Get the Edge on the Latest Audio Technologies with audioXpress April 2019

March 8 2019, 12:10

In this edition of audioXpress, we focus on two of the most important technology trends in today’s audio industry. Truly wireless earbuds and voice assistants are two of the fastest growing product segments right now, and their effects on the industry will probably last for a very long time.

According to all market intelligence research and forecasts, the global headphones market continues to enjoy an upsurge in revenues, growing by 54% year-on-year and more than doubling the demand every year. It seems noise-cancelling and true wireless headphones are exciting consumers, and brands are exploring products that can remain in the ears throughout the day. In this edition, audioXpress features a new Market Update to illustrate some of those key trends and highlight a few important ongoing technology efforts in hearables and true wireless earbuds. Read about the first over-the-counter Personal Sound Amplification products on the market, and new technologies from ams, Qualcomm, CEVA, Tempow, Dialog Semiconductor, and Cypress.

Voice applications are currently fostering the largest growth in the audio industry. It's never been more important to closely follow the advances in products, technologies, and solutions, and audioXpress April 2019 does just that with a post-CES dedicated Market Update.

And this edition of audioXpress also features an article by Steve Temme (Listen, Inc.) addressing the challenges and solutions for testing the wider class of “smart” – connected, voice-activated, and sensor-equipped – devices, proposing solutions to implement basic acoustic tests and real-world tests of greater complexity. 

Next up, Jyri Huopaniemi and Kai Havukainen from Nokia Technologies, the licensing arm of Nokia, explain how to enable higher quality audio capture for smartphones and introduces us to some of the most exciting audio recording features ever available for mobile devices. How would you like to be able to completely isolate sound sources or zoom in on specific sounds and cancel the rest in location recordings, directly on a smartphone?

And because this is 2019 and music streaming is now the mainstream music distribution method, Luke McCready writes about high-resolution streaming and specifically how European hi-res music streaming company Qobuz is expanding to the US, and challenging Tidal for the audiophile streaming market. Qobuz claims the largest hi-res catalog in the world, the most complete metadata, and the best editorial content. Luke put those claims to the test in this complete review of the new streaming service.

In Sound Control, Richard Honeycutt discusses wave effects and how they can affect sound in different rooms. Most computerized acoustical modeling programs such as EASE, CATT, ODEON, ULYSSES, and the several manufacturer-specific speaker-coverage modeling programs do not reveal wave effects, but it is important for a designer to account for wave effects.

For those into DIY, our esteemed speaker builder veteran Ken Bird explains how to construct an interesting omnidirectional speaker for indoor/outdoor use. Ken Bird adapted a set of Greek-style plastic columns typically used for trade show props, weddings, or other decorative applications, and created an ideal design for a Goldwood GW8004 coaxial driver coupled to a diffusor. He fondly named it the Geek Columns :)

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