In this paper we describe the components of a novel audio coding algorithm capable of delivering high-fidelity CD-like stereo audio at the bit rates of 40-48 kbps and natural sounding FM grade mono at the bit rates of 18-22 kbps. Bandwidth Extension has emerged as an important tool for the satisfactory performance of low bit rate audio codecs. Recently we proposed two new bandwidth extension algorithms, Fractal Self-Similarity Model (FSSM) and Accurate Spectral Replacement (ASR), which belong to a new class of Bandwidth Extension techniques which are applied directly to the high resolution frequency representation of the signal (e.g., MDCT or ODFT). The proposed coding scheme uses FSSM and ASR in an adaptive and complementary framework. Another important component of the proposed codec is a wideband psychoacoustic model that makes an explicit use of the Comodulation Release of Masking (CMR) phenomenon. It also includes a novel parametric stereo coding technique. The proposed audio coding scheme is geared towards broadcast applications where codec latency and encoder complexity is generally not an overriding concern. In this paper we present algorithmic details of the new codec, audio demonstrations, and, comparison to other audio coding schemes. Further information and audio demonstrations are available at http://www.atc-labs.com/teslapro.
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