Stereophony and Wave Field Synthesis (WFS) are capable of providing the listener with a rich spatial audio experience. They both come with different advantages and challenges. Due to different requirements during the music production stage, a meaningful direct comparison of both methods has rarely been carried out in previous research. As stereophony relies on a channel- and WFS on a model-based approach, the same mix cannot be used for both systems. In this study mixes of different popular-music recordings have been generated, each for two-channel stereophony, surround stereophony, and WFS. The focus is on comparability between the reproduction systems in terms of the resulting sound quality. In a paired-comparison test listeners rated their preferred listening experience.
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