DTS, Fairlight Collaborate on 3D Audio Creation Platform With MDA Support

DTS (Booths SU8514, s217LMR) and Fairlight (Booth SU9507) have announced release of Fairlight’s new 3DAW, a 3D audio-production platform with native MDA mixing and format support. To meet demand for an open next-generation audio format, DTS worked with experts in the content-creation community to create the MDA specification.

In January, DTS announced its intent to provide MDA to the industry as an open object-based audio-authoring format, as the industry looks to avoid a format war for next-gen content creation and cinema delivery. The standardization work continues to formalize the specification, as industry leaders like Fairlight jump ahead of the curve by working with DTS to integrate MDA into their new 3DAW solution. Fairlight’s 3DAW enables sound designers to truly mix object-based audio in unrestricted 3D space, monitor on any configuration, and output in DTS’s proposed future specification, MDA. Additionally, Fairlight’s 3DAW will feature the ability to mix soundtracks for DTS Neo:X, a channel-based audio solution designed to support up to an 11.1 speaker system.

The MDA specification is currently being proposed to international standardization committees as an alternative to today’s closed proprietary solutions. MDA allows every sound element of a soundtrack to be mapped in 3D space, storing all the spatial and behavioral information of each sound element as metadata. Mixing audio with MDA as opposed to other surround-sound platforms allows a soundtrack to maintain the exact spatial characteristics of the audio as intended by the mixer. MDA has already garnered support from major studios and networks, and content-tool providers have begun developing new authoring solutions for the MDA format.

Based on Fairlight’s Crystal Core Media processor and software, Fairlight 3DAW is available as a turnkey solution. It offers audio engineers a ready-to-go creative tool for designing sound in both object-based and channel 3D-mixing methods. The system provides on-screen 3D panning via a plug-in, as well as extensive monitoring functions. 3DAW is able to generate a range of mixes: stereo, 5.1, 7.1, 9.1+2, DTS Neo:X, as well as an object-based mix (MDA). A separate tablet control application allows easy previewing and demonstration of audio output to verify and display the results of the creative process. 

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