Wilsonville, OR (October 2, 2012)-The Audix TM1 omni-directional test and measurement microphone is playing a role in helping the SMPTE 202 Work Group update its motion picture audio B-chain standards.
The SMPTE 202 Work Group has been working to update the standard's specified measurement methods and characteristic electroacoustic frequency response of the motion picture audio B-chain. The group is working specifically on the standardization of multichannel sound reproduction and monitoring in motion picture dubbing theaters, screening rooms and indoor cinemas to ensure constant perceived loudness and frequency response from venue to venue.
The 202 standard focuses on the B-chain, which refers to everything after the sound source selection: the volume control, amplifiers, loudspeakers and auditorium acoustics. SMPTE 202 Work Group members Neil Shaw of Menlo Scientific Acoustics, Inc. and David Revel, TechMD, Inc., discovered that the Audix TM1 met the organization's performance standards.
"Our goal is to get the presentation theaters' audio playback to match as closely as possible the audio in the film dubbing stage where the soundtrack audio is mixed," explained Revel. "We need to be sure that both ends of the process are measured and calibrated to the same exacting standard with a comparable set of tools so that we know that the mixes translate correctly. At this stage of the 202 Standard reviews, we're not evaluating the rooms themselves. We're first evaluating the tools and practices to do so, and to establish a reliable process. And it turns out that one of the greatest variables in this tool-set is the calibration microphone."
The TM1 reportedly did well against the 'gold standards' for calibration mics-finishing in the top two-despite being significantly less expensive. While SMPTE does not endorse specific products, the lower price of the Audix TM1 could be important outside the major markets, noted Revel. "It's one thing to expect theater calibration experts in major markets to be able to invest in very expensive calibration tools. In order to serve secondary and smaller markets with the same level of results, a lower cost microphone solution that meets the performance requirements of this standard is ideal."