Surround sound television is being taken up by broadcasters around the world and it is important to assess the impact of this for viewers, particularly those who struggle to understand speech on TV soundtracks. This research assesses the effect on intelligibility of a central dialogue loudspeaker, such as that found in 5.1 surround systems, when compared to a phantom central stereo image. Listening tests were carried out that showed up to 9.4% average improvement in intelligibility and which indicate possible benefits of surround sound systems on dialogue clarity.
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