With a soundbar, homeowners are only getting an algorithm designed to make their brains think that sound is coming from a place that it is not – why simulate it when you can get the real thing?
By Rob Jones, CTO Enclave Audio
When it comes to setting up a dynamic at-home entertainment experience, it’s not the visual performance of your system but the audio performance that is going to have the greatest impact on your favorite content. While striking visuals are a component of a complete system, it is audio atmospherics that brings content to life and makes the viewer feel like they are truly immersed into their favorite movies, games, television shows and music.
Unfortunately, while most homeowners are onboard with the concept of home theater and enhancing their at-home experience, most sacrifice the quality of true surround sound for the convenience of a soundbar.
Presently, the term “home theater” conjures up thoughts of heavy loudspeakers, hulking subwoofers, complicated AV receivers with more connection options than the telephone switch boards of old and a feeling of dread associated with running (and concealing) speaker wire all over the room just to get a system connected.
The complicated setup process associated with home theater set up and management is one of the largest barriers to entry the market faces today and the reason why so many homeowners simply opt for a soundbar. While soundbars have their place in the world, they are simply not capable of providing the dynamic multi-channel surround sound experience that a separates-based home theater can.
With a soundbar, homeowners are only getting an algorithm designed to make their brains think that sound is coming from a place that it is not – why simulate it when you can get the real thing? What if users had access to audio systems that setup just as quickly and easily as a soundbar does, provided the same wireless audio experience as their favorite on-the-go Bluetooth speakers or headphones but with the level of quality better than a wired surround sound home theater system? In 2020, customers have access to multiple wireless home theater surround sound systems that check all the boxes above while overcoming the second hurdle to home theater adoption, affordability.
Today, customers have access to more wireless home theater system options than ever before thanks to the progression of WiSA technology, a worldwide standard for high definition, multi-channel wireless audio. The WiSA Association is made up of leading audio, CE, and manufacturing brands – including Enclave Audio – that are all working to advance the technology and provide low latency wireless audio solutions for TV, gaming, movies and music. This technology, found in speaker systems from a variety of manufacturers, removes the number one barrier to customer adoption of home theater by making complicated setup a thing of the past.
Two recent examples of WiSA Certified home theater solutions now available to customers include the Enclave Audio CineHome II and the THX-Certified CineHome PRO. By leveraging the WiSA technology, these new systems are capable of supporting up to eight channels of uncompressed 24-bit, 96KHz audio with less than 1 micro-second of synchronization across speakers with under 5 milliseconds of latency.
Manufacturers also have the ability to build on top of the WiSA technology to provide additional features to their consumers including auto-synchronization of speakers and even on-screen setup and calibration to help consumers overcome additional barriers to adoption.
The end result? There is now an entire ecosystem of wireless home theater products available to consumers capable of providing the same impactful and dynamic performance of wired solutions of the past which setup as easily and quickly as other wireless solutions within their home.
Beyond the freedom of wireless home theater sound in their living room or media room, customers can choose from systems that bring additional features into the mix and operate on dedicated wireless networks to safeguard against interference from the plethora of 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz wireless devices that exist within the home today.
As more and more technology moves towards a wireless future, today, there is no reason why your home theater and entertainment system cannot be wireless and provide the same level of performance customers expect within the home.