Tuesday, April 04, 2006


Waves has created some of the best signal processors in the business. They aren't cheap (why should they be?) and you get what you pay for.

One of the algorithms they've developed is Maxxbass, a psychoacoustic processor that increases the perceived amount of bass in an audio signal without actually adding any low end. It's based on the concept of the missing fundamental, a quirk of the human ear/brain that causes the listener to perceive notes that are non-existent when harmonics related to the note are present in a signal. Maxxbass adds a carefully calculated series of upper harmonics, the ear hears them, the brain fills in the missing low notes - and the listener experiences low end when none is there.

Since the majority of power in an audio system is used by the low end, being able to increase the loudness of the bass without changing its power (loudness and power are different - loudness is subjective - see "dB" below) means more room for the rest of the signal. Music can be mastered louder, speakers don't get damaged by trying to reproduce notes below their range, and computer speakers, headphones, and car stereos sound bigger than they could possibly be.

It's more amazing ingenuity from the people at Waves. It's also a great example of the incredible power and gullibility of the ear/brain interface.


At 2:09 PM, Blogger Dave Cavalier said...

How much are these guys paying you?

At 2:30 PM, Blogger Chrispy said...

I wish. I'd be happy to give them loads of advertising for just a single copy of their plugins... that would be several grand right there.

Honestly, they're that good.


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