Audio News for June 21, 2016

Bowie Classical Tribute Scheduled – Glastonbury in the UK will have a tribute concert for the late David Bowie tomorrow. Philip Glass will conduct his 1966 orchestral work Heroes Symphony which was a tribute to the 1977 Bowie album Heroes. The music will be backed by an immersive light and laserworks show by Chris Levine.

Surface Hub Videos Focus on Music Notation, Product Planning, and More –  Microsoft’s Surface Hub has been on sale to customers for a few month. They have decided to highlight some documented real world application and hardware use cases in a series of YouTube videos. They focus on third party software on the Surface Hub doing music notation with StaffPad, collaborative creation with Drawboard, and Video looping with TechSmith Loop.

LeEco Bringing Its Phones and Video Streaming to U.S. – This fall LeEco, which has launched hi-end affordable Android phones outside of the U.S., will be bring them into the U.S.  Their phones are light and will be sold unlocked. The company is currently securing the rights to live and recorded U.S. video content, and their handsets will support other streaming services as well. The phones have solid specs and affordable price tags.

Is MQA the Fix for the “MP3 Mistake?” – Writer Andrew Flanagan thinks it is. He mentions the problems of audiophilia: expensive gear, a high informational barrier to entry, and the re-purchase of music in the latest hi-fi formats. Neil Young’s Pono solution is not doing that well. Most of the original recordings of pop and rock are analog tape, definitely not hi-res, but upsampling to digital hi-res formats can increase the price exorbitantly without improving the sound quality a bit.  Convenience trumped fidelity because it was felt the important thing was for more people to have access to more music. If labels use it, MQA will bring the potential for higher quality sound without sacrificing portability and streaming. It works with new research which was unknown at the time of the development of MP3, about how our brains process audio information. What they cut out of MP3s are those tinkles at the top and the rumbles at the bottom, which affect what we feel in the middle.

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