US/KOREA: Wireless 7.1 surround moves a step closer
The home cinema dream of full-range 7.1-channel surround without wires all round the room has moved closer to reality with the announcement of a deal between Californian company Focus Enhancements and Korea's Anam Electronics.
Who they? Well, Focus is the maker of the FS848 High-Definition Digital Wireless Audio IC, while Anam makes products for quite a few companies whose names may be a little more familiar. And the two have done a deal to include the former's technology in the latter's products.
Anam makes products for a variety of well-known names
All of which means that products from the likes of Denon, Harman/Kardon, Marantz, NAD, TEAC and Yamaha could soon start appearing with onboard wireless surround.
The Focus system allows the transmission of up to eight channels of uncompressed 48kHz/24-bit audio with forward-error correction and a low-latency fixed 2ms end-to-end delay to avoid lip-synch errors.
Transmission is on the 5GHz U-NII band for low interference, and the active speaker end of the transmission chain allows both speaker phase adjustment and driver alignment parameters to be set.
There's also built-in SpeakerFinder technology, allowing the system to 'find' each speaker in the room and allocate it to a channel, using ultrasonic transducers with an accuracy of 1cm.
In addition, there's also MyZone technology, allowing the listening 'sweet spot' to be shifted to different positions in the room. Or it's possible to use another ultrasonic transducer, this time in the remote control handset, to let the system home in on the listening position.
Sounds intriguing – watch this space...