Dolby and Dirac drive to create ultimate in-car audio

posted on Friday, 17th June 2022 by Steve May

Automotive  Dolby Atmos  Dirac 

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Dolby and Swedish digital audio pioneer Dirac are collaborating on a high-end immersive automotive audio system.

The duo aim to show how the combination of their technologies, Dirac’s audio optimization algorithms and Atmos immersive audio, can provide ‘the ultimate immersive in-vehicle audio experience.’ The system will be showcased in Dolby and Dirac’s demo vehicles worldwide, and will debut commercially later this year.

The partnership is intriguing. Dirac uses digital signal processing to upgrade the sound system performance and overcome acoustic challenges inherent in cars, typically suboptimal positioning of loudspeakers and reflective surfaces, while Dolby Atmos has changed the creative paradigm.

So could this union herald a new standard in automotive audio?

Lars Carlsson, Head of Business Development, Automotive, at Dirac: “The car is a natural place to listen to music, but vehicle cabins are also the most acoustically challenging listening environments. For 20 years, Dirac has been developing tailored solutions for some of the world’s leading auto manufacturers, optimizing sound systems to achieve entirely new levels of audio performance. Now, through this collaboration with Dolby, we’re for the first time combining the world’s most sophisticated audio algorithms with the world’s most immersive content to quite literally establish a new standard in automotive sound.”

Andreas Ehret, Director Automotive at Dolby: “‘Reproducing a faithful Dolby Atmos experience in a car that translates well from the point of creation in the studio into the challenging acoustic environment of a car cabin is a lofty task. The Dirac technology is a great solution for car makers to optimize this experience. We have found that in our demo cars, the results were excellent, with excellent detail, accurate staging, and a well-balanced sound field in all seating positions. Dolby works hand in hand with the entire automotive supply chain, to deliver an authentic entertainment experience inside the car.”

The NIO ET 7 electric sedan is expected to be the first vehicle to feature Dirac audio optimization algorithms and Dolby Atmos. It’ll enter the European market in 2022.

Steve May

Inside CI Editor Steve May is a freelance technology specialist who also writes for T3TechRadarHome Cinema Choice, Trusted Reviews and The Luxe Review.

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