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Intel Announces Name Of Next-Generation Audio Spec

Intel Announces Name Of Next-Generation Audio Specification

Intel® High Definition Audio Brings CE-Quality Audio to the PC

New audio technology, new name.

Presented at the International Consumer Electronics Show (Las Vegas), Intel’s next-generation audio specification, previously codenamed “Azalia,” has a new moniker: “Intel® High Definition Audio.”

High Definition Audio brings CE-quality audio to the PC. It is designed to implement a range of audio, modem and communications functionalities in PCs, handhelds and consumer electronics (CE) devices. The name High Definition Audio is meant to reflect the marriage of advanced audio capabilities in PCs and consumer electronics.

Developed by Intel with broad support from PC and CE manufacturers, codec vendors, software providers and other industry players, High Definition Audio is built on a flexible, dynamic, cost-effective and stable architecture with headroom for future expansion.

“The PC is a versatile platform for digital media and is playing an increasingly large role in DVD-Audio, streaming music services and home theater applications” said Intel’s Kevin Corbett, vice president of the Desktop Platforms Group and director of marketing and strategic planning.

High Definition Audio will not only provide an enriched playback experience but is intended to deliver a better-quality input for voice and communication applications. The enablement of higher-quality audio is attributed in part to an upgraded architecture and increased bandwidth that allows for 192 kHz, 32-bit, multi-channel audio and support for evolving high-quality audio formats. Other means are increased support for multi-channel array microphones for higher quality input, dynamically allocated bandwidth and audio device configuration flexibility.

“High Definition Audio elevates PC audio to an authentic home theater surround sound experience that opens up a whole new world of PC entertainment possibilities,” said Greg Rodehau, Dolby’s director of PC technology marketing. “We are delighted Intel has chosen to demonstrate the multichannel audio capabilities of High Definition Audio using Dolby’s newest innovation, Dolby Pro Logic IIx* technology, which delivers the most natural, seamless and immersing 7.1 surround listening experience from any native 2-channel source.”

The High Definition Audio specification is currently at the Rev. 0.9 level. Intel expects to release the final specification by midyear under royalty-free license terms. The technology will also be featured with the “Grantsdale” chipset scheduled for release in the first half of 2004.

High Definition Audio architecture is designed on the same cost-sensitive principles as AC’97 and will allow for an improved audio usage and stability level for onboard PC audio devices.

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