What I heard

While the popularity of virtual reality goggles such as Oculus Rift can profoundly affects cinematography and video games industry, an appearance of smart headsets such as 3D Sound One with a built-in motion sensor can cause a shift in audio market and contribute to providing surround sound formats in music streaming services.

To immerse into a 3-dimmentional artificial sound, people usually go to a cinema, play a DVD, Blu-ray or a file downloaded from the Internet on a home theater sound system that consists of six or eight speakers installed around their couch. Game players also use multichannel headphones. In the latter case, users take it for granted that movements of their head do not influence the sound they hear from a headset. But with 3D Sound One – the world’s first smart 3D sound headphones with a motion sensor – those days may be over.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JSUpprqd2QQ

3D Sound One headphones made by the French company 3D Sound Labs are much more than a classical audio device. 3D Sound One is a personal 7.1 home theater sound system with a built-in head tracking module. When a user moves his or her head, the sound changes respectively in a real-time. Sensors pick up and adjust for even the slightest of micro-movements to immerse a user completely in his or her activity. By accounting for these micro-movements, 3D Sound One produces a sound experience with unprecedented realism.

Beyond 360° photos and movies, 3D sound is a key in creating truly immersive new worlds for a realistic experience. 

3D sound is a sound as you experience it in real life. You can identify where sounds are coming from around you. 3D Sound One headphones create a 360° fully artificial environment with sound sources perceived as coming from anywhere in a space – any distance or direction.

3D Sound One VR
3D Sound Labs is working on partnerships with virtual reality goggles manufacturers.

Right now, 3D Sound One headphones can be used for games, movies, and music. Drivers that create a virtual 7.1 sound card can be downloaded on PCs with Windows 8.1 or 10. Headphones also work with iOS mobile devices: you can download 3D Audio Player app from the App Store, and then drag&drop your audio or video files into the app. You don’t need any specific format or recording – the app is compatible with most multimedia formats available today. The French company plans to release the SDK to developers, so in the near future there will be more and more apps integrated with technology developed by 3D Sound Labs.

3D Sound One Zoom

The box on the left side of the headphones houses the motion sensors: a gyroscope, an accelerometer, and a magnetometer. Data travels from the sensors to the app via Bluetooth Smart technology. The sound goes through a wired audio link to provide an excellent sound quality. The hybrid system is powered by a rechargeable battery with more than 18 hours of battery life.

Movies will come with a real 3D sound, like in a theater, but you will not have to put 64 speakers at your home. Instead, you will listen to 3D audio over your headphones.

I tried 3D Sound One headset at the IFA fairs that took place in Berlin from 4th to 9th of September 2015. The experience was incredible! Unfortunately, after the show I found many complaints from Kickstarter backers about the poor quality of the first generation of the headphones (it was called NEOH). They claim that headphones break within few days after delivery. I hope that the company will fix this problem as soon as possible, and the second generation of headphones will be spotless. I keep my fingers crossed for 3D Sound Labs. Their idea has the potential to conquer the global market, but to make it happen the quality of their product must be perfect.

3D Sound Labs Maxime Sabahec credits Trend Nomad
Maxime Sabahec, the member of the 3D Sound Labs team working at IFA fairs. Photography: Trend Nomad

3D Sound Labs was founded in January 2014 by entrepreneur Dimitri Singer, consumer electronics specialist Xavier Bonjour (Technicolor, LG, Philips) and Supelec research engineer Renaud Séguier. Their aim is to revolutionize the user audio experience. If you have any questions concerning 3D Sound One headphones, please contact Xavier Bonjour directly at x.bonjour@3dsoundlabs.com.

www.3dsoundlabs.com

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