Surround technologies


Throughout the world, in a wide range of broadcasts, surround sound has become a vital tool for easily and effectively capturing real-life recordings. Playing an equally important role in developing advanced surround sound microphones is Holophone®, with its patented audio recording devices designed specifically to address the challenges audio professionals face in capturing, recording and broadcasting multichannel surround sound.

Using a patented design which mimics the acoustical shadow of the human head, Holophone is able to capture a surround recording from a single point with no mixing or signal manipulation required. It features six(5.1) or eight(7.1) mic elements which are positioned within an elliptical casing to correspond with a typical home theater or studio speaker setup, helping to give listeners the feeling of “really being there.” Holophone systems provide the perfect front end for all professional and consumer audio applications including HDTV broadcasting, standard broadcasting of live sporting and music events, feature film location recording, studio recording for music and films, aswell as local broadcasts and podcasts.

Always continuing to expand its line of surround sound microphones with the very latest technology, Holophone has recently introduced its PortaMic camera-mountable surround mics to the market. They are available in two versions, the professional (Pro - £695ex) and consumer (5.1 - £430ex) models, with the Pro Version featuring both a fantastic Audio Zoom feature and Balanced Outputs. Despite only recently becoming available for shipping, the PortaMic has already received excellent industry response :-

"the surround spread was impressive for such a small microphone...Just imagine concerts or weddings with full surround. If you've considered offering surround sound in your productions but couldn't handle the price or complexity, The Holophone PortaMic 5.1 surround microphone is the simplest solution available today" VideoMaker Magazine, Dec 2009

While this innovative new product becomes more readily available, Holophone’s customers are still turning to the company’s other flagship surround options, such as its H2-PRO, H4 SuperMINI and H3-D, to create realistic discrete surround sound recordings for broadcast, feature films, live events and a wide range of other applications.

Throughout 2009, Holophone has been involved in several sports broadcast events including numerous international broadcasts for leading Italian television networks Mediaset, Sky Italy and Rai, where Frame S.P.A, a prominent Italian-based television production company, utilized Holophone’s H2-PRO for Italy’s Soccer Championship and several Champions/Europa League Events. Holophone’s H2-PRO was used to build a 5.1 audio setup to capture ambient sounds from the crowd as well as player interviews for each of the games.

Within the U.S., H2-PRO has also been called on to help bring the excitement of the NBA basketball playoffs on ESPN to fans at home by creating an ambient surround bed and capturing crowd response.

Moving from live sports to virtual gaming, Holphone’s H3-D was recently put to the task to help create a realistic soundtrack for the best-selling video game FIFA 10. Centered around the internationally played sport of soccer, the sound of the crowd is certainly a key element and one EA SPORTS, maker of the game, wanted to be sure was accurate. By incorporating real-world audio from stadiums across the globe, EA SPORTS ensured enthusiasts authentic crowd noises, captured with the H3-D surround mics. The soundtrack for FIFA 10 was comprised of several elements, with Holophone’s surround sound being used to create the main background crowd beds.

Holophone’s surround technology also made a huge splash across the U.S. for the national broadcast of the 2009 Grammy Awards and included a number of high-profile performances from such artists as Radiohead, Robert Plant and Alison Krauss; Coldplay, Lil Wayne, Paul McCartney with the Foo Fighters; Justin Timberlake with T.I. and more. Literally in the center of it all was Holophone’s H2-PRO surround microphone, helping to bring the excitement of these live performances to the viewers at home.

In San Francisco, Holophone’s H4 SuperMINIhelped station KTVU, a local FOX affiliate, breathe life into its coverage of the city’s Chinese New Year parade. The largest celebration of the Chinese New Year outside of Asia, San Francisco’s parade attracts visitors from all over the world. For over 20 years it has been KTVU’s task to bring the sights and sounds of the event to viewers at home. This year, in addition to the event being broadcast in HD, Mark Metzler, operations supervisor of KTVU and one of the sound designers for the show, wanted to further enhance the Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound mix of the live show, which has been presented in conjunction with Dolby Laboratories since 2003. The shoot location for the parade was set up in San Francisco’s Union Square. Two H4 SuperMINIs where mounted onto two Sony HD cameras using custom wooden mounts made by Stephen Thomas, one of the station’s audio engineers. This allowed the cameramen to get right into the action, fully immersing themselves in the sights and sounds of the parade. What allows KTVU’s cameramen to capture it all is the mic’s patented design.

Moving into 2010, Holophone will continue to provide the very best in surround recording technologies to its existing and potential customers. Through its innovative product introductions and diverse applications, Holophone is poised to remain at the forefront of the very latest in surround sound technology.

Tags: iss036 | planet | holophone | surround sound | audio | N/A
Contributing Author N/A

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