Contrary to widely-held belief, there are instances where multichannel sound reproduction results in a reduced sweet spot size when compared to stereo. This problem occurs due to interference in the listening room when signals in two or more channels are coherent. In contradistinction, a high degree of interchannel coherence is required to ensure localisation of sources and early reflections between (rather than in) the loudspeakers. This paper describes a new multichannel microphone configuration that provides high interchannel coherence for direct sounds, and low coherence for reverberation. Thus it considers not only the usual sound stage characteristics such as imaging and spaciousness but also unwanted artifacts caused by interchannel interference in the listening environment.
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