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Samsung is using AI to improve sound quality of its TVs and AV products

Samsung is the biggest TV brand in the world, and it makes some fantastic QLED TVs. To match the impressive video quality of its TVs, the company now turned to AI (artificial intelligence) technologies to improve the sound quality of its AV products. The South Korean firm has explained some of those technologies on its website.

With its 2020 lineup of 8K QLED TVs, Samsung has raised the bar of audio experience through Object Tracking Sound+, Active Voice Amplifier, and Q-Symphony.

To recreate a movie theatre’s multi-channel audio experience inside a living room, the company’s audio engineers Object Tracking Sound+ technology. Samsung TVs that come with the audio technology follow onscreen movements in real-time through six built-in speakers. For example, when a car is moving from the left to the right on the screen, the sound is recreated similarly through the TV’s built-in speakers.

The company managed to add four speakers to the traditional TV audio setup to expand the sense of sound. Two speakers were added to the left and the right, and two speakers towards the top and the bottom. This creates a fuller and wider sound when compared to conventional TVs. Despite using six speakers, Samsung’s engineers managed to keep the TVs extremely slim. The audio processing recreates the location information from the original signal and then redistributed among the TV’s six speakers.

The AVA (Active Voice Amplifier) technology takes into account the external audio and then adjusts the level of vocals from the TV so that you don’t have to adjust the volume frequently. The latest TVs from Samsung come with sound sensors that measure the audio coming from the TV and the ambient noise. The AI technology then compares the sounds and then selectively raises the TV’s volume. That way, if a mixer is turned on in the kitchen or if there’s a loud thunder, you don’t have to raise the TV volume manually.

Until recently, Samsung’s TV and soundbar teams used to work separately. However, since the inclusion of six speakers in the company’s new TVs, both the teams developed the Q-Symphony feature. It uses the speakers on the soundbar as well as the TV to work simultaneously for a fuller, more vibrant, and wider sound. It is an industry-first achievement, and the South Korean firm was awarded the Best of Innovation Award at CES 2020.

Apparently, this technology was harder to develop than it seems. Since the quality and tuning of speakers on the soundbar and the TV differs, playing audio from both the devices can do more harm than good when the technology is not optimized. Engineers were able to separate the main soundtrack, including dialogs, from the entire signal, and assign different soundtracks to the TV and the soundbar.

Samsung’s Audio Lab, which is based in the US, is working closely with Samsung Research’s R&D Centers, startups, and universities to improve the audio quality even further.

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