TORONTO -- IMAX Corporation today announced the launch of its new nXos Calibrator, a patent-pending technology designed to tune and automatically monitor IMAX audio systems. The new technology applies the equivalent of thousands of bands of equalization to perform a highly detailed tuning of the IMAX audio system. IMAX nXos Calibrator is designed to significantly exceed the capability of manual equalization processes.
IMAX's audio systems feature proprietary loudspeaker technology and uncompressed digital sound, with much greater dynamic range than conventional systems. The system is designed to provide a more immersive audio environment. The IMAX nXos Calibrator works to ensure that the audience is provided an optimum audio experience in the IMAX(R) theatre.
"We developed the nXos Calibrator to maximize the listening experience for moviegoers and to make the operation of IMAX theatres easier for exhibitors who are often responsible for simultaneously monitoring dozens of screens in addition to their IMAX venue," said Brian Bonnick, IMAX's Executive Vice President, Technology. "The automation of this groundbreaking technology will enable operators to calibrate more frequently and with much more accuracy than what is done in conventional theatres."
"We're very pleased to add IMAX nXos to the arsenal of proprietary IMAX technologies designed to help our customers consistently deliver the best cinema experience to audiences," added Larry T. O'Reilly, IMAX's Executive Vice President, Theatre Development. "Sound is just as important as picture in an IMAX theatre, and this new technology complements our latest image enhancement technologies, helping to ensure every single IMAX screening is presented how the filmmaker intended."
The IMAX nXos Calibrator was developed in cooperation with Audyssey, the leader in audio equalization technology. Based on a proprietary implementation of Audyssey's MultEQ XT technology, the IMAX nXos Calibrator applies Digital Signal Processing technology to tune and monitor IMAX audio systems. The new technology provides remote monitoring to allow IMAX technicians to know on a day-to-day basis the status of nXos equipped audio systems. The system can automatically apply corrections if changes in audio calibration are detected.
Using a proprietary version of MultEQ XT technology, IMAX technicians measure audio performance at over twenty locations in the theatre. The MultEQ algorithms calculate an optimal equalization based on loudspeaker and room acoustics to provide a consistently high level of audio performance in each auditorium.
System tuning is not the last step in maintaining IMAX audio quality. On a regular basis, IMAX's nXos technology applies test signals to each audio channel, and by means of permanently installed microphones, measures the performance of the IMAX audio system. If significant variation in performance is detected, correction is applied to return the system performance to its pre-determined value. Results are reported to the IMAX Network Operations Centre at IMAX's headquarters. Technicians have the capability to remotely access the IMAX nXos Calibration system to observe results, modify tuning parameters and perform diagnostic tests.