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Subjective Evaluation of Stereo-9.1 Upmixing Algorithms Using Perceptual Band Allocation

The purpose of this study was to investigate preexisting algorithms for building an upmixing algorithm that converts a stereo signal to 5.1 and 9.1 multichannel audio formats. Using three algorithms (the passive surround decoding method, the Least Mean Squares algorithm, the adaptive panning algorithm), a stereo audio signal was upmixed to 5.1 and 9.1 in Max. The Max patch provides a GUI in which listeners can select one of the upmixing algorithms and control EQ during playback. Perceptual Band Allocation (PBA) is applied for converting the upmixed 5.1 channel audio to 9.1 that contains four height channels (top front left, top front right, top back left, top back right). A subjective listening test was conducted in New York University’s MARL Research Lab. LMS algorithm was found to provide more natural and spatial sounds than the other two algorithms. The passive surround decoding method and the adaptive panning algorithm were found to show similar characteristics in terms of low frequency and spaciousness.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society