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A Novel Algorithm for Volumetric Amplitude Panning and Diffusion in Spatial Audio Production

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The world of spatial audio production is expanding rapidly with multichannel and Dolby Atmos formats becoming increasingly popular in music, cinema, and gaming. To keep up with the pace, it’s crucial to have tools that accurately represent sound objects in 3D, are intuitive, and effectively translate ideas into perceptual reality. A 3D panner is an essential tool that accurately places a sound source or an object in any point of the 3D space. However, traditional techniques such as Vector Based Amplitude Panning (VBAP) require the listener to be positioned at a "sweet spot" surrounded by loudspeakers on either a 2D ring or a 3D sphere, which limits their effectiveness. Our research presents a novel algorithm for volumetric amplitude panning that does not assume any sweet spot and can work for any loudspeaker layout, both asymmetric and symmetric. Additionally, we’ve included geometric and distance based diffusion techniques that guarantee smooth spread across all directions, distances, and diffusion amounts. With this algorithm, we can improve the accuracy and efficiency of sound object placement and enhance the overall spatial audio experience.

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