Mediagroup Academy immerses students in sound
MALAYSIA: The Mediagroup Academy in Kuala Lumpur has recently conducted two surround sound/immersive audio seminars – Immersive sound: Introduction to Dolby Technologies and Revive the Concert: 5.1 Surround Sound Production. Led by broadcast specialist Jean-Paul Moerman the sessions welcomed a combined audience of 30 to the academy to discuss the industry’s ‘burning topics’.
Mr Moerman began his two-part presentation with a general introduction to multichannel audio and essential guidelines for surround productions. Attendees reportedly learned about the typical surround production chain, the recommended configuration of a surround control room, and system engineering aspects for the on-air and streaming delivery of content in Dolby E and Dolby Digital formats. The sessions were intended for a production audience to get to grips with the fundamentals of surround sound for HD 5.1 productions. Mr Moerman illustrated his points with various A/V clips and case studies of music talent shows and sports programmes produced in 5.1 to ‘demonstrate the importance of a thorough strategy’.
Spread over three days, the second seminar focused on how television audiences ultimately perceive and judge 5.1 mixes for live music shows and sporting events. The seminar discussed the notions of ambient sound and the ingredients for a convincing immersive sound stage, with Mr Moerman providing detailed guidelines for drama, news, sports and music productions.
‘One of the highlights in the seminar was the in-depth case study of the AJL Music Awards show, which is well-known in South East Asia and has more than 5m viewers,’ concluded Mr Moerman. ‘This is a three-hour live show with over 170 audio sources on stage – no backing tracks, no music on tape, no tricks. Participants were pleasantly surprised by the professional sounding voices enveloped by the venue audience, getting a real treat with a full string section into the immersive 5.1 mix. The Aurus console and extensive Nexus audio network easily managed all resources, layer distribution and paging, VCA grouping, and provided genius snapshot/scene automation – all giving you a clear head which is vital for a successful result in 5.1 live production.’
‘As Malaysia moves towards full digitalisation and multichannel audio, the Mediagroup Academy training was apt and timely,’ enthused A/V systems engineer, John Anthony, who was in attendance. ‘It has provided me with a deep insight of multichannel audio mixing and distribution. I reckon it has also bridged the gap as far as knowledge and technology is concerned for all participants. At last, someone was able to explain to me comprehensively how multichannel audio content is mixed and distributed to the home.’
‘The Mediagroup Academy was set up with the intention of enhancing skills and knowledge in this part of the world,’ continued Salzbrenner Stagetec Asia managing director, Advon Tan. ‘As the first fully-equipped Dolby 5.1 surround training facility in Malaysia, our new venue proved the perfect location for this event. From what I hear, broadcasters and production houses are now eager to implement what they have learned over the past few days.’