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AudioForum discusses the role of electronics

The AudioForum helped kick off ISE’s programme of pre-show events with a well-attended all-day conference targeting higher-level audio delegates. The five presentations were themed around the impact of electronics on audio, from the developments in DSP over the decades to the management of sound from outdoors events, as well as increasing the efficiency of sub-bass systems.

In his keynote, Umberto Zanghieri tracked the history of audio DSPs from the earliest processing concepts in the 1960s, starting with the pioneering work on MUSIC by Max Mathews, and continuing with the development of DSP processors leading to DSP within more general chips and on computer platforms.

While covering the wide range of processor implementations, Zanghieri noted that dedicated DSPs will continue as an important building block for professional audio applications.
Rudd Kaltofen discussed his work on implementing variable acoustics and moved on to automated noise pollution solutions.

“Quite a few open air events here are in built-up areas, and there are problems with noise pollution.” He noted that the traditional ways of measuring have limitations, and that he has developed a portable system that can monitor from multiple locations, with good correlation to the performance stages, available to monitor via the web.

Closing the morning’s sessions, Audio Labs Systems’ Mario Di Cola took a new view on increasing the efficiency of sub-bass systems. Using high motor strength drivers and Class D amplifiers “has a magic effect of handling back EMF without the amplifier overheating,” he said.

Powersoft’s Marc Kocks discussed the decentralising of DSP solutions as the afternoon sessions got underway, whilst Audio Labs Systems’ Paolo Martinon looked at the use of acoustic simulations to model the complete audio and acoustic chain.

The AudioForum, sponsored by 18 Sound and Powersoft, was put together by Conessioni with collaboration from the AES. Connessioni president Chaira Benedettini was pleased with both the quantity and quality of the audience and the presentations.

“I’m very pleased with the level of the people attending,” she told the ISE Daily. “DSP is not an easy topic, and this audience wants to understand not just how it is used but also what is inside – and have an opportunity to network.”