Conventional algorithms for converting 5.1 sound fields into 2.0 have systematically suppressed the low frequency information and neglected spatial auditory effects produced by the real position of the loudspeakers in 3/2/1 arrangements. We designed a downmix variation in which the listener's head acoustic shadow and the LFE information are considered in the conversion in order to investigate how the use of such models can contribute to improve the surround experience in two-channel modes and to customize the downmix conversion so to achieve the particular balance required by individual surround programs. A test implementation with integrated loudness control was carried out. Preliminary results show the potential benefits in using this approach and point to critical parameters involved in the downmixing task.
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