try a four-channel sound system.
The front left and right speakers, and two center channels, one more into the room and higher than the other one lower and right behind it; singer & drummer.

I think what you suggest would be very problematical, meaning virtually impossible and a wild goose chase doomed to failure. No consumer Mch system I have ever heard of supports two center channels. Also, there are no recordings or synthetic Mch processing schemes I know of that would separate the center "singer from the drummer" into two discrete center speaker channels. Consumer Mch is not a mixing and panning scheme. That is done in the studio.

Also, in your description, unequal distances of two center channels from the sweet spot is not possible to correct and synchronize in consumer audio, meaning it would be a huge, insurmountable problem.

It is best to first understand what the normal, standard Mch consists of: 5 or 7 speaker channels with optional sub(s). Those channels are Left, Right, Center, Surround Left, Surround Right and, for 7.1, Back Left and Back Right. These are the input and output channel assignments for discretely recorded Mch, and also the output channel assignments for any synthetic stereo to Mch matrix schemes.

7.1, by the way, offers very little advantage over 5.1. I did it, but it is not worth considering for most. There is not a lot of 7.1 surround material available even on BD videos. I should have saved my money.

You can get away with 4.0, meaning a phantom center channel and no sub(s). That is ok, but suboptimal. But, it is a better starting point than what you suggest. There is also rarely 3.0, with a center, just one not two, but no surrounds, also suboptimal.

You do need an analog Mch preamp or preferably a digital Mch preamp processor (or AVR). You need either of those to act as a master volume control and for source switching. The digital processor should also offer DSP correction for unequal speaker distances and digital bass management to the sub(s), as most do, even the cheapest AVRs.
 

fas42

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#16
The issue for me is whether one wants to recreate a real event from a discrete recording or to simply create an immersive experience with little relation to an actual performance.
IME the real event based only on what is in the recording is the way to go - a sufficiently competent system will recover that information well enough so that the mind can fill any gaps, compensate for any acoustic anomalies in the listening space.

If this is done well enough then every recording one puts on completely changes the place you listening to, you are moved totally from one environment to another when a new album starts.
 

Fitzcaraldo215

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#17
By the way to all here, in case you any of you do not know who Kal Rubinson is, he is a regular reviewer at Stereophile Magazine, specializing in Mch and room acoustics products. He is certainly the world's leading reviewer of Mch audio systems for music (not video), if not the only one. He also happens to be my nominee for best audio journalist in the world on any subjects.

I am sure Kal will keep me honest and make sure we do not go wrong. It is a privilege to have you here, Kal.

His back columns can be found here:

http://www.stereophile.com/category/music-round
 

NorthSky

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#18
This is remarkable the amount of multichannel music recordings out there. ...I agree with you Kal; recreating the music experience @ a concert hall is not the same as creating a new surround mix for the effects.

From stereo music recordings can you recreate what was recorded in a recording music studio? [email protected] a concert hall venue?
Stereo people must prefer studio recordings more than live ones well recorded for the home?
@ most audio shows (Axpona) what you see is usually a pair of stereo loudspeakers with stereo sources...turntables and stereo music servers.
...Sometimes a DAC too and a CD transport; they still exist...not just turntables and Open-reel-tape decks.
But all of them in stereo two-channels only.

For multichannel surround sound people go @ video/audio shows, from Dolby, dts, Auro, JBL Synthesis, ...

Are there multichannel hi-res audio shows where they play multichannel hybrid SACDs and Blu-ray Audios?
...You know, the type where they recreate a live music event. If there are thousands, ten thousand multichannel SACDs out there that are great sounding and give you a closer approach to real live music, why are there so many people who love stereo studio music recordings played from stereo turntables and stereo CD players and stereo DACs and stereo R-2-R tape decks?
I always thought that audio is the liberation of a man's soul in getting closer to the real event?
Stereo music recordings made in studios are cool, so are multichannel music/movie recordings made in real life venues of all sorts...halls, clubs, alleys, cabarets, lounges, small classical chamber rooms.

I think perhaps that our rooms act as the natural reverbs present in a classical music concert hall or jazz club cabarets.
So stereo is plenty for most stereo audiophiles. And the ultra high end music listeners cannot afford more than one pair of ultra expensive loudspeakers?
Hey, 5.1 and 7.1 requires one or two and a half pair more of loudspeakers. ...Plus a sub or two-three-four.

When I listen to some classical music recorded in 5.1-channel say from Channel Classics on SACD, it is a very different music experience than a stereo recording of the same performance from a turntable or CD player. It's like I'm more inside the real event and more involved emotionally. It does that to me, but I still love stereo...it's just that to look for something closer to a real life event, and finding it, makes for a natural music progression...the holy grail of music nirvana...there there more.

There is also more work involved with multichannel music to get it right, and also in the music selections.
More money involved too, more measurements, more care, more selective with the speakers, more care with speakers positioning, more care in speakers and subwoofers balancing and level and delay matching. Best delay is no delay, same distance. Best timbre matching is no mixing drivers from different brands, same equal speakers all around...five or seven of them (eleven with movie soundtracks...Atmos, dts:X and Auro-3D spaciousness...audio immersion).

* Today I saw @ least a dozen baby spiders going under the keys of my laptop's keyboard. I spent all day on my deck under an umbrella for shade from the sun (it hits 34° Celsius in mid-afternoon), and insect life is extremely active...bees, birds, ants, spiders, all type and species and babies.
What a hot sunny Spring day here on the Island...almost scary. Right now (7:07 PM) the colors and the flowers are magnificent, similar to a great classical multichannel music recording. It's just that on my deck outside I don't have such a system setup...just one pair of stereo speakers.

Anyway, thx for that link with tons of SACDs. :cool: ...This is a refreshment in natural music evolution. ...Just like in real life with sounds coming not only from the front sound stage but from the sides and rear too, and right in the middle @ front. ...And from above.
The ambient sounds, the ones from real life music events.

♦ Did they have rooms like that @ Axpona 2016, with a 5.1-channel rig setup? ...Perhaps they should...
That'll be some' else. :)
 
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amirm

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