Linear Acoustics looks to kick-start aacPlus

Local broadcasters looking to launch digital multicast sports and other networks have a new option for encoding and decoding Surround Sound audio.

Two new products from Linear Acoustic are designed to accommodate Dolby-E metadata within the aacPlus format, a next-generation audio technology that delivers 5.1-channel Surround Sound at a fraction of the data rate of current technologies. As broadcasters and others look to MPEG-4 video, which offers dramatic bandwidth savings, they’ll also be hunting for the equivalent savings in audio. Linear Acoustics believes aacPlus is the best bet and that its products will speed the adoption of the aacPlus audio compression format for digital multichannel broadcasting

“With the introduction of aacPlus for 5.1 surround sound, broadcasters now
have a choice of formats,” considers Linear Acoustic president/founder Tim
Carroll. “MPEG-4 aacPlus is the most advanced audio codec available today.
It is exciting to make this choice possible with a professional encoder
product that supports metadata.”

The new products, AEROMAX-aacPlus Professional Encoder and Decoder – use a proprietary data-reduction process innovated by Coding Technologies, a provider of audio compression for digital broadcasting, mobile media and the Internet. The MPEG-4 aacPlus audio codec is standardized across a variety of platforms as a compression format for digital audio, including DVB, MPEG, 3GPP and other international standards. In digital broadcasting, aacPlus has a proven track record as the audio codec for XM Satellite Radio.
Compared to current 5.1-channel coding systems, including Dolby AC-3,
aacPlus reduces broadcasting bandwidth and transmission costs to less than
half, and frees up limited bandwidth resources for additional programming in
fixed, existing channels.