Ambisonics in the Spark

Students from the Media Technology programme were on hand to help install a 24 channel ambisonic rig in the University’s Spark building last week 13th March 2017. The rig was used for a sound scape installation and featured at the AES conference over the weekend. Ambisonics systems provide a truly spherical sounds field sound sources appearing above and below the listener as well as across the horizontal plane. This provides a much more immersive listening experience with distinct sounds appearing from any point around the listener. From the mixer’s perspective they are no-longer constrained by loudspeaker positions and can focus on localising sounds instead.

Students from across the year groups and pathways erected the 7 x 7 x 3 meter scaffolding, installed the loudspeakers and ran the cabling for the multichannel system. They were also on hand to help align and calibrate the system for optimal performance. Several of the students already had some experience of ambisonic rigs from a smaller setup in the department’s studios; all of the students involved will have benefitted from seeing some of the theory on spatial audio from the course put into practice on an unusually large scale. Many thanks to all those involved.

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