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Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Sep 8

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9/8/2008 12:37 PM  RssIcon

A Point and Shoot 5.1 Surround Recording at an Aggressive Price Point

AMSTERDAM, SEPTEMBER 8, 2008 — Holophone®, the leading manufacturer of surround microphones, is introducing the revolutionary PortaMic 5.1 camera-mountable surround microphone, an easy-to-use and cost-effective means of recording surround sound, to the European market at IBC 2008 (Stand 8.C10). holophone_portamic-5-1_ibc-2008.JPG

The PortaMic 5.1 taps into the power of the company’s H4 SuperMINI, to offer users a professional-grade, 5.1 audio recording at a price that fits into any production budget – the mic retails for $599. Its compact size and low learning curve make it a perfect addition to any audio and video application including in-studio, field recording, documentary and ENG. What gives the PortaMic’s 6cm (2.5 inch) x 3.5 cm (1.5 inch) mic head its power are the six separate mic elements arranged to correspond with the typical 5.1 speaker setup in a studio or home theater. This patented design allows users to simply capture from a single point source, a discrete surround recording, with no additional mixing required.

Incorporating the industry’s latest broadcast technologies, the PortaMic 5.1 is equipped with Dolby Laboratories’ Dolby® Pro Logic II® encoder. This allows the PortaMic 5.1’s six audio channels to be encoded down to two channels, so it can be recorded to any broadcast camera or stereo recording device. With the encoder measuring only 2.5cm (1 inch) high, users have access to Holophone’s renowned recording technology while still being able to enjoy an uninterrupted sightline. Recordings made by the PortaMic 5.1 can be output to a stereo mini plug. To ensure a high-quality recording even in loud environments, the mic features unity gain control and a 12-db pad.

“The PortaMic 5.1 is breaking down the cost and learning barrier typically associated with recording in surround,” says Holophone CEO Jonathan Godfrey. “With the PortaMic 5.1, users can give a more immersive and three dimensional feel to their productions by easily and effectively capturing discrete and instantaneous 5.1 channels of audio without having to sacrifice their budget.”

For an easy transition from the field to post, the encoded recordings of the PortaMic 5.1 can be converted back to six channels using the company’s new D-CODE multi-channel decoder or Dolby Pro Logic II Decoder. In addition to being decoded in post, the PortaMic’s recordings can be broadcast in stereo and decoded to surround in viewers’ living rooms by the installed base of approximately 60 million Dolby Pro Logic II consumer decoders. Additional accessories for the PortaMic 5.1 include boom handles and pistol grips. The mic and encoder are powered by one 9-volt battery.

About Holophone

Holophone is committed to developing and commercializing products that use patented 3-D audio technology to bring the physical experience of “really being there” to a new level for all audio and visual productions by professionals and hobbyists. Holophone provides customers and business partners with industry-leading product and service quality. Holophone is firmly dedicated to providing outstanding value, excellence in service, and product performance.

Holophone® surround-sound microphones are patented audio recording devices designed specifically to address the challenges audio professionals face in capturing, recording and broadcasting multichannel surround sound. Developed by Rising Sun Productions in Toronto, Canada, Holophone systems effortlessly capture discrete signals that are ultra-realistic and provide the most accurate spatiality, audio imaging, and directionality of any recording device. Entirely compatible with all audio mixing, encoding, and playback systems, Holophone also enhances mono and stereo mixes. Holophone systems provide the perfect front end for all professional and consumer audio applications including HDTV broadcasting, standard broadcasting of live sporting and music events, feature film location recording, and studio recording for music, films, and worship applications. Holophone surround sound technology has been used for numerous national and international broadcasts, including the Grammy Awards and NFL Super Bowl. As a scalable system, Holophone technology is also available for license to the consumer electronics industry.

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