Dirac Live Active Room Treatment uses the whole AV system to eliminate boomy bass

Dirac Live Active Room Treatment uses the whole AV system to eliminate boomy bass
(Image credit: Dirac Live)

Home cinema sound is getting an upgrade. The Dirac Live room optimisation software is adding a new feature that promises to eliminate boomy bass and deliver cleaner, tighter audio through your speakers.

It does so by treating your home cinema setup as a unified system rather than separate speakers. By processing the audio in this way, Dirac Live Active Room Treatment enables spatial optimisation, where all the speakers in the system cooperate to reduce bass decay times (i.e. the amount of time bass takes to stop bouncing around the room). By reducing decay times digitally, Dirac claims the sound will be devoid of the boomy, smeared bass you sometimes get with home cinema setups.

Previously, the most effective way of reducing bass decay was by installing physical sound dampeners on the walls or other areas. Dirac Live Active Room negates that.

It works like active noise cancellation (ANC) found in headphones, with the system's speakers actively cancelling out other speakers' unwanted wavelengths. It automatically evaluates and adjusts the bass characteristics of the whole surround sound system based on the room it is in, leveraging the strengths of each speaker to make up for others' shortcomings. That way, passive speakers effectively become active support units.

Dirac Live Active Room works with any system with more than one speaker. The more speakers in the setup, the more effective the spatial optimisation will be.

It will arrive in all StromAudio AVRs via a firmware update from the spring onwards. It will be included as a free upgrade for all StormAudio processors and AVRs ordered from now on. If you bought a StormAudio product before 1st January 2023, you'll have to buy a licence to use the feature – this costs $299 (about £250, AU$440). 


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Joe Svetlik

Joe has been writing about tech for 17 years, first on staff at T3 magazine, then in a freelance capacity for Stuff, The Sunday Times Travel Magazine, Men's Health, GQ, The Mirror, Trusted Reviews, TechRadar and many more (including What Hi-Fi?). His specialities include all things mobile, headphones and speakers that he can't justifying spending money on.