KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Waves, the preeminent provider of intelligent audio in consumer electronics and leading developer of DSP for the professional audio market sector, announces Waves Nx. Waves’ proprietary Nx software technology runs on PCs, laptops and other devices and lets users hear the same natural depth, natural reflections, and panoramic imaging heard from speakers in a physical room, but on headphones. PCs equipped with Waves Nx software and an Intel RealSense integrated or peripheral SR300 camera can enable real-time playback of true immersive, 360-degree sound experience over headphones that naturally adapts to head positions. Waves Nx and Intel RealSense technologies provide developers, creators and consumers with the next generation of immersive audio experiences.
As the recipient of a Technical GRAMMY® Award and the top Audio DSP technologies developer, for more than two decades, Waves Audio has pioneered the development of psychoacoustic signal processing algorithms that leverage knowledge on the human perception of hearing to radically improve perceived sound quality.
The perception of spatial sound is a complex phenomenon. It combines the interactions between acoustic sound waves and a room or space, the interaction of the physical movement of our head and ears, the reaction of our middle and inner ear and the audio nerve, and finally our brain’s cognition and interpretation of the acoustic landscape.
The perception of sound over headphones is a completely different experience. Waves Nxtracks the user’s head position using the Intel RealSense SR300 Camera, positioning the sound in the user’s headphones to match the way we hear in the real world. Waves Nx tracks the actual movements of the user’s head, to render the slight nuances that create a real, dynamic and variable sensory experience – appropriately positioning the audio in the left and right headphones to simulate movement through the audio space.
The Intel RealSense SR300 Camera captures the world in 3D with an array of sensors – a 1080p HD camera, an infrared camera and an infrared laser projector, and enables many unique user experiences to work and play with computing devices, and is now extending to new headphone audio experiences with Waves Nx technology. The Intel RealSense camera brings significant value propositions to the Waves Nx experience, beyond providing head tracking information. The 60 frames per second (fps) output with integrated depth processing provides smoother audio adaptation with more frequent head position updates and reduced latency that is critical for applications like gaming and AR/VR audio. The infrared camera enables robust performance in low-light conditions that is very challenging or not possible with other cameras. The tight integration between Waves Nx technology and the Intel RealSense SR300 Camera enables unique headphone audio experiences.
Waves Nx supports any type of headphones or earphones on all media formats. The fully realistic, real-time, 360-degree virtualized audio environment positions every sound exactly as if it is coming from external sources. By placing the listening environment outside the confines of the headphones, Waves Nx technology enables you to experience everything positioned exactly as it is in the real world around you, rather than flat inside your head. It also allows you to enjoy a more comfortable and ear-friendly headphone experience over extended periods of time.
Jack Joseph Puig, a multi-platinum GRAMMY Award-winning record producer/mixer (U2, Lady Gaga, Black Eyed Peas, John Mayer) and Head of Global Marketing, Waves Consumer Division, stated, “From my extensive experience working with top artists, it’s clear that entertainment and its place in our everyday lives is moving into a new realm – one that is set to integrate virtual reality into its very fabric. Content creators and device developers will need to have the right tools to provide consumers with an experience that truly mirrors real-life in every imaginable way. Waves Nx and Intel’s RealSense SR300 Camera set up these developers and future content creators for success with the right technology to be primed for this next generation and beyond.”
“For many years, top consumer brands have utilized Waves technologies to enhance the audio in a variety of devices and settings,” says Tomer Elbaz, Executive Vice President, Waves Consumer Division. “Waves Nx represents a major step forward for a lifelike sound experience, and, when paired with the Intel RealSense SR300 Camera, Nx offers the right tools to stay on the cutting edge of developments in virtual reality and augmented reality on our everyday devices.”
“It’s exciting to see the applications in which Intel RealSense cameras are being used,” said Achin Bhowmik, vice president in Intel’s New Technology Group and general manager of the Perceptual Computing Group. “Interactive computers, unmanned aerial vehicles, autonomous robots, immersive virtual and augmented reality devices, and now headphones, are all starting to use this technology in novel and creative ways. We can’t wait to see where it’s used next.”
About Waves Nx Technology:
Waves’ Nx technology has been developed in order to bridge the gap between listening to sound from external sources and listening on headphones. The Nx algorithm inserts all of the above-described missing cues into the signal in order to convince the brain that sound is coming from virtual speaker positions in space. However, in contrast with other similar technologies, Nx does this in a subtle, realistic manner, adding only the critical and global cues required for the spatial image without modifying or coloring the sound. The filters and ambience were optimized to create a transparent sounding “room,” so as to minimize the frequency alteration in order that all changes would be perceived as relating to space rather than equalization. By adjusting the sound to the user’s head movements, the depth perception is created without dramatic changes to the frequency response. Also, for enhanced realism, Nx allows the user to insert individual head and ear measurements in order to tailor critical delay and frequency changes to the dimensions of the head, thus allowing an individualized realistic effect without extraneous effort or additional hardware.
As the number-one choice of the professional, Waves is heard on hit records, major motion pictures and popular video games, and employed by leading consumer brands. Waves’ technology is used in every aspect of the audio signal path: on computers, in tablets, smartphones and more; Waves is everywhere.