Enveloping3D - (Headphone-) Mix
A. Dedicated headphone mixes of recordings
The usual sound of recordings when listening through headphones (stereo) is unsatisfactory, but so far there is a lack of suitable technologies that could produce a much better sound for dedicated mixes for headphone listening (so-called binaural mixes). A very small market exists for the following concepts:
a. Dummy head recordings are offered by some small labels, the best known of which is the Chesky Records label. The headphone spatial effect of such recordings is greater than that of conventional recordings, but still disappointing for most listeners - the spatiality reaches from above the head only about 15° forwards and 15° backwards. Further disadvantages of dummy head recordings are that they are only very elaborately compatible with loudspeaker reproduction, can hardly be processed further, are not compatible with most future technologies for headphone reproduction and a simultaneous miking for a loudspeaker mix is not possible in most cases.
b. 3D Direct-sound Mixes: The only known binaural mix of this kind, a remix of old Kraftwerk recordings, was released in 2017 and has become well known among experts, not least because of a Grammy that was awarded. The sound sources (synthie sounds) come from many different directions and the remix is carried out competently. However, the concept cannot be transferred in any way to acoustic recordings, not even to many other electronic recordings, since it gets by completely without spatiality in the sense of reflections and diffusivity.
In the medium term, the only headphone mixes that are likely to be commercially viable are those dedicated headphone mixes that can be produced from files that can be created during normal recording sessions without significantly increased effort - i.e. during normal recording, only 1 additional microphone should be required for the purpose of headphone mixing.
B. Enveloping3D Headphone-Mix
The process Enveloping3D Headphone Mix developed by Saalakustik.de fulfills exactly these requirements. An additional HOA microphone is set up during the recording and recorded additionally, the signals recorded with it are the basis for an independent headphone mix. In combination with the Enveloping3D algorithms, a fascinatingly transparent and spatial mix is created for listening with headphones, with a previously unattainable and unknown future-oriented sound aesthetics. In its basic version, this mix is available to the customer on 2 audio channels (binaural stereo) and is suitable for listening to the vast majority of listeners.
In principle, an HOA sound field created once, e.g. for headphone playback, is suitable for all types of playback depending on the selected decoding. Accordingly, in the medium term it is to be expected that the Enveloping3D headphone mix will also be the basis for 3D audio playback via the Enveloping3D loudspeaker process.