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Planar Microphone Array Processing for the Analysis and Reproduction of Spatial Audio Using Directional Audio Coding

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Recording and reproduction of spatial audio becomes more and more important, as multichannel audio applications gain increasing attention. Directional Audio Coding (DirAC) represents a well proven approach for the analysis and reproduction of spatial sound. In the analysis part, the direction-of-arrival and the diffuseness of the sound field is estimated in subbands using B-format signals, which can be created with 3D omnidirectional microphone arrays. However, 3D microphone configurations are not practical in consumer applications, e.g., due to physical design constraints. In this paper, we propose a new approach which allows for an approximation of the required B-format signals, but is based on a planar microphone configuration only. Comparisons with the standard DirAC approach confirm that the proposed method is able to correctly estimate the desired parameters within a wide range of frequency and the spatial resolution matches the human perception.

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