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Dirac brings its spatial audio tech to wireless headphones

Swedish digital audio brand Dirac has long been a pioneer with its room correction tech, and it’s now bringing that skill set to the wireless headphone market.

According to Dirac, listeners will be able to enjoy spatial audio natively in wireless headphones thanks to the brand’s patented Dynamic HRTF technology. It’s said to be able to create an immersive stereo experience from standard stereo content in a similar fashion to how it’s done with a home theatre system, and Dirac says it can do this without requiring content that’s been specifically encoded in the format, as you’d find with Dolby Atmos Music and Sony’s 360 Reality Audio.

Related: Dirac Mobile app preview

Dirac says that this level of fidelity could be enjoyed across a wide range content and applications, such as playing games and watching films, which brings to mind Creative’s SXFI holographic technology.

The second part of the solution is its speaker optimisation tech, and it won’t be restricted either. Headphone manufacturers will be able to “easily integrate” Dirac’s solution into chipsets from Bluetooth DSP vendors such as Mediatek, BES, and Qualcomm.

The feature is already coming to upcoming Klipsch and RHA headphones, and Peter Cedmer, Director of Product Management, Headphones, says Dirac is in talks with several other brands. It works by using Dirac’s magnitude response correction and impulse response correction solution, which enhance the headphone performance without the need for an upgrade. The result, they claim, is a clearer, balanced sound with richer, tighter bass.

The Swedish brand maintains that despite the (hopeful) wide-ranging availability of its tech, that headphone manufacturers will still be able to differentiate from each other, delivering their own signature sound with “high accuracy and consistency”.

Cedmer also said: “While TWS earphones miniaturize, and the size of the speaker drivers are further reduced, consumers continue to expect great sound quality from these increasingly small devices. Our solution empowers wireless headphones to stand out in a fiercely competitive market by delivering superior sound quality from smaller form factors than ever before. The speaker optimization feature can even be offered alone, without the spatial audio feature, to OEMs that focus solely on maximizing headphone sound quality.”

We were impressed by the Dirac Mobile app when we went hands-on with it at CES 2020. We’re very intrigued to see how well the spatial audio and optimisation tech works when integrated into the headphones themselves.

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