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Height Channel Signal Level in Immersive Audio-How Much Is Enough?

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Is there an appropriate level for the height channels in an immersive/3D presentation of recorded music when those channels are used speci?cally for ambience or spatial information? This paper describes an interactive listening test in which expert listeners were directed to manipulate and set the level for four height channels in the upper ring of a 9.1 channel 3D mix (traditional 5.1 surround sound with the addition of four height channels; front L/R, and rear L/R). Stimuli consisted of three musical excerpts-solo piano, string trio, and orchestra. Results were analyzed for mean level and overall variance as a measure of consistency of level set over multiple trials.

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