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Audio News for August 12, 2016

BBC Radio 3 Has Highest Audience in Five Years –  The number of people now listening to Radio 3 in the UK has reached 2.2 million. Programs such as Breakfast and Essential Classics, Listening Service and Jazz Now have scored record highs. The station’s recent introduction of birdsong-inspired programming is credited with helping to attract new listeners. It includes pairing of recordings of birds singing with musicians.

Home Audio Device Global Analysis – The new study, published by SBWire, considers downstream and upstream components, and highlights major factors that drive its growth. Leading companies in the global Home Audio Device market are profiled as to annual revenue, products, applications, capacity production, areas of coverage and more. The strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of leading players in the global Home Audio Device market are measured.

What is Dolby Atmos Sound? – Originally developed in 2012, it is a surround sound technology building on the 5.1 and 7.1 systems of old and taking things to a new level by adding a lot more speakers. Some commercials theaters now use up to a whopping 64 speakers. The sonic experience is not channel-based, requiring multi-channel source material. Instead, it is object-based, where elements of regular stereo audio can be controlled with precision, moving them around the room in various ways. You can even get Dolby Atmos on smaller products such as tablets and smartphones. There are even some computer lap-tops with Dolby Atmos now. In the home, where one is unlikely to have the space for that many speakers, various soundbars and projectors include upward firing speakers to deal with and provide the Atmos element. There are also small upward-firing speakers available to sit on top of the two front speakers and bounce the sounds off a flat ceiling. (If you have a high vaulted ceiling, as I do, you are out of luck. But I have had high-mounted side speakers for years, although Dolby Atmos recommends four speakers: two side and two in the ceiling.)

Millennials Drive Audio Sales – Part of the allure of moving away from one’s parents is having control over the home theater setup, including what gets played and how loud is in fact “too loud.” Young consumers, under 34, account for a larger share of home audio spending that they did only two years ago. The importance of the stereo headphone market is well known; younger consumers accounted for 43% of dollars spent on headphones in 2015. The audio trend came at a time when many younger consumers had transferred much of their consumption time to smartphones, offering access to huge libraries of music via streaming services. The smartphone has unfortunately become the central component to most music consumption today. Also, millennial spending on home audio – including AV receivers, speakers, CD players, soundbars and home theater in a box systems was up 38% from a year prior.

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