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THX Details First Standard For Soundbar Certification

9/09/2011 08:02:54 AM Eastern

Indianapolis - THX revealed more
details about its first performance standard for soundbars, pointing out that
active and passive models would qualify for its certification mark but that all
would likely require the use of an active subwoofer.

The certification standard would
join standards for A/V receivers and HTiB systems.

The standard calls for flat
response from 35Hz to 20kHz through a two- or three-channel soundbar, reference
sound levels of a minimum 85dB with 20dB of headroom at a viewing distance of
six feet, a smooth blend between satellite and subwoofer drivers, and
controlled horizontal and vertical dispersion to minimize distortion-inducing
floor, ceiling and wall reflections, technology operations VP Peter Vasay told
TWICE. The dispersion requirements would optimize sound reproduction for
viewers sitting anywhere on a couch that's 6 feet from a TV, he noted.

The crossover
level between subwoofer and satellite drivers is low enough to minimize
location changes in voices and instruments.

The standard
also calls for a minimum of two stereo analog connections. Digital inputs are
optional. The standard does not require the inclusion of any virtual surround
technologies or embedded surround-sound decoding, he added.

Reference dB levels are optimized
for rooms with a volume of less than 2,000 cubic feet, whereas the HTiB
standard is designed for rooms of 2,000 cubic feet with sound pressure levels
of 85dB with 20dB of headroom at a viewing distance of 10 feet.

The first soundbar meeting the
standards is an active model from direct-to-consumer speaker supplier Teufel,
which sell only in the European Union. That model, on display at CEDIA Expo, is
an active 2.1 system with 350-watt output, separate subwoofer, and analog and
digital inputs.

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