[Feature Article] Low bit-rate coding standards are always evolving, leading to solutions offering better quality and more flexibility at lower bit rates than previously available. Particular challenges in this evolution have arisen in recent years, owing to the proliferation of multichannel audio and digital radio systems whose standards were set in stone before the most recent low bit-rate coding systems became available (see the article on Digital Radio in the December 2004 Journal). Research efforts have centered on trying to find compatible ways of adding the enhancements offered by modern developments without penalizing those using legacy equipment.
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