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Weekly AUDIO NEWS for Oct. 10, 2001


Most Web Users Won't Pay for Their Music - A new survey by IDC reports that only 23% of Net users who have downloaded their music in the past would want to pay for online music in the future. With broadband subscribers there was a somewhat more positive attitude toward paying for online music. Another survey showed that concerns about privacy issues were slowing down online sales in general - not just music.

Now It's Eight Channels! - THX has announced the THX Ultra2 spec for home entertainment systems, which features uncompromised eight-channel playback of any multichannel program - music or film soundtracks - over the widest possible seating area. All Ultra2 controllers will be capable of handling HDTV and progressive-scan DVD. Seven channels of amplification are used; with a powered subwoofer that extends down to 20 Hz. The surround channels of all 5.1 sources are processed to replay through four surround speakers instead of two - two at the side and two in back. The first Ultra2 certified products will be two receivers from Pioneer Elite.

UK Arts Audiences Decline - A survey of Britain's cultural sector says that audience support for nearly every art form has declined despite record levels of government funding.

Computer That Knows the Score - A Leeds University computer scientist has developed software enabling a computer to scan and read a handwritten music manuscript. It can produce an accurate printed score in a fraction of the time it would take a music copyist to complete such a task manually. It has been possible to convert printed music into Midi files to be performed, but reading handwritten music notation has proved extremely difficult. Old and damaged scores plus the efforts of messy composers can now be saved as digital archives. Guess instead of OCR software this would be called ONR - Optical Note Recognition.

Deaths of Two Performers on Unique Instruments - The greatest exponent of the classical harmonica, Larry Adler, died at age 87. He had played in Ravel's Bolero and Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue. The world's most famous ondes martenot player - Jeanne Loriod - died in France at age 73. She was the sister of Olivier Messiaen's widow and premiered many of the composer's works which included the electronic instrument, a sort of theremin with keyboard.

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