Improvements to ITU and matrix surround downmixing are proposed. The surround channels are often mixed into the downmix with reduced gain to prevent that the resulting stereo signal is overly ambient. A method is proposed which allows to control the amount of ambience in the downmix independently of direct sound. In a conventional matrix surround downmix, ambience from the surround channels appears impaired (negatively correlated) . To address this issue, a technique is proposed which separates direct and ambient sound. Then, a matrix surround downmix is only applied to the direct sound, while ambient sound is treated like in an ITU downmix.
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