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The Surround Zone brings all the control of SoundField’s surround and stereo processing to the digital domain. It combines the hardware features of both the SP451 Surround Processor and MKV System and is designed to accept the B-Format information generated by any of the current SoundField microphone models.
A full surround recording can be captured using a single SoundField microphone incorporating a patented multi-capsule array. Because the microphone captures the sound at a ‘single point’, as opposed to multiple spaced microphones, all channels are completely phase coherent. This enables surround mixes to be collapsed back to stereo or mono without the loss of any vital audio information.Each microphone system outputs SoundField B-Format which is a three-dimensional snapshot of any acoustic event.
Once the SoundField B-Format is in the ProTools environment the plug-in enables the user, either live or in post-production, to generate various surround mic-arrays with variable polar patterns. Specifically the Surround Zone provides a choice of three separate 5.1 arrays, individual 6.1 and 7.1 arrays, independently variable width of both the front and rear pairs, phase coherent LFE and individual level controls with Mute and Solo all with bargraph metering. The software also provides additional control over the sound such as Rotate - 360 degree horizontal rotation, Tilt - adjust the microphone pick-up angle by plus or minus 45 degrees in the vertical plane and Zoom - zoom in on sound sources. The Surround Zone can output mono, stereo, M/S, 5.1, 6.1, 7.1 or any future surround format.
Pieter Schillebeeckx, Technical Sales, states, “After the introduction of the Surround Zone on the Sadie and Nuendo platforms, the ProTools TDM version has been released in response to customer demand. The Surround Zone software enables us to offer a complete surround recording package. Our microphones capture the realism at the front end and the software provides all the necessary post-production tools for the final surround delivery format.”
In addition to the surround capabilities also provided are simultaneous stereo outputs. The stereo page features fully variable graphically displayed polar patterns, variable stereo width, variable high-pass filter from 20Hz up to 250Hz, and mid/side encoded output.