Abstract

Spatial audio has been at the core of the multimodal experience at the AlloSphere, a unique instrument for data discovery and exploration through interactive immersive display, since its conception. The AlloSphere multichannel spatial audio design has direct roots in the history of electroacoustic spatial audio and is the result of previous activities in spatial audio at the University of California at Santa Barbara. A concise technical description of the AlloSphere, its architectural and acoustic features, its unique 3-D visual projection system, and the current 54.1 Meyer Sound audio infrastructure is presented, with details of the audio software architecture and the immersive sound capabilities it supports. As part of the process of realizing scientific and artistic projects for the AlloSphere, spatial audio research has been conducted, including the use of decorrelation of audio signals to supplement spatialization and tackling the thorny problem of interactive up-mixing through the Sound Element Spatializer and the Zirkonium Chords project. The latter uses the metaphor of geometric spatial chords as a high-level means of spatial up-mixing in performance. Other developments relating to spatial audio are presented, such as Ryan McGee's Spatial Modulation Synthesis, which simultaneously explores the synthesis of space and timbre.

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